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2012 350 excf 13/52. Also in new jersey. Would love to know where the faster terrain is... are you down south? I mostly ride pa (legally ) mostly rocky technical single track 13/52 allows front up easily and great 2nd 3rd control. Top end is rarely used. Could get 65 on fire road with room lefy

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I need some feedback on gearing. I have a 500EXC which came with 15/45 gearing. First gear was about the same as my last Honda motocross bike, while sixth gear was so high you have to be going 65 mph, to shift into it an cruise at 80. I put on a 14 tooth countershaft and it really feels lower. First gear is low enough for must stuff so far, and 6th gear seems about right for 55 mph cruising without over- revving the motor in the highway between trails. My question is this: I keep reading that everyone with a 350/450/500 off road model is using either a 14/48, 13/48, or 14/50 combination. I can't see how 6th gear doesn't end up the same as a close ratio 5 speed with one of these combinations. Remember, I have NOT tried any of these, so I'm reaching out for some feedback?

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Hi Guys,

 

Just ordered a new 500 and looking into gearing.

 

I've heard from a group of people that 13/48 is a great setup on the 500. Its as low as you can go with the stock chain while keeping freeway speeds reachable. What I have heard is its reaching the limit of the chain length and you need to rotate the wheel blocks to fit it. Is this true?

 

How many people have this gearing that can talk to its use and install?

 

This bike will be used for high mountain desert and offroad with times of tight stuff.

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Hi Guys,

Just ordered a new 500 and looking into gearing.

I've heard from a group of people that 13/48 is a great setup on the 500. Its as low as you can go with the stock chain while keeping freeway speeds reachable. What I have heard is its reaching the limit of the chain length and you need to rotate the wheel blocks to fit it. Is this true?

How many people have this gearing that can talk to its use and install?

This bike will be used for high mountain desert and offroad with times of tight stuff.

Congratulations on the purchase!

You will not be disappointed.

I'm running that combo on my '13 500 and it works great for me. I am using the stock chain with the axel blocks flipped. I ride Sierra single track and can still cruse easily at 65. I've read some riders are concerned of excessive wear on the chain because of the 13T counter sprocket. I have nearly 100 hours and 2500 miles with no drivetrain issues. Keep the chain clean & lubed and they'll lest a long time.

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Congratulations on the purchase!

You will not be disappointed.

I'm running that combo on my '13 500 and it works great for me. I am using the stock chain with the axel blocks flipped. I ride Sierra single track and can still cruse easily at 65. I've read some riders are concerned of excessive wear on the chain because of the 13T counter sprocket. I have nearly 100 hours and 2500 miles with no drivetrain issues. Keep the chain clean & lubed and they'll lest a long time.

Please let those riders know that the 500 XC-W comes with a 13T(for certain 2012) up front so that point is a non issue.

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   I have a 2014 500 EXC , put 14-50 gearing and love them . I do a lot of technical rocky and single track . With some occasional desert runs . I have to ride a lot of road to get to the trails and cursing speed 55 is great . Top speed I hit 96 , so it is probably a true 87 top speed. Definitely balance the tires 3oz front and 3.5 rear made huge difference on the road. Speed safely !!!

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But once again, it comes down to the type of riding you are doing. If you are into more highway/fast fire road type riding for longer distances, then sure, you'd want to make sure you kept the revs down. But really, how fast do you intend to cruise at? Set it up how YOU'd like, cause you can. If your priority is maximizing gas mileage, engine life and such, then gear it high and you'll be happy with that. Ah, the sweat smell of freedom, isn't it great!

Need about 85 mph sustained cruising speed, and no motor work before 50,000 miles minimum.

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Need about 85 mph sustained cruising speed, and no motor work before 50,000 miles minimum.

Hey spud, I think you're describing a Goldwing, or at least a KLR650, which is basically the same.
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I ride desert which can be anything from flat out hauling the mail to technical loose rocky stuff. With my 450 the best combination I've found is 14/52. It does everything relatively well. I don't do much tarmac if it can be helped but when I do I have no issue cruising at high speed and keeping the revs down.

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Up here in NorCal the tight singletrack is TIGHT with rocks and roots and at times you wish you were on a trials bike. Also with really low gearing you don't end up slipping or even using the clutch as much when going real slow. Not abusing the clutch makes a huge difference when the temp is up and you're going slow.

Sounds like you need a Rekluse clutch.

Even the Rekluse will contribiute to the heat when geared to high. The Rekluse works by allowing the clutch to slip is a controlled manner. Clutch slippage heats the oil. 

If I am geared correctly for the terrain and can limit my clutch use on hot days in the really tight sections my bike rarely spits and coolant and my fan usually only comes on when I stop.

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I got 14/50 on my 14' 500exc and it's a great all around combo IMHO. Plenty down low and cruises at 70mph with enough on top to hit 100mph. Only use first gear on steep hills with no room before to get any speed built up or on short steep hill climbs with deep sand or silt. I kind of want to try 13/50 though.

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Hehe, Mike Tucson maybe? Rides a very nice wheelie!

Thanks for the shout out rodgertheshrubber, sure wish i could do it.

Hey all. Mike Tucson here out in the desert. Over the past 2+ years I've tried about every combination of gearing on the 500 front and rear there is.

I thought i saw an earlier post of a 500 pulling 120. Have to call bs on that if so. Ain't happening on this planet. Not enough motor and too much drag. I thought the 530 had the same displacement as the 500 but the internal gearing is prob different. The 500 just can't push through the barrier to get that fast in any gearing or tire combo. If so, I'd love to see the evidence.

Like others have stated, gear it to your terrain and riding style as there are many options.

Ride safe...

Edited by oldfuddy

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Hi Guys,

 

Just ordered a new 500 and looking into gearing.

 

I've heard from a group of people that 13/48 is a great setup on the 500. Its as low as you can go with the stock chain while keeping freeway speeds reachable. What I have heard is its reaching the limit of the chain length and you need to rotate the wheel blocks to fit it. Is this true?

 

How many people have this gearing that can talk to its use and install?

 

This bike will be used for high mountain desert and offroad with times of tight stuff.

Just picked the bike up and put my first hour around town going through all the gears and being gentle. I installed the 13/48 gearing before I ever started the bike up so I have no comparison to stock gearing but these are my thoughts:

 

1. I would never go any higher than 13/48. This is plenty high for any freeway speeds. Cruising at 65 is cake in 6th. 55 is too slow for 6th. It feels like I'm almost lugging the bike. If i were to make a change, I would gear it lower yet.

 

2. The stock chain works just fine for 13/48. I was concerned about flipping the axle blocks like there would be an issue with chain length. This is not the case. There is plenty of room for additional adjustment and if you didn't flip the blocks during the install, it looks like it would still fit. With a brand new chain, my rear axle location looks fine.

 

Go here to see what the rear block looks like with 13/48 and see the adjustment abilities: https://www.dropbox.com/s/w71ocktvemtprrh/sprocket.jpg

 

3. If i were to ever make another gearing change(when my chain wears out)the bike would be FINE on the freeway and have better technical/trials abilities with 13/50-13/52. 

Edited by ruphianh
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I think a big part of what makes this bike so flexible is the 6th gear.  You can gear it low enough for the tightest of trails, and still have the ability to cruse at 65+ without revving it to the moon.  I think KTM did a great job choosing internal ratios. 

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I think a big part of what makes this bike so flexible is the 6th gear. You can gear it low enough for the tightest of trails, and still have the ability to cruse at 65+ without revving it to the moon. I think KTM did a great job choosing internal ratios.

+1

In stock trim with 18/21 wheels 6th is almost useless, especially off road even out in the open. But have to agree with you 6th becomes very useful when stepping down the CS to a 13 or 14 and even going to a 48, 50, or 52 rear at the same time. the bike will do road work and still crawl for you when you need it. For our open riding areas I settled on 14/50 and just slap a 13 on when I know the ride will be 90 percent or more technical. I commute (including hwy) with the 14/50 with no issues.

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Just picked the bike up and put my first hour around town going through all the gears and being gentle. I installed the 13/48 gearing before I ever started the bike up so I have no comparison to stock gearing but these are my thoughts:

1. I would never go any higher than 13/48. This is plenty high for any freeway speeds. Cruising at 65 is cake in 6th. 55 is too slow for 6th. It feels like I'm almost lugging the bike. If i were to make a change, I would gear it lower yet.

2. The stock chain works just fine for 13/48. I was concerned about flipping the axle blocks like there would be an issue with chain length. This is not the case. There is plenty of room for additional adjustment and if you didn't flip the blocks during the install, it looks like it would still fit. With a brand new chain, my rear axle location looks fine.

Go here to see what the rear block looks like with 13/48 and see the adjustment abilities: https://www.dropbox.com/s/w71ocktvemtprrh/sprocket.jpg

3. If i were to ever make another gearing change(when my chain wears out)the bike would be FINE on the freeway and have better technical/trials abilities with 13/50-13/52.

to follow up on this. I hit 98MPH pegged in 6TH. Not sure it ran out of speed because it was on lose/wet dry lakebed clay or I ran out of rpm. 13/48 gearing.

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My 09 530EXC

14/52 100mph. Done.

14/52 90mph. Easily pulls this on dirt with knobbies.

Geared right with street tires on pavement I have no doubt it could make 120mph with all conditions being good.

A beat 450 with knobbies on a hot day with a dirty airfilter, Not a chance of hitting 120mph.

Agree. I run 14/52 on my 450. At cruising speed rpm is in a comfortable range and 100mph isn't an issue. I do my best to avoid the pavement but when I do its still a very usable setup.

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Tough call, you're right in the 6th gear threshold with that gearing...you may have been sitting on the limiter with 13/48 at 98 or you could have just barely run out of motor. In my experience 13/50 routinely allows 6th to sit on the limiter. 13/48 is very similar to my 14/50 and I think its a perfect set up...one of my favorites for where and how I ride.

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So from briefly going over these posts, it seems I may want to try out 13/48. For my 08 ktm 530 excr, I ride 95% street. The bike is completely stock as far as setting it up for the street. My dad and I do a lot of windy back country road cruises up to the mountains. I want a gearing setup that will do 80-85 at a comfortable rpm. I'm not crazy concerned about low end torque. What setup will give me this?

2008 KTM XC-F 450

2008 KTM EXCR 530

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