18 Aug 2014

My new project, the Honda VT500 Ascot!

What happened to my SV650 project you might ask...? Crashed it 3 times in a year so I had the feeling we did not make a good match, ha.
So I decided after the last crash, some weeks ago, that I would stop Project SV650. Still waiting for some parts to fix it. Selling it asap.

So I needed a new daily ride. My gr650 is still a work in progress, not running at the moment and that's not gonna change any time soon. I fucked up the Super 100. My fault. Did not check the oil level in time... Stupid, I know, shit happens. Waiting for a new engine. I started looking for a new daily ride that I could build in something rad on a low budget. I checked marktplaats, speurders, autoscout, etc. everyday. Could not wait any longer. Summer's almost over and I'm missing all the fun so I decided I needed a new bike, and I waned it ASAP!

I wanted a low budget, reliable light single or a twin. The budget was 700 euro.
Would love to own a dr350, xs650, GB500, SR500 or XT500 but they are to expensive over here.
My plan was to buy a XL500R but than I found out the 17" rear and 23" front rim have these rare tire sizes. That means very limited options for the tires so I changed my mind. Almost bought a GN400 but I was to late, someone else bought the only one I could find just before me.

Than last Thursday a VT500Ascot popped up on speurders. Always thought they would be a great starting point for a custom. 

They are light for a V-twin, have a great sound, cool 2 in 1 exhaust, fantastic looking 18" rims, narrow, nice looking frame and they are relativity fast for a 500 twin. It's got the reliable VT500 shadow engine so that means lot's of cheap spare parts.
On the downside they have a hideous headlight plus the electrics are hidden below the headlight...? The front forks air-assisted 37mm front fork have a strange rake and are to soft. It's got a (heavy) shaft drive, and it's water cooled so that means it's got a radiator up front, don't like that very much. 
The VT's have a double tube backbone that allows the air cleaner tract to run up to the carbs. The Fuel Tank tunnel is very wide so the options for swapping a tank are very limited.

No bike is perfect and "problems" can be fixed so I decided to try it. I did a short test drive and I instantly knew I wanted to own the Ascot. It's a lot of fun! It sounds just like a mini Ducati and it sort of looks like a mini XR 750 Harley :) With a new exhaust this thing will sound amazing.
Bought it for 500 euro from a man who fixed it up for his wife. He told me she did no like riding a motorcycle after all so she stopped using it and he needed to sell it again. If that's a true story or not, I don't know but the bike looked to be in great shape for 500 euro. The bike runs great, he repainted the wheels, and some parts parts he painted red, don't ask me why. It's not the same colour red and it looks horrible so I'll have to repaint that. Here's the original honda VT500 Ascot commercial and a picture my new ride.