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'01 GS500

Started by Wagoneer, June 10, 2013, 11:06:05 PM

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Wagoneer

This is my first bike that I picked up in May. I grew up on dirt bikes and quads and I've had my motorcycle license for almost 2 years now so I finally decided to take the plunge. The bike wasn't perfect when I got it but it's almost there. Mechanically it was perfect with 30,000km with a fresh top-end and fresh brake pads and rotors. Shifts great, brakes great, handles great (aside from the stupidly soft suspension - we'll get to that later). The only things wrong with it were cosmetic. It was dropped by the previous owner so the tank is dented, left side of the tail fairing is scratched, pegs scratched, side engine cover scratched, that's about it. Some of the gauge lights were out, had no mirrors, tail light lens was cracked and rear wheel was out of round. It also needed tires. For all that, I got it down to a price that I couldn't believe. Here is a list of parts it already has:

-full Jardine stainless exhaust
-rejetted carbs
-K&N drop-in filter

First thing that I did when I got it home was swap out all the gauge lights with some LED's I had laying around from my previous vehicle and got everything working and then gave it an oil change and a fresh filter. Then I ordered new mirrors, tail light lens and tracked down a used rear wheel. I then took it to get safetied and ordered a set of Bridgestone battlax BT-45 tires (110/140). It got through the safety with no issues and I was able to get a surprisingly reasonable insurance quote for it. I do afterall live in Ontario, the land of BYOL insurance plans (bring your own lube).

So now I'm at the point where I was finally able to start riding it and enjoying it. These aircooled twins really are amazing. 30,000km on the odo and it purs like an angry kitten. Then I started noticing things that had to be addressed (as I do with EVERY vehicle I own). The headlight sucks more than my momma's vacuum. It could be the extremely old bulb in it, but even with a newer bulb the beam pattern is brutal. Most of my driving is going to be done at night, so I did some research and came up with two options - the dual dominators or the dual dominator projectors. I'm all for projectors, I've done retrofits on almost all my vehicles, but then I thought that on a motorcycle seeing is just as important as BEING seen. One single projector on the front wasn't going to make me very visible. So in the end I ordered the regular dominators with philips xtreme vision bulbs which I'm still waiting on. I'll update with install pics when they arrive.

The next issue was the suspension. I'm a big guy at 240lbs, and the stock suspension was tired. The front would dive to the bump stops on hard braking and I bottomed out on any medium bump and had to stand up for tracks or large bumps that I was lucky enough to see ahead of time. So again, after some research and emails to Sonic, I ordered a set of .90kg/mm fork springs with 15w oil. I'm almost done with the install currently and looking forward to testing them out. For the rear I went with a '06 GSXF600 Katana shock. This should have been the standard shock on the bike, it performs great. Might be a little stiff if you're sub 180lbs, but for heavier guys it's the perfect choice. I finished off the suspension with one of Chuck's 1/2" fork braces.

So I'm at the point now when this is all finished I'll have a safe, reliable and fun bike to ride for a couple of years. I think even if I end up graduating to a larger bike one day, I'll keep the GS500 for commuting to work. Only other thing I'd like to purchase for it is a belly pan to complete my sort of 'streetfighter' look I have going on.

And the obligatory photos:

First day I got it home.


LED's installed in gauges (the needles and redline numbers show up pretty well at night, just not in photos).



Sonic springs and Katana shock before installation.



Chuck's piece of artwork.



My girlfriend all geared up thinking she'll actually get to ride it. She just enjoys sitting on it and twisting the throttle. She's finishing up her motorcycle license course this week and she'll be shopping for a bike shortly. Unfortunately she doesn't share my love for naked bikes so I'm trying to convince her to get a GS500F but I think she's leaning towards a CBR250 or a new CBR500.



I'll update with more photos once I get everything finished up this week. After I go and put a few more hundred kilometers on it  :woohoo:
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

weedahoe

Pics look good. I think it'sgood your GF wants to ride and is the scared. Nice find
2007
K&N Lunchbox
20/62.5/142.5
chromed pegs
R6 shock
89 aluminum knuckle
Lowering links
Bar mirrors w/LEDs
rear LED turns
89 clip ons
Dual Yoshi TRS
Gauge/Indicator LEDs
T- Rex sliders
HID retrofit
GSXR rear sets
Zero Gravity screen
Chrome Katana rims
Bandit hugger
Custom paint
Sonic springs

cbrfxr67

"Its something you take apart in 2-3 days and takes 10 years to go back together."
-buddha

Zmerica19

very beautiful bike, almost identical to mine but white fairings in the rear. im doing some work on mine also, im about 220 so a stiffer shock in the rear may be beneficial. do i need the rear shock and upper and lower bolts from a katana or just the shock? thanks!

Wagoneer

Just the shock will do, the katana shock has identical mounts unlike the R6 shock. But replacing the bolts with new ones is probably a good idea.
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

Wagoneer

#5
Finished installing the sonic springs and katana rear shock. Man, what a different bike! Feels so much more stable and tight especially throwing it into a corner or braking. This is the most confidence inspiring thing you can do! No more bottoming out over every bump or while going into parking lots of driveways, no excessive brake dive, no shimmying over highway joists, just perfect.

For reference, I'm 240lbs and these are .90kg/mm sonic springs with the stock preload and air gap with 15w oil. In the rear is an '06 katana shock set on 3 for preload and 2 for dampening. I tried it on 4 and to be honest it's a little too stiff for street driving, but probably perfect for two-up riding. Dampening seems perfect, so I probably won't mess with that.

When I sat on my bike before the suspension swap, my kick stand would hit the ground when the bike was perpendicular to the ground. Now when I sit on the bike I still have about 1-2" of clearance beneath the kick stand. I think this is why people say the katana shock 'raises' the bike in the rear. I don't think that it does actually raise it, it's just the lack of excessive sag that essentially raises the bike under load.

I have a pretty long trip planned for tomorrow and I'm really looking forward to testing it out more.
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

Wagoneer

I was so happy with how she rides now I decided to splurge tonight and gave her an oil change ahead of schedule.

'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

Wagoneer

Forgot I had this build thread started. I guess I'll keep going with it! I've been battling with some lean top-end issues. I replaced the K&N drop-in with the stock airfilter and replaced the worn plugs with some new ones and it looks like the problems have went away even though the plugs still show some signs of running lean. But no more excessive oil use, no more top-end power loss, and no more misfires or surging! Bike seems to be a lot happier, so I'm happy. After the suspension upgrades and the lean issue worked out, I'm REALLY enjoying the bike now.

Installed some dual dominators and swapped in some Phillips Xtreme Vision 100+ bulbs. Much better than the stock 7" headlight.




Mounted my GPS. Quickly realized that I depend WAY too much on GPS since taking the bike on some longer trips. I might wire up a charging cable, I'll see if I run through too many AA's.




R6 throttle tube is on it's way. I seem to have a little play with the stock throttle tube so hopefully the R6 tube will go right in without having to adjust the cable. Can't stand the 1/4 turn GS throttle, can't wait to cut that down to 1/6 turn!

After this I think the bike is pretty much finished for the season. I'm still on the look out for a belly pan though, and might try fabbing up some brackets for a flyscreen, but that's about it on the want-list.
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

Snake2715

How did you mount the GPS?

Looks good.

98 Aztec Orange, F1R Cobra Exhaust, Jetted , Rear Hugger, Stainless Chain Guard, Sonics / Kat600, Fork Brace,
Superbike Bars, Pro Grip, Bar End Mirrors, LED conversion...

Wagoneer

Quote from: Snake2715 on July 15, 2013, 06:48:09 AM
How did you mount the GPS?

Looks good.
The GPS came with a handle bar mount. It's just a simple rubber sleeve held tight with zip ties. I actually have a waterproof case for my Garmin Nuvi that I have mounted now. The other GPS is strictly my off-road GPS with only topo maps.
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

Wagoneer

I did a re-fenderectomy today. The last owner did a pretty half-as$ "sorta" fenderectomy and I just went back and fixed it and tucked everything up nicely so it's finished. Amazing what a couple small things can do to clean up the bike! I was thinking about getting some new blinkers and tail light but the tail lens is brand new that I had to get for my safety (original one was cracked) and I really don't mind how everything looks now. I also like the fact that the blinkers are large and far away from the tail light so that they're noticeable. I'd rather have safety than a completely tucked tail with useless blinkers. Maybe I'll spend the money instead on a nice chain guard and maybe even a belly pan this year.



I also put on a new chain and sprockets last week. I went down to a 15 tooth front sprocket and I LOVE it. Amazing what an extra 500rpm can do on the highway. Not to mention no more chugging around slow turns in 2nd gear.

I switched to 20w50 oil last oil change since it was burning oil a little too quickly with 10w40. The bike seems to love 20w50. I've burned zero oil since the oil change and the bike seems to have a more consistent temperature now. Gear changes also seem a little more direct and I rarely get a mis-shift anymore.
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

GS Fan

Love that color.
Just recently purchased a similar darker blue 2001.

What blue LEDs did you use in the gauges?
resistors needed?

Wagoneer

#12
Thanks! I like the blue too. I've been wanted to paint it satin black but every time I wash it the blue just looks too good.

Just the 180 deg LED (4 facing out 1 facing forward). Zero hot spots as you can see. For the indicator lights I used forward facing LED's. They're actually a little too bright at night time.

No resistors needed. You just need them if you're puting led's in the blinkers.
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

jacob92icu

Good idea with the oil, I had never thought of raising the weight to see if that helped with the burning oil problem. I love this color scheme, and the darker navy blue one that GS fan is talking about above is my favorite! You should through some SS braided lines on there front and rear, you will also be amazed by that. 2nd best mod I did to mine back in the day other than suspension. My Jardine SS exhaust was up there too, but you have that already :) They sound super nice!
I am into buying bikes that people have given up on and fixing them up!

RIP Patrick Lajko, I miss you man.

Wagoneer

Yeah I was a little hesitant about the 20w50. You feel horrible pouring that syrup into the engine the first time. But it really seems to love it. I just did a long highway trip yesterday, 2-3hrs of 7,500rpm cruising and it just now got a tick below the full mark. This is going on almost 1000km now. I could really tell that the 10w40 got way too thin after a long highway ride. I finally feel comfortable with planning multiple day trips without bringing a quart of oil in my backpack! 
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

Wagoneer


Quote from: jacob92icu on May 02, 2014, 07:35:41 AMMy Jardine SS exhaust was up there too, but you have that already :) They sound super nice!
I love my Jardine system. I'm a sucker for a high revving twin. This is my budget ducati. It'll do until I can afford a monster 796 :P
'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

GS4me

Love that blue.   :thumb:

Had a Z-28 that I painted a similar color.  Thought about changing colors on that car several times but just couldn't do it.

Wagoneer

I haven't posted in a really long time but I thought I would give a quick update on the bike. Starting to repair the cracks in the rear fairings turned into an entire paint job so now it's semi-gloss black with a satin clear coat. I also went ahead and banged out the dents as best I could in the gas tank and filled them in. It actually came out quite nicely compared to what it was when I bought it. It was so bad that I almost scrapped the rear plastics and bought new ones but I managed to fix everything. Also replaced the headlight with the dual projectors, mini smoked blinkers, smoked LED tail light, new brake pads, tank pad, and exhaust wrap. Something is still up with the front brakes and causing it to be "chunky" and not linear at all. I think I'm just going to replace everything from the caliper up with new equipment (any suggestions for where to buy parts are welcome), but those are my only other plans for the rest of the season.

'01 GS500
-140 rear tire
-Jardine exhaust
-jetted
-Katana 600 rear shock
-Sonic .90 fork springs
-1/2" aluminum fork brace
-dual dominators
-R6 throttle tube

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