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Mr. Lee
Mr. Lee GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
4/24/21 2:20 p.m.


Error404 Reader
4/25/21 7:02 p.m.

Congrats! I have a first year CB500F and I still love it. The fuel economy is great, the engine has a very "Yes I Can" feel to it, and they're overall just a very forgiving ride. I don't know if they changed anything but the factory tires were very whelming. Unless you're a sunday rider, I like Michelins for just dealing with everything.

Brian(formerly neon4891)
Brian(formerly neon4891) MegaDork
4/26/21 12:51 a.m.

I can't wait to pick it up. I'm looking forward to seeing how dirt capable it is as a beginner ADV.  I live in the sticks and have plenty of seasonal roads and the like to try within 10 miles of my house, nothing crazy. Other plans include submitting it for review to RCR once I've taken delivery. 

gearheadE30 Dork
4/26/21 8:31 a.m.

In reply to Brian(formerly neon4891) :

Congrats! That should be a lot of fun, and you will probably find it can do a lot more ADV than you'd expect. The internet is full of people that think you need a KTM 500 to ride down a gravel road or trail which I think puts a lot of people off. Just a few things to keep in mind as you play around off pavement, which is where all the fun is -

  • Riding on loose surfaces will make you want to tense up and hang on tighter - which makes it feel like you have no traction and will wear you out. That's no fun. Sitting or standing, squeeze the bike with your knees and use the lightest grip on the bars that you can. The bars are not for hanging onto; they're just a convenient place for the controls.
  • Leaning is the opposite off road of on pavement. On the street you lean your body with the bike, on loose stuff you can keep your body vertical and push the bike down into corners underneath you. This way, if you lose traction, you are on top of the bike instead of having the bike slide out from under you, and it just feels more confidence-inspiring.
  • Tire pressure is huge off road. You can let some air out for more traction; ~20-25 psi is safe most of the time if you're not playing rally bike. You can go as low as ~15 if you get stuck and need all the traction, but risk of bent rims or a pinch flat goes up. Bent rims usually come from hitting a sharp bump that bottoms the forks out, not from little rocks and stuff on the road. Not something to be scared of, just to keep in mind if you like speed.
  • A lot of street or newer riders on bigger bikes will slip the clutch a lot, without realizing it, when they are on loose surfaces because they are hanging on too tight and have a finger on the clutch lever. Cooks the clutch, and superheats the engine oil. Nothing wrong with riding with a finger on the clutch, just make sure you're not dragging the lever.
  • If its dry, that bike will take you a LOT of places even with street tires. If it is muddy or wet at all, you will be amazed how easy it is to get stuck. If you get bogged down in a wet or soft spot, put it in second gear, rev it up, drop the clutch to get the tire spinning and cleaned out, and power out of it. Be ready to pull the clutch in when you get traction again. Slowly trying to get out in first gear usually just digs a hole.

Looking forward to seeing some dirty CB500 pics!

the_machina Reader
4/27/21 3:48 p.m.

Sweet! Congrats on the CB500X, it feels very "right" under you and it'll feel smaller and more comfortable the more miles you put on it.

Brian(formerly neon4891)
Brian(formerly neon4891) MegaDork
4/28/21 12:11 p.m.

Pick up is delayed on account of waiting for the COO from Honda before they can title it. But I did get to test ride and I am rusty. 

Mr. Lee
Mr. Lee GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
4/28/21 2:03 p.m.

In reply to Brian(formerly neon4891) :

Jumped back on a bike after a 24 year break a few weeks ago I can comiserate with the rusty feeling. Felt bad enough to sign up for the MSF again. I've kept it on the back roads for the most part while getting back into the groove, have only gone into town for gas. After two weeks and two hundred miles it's starting to feel much better. Don't remember a hour ride being this exhausting though. LOL lets me know how out of shape I am.

dxman92 Dork
4/28/21 8:13 p.m.

Not sure if you have ever done any reading on the Rally Raid kits for the CB500X:



Brian(formerly neon4891)
Brian(formerly neon4891) MegaDork
4/29/21 4:56 p.m.

In reply to dxman92 :

I'm somewhat familiar with RRP, but several factors leave them low on my list. First, most of their basic upgrades have been addressed in the '19 refresh, such as a 19" front wheel and longer suspension travel. Second, they are a British company without a solid US distributor, so I'm not keen on everything involved in importing parts. 

My only imminent mod is a center stand, followed by a Corbin saddle by next spring. I'm partial to T-Rex Racing for protective parts. Time will tell what I do. 

03Panther UltraDork
4/29/21 8:26 p.m.

In reply to Mr. Lee :

I have not ridden on a regular basis on at least 10 years or so, myself. I "taught" myself how to ride, in 82, on a Honda CB450, but buying one, and riding to work. In town. I DO NOT recommend that method. (if ya gonna be stupid, ya better be tough!)

Since I'm about to get another K75S, and need to ride it to work every day (MPG) I need to find a MSF  'round here myself. I've never taken one, but I've heard it mentioned, even for experienced riders, it a very good thing to remind us we have developed a lot of bad habits.

Being on the back side of the proverbial side of the dreaded middle age, I don't find a comfortable bike to wear me out more... but I doubt I'll ever do 100+ miles on an ol' chopper anymore!

I do find I do not have as good of a "situational awareness" ability as I used to, so I have to improve my mind skills, as much as physical.

Mr. Lee
Mr. Lee GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
4/29/21 8:55 p.m.

In reply to Brian(formerly neon4891) :

This thread has me shopping these locally. It's a good looking bike!


In reply to 03Panther :

My dad was one of the MSF course instructors, and taught the advanced classes on the various military bases I grew up on. I rode shotgun on more than a few classes.  The more I ride, the more I find is coming back, but a refresher on the basics is never a bad idea. I fully intend to find an advanced course later this year if I can. I can't believe how unstable I feel at low speed stuff. I used to enjoy low speed drills and turning a bike around in the space of a parking spot. (could be a carb that needs to be rebuilt on the bike to. I don't trust it right now right off idle) right now it just doesn't feel "right".

03Panther UltraDork
4/29/21 10:29 p.m.

I bought my first bike at an extremely aggressive age of 19, and had no fear. My sister took a course in the 90's, and I was able to teach her how to ride a bit more aggressively. My niece never got around to a class, and I tried to teach her a bit in a parking lot, but found out I had no clue how to teach her something she did not partially understand! Being self taught, I don't really know how to explain how to do what my body knows how to do!

I've relied on my instincts and reflexes to get me out of situations that smarter people have the sense to never get in in the first place!!!

Again, I do not recommend this method to anyone... especially not myself, now that I'm not a a teen that's indestructible anymore.

ShawnG UltimaDork
4/29/21 11:07 p.m.

A monkey can go in a straight line if you put him on a bike and crack the throttle.

A good rider can do anything he wants as slow as he wants.

This is something I still need to work on.

gearheadE30 Dork
4/30/21 2:03 p.m.

The general rule I work around both for my own training and when teaching others is that if you can do it slow, it will make you safer and more confident doing it fast. But if you can only do it fast, it's eventually going to bite you. I know that stopping and balancing without putting a foot down just looks like a showoff thing, but being on 2 wheels is all about balance - and knowing you can balance is a great confidence builder when a situation suddently gets sketchy.

I'm also a huge proponent of slow figure 8s. Ride as slow as you possibly can, sitting or standing, doing figure 8s with the goals of going slower and eventually being able to do it with the steering on the stops. Doing this forces you to stay loose and use your body for balance instead of speed/inertia, and anything you can do to program your body to stay loose is a good thing. It is also excellent for clutch/brake/throttle control, and you can do it in a driveway, or a parking lot.

The MSF/Abate/etc courses are definitely good things, but I have seen one thing in particular from them that always bugged me - using all your fingers for the clutch and the brake. I don't know if they still push this, but it always seemed to be a relic of old bikes with drum brakes and heavy clutches to me. Only takes a finger or two to use the clutch and lock the front wheel on most modern stuff, and if you train yourself to ride with a finger resting on top of each lever, it's a great habit to have for being ready for anything.

Brian(formerly neon4891)
Brian(formerly neon4891) MegaDork
5/20/21 10:35 a.m.

After I picked it up it was parked for a few days due to weather. Then I did practice rides after work for a few days and got comfortable. I followed that by spraining my knee on a rutted seasonal road. I proceeded to ride 170 miles that day after regaining my composure. Then it was parked for almost a week while I recovered and I finally rode it into work today. 


Here it is parked next to my friend's 1400 Interceptor. 

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