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Hi folks,

Well, I finally took a step up...300 steps up to be exact. Picked up a nice '81 SR500H. This bike will be the basis for my next build. It's overall in pretty nice shape, but looks can be deceiving. It's got some electrical problems and some rust in a few spots that will require sorting.

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Anyone out there have one of these old bikes? I am looking for a little tuning help.

Thanks - Bart
 

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I bought a new one in 1981, put 37,000 miles on it, then sold it. Still regretting that decision! Put a 2mm larger mikuni carb, K&N filter, and a SuperTrapp exhaust on it, really woke it up.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I bought a new one in 1981, put 37,000 miles on it, then sold it. Still regretting that decision! Put a 2mm larger mikuni carb, K&N filter, and a SuperTrapp exhaust on it, really woke it up.
That's my plan already! I ordered a new muffler and a K&N today. Now, 2mm larger, so I think that would be a VM36 Mikuni. I would imagine I will need to mess with the jetting quite a bit too, huh?

Thanks - Bart
 

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That's my plan already! I ordered a new muffler and a K&N today. Now, 2mm larger, so I think that would be a VM36 Mikuni. I would imagine I will need to mess with the jetting quite a bit too, huh?

Thanks - Bart
I think I bought mine from White Bros. with the exhaust. Came pre-jetted, just bolt on and go. I don't know if White Bros. is around anymore.
 

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Hi folks,

Well, I finally took a step up...300 steps up to be exact. Picked up a nice '81 SR500H. This bike will be the basis for my next build. It's overall in pretty nice shape, but looks can be deceiving. It's got some electrical problems and some rust in a few spots that will require sorting.

View attachment 8571

Anyone out there have one of these old bikes? I am looking for a little tuning help.

Thanks - Bart
That could have been mine from 30 years ago.

Could have been. It's not; a cager had brain flatulence and from him I contracted road-rash. The SR...went on to the scrap pile.

I was close to pulling the trigger on an SR 400; but it was too much money for what I'd want it for (second bike) and now, in my late 50s, the idea of working that VERY SAME kickstarter with that VERY SAME elaborate starting recipe, just doesn't do it.

If I were younger though, and could afford it...I'd be right there.
 

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There are two things I remember about my SR500. First one JustPassinThru mentioned with the cumbersome starting procedure. I got use to it, but never cared much for it either. And it was even harder starting when the engine was warm. Second was the vibration. Boy, that sucker vibrated. After 25 miles, my arms started itching because of the vibration. Some complain about the TW vibration, hell, the TW is like riding a Gold Wing compared to the SR500 vibration.

But...

...it was still cool!:p

Will look forward to your project with this bike!
 

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Back in the day, I had an SR500 and it's dual sport brother the XT500. My knee still
hurts from starting them. Lots of good times guessing what was going to fall off next.
Went through lots of license plates. Excellent handling and capable off road but a
young man's bike in my opinion.
 
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