|1984 Honda CR500R|
|I purchased this bike in the summer of 1999 from dirtbike Don, of Edgerton. It had a fresh top end, some new plastic and new tires. Don said he had raced it in Byron and was only selling it because he was getting a Ducati. I was looking for something crazy and this seemed like it. I started it up and took it down the road at his house. When I turned around at the end of the road, I twisted the throttle with the bike still in second gear. The back tire spun on dry pavement and I was sold. I came back later with my friends Ben and Dan to pick it up, thinking evil thoughts the whole way home. For reference, listen to Fuel, by Metallica.
When we got it home we found out the true nature of the beast. First, it had very high compression. I had to jump on the kickstarter to turn the motor over. I couldn't start my own bike. Ben had to start it for me. Another problem: all that horsepower meant it was very hard to ride. In everything but a straight line, I was faster on my KDX200. Also, the back tire was already starting to round off after only one day of riding. Thankfully, the bike was still a lot of fun. It would either spin the tire or wheelie all the time. There was never enough traction. The CR500 would wheelie (without clutching) in fifth gear at 65mph (we got it up next to Dan's car out on County M, just to be sure). I have never ridden anything that was so crazy in my life. I have since talked to people that used CR500s as enduro bikes and I have nothing but respect. It's compete insanity.
We had some fun with the CR. One of the coolest things that we did with it was race cars. One time Ben was riding it and a mint 60s Corvette came driving by. We tried to get the Vette to have a serious race but he got on it while Ben was still getting the bike into the street and pointed the right direction. The car seemed like it was very fast and I think it probably was. None of that mattered. The CR had the Vette reeled and passed before he knew what hit him. Everybody knows about crotch rockets, but no one knows how fast dirt bikes can be.
Soon I became tired of having a bike that I could never start, and I wanted to get my $850 back. It was a lot of fun, but not realistic. So I put up some ads, and I found out that most people that were interested in the CR500 just wanted to see what a 500 was like and didn't really have any interest in buying it. Then a friend of mine, who shall remain nameless, decided he wanted it. He came to my house to test ride it and proceeded to wheelie up and down the street. There were quite a few people there and, needless to say, no one thought this was a good idea. We were all happy when he turned into my driveway. Unfortunately, as he came up the driveway, he gave it gas and the bike went over backwards almost instantly. The bike was all scratched and bent and he was bleeding. In the interest of everyone involved, I kept the bike.
Soon after, dirtbike Don called me up and asked me if I might be interested in trading the CR even up for a freshly rebuilt 1983 Suzuki RM125. The CR500R was gone the next day.
|1984 Honda CR500R Ridiculously fast, loud and dangerous. Also cheap. The characteristics of any great dirt bike.|