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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey SBN:twofinger

I registered on here a while back but soon I'll actually have a bike to show for it..
I've had my license for about 2 years now after taking the MSF course, life got in the way of having a bike until now. Craigslist has countless bikes in my area and I've been focusing on 250 and 500 ninjas, though there are also some SVs local. I've got a good lead on an '07 500 and will probably be checking it out this weekend. Friends that ride are saying it's small and that I would be better off on the SV (I'm 6', 190), but I know that argument has been beaten to death here...

Regarding the 500, it's been lowered, is raising it back up an easy process or do I need to buy parts to put it back to stock height? Also, though it has around 7k I think the carbs will need to be cleaned, and maybe synced? What should I expect to pay for that service? Lastly, I bought gear when I got my license so I'm good there, and the helmet was bought new late in 2010. It's been stored inside in the packaging since so I'm assuming it hasn't deteriorated, and from what I've read shelf life for helmets is 5 years. Should it be good to go or should I just buy a new one?

Thanks :)
 

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Raising a lowered bike can be easy; it depends on how it was lowered.

I think in most cases the bike has only been lowered at the rear shock. Depending on the model, they use one or two 'links' which attach the shock to the swing arm or frame. Lowering links are shorter versions of the stock link, more or less lowering the rear end 1 - 3 inches. Depending on the link used, they often have two 'settings', stock height and lowered. If this type was used, you won't need to change the link; you just change the hole that the bolt attaching it to the shock (or swing arm) goes through. If not, well the thing to do is to go on eBay and buy a used one and then switch it out. You'll need a way to raise the rear end off the swing arm and a torque wrench. If you pay a shop to do it, it shouldn't be more than an hour of labor (and should be more like a half hour as it's changing 1 or 2 bolts tops.

If the front end was also lowered, then it's more work. Usually the springs have been changed or cut, as well as the fork tubes. Basically you buy new for tubes and springs to go back to stock.

As for your helmet, if it was me, I'd use it. I'm still using the lid I bought in 2008 and have only started to consider getting a new one this year. I'd suggest searching the manufacture's website for their recommended helmet lifespan and see what they say.
 

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The front end can be lowered in many ways.
1. As BikerRob stated.
2. The triple tree could have just be loosened, the fork tubes moved upward, then the triple tree tightened again. This is how most bikes are lowered. If this is the case, you will notice an inch or two of the tubes exposed above the top triple tree clamp. This is an easy fix as you just reverse the instructions given previously to raise it back up.
3. Lowering straps. This is a bit less likely as it is usually only used on drag bikes. This is basically a strap that bolts to the bottom of the fork tubes and when tightened, it compresses the fork to keep it low while racing.
 

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If you get the 500 you will like it. I started on that bike back in '87 and road it back and forth from SC to Philly with no problems and I was 6'2 210lbs. I'm betting front was lowered by sliding in the triples....most people are too lazy to mess with springs
 

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If you feel confident on a bike get the SV650, if not check for a nice used ninja 300. I really love those little ninja but I think the 250 is a bit underpowered while the 300 is just right for a newbie or even someone with more experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
They were asking 2500, which I'd talk down assuming it needs the necessary maintenance. Now I know I'm mature enough not to squid around on a 650, but having no real bike experience outside the MSF course, it's throttle control and general bike manipulation that has me leaning towards the 500. I felt comfortable in the class and passed fine, but I guess that doesn't really count for much. The 650 being a standard and naked and fuel injection does have some positives though. Thoughts and comments welcome.
 
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