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Old 10-11-2011, 03:17 PM   #106
ThatOtherGuy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by truck6driver View Post
You should replace the chain and sprockets together. A new chain on old sprockets will wear out the new chain faster. It can be done but you will get longer life changing them together and save money in the long run.

The Primary Drive brand at Rocky Mountain ATV is a good chain (= to or better tensile strength) and is way cheaper than the name brand ones. The sprockets are good too. I haven't needed one for the Ascot yet but have run them on other bikes with great results.

http://www.rockymountainatvmc.com/ty...=36&webCatId=9

Ray
Thanks for the advice, but I don't think I will need it anymore.

I just sold the Ascot today. The way I saw it she was living on borrowed time anyway. The guy I sold it to has plans to restore it to its former glory though.

The Ascot made a good bike for me to cut my teeth on, but I'm ready to move on to something newer. I'm going bike-less for a while, but I'll hopefully be back on the road soon.
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Old 12-16-2011, 12:15 PM   #107
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It has been a few months since I saw this on the front page so I deceided to pull it back from the basement.

My Ascot has her mittens on now and I have been riding it almost daily keeping my hands warm.

So where have you folks been getting you chain and sprockets from. Place I buy my stuff from dosen't have the sprockets for it.

Ray
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Old 01-16-2012, 02:44 PM   #108
ccantagallo
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Chain

I just stumbled on this thread and it convinced me to sign up. I bought a FT500 towards the beginning of last summer. This winter I have turned it into a project bike. I am reluctantly calling it a "Cafe Racer". Basically just trying to remove weight, make it handle better, and finally improve the looks a little bit. If anyone is interested check out the blog link I have in my signature.

As for finding a chain and sprocket for the bike, I have found the following site helpful for parts. And they sell chains and sprockets.
http://www.thumperstuff.com/FT500.html

My chain and sprocket are basically shot as well. But I think I am going to convert to a 520 chain and sprockets. It will buy me a little extra room for a bigger rear tire (if I go that route) and 520 is a more common size it seems like. I have not sourced all of the parts for that yet though.
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Old 01-17-2012, 08:21 PM   #109
Bake
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I rode this bike prospecting in Central Colorado around Monarch for a couple of summers. I rode about a thousand off road miles on my FT. You have to install Helicoils at the valve inspection caps and also the cam cover or they will eventually pull the threads from the soft alloy Honda cast the head out of. I pulled the head, decarboned the piston while I was there, drilled and installed all the Helicoils in the head, and that was the end of the leaks. Don't over torque those screws if yours isn't leaking yet and I would advise making sure they haven't vibrated too tight, because with that soft alloy head, once the thread is starting to pull out, it's done the next time you try to tighten it. They are 6mmm, they don't need much, like finger tight and then 1/2 turn. Red RTV sealant on the cam cover, and mine never leaked again. Adjust the chain drive balancer once and it's probably good to go. The fork seals are kind of a bear, being recessed down in the leg about 2". It seems like Dennis Kirk used to have a lot of parts. I replaced the steering head cheapo bearings with tapered roller and that makes a world difference, no more notchy steering.The starter issue isn't the electric starter motor, it's the Rube Goldberg scabbed on starter clutch and solenoid behind the little 1" x 2" cover. That fills up with mud and corrosion, and the starter clutch inside basically does not have a good oil supply, it's by splash only and it's way up high from that action, so eventually the rollers in the clutch get baked on oil film, get gummy, don't roll very well, and the whole shebang is mucked up. I removed the starter clutch assembly, ground off the weld that tacks it together, pulled it apart, de gunked and polished like a mirror all the rollers, packed the whole thing with Castrol wheel bearing grease and tack welded it back shut, it was a lot better. Also greased up the worm gear it slides on. If there was an oil supply line done up to it like it should have been done, then the starter would never have been an issue, it just doesn't get proper lubrication.Eventually the grease would get washed out but the splash is so insignificant, it'll take a long time I think. Keep a hot battery and squeaky clean contact at the terminals. I had the custom seat cover made by Sargent back in the day, (1994) they had just gotten started and put the gel pad in mine also, it was fine then. Mine had the Cobra muffler, and the carb diaphragm usually needs replaced. I put Progressive wound springs in the forks with air cap plumbed into a T fitting so I could adjust them a little bit. I usually had 4-5 lbs air in them. I had Progressive shocks on the back also. I put on Maier Hand Guards, 2 steel braided brake lines instead of those mushy feeling fat hoses, Galfer brake pads and I made a steel screen headlight protector because way back in the hills where I was going was not a place to lose a headlight from a rock. I rode mine about 25,000 miles. A Fun Bike once the generic issues are sorted.
















At the top of Tincup Pass Colorado getting a drink. I geared mine way down with a 48 tooth rear sprocket, the highway speed dropped to a cruise at 50 mph but I didn't care, I needed hill climbing ability also. The FT has a close ratio gearbox unlike the XL500 engine that had a wide ratio.






Just crossed Mosquito Pass 13,000 ft., heading into Leadville, Colorado





Heading from Taylor Lake to the
Divide in the distance, going over Cottonwood Pass



Mirror Lake near Tincup, Colorado




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Old 01-19-2012, 02:39 PM   #110
SloCalSpode
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Sweet write up! Thank you for the trip back down memory lane.
The 82 was my first street bike. Learned to ride it chasing my
friend through the canyons above Malibu Ca. on his 82 750 Interceptor.
I put +32,000 miles on that bike. Somewhere around 12,000-15,000 mi
the solenoid performed Seppuku and spilled it guts and several gear teeth.
I got good at bump starting that bike after several years. In the end it
was the cam chain and tensioner, as well as a new FZ750, that put an end to
me riding the ole FT500. It put a lot of smiles on my face. And taught me some
value able lesions about motorcycles in general. I need to see if I can dig up
some old pictures out of the attic one of these days.
Right now the FT is in about 100 pieces. Stored in my garage. Waiting for the
day I get motivated to put it back together.
Jeff
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Old 02-01-2012, 05:02 PM   #111
roadrunnerADV
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FT500 Ascot Project Bike (continued)

Wanted to report that the Ascot is now "revived" and I'm enjoying the ride! Here is what it looked like when I picked it up ..


Here is what it looks like now... pictures were taken on a 100 mile ride...


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Old 02-02-2012, 01:44 PM   #112
truck6driver OP
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Nice job on the rebuild. Really nice bike you have there.

I also Have a Nighthawk and an Ascot.

Ray
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Old 02-02-2012, 05:13 PM   #113
SloCalSpode
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Impressive.
A lot of love when into getting your bike back in shape.
Very well done indeed.
Jeff
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Old 02-02-2012, 07:18 PM   #114
roadrunnerADV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by truck6driver View Post
Nice job on the rebuild. Really nice bike you have there.

I also Have a Nighthawk and an Ascot.

Ray
Thanks Ray ... great minds think alike, I guess ..
Quote:
Originally Posted by SloCalSpode View Post
Impressive.
A lot of love when into getting your bike back in shape.
Very well done indeed.
Jeff
Thanks Jeff ... a lot of love and a lot of $$ as it turned out. But, it did keep me pretty well occupied for 6 months
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Old 02-05-2012, 04:26 PM   #115
canadaler
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Just picked up a VT500 on the weekend.

Tank apparently leaks, battery is long since dead, couple of broken turn signals and missing the right side cover. Other than that...it looks pretty decent for $500.





I'll try getting it running this week, then some big mods are in store.
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Old 02-05-2012, 06:41 PM   #116
truck6driver OP
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Nice score. Parts are around on E Bay but can get a bit pricey at times depending on the parts you are looking for.

Keep us posted on your progress.


Ray
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Old 02-07-2012, 02:03 PM   #117
roadrunnerADV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canadaler View Post
Just picked up a VT500 on the weekend.

Tank apparently leaks, battery is long since dead, couple of broken turn signals and missing the right side cover. Other than that...it looks pretty decent for $500.

I'll try getting it running this week, then some big mods are in store.
Looks pretty nice! Good luck on getting it running!
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Old 02-07-2012, 02:38 PM   #118
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Man...that part has been a battle the last two days. It hasn't turned over for about 6 years. Finally, finally got it running today after much head scratching, carb cleaning, spark checking and cranking.

The reason it wouldn't start? Of course the battery is completely dead so I jump started it. Turns out the cables I used weren't heavy duty enough to crank it and properly power up the ignition. At least that's what it appears to be. Changed jumper cables...boom...started right up.

I had spark all along, but apparently it was just too weak before I properly powered up the system.

Now for some fine tuning on the carbs tomorrow. I'll probably pull the caps off the pilot air screws and try some fine tuning there.
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Old 02-07-2012, 02:41 PM   #119
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COOL DEAL!!
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Old 02-07-2012, 03:08 PM   #120
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In the 80s here in Australia we got the FT500. They were not called Ascots as no one here would have known what that name meant.

I had a black FT500 and loved it. Just a shame it got written off in a head on accident I had with a car.

The below photo was taken at the Alpine Rally and it was -5c.

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