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Author Topic: 98 KX 500 HELP NEEDED ON GEARING/ETC. FOR WOODS/TRAIL RIDING  (Read 2694 times)
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98kaw5oo
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« on: July 02, 2008, 04:28:32 AM »

just bought 98 kx 500 nice clean looking and running bike,supposedly has wiseco piston,has a procircuit works pipe,and stock 14/47 sprockets.i was on another forum and searched and found out a few things but was told to come here.i do mostly trail riding,sometimes theres some tight stuff and sometimes you can get on it for a little while.i havent taken the bike up north yet but i can tell my driving it down my street that it needs to be really geared down.i feel like 1st gear winds out so long like i could probably do 40 miles per hour easily like it seems to wind out like a 250 in 2nd gear!.i know it will be constant pulling in the clutch and on and off the gas in some of the trails,i know its a 500 and its more of as desert bike but i love the insane power and want to keep it,i was told a 14 oz flywheel weight and go to a 13on the front sprocket then try it out then see if you want to go up a few teeth in the rear to make it even more geared down.as far as money the bike set me back a few bucks and i am limited on funds but want to do a few things before i head up to ride.am i ok with leaving the procircuit works pipe on or i do i have to get an fmf gnarley? should i go right off the bat and change the gearing to 13/50 or should i try it first with the 13 in front?.i was hoping just for now to get the healey 14oz.flywheel weight and 13 tooth front sprocket and leave it at that or will i be sorry i didnt do more? how many miles on the stock 2.6 gallon tank? thanks for your  responses.
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Danger4u2
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« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2008, 05:38:53 AM »

I built my 04 K5 to be more trail friendly.  Stealy flywheel weight, a reed spacer, and FMF Gnarly pipe, gave mine more low end.  I added them all at one time so I can't say which one helped the most.  Probably the weight.  The weight made it easier to start.  First gear is tall, it winds out so far for getting the hole shot in races.  I haven't played with changing the sprockets yet.  When I wear them out I may go a few teeth bigger in the rear.  The gas issue comes down to how much you gas it.  Each bike is different.  Environment plays big in the gas use.  Next time I go riding I'll carry my GPS and do a mileage check.
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98kaw5oo
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« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2008, 06:28:03 AM »

thanks danger for the reply.i think ill go with the steahly f.w.w. 13 front sprocket and see how it works,down the road get a gnarly(seems like everyone who rides woods has one) although i heard the procircuit is the best for the kx 500(maybe thats for desert riding),i also heard these bikes run hot and need to get air through the radiators and need to be moving unlike any other bike,i had mine on a stand the other day maybe for a good minute revving it up here and there nothing too crazy and noticed just a little bit of coolant come out of the overflow.hopefully it was because the bike was at a standstill.it seems some people like these bikes for woods/trail riding and some dont.im know a 250 will be more trail friendly but i would think the 500 would make up for it if you got some room to move it and when you get to open it up a bit and just to know you have that wicked power when you need it.ive heard from all different people these bikes to have anywhere between 50-65 horsepower,i though a stock had 59 or 60? let me know about that gps reading for the mileage when you do,thanks.
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stewart
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« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2008, 06:38:33 AM »

try a new radiator cap from the parts store for a toyota or nissian.. that will  work  just match cap psi  ,,its like 16  psi
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Hillclimb#42
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« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2008, 09:20:25 AM »

Keep the pro circuit. 13 tooth front steel sprocket is good and cheap. Keep that 14, you'll be puttin it back on in a year or two. I'm not a big fan of the flywheel weights. Look into Magura hydraulic clutch, best investment for the k5.
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98kaw5oo
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« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2008, 11:47:28 AM »

hi,ill keep the pro circuit which is good because i dont want to spend $195.00 plus shipping for a new gnarley.ill definitely keep the spare 14 (it might have to go back on for wide open stuff at a later time)i was thinking of the clutch lever being that in tight trails ill be pulling it in quite a bit.,so i take it the "MAGURA" is the whole clutch complete with the lever or without the lever or just the clutch or just the lever?i was at a dirtbike shop and they had a super easy pull clutch lever on the counter for customers to try and it was so easy to pull and it went front to back to prevent breakage but it was very pricey from what i remember but maybe worth it on a kx 500! let me know further about that magura(exactly what it is and does and if possible if you know what i should be willing to fork out for one.
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Hillclimb#42
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'97 kx 500, '96 kx 250, '98 yz 125, 03 ktm 105


« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2008, 01:32:06 PM »

Its high dollar, buddy. Like 250.00, but makes the clutch pull butter smooth. Its a hydraulic line, lever, and hydraulic actuator. Alot like the front brake. If you get one, make sure you take every precaution to protect the hydraulic line, or opt for the the steel braided line. All that power on an easy clutch is really sweet.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2008, 01:33:58 PM by Hillclimb#42 » Logged

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KXcam22
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« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2008, 01:50:21 AM »

98Kaw,
  I single track my KX.  Do a search and you will find lots of bush riding setup tips.  I think that many err on gearing the KX too low.  I run 14/48 which is just low enough for the impossible stuff.  Keep in mind that the KX has super low end torque and the power is very smooth down low (with proper jetting).  Mine almost never overheats, only with lots of clutch abuse.  Build a rad overflow bottle to fix that.  Extend your clutch arm. Look in my gallery for some pics of setup. Cam.
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barryadam
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« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2008, 04:40:30 AM »

Cam is right - if it's tuned well, it will pull well from all the waaayyy down low, which makes it really versitile.  But the stock first gear is really tall, and that makes some slower trails a bit more difficult in that you may end up lugging AND clutching a lot more.  My son rides our 2001 KDX 220, and his stock first gear is really low.  He has less problems with some of the slow stuff than I do as he does not have to work the clutch as much.  It's interesting to havee both extremes to ride to compare.
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98kaw5oo
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« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2008, 01:23:56 PM »

i think i may try the bike out the way it is then gear it down a little if i think i need it,and maybe get a flywheel weight.you are right that 1st gear is really tall.thats the only thing that im thinking might give me workout in the tight woods.at least when i change something i will be able to tell the difference.
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98kaw5oo
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« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2008, 04:47:02 AM »

kx cam you are right,i dont think i need to gear this down,i am running stock 14/47 gearing and it seems fine.finally just rode it on a small track and some tight trails for the first time,i might go up one or two teeth in the back to a 48 or 49 and nothing higher,i recently added the flywheel weight which i am glad i did.this bike has got great low end torque,i couldnt whip it around berms like my friends 05yz 250 but this was the first time riding the kx500 so i can see it will take some getting used to and is "DEFINITELY" for an experienced rider but i do like the power.i can see it being a fine woods bike.after riding this in tight woods,i think anybody would be a fool to go any higher than a 14 stock front and a 51 in the back.
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BDI
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« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2008, 07:32:16 AM »

I agree, you could go to the tracktor pulls with a 14-51 and place very well. You would probably blow this guys doors off cheesy cheesy cheesy cheesy cheesy
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« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2008, 07:56:54 AM »

I ran 14/49 on my bike and it was great. First gear for really tight and steep hill climbs and second and third were best for all around trail rides. On faster trails I could leave it in thrid gear and just roll the throttle. 4th and 5th still provided great top end.
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BDI
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« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2008, 08:30:05 AM »

The best and most rideable gear ratios tend to be one or two teeth +or-  the stock gear ratio. That's probably why most motorcycle manufacturers only recomend going up or down two teeth on the rear sprocket. If you go to far one way or the other you can cause things like, second becomes first and first becomes useless, or you can go the other way and make first gear second, again useless. I have seen a lot of people spend a ton of money on sprockets only to find out they really could not improve much on what the manufacturer had allready spent way more time and way more money dialing In. Of course there are exceptions to anything like if you want to set land speed records or do some tracktor pulling.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2008, 10:56:59 AM by BDI » Logged

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Albertan
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« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2008, 12:19:58 PM »

I just came back from a bunch of mountain/trail riding and ran either the stock gearing (14/47) or an 18'' rear with 14/46 gearing.  I agree with the comments that first is geared tall (I also rode a KDX 220, and first gear is incredibly low on that thing), but I think a 13 countershaft sprocket is a bit drastic.  I'd go to a 14/48 or 14/49 if I rode in the woods more.

Honestly, though, I think a KX 500 is complete overkill for woods riding; it prefers to run free in the open spaces.  I also think a skid plate and hand guards are a good investment, and a pipe guard if your pipe doesn't have any dings yet.
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