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2018 FE501 Suggestions

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A new 2018 FE501 basically fell into my lap and couldn’t pass up the deal. Timing wasn’t the greatest, as I spent all winter prepping my 2015 WR450 for this season. Oh yeah, and I have wedding to pay for in a couple of months... I digress.

WR is sold and now onto modding the FE. After a fair amount of combing through forums (dealer couldn’t distance themselves more from the convo), I’ve started the seemingly long list of recommended mods to the bike:

Rekluse manual clutch slave

Desmog

PMB end cap

Reed removal

jD tuner

Bulletproof rad guards

13t front sprocket

Shorai battery

Flexx bars/barkbusters(Ripped from my WR)

Shinko fatty front

Metzeler 360 rear

Custom taillight cleanup

 

Observations: bike now feels much better after uncorking and is far more nimble that the WR I came off of. However, as plentiful as the power may be, it just seems like I’m leaving something on the table. Perhaps I need to toy with the JD more? My intent was to just buy a vortex ecu and be done with it, but I’m simply impatient and can’t wait the 6-8 weeks for it (or longer???). Until then, I guess I’m stuck w the JD. Any insight on optimizing the JD fuel mapping or perhaps opening up air intake and adding more fuel? I am currently running the “open exhaust” numbers. Also, the bike cut out lugging in 2nd gear which was unusual. Came to a halt, started back up immediately and then minutes later check engine was lit solid. I stopped, keyed it off, waited a second and it fired right up and went away. Any idea what caused this? What other mods, besides protection am I missing? Critiques are welcomed. Side note: the plate is off of my old bike and was mangled from previous use. Here’s the bike:

 

 

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Almost forgot, where can I find a more technical manual for this bike? In the event I want to get into the motor etc. The user manual is nice and all but pretty vague

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I just ordered a repair manual from RM on CD. I couldn’t find one printed. Also the Husqvarna website has one that you can download for free, but I didn’t see the valve check procedure. My mods are similar to yours. 13t front sprocket, JD tuner, reed removal, desmog. I removed the screens from my stock exhaust instead of the PMB endcap. I haven’t had any cutting out. I wanted to go with the Vortex, but didn’t want to wait. I will probably just stick with the JD. I didn’t change the settings. It is supposed to be preset for the mods you have. My next mods will include AXP extreme skid plate, larger tank to have the same range as my wife’s FE250, and either flexx bars or BRP handlebar mount.

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I see the download on huskys website but it looks like it’s simply a pdf of the manual that came w the bike. Good to know Rm has an option. Be careful with the brp mounts and flexx bars on this bike... this setup barely clears the keyed ignition and if you run a pad, it’ll block the digital display. Luckily I needed bar risers and this also addressed the clearance issues

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You need to buy the “service manual” or repair manual(I forget what it was called specifically) not the user manual that’s free on the website. 

 

Call pr2 racing. They might have a vortex in stock for this bike.  I have only seen problems with supplementing the Ecu with a fuel tuner, and also these ecu’s take a shit anyway early on in their life so it seems best to just replace the Ecu. 

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You need to buy the “service manual” or repair manual(I forget what it was called specifically) not the user manual that’s free on the website. 

 

Call pr2 racing. They might have a vortex in stock for this bike.  I have only seen problems with supplementing the Ecu with a fuel tuner, and also these ecu’s take a shit anyway early on in their life so it seems best to just replace the Ecu. 

Interesting. Thanks for the feedback. Looks like I’ll be missing my wr until the vortex is plugged in. Anyone else have an in on obtaining vortex ecu? New Jd tuner for sale, 50% off!

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3 hours ago, 11bangbang said:

I see the download on huskys website but it looks like it’s simply a pdf of the manual that came w the bike. Good to know Rm has an option. Be careful with the brp mounts and flexx bars on this bike... this setup barely clears the keyed ignition and if you run a pad, it’ll block the digital display. Luckily I needed bar risers and this also addressed the clearance issues

Thanks for the information on the mounts. I run risers also, so that should help. 

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For a manual, I bought one of these. Nice quality and not expensive.  I wanted a printed version so I don't need to fire up a computer when I need to refer to it.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Husqvarna-workshop-service-repair-manual-2018-FE-501-/264165448383?hash=item3d817cdabf&redirect=mobile

Just finished desmogg, de-reed ( FX450 airboot), JD tuner and removed 2 screens from stock can. Running JD with Offroad settings but added a little fuel in the mid range. Bike seems to run much better but gearing sux for tight single track. Going to 48 rear and maybe a 13 front. Debated on the Vortex. If I was going to pony up that kind of cash, I'd take a serious look at the Dynojet Power Commander. It adds a Lamda sensor so the system becomes a closed loop system !

I also run the Flexx bars and relocate ign switch to right side by headlight using KTM parts. Stock position would not work at all with those bars and Cycra pro bend guards for flexx bar. 

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Edited by Heli-Pilot
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Posted (edited)

20190322_101219.jpg.fea057f5317a09d39a8fe39352bd6981.jpgI have the same exact bike is you just bought it 4 weeks ago brand new 2018 Fe 501 and sometimes it will choke out at low RPMs or sometimes when you're taking off at will choke out to it's pretty common give it some gas and go

Edited by Camoman44

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Thanks for the replies. Manual purchased. I’ll say this: having come directly off a properly modded 15 wr450, and onto this bike, I’m somewhat disappointed. The weight of 501 is obviously a huge advantage and def helps in the tight stuff. But, what good does that do me if the bike is flaming out and throwing codes w faulty Ecus? Don’t get me wrong, the bike is awesome but I have to imagine Yamaha is in the same regulatory environment as ktm/husky and the stars don’t have to align to get them tuned/running properly. This includes dropping 700 on a unicorn ecu. All of this complaining would prob be prevented by me having a vortex, but at this point it seems like a pipe dream. Hopefully this post isn’t taken the wrong way, it’s not a dig on husky, I’m just trying to wrap my head around this and find solutions. This fe501 platform seems hard to beat, just have to drop another 2k+ just to make it trail/trust worthy. No one said it was a cheap hobby tho, right?!

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BangBang,

You and I are in the same boat. Ironically I just posted this to KTMTalk today...

I finally pulled the trigger on a new 2018 FE 501 and have spent the last couple months sorting it out. So far I’ve...
- desmogged
- stock exhaust gutted with spark arrester still installed
- JD power surge 6x (open exhaust settings plus 1/2 step richer)
- reeds removed
- air box opened up
- air filter cage without metal screen

The bike starts and runs good, but I have a few issues with the power delivery characteristics. My issues are...

- off idle the power pulls hard and a bit jerky. I don’t mind the strong power, but when I’m mid turn and carefully rolling on the throttle, the rear tire breaks loose and steps out regularly. Short shifting helps, but not always.
- the mid and top end power is descent, but feels a bit flat. It feels like I’m not getting the full potential of the motor as it revs past mid range...

Has anyone found a way to tame the off idle jerkiness?

Is there more power to be found in the mid and top end?

I’m coming of a Thumper Racing 570 RFS with a stage 2 cam and a well sorted carb. Or is this just a perception issue coming off the 570?

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20 minutes ago, Knightly said:

BangBang,

You and I are in the same boat. Ironically I just posted this to KTMTalk today...

I finally pulled the trigger on a new 2018 FE 501 and have spent the last couple months sorting it out. So far I’ve...
- desmogged
- stock exhaust gutted with spark arrester still installed
- JD power surge 6x (open exhaust settings plus 1/2 step richer)
- reeds removed
- air box opened up
- air filter cage without metal screen

The bike starts and runs good, but I have a few issues with the power delivery characteristics. My issues are...

- off idle the power pulls hard and a bit jerky. I don’t mind the strong power, but when I’m mid turn and carefully rolling on the throttle, the rear tire breaks loose and steps out regularly. Short shifting helps, but not always.
- the mid and top end power is descent, but feels a bit flat. It feels like I’m not getting the full potential of the motor as it revs past mid range...

Has anyone found a way to tame the off idle jerkiness?

Is there more power to be found in the mid and top end?

I’m coming of a Thumper Racing 570 RFS with a stage 2 cam and a well sorted carb. Or is this just a perception issue coming off the 570?

Which throttle cam do you have installed? You might have the aggressive one and going to the more tame one might help the low speed throttle response. 

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- the mid and top end power is descent, but feels a bit flat. It feels like I’m not getting the full potential of the motor as it revs past mid range...

Is there more power to be found in the mid and top end?


Couldn’t have put it any better. Would love any additional input from others, aside from running vortex ecu

Regarding your lurchy condition (on/off on low end): I, personally don’t have this issue. Considering you have taken extra steps to adding more air in with your airbox mod, maybe you’re creating a lean condition and adding more fuel in low to mid would smooth this out?

To be clear, this thread was addressed in previous discussions on here, and it was apparent that vortex was way to go and that Jd tuner would leave you with something else desired. Fine by me, I would be ok with only having 80% of the bikes potential with the Jd until vortex becomes readily available. What’s haunting me is the check engine light/bike dying out and Broke311s comment on ecus shitting out/problems with adding tuners to stock ecus. Having a reliable bike that doesn’t die on the trail because of a computer seems like a reasonable expectation, call me crazy

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I ran the JD for about 7 months and THOUGHT that it had solved all of my problems. Then I got the vortex and realized that NOW I finally have the beast I wanted. I run an FX exhaust with the spark arrestor cut out. I'm on the FE450. 

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I suggest 14/50 and put a flatlands racing pipe guard on. 

14 is great for up to 70 mph, and 2nd gear is very useful. When it gets super gnar, first gear isn’t grabby. Aggressive throttle cam, the soft one is lame.  

I ride a lot of gnar, a lot of miles. 

Have fun, awesome bikes...

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I suggest 14/50 and put a flatlands racing pipe guard on. 
14 is great for up to 70 mph, and 2nd gear is very useful. When it gets super gnar, first gear isn’t grabby. Aggressive throttle cam, the soft one is lame.  
I ride a lot of gnar, a lot of miles. 
Have fun, awesome bikes...

When you say aggressive thrtl cam, is it the black one? Mine came w grey one installed and I believe black is only other option. I have heard guys having three options? 13/45 that I’m running is still a bit tall but I couldn’t imagine ripping through the gears any faster than I already am. I am pleasantly surprised how well this thing lugs if you get lazy and leave it in a higher gear. I will prob give the 14/50 a shot on next tire change. I am assuming I would need a diff size chain? Just ordered the pipe guard on RM. It doesn’t have much love on there... is it a direct fit or did you have to muscle and fab it on there? Loving the bike more and more w each ride.

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2 hours ago, Scramg11b said:


When you say aggressive thrtl cam, is it the black one? Mine came w grey one installed and I believe black is only other option. I have heard guys having three options? 13/45 that I’m running is still a bit tall but I couldn’t imagine ripping through the gears any faster than I already am. I am pleasantly surprised how well this thing lugs if you get lazy and leave it in a higher gear. I will prob give the 14/50 a shot on next tire change. I am assuming I would need a diff size chain? Just ordered the pipe guard on RM. It doesn’t have much love on there... is it a direct fit or did you have to muscle and fab it on there? Loving the bike more and more w each ride.

I've used the Flatlands guards exclusively for 5 bikes in 4 years, they are stout, easy to put on, and you will not burn anything. They also clean up easy and keep a nice look. Yes, black throttle cam. Tuning an off road bike is all about what is going on in 2nd gear if you ride reasonably technical stuff. 14/50 for these bikes is the ticket. @dan500afc can confirm if you need a new chain or not, or suggest a sprocket combo that will work similarly. We just got back from Moab with a fx350, fe450, 300 tpi, 501.... The 450 and 501 just love all things Moab, even the nastiest of stuff...  

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You will need a new chain if switching to 14/50. I believe it will be 116 links but I always buy a 120 and break the chain for the sprockets used. 

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5 minutes ago, dan500afc said:

You will need a new chain if switching to 14/50. I believe it will be 116 links but I always buy a 120 and break the chain for the sprockets used. 

What do you recommend for a guy that wants to keep the same chain length?  You have 14/50 on the 501 right?

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