ktm 500 1988


13 replies to this topic
  • hardinglad

Posted 28 December 2009 - 07:07 AM

#1

always told myself if a cr500 or a kx500 came up for sale close to me i would buy it.

not 1 has came up for sale in over 2years. but today i found a ktm 500 for little money and brave and local. (never knew ther was such a thing) so googled it a few times and went onto youtube.

looks like a beast. never ridden a 500 2stroke before so shall be a fun experience. going to look at it tomorrow all being well.

had alot of 2strokes although none of them ktms.

so anything different with these things.
i know check the bushing, all the bearings, funny noises when its running, losing power, no water in the gearbox, is the clutch shagged

things that dont worry me is chain, sprockets and plastics all easily bought.


so any ex 500 riders give me some info.
the ower says its a cross between bullriding and holding onto a harrier jet. power wise it couldnt be much different to my husky both around 55hp although its fourstroke so power delivery is so different

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  • Mike in Fresno

Posted 28 December 2009 - 07:38 AM

#2

one thing that comes to mind on an older bike with magnesium cases is that the paint on the inside can wear or get scratched and in time the water then eats thru. I had a friend with this problem and he couldnt buy a new case so he shopped used for a year to find it. Used JB weld til then.

  • Just John

Posted 28 December 2009 - 12:35 PM

#3

Never owned a big ktm....(would love to take a 550 for a ride)Bought a brand new kx500 in 95 and owned 3 cr 500's.
Words can not explain a 500,big vibrating beasts that will put a huge grin on your face.....and do there very best to hurt you.

Good boots and know where the piston is before you kick.
On jap 500's when cold,lean them over until fuel dribbles out and they start with no problem. Be careful,enjoy !

  • hardinglad

Posted 28 December 2009 - 04:50 PM

#4

well il dig the landrover out of the yard. Useless freelander worst car/4x4 ever invented. Cant go up icy hills a car could drive up.

Anyways back to the topic i will get the trailer linked up and get a look at this beast in the morning. Really looking forward to having a go on a 500 2stroke. Everyone seems to rave on about the power in them i think its all lies and there tame lol

  • KTM-548cc

Posted 28 December 2009 - 07:03 PM

#5

examine the bike very closely, it could be a money pit if its on the verge of being worn out. they are good bikes but different animals than the jap machines, some oem parts are hard to find and theres only a very small selection of aftermarket parts.

  • ktm300

Posted 29 December 2009 - 03:48 PM

#6

I had a 91' 550DXC for a few years, was my first real dirt bike I bought brand new, and it was a horrible bike to learn on, hard to start and vibrates simular to the paint shaker at the hardware store.

Not many bikes had more torque or could guzzle fuel like that thing, the 500's were fast but none of them made great woods bikes.

  • sbest

Posted 29 December 2009 - 09:17 PM

#7

Hmmm, drum back brake, rickity electronics, little aftermarket?
I'd pass it up for something in the 90s or newer, like a 360 or 380.
But then, it wouldn't be a 500 would it?

  • fender bender 59

Posted 30 December 2009 - 08:07 PM

#8

I've got a friend that has a 86 or 87 500... He loves everything but starting it. This beast is a left leg kick without any compression release. He'll lean it on his truck and stand on a wooden box to kick it with his right leg....

  • Fetona

Posted 30 December 2009 - 10:18 PM

#9

I had a 91' 550DXC for a few years, was my first real dirt bike I bought brand new, and it was a horrible bike to learn on, hard to start and vibrates simular to the paint shaker at the hardware store.

Not many bikes had more torque or could guzzle fuel like that thing, the 500's were fast but none of them made great woods bikes.


So how is your 300 in the woods? :moon:

  • OrbaBill

Posted 31 December 2009 - 08:09 AM

#10

I had an 85 500 MXC, one of the very first boatload of 500's when they first came out in 85. I rode the snot out of it for 3 years, won a couple of D-36 #1 plates with it (or in spite of it!) It was very fun to trail ride, and not so much to race. Lots of power that would break the rear wheel loose at any speed in any gear if you whacked the throttle open, and I flew off countless turns because I came in waaaaay tooooo hot. Oh, I wanted to correct sbest on the brake issue, only the 85 had the drum rear and KTM went to discs on the rear of everything in 86 on. I also had no ignition problems after the original ignition was recalled due to erratic spark at kicking speed that kicked back so hard it bent 3 kickstarters in the first couple of months, each one beefier than the last as KTM made running production changes on this part. It also ran backwards a couple of times when it kicked back. After they figured out the erratic spark issue was causing the kickbacks, KTM sent me a different Motoplat, it quit backfiring and worked perfectly the 3 years I rode it.

Open class 2 stroke power is pretty amazing. In our local riding area where I lived at the time there is a big steep sand hillclimb that was a great test of power. Only the strongest 250's could make this climb (no Husky 250 ever saw the top), after making a high speed run at it & hitting the bottom tapped out in 4th, and end up in 2nd at the top. I could stop the 500 at the base of the hill, put it into 3rd, drop the clutch and motor right over the top in 3rd.

BUT, there are negatives. One of my friends nicknamed it the "Terminator" as it would try to kill you if you weren't careful. You had to use DISCRETION with the throttle. Ridden appropriately, I called it "Gentle Ben".

Sure they vibrate, but the motors are bulletproof because you never need to scream them. My stock piston was still tight after 3 years of racing and hard trail riding. You have to kick it like you want to kill it, no half assed kicks.

But the big bottom line is the condition of the bike. If the frame, wheels, or motor is roached, walk away. If it is decent, give it a whirl!!!

  • sbest

Posted 31 December 2009 - 08:46 PM

#11

I've got a friend that has a 86 or 87 500... He loves everything but starting it. This beast is a left leg kick without any compression release. He'll lean it on his truck and stand on a wooden box to kick it with his right leg....



Ha, I have this problem with my 300 as well. Heck, had a pile of kick start thumpers over the years, Husaberg, XL500, XT600, even my 70s XL250 and CR250 were no joy to start. You'd think I'd learn. It is like a hangover, the joy makes the pain forgotten. Dang I love my 125 for at least joy that it is to start!

Hey, I don't mind being corrected. Only way to learn, and I love hearing what the old bikes were like.

I have both a 125 and a 300, new with the 300 but have ice screws in it and had it out in the mud and the snow the past week. With no lights or battery it feels lighter than my street equipped 125. It is pretty much as good as the 125 as a woods bike, except for when it comes to starting it.

  • mightyhammer

Posted 20 April 2012 - 07:54 PM

#12

On a whim, and the price was right, I picked up an '85 MX500. I have only ridden it a few times around my 2 acres, but am dying to get her out in the breaks on the Snake. Leaves a smile on my grill every time. I'm an 'ol school Hoon CR500 rider and I have to admit, I really like the 'ol Katoom. It vibrates my feet and ankles terribly, but besides that it is an absolute HOOT to ride. If it appears to be in decent shape, give it a whirl. Remember tho.... It has gobbs and gobbs of get. And if you are not careful it will try to hurt you. Remember there is a learning curve and you should be fine.

  • ktm300

Posted 21 April 2012 - 07:48 AM

#13

They vibrate like mad, hands and feet to sleep, and crack the pipe some where every ride, go through fuel so fast you'd swear theres a hole in the tank.

And you didn't over shot corners because of the speed, it was the piss poor front brake, remember ??

  • harryhandshake

Posted 21 April 2012 - 08:32 AM

#14

they shouldnt vibrate any more than other 500cc bikes. might have crank bearings heading south if you got alot of vibration




 
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