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'08 GS500F Rebuild

Started by Tyler.M, October 18, 2012, 02:45:43 PM

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Hi All,

My name is Tyler, I live in Harrisonburg Virginia and I currently attend James Madison University.

I got my license over the summer and picked up an '08 GS500f with around 10k miles on the clock.  I've had a blast all summer with it, and now that it's getting cold I'm ready to delve into a simple Streetfighter build.  I want to cut my teeth on this bike so when I upgrade down the road, I have some experience working on bikes in depth.

On to the pictures:

The bike isn't perfect... Whoever owned it before the people I bought it off of obviously dropped it a some point and left it out in the sun. The tail fairing paint and graphics are faded and peeling. The fairing itself is ugly and chipped. The Left and ride side fairings are completely missing, and the nose fairing is cracked.  When I picked it up, it had no mirrors, no front turn signals, and the mount points for the signals were both  cracked.

I've been riding it like this (except with the addition of handlebar mirrors) for about 600 miles now, and though its ugly as hell, it's served its purpose.  Now that I have some time (and a garage of my own after buying a house earlier this year) I'd like to get it to the point where I actually like the look of the thing. Since I'm lazy and cheap, the best option is obviously streetfightering it(is that a verb now?)

First things first will be to replace the awful front fairing and headlight with a single headlight and turn signals on the front.  I prefer the look of the E headlight, so I'll be offering up my F headlight for a straight trade.

Then, I want to replace the handle bars as the ones I have are rusty and busted, and get some barends to replace the ugly ones I have now.

Next, I want to either A:) Replace the tail fairing or B:) attempt to repaint and replace the graphics myself.  I'm not sure which one would be cheaper.

Next, The engine cover is scuffed to hell. I want to either replace it, or JB weld it and paint the engine cover (with the rest of it) a nice flat black.  My question with this is, would high-temp paint reduce the cooling qualities of the GS engine because it's air cooled? 

I also will paint the pipes a flat black too, but I want to find an exhaust leak first.  Not really sure how to go about doing this, but the interwebz will give me a good idea.

I don't want to do any of that cutting the subframe nonsense or replacing the front end with a GSXR front end.... yet.  Performance and more extensive upgrades will come eventually as my budget opens up, so we'll see. 

But yeah! Nice to meet you all and I'm excited to be a member of this community.  My ultimate goal is to see some bike track time, but for right now I'm just trying to get a good 10k under my belt and do some basic maintenance.  I'm pretty green when it comes to all of this stuff, so be sure I'll be asking lots of questions... and encountering lots of problems due to my own stupidity.


No problem painting the engine black.  The 89-96 GS500 models all had black engines and they didn't have an oil cooler as yours does on the 04+ models... plenty of people logged over 100kmiles on these engines with the original setup.
... Also plenty of people that have done streetfighter modding and painted the engine black with later models and logged well over your 10k mile marking goal.  In fact, I read somewhere once that black engines actually dissipate heat faster.  Regardless of whether that is true or not, you won't have a problem with your color choice affecting engine temp.

- Bboy

Sonic Springs, R6 Shock, R6 Throttle Tube, Lowering Links, T-Rex Frame Sliders, SW-Motech Alu-Rack, SH46 Shad Topcase, Smoked Signals, Smoked LED Tailight, ZG Touring Windscreen


Thanks, good to know.  I'll look into a paint type and work on it once the weather decides to get cold.  Who would've thought I'd be riding comfortably towards the end of October? Dayum


2009 GS500F


Quote from: Roxtar on October 19, 2012, 07:09:03 PM
ahh, a fellow Duke (class of '04)

:cheers: We're everywhere it seems, and I'm okay with that.




Quote from: BassWoW on October 24, 2012, 02:15:13 PM
Nice bike

Thanks, it needs some work but for a first bike, I can't complain.


So,  after doing some research and trying to figure out what I want to get out of motorcycling, I've decided to change directions on what I want to do with the bike.  At this point, I think my best bet is to try to put it back together, make it look all fancy and start prepping it for some track time.  Ultimately, thats what I wanted to do in the first place with the bike and motorcycles. A streetfighter is cool, but most tracks require fairings to run, so fairings I'll have to add.

A member here set me up with a great deal on some pretty great fairings and hardware to boot. Over this winter I plan to do a few things to get it looking put together:

Paint fairings and gas tank white or suzuki blue. 
Repaint the frame (some gas damage on the left hand side)
Figure out clutch slippage issue
Replace exhaust, intake and rejet
Swap out bars
Remove the fender
Try to consolidate some of the electronics
Replace the throttle and clutch cables
Replace the front end?
Replace the rear shock


Got a replacement upper fairing coming in soon, which is good. It has some rash though, so I'll need to repaint it and fix it up, but still in better shape then the one I got now. I think I'd like to do a fender elimination too, so that's added to the list.  I've pretty much set my mind on painting the bike completely white, for two reasons: visiblity and I haven't seen too many all white gs500f's. I have a buddy here that does vinyl wrapping for some race cars and such, and I might have them do some GS500F logo stuff on various parts of the bike.  I'm running through a few ideas on the magical photoshops, so we'll see how this goes.  I honestly wouldn't be doing half of this stuff if it wasn't so freakin' cold.... I just want to ride the thing

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