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Classic Steel

Classic Steel #4: 1984 Suzuki RM500

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Comments (6)
  1. Excellent article Tony Blazier! You certainly know your oats when it comes to anything related to Motocross, enduro, trail, and street/road motorcycles. Ok ok let’s just say anything related to motorcycling. I owned a 1981 Suzuki RM 465X back in ’84 here in New Zealand. Bike had previously been raced by a local who really knew how to ride/race the most powerful motocross bikes back then. I wanted to get maximum speed runs off-road on the RM and so I tall geared it, fitted a Boyesen reed to smooth out the engine’s insane powerband, and used BelRay 2stroke oil [really expensive even back then!}. I wondered about using alcohol/ethanol for fuel however as I wasn’t the smartest mathematician in the class I didn’t want to miscalculate fuel/oil ratios and run the engine excessively lean causing the piston to melt on top…easily done especially when doing high speed runs over say 10-20 minutes+…I couldn’t afford to repair a blown engine on apprentice automotive engineer wages back then. Here’s a link to my 1981 Suzuki RM 465X and all of the 10 motorcycles I owned from 1981 to 1990 – the story to my last motorcycle has a twist: https://www.flickr.com/photos/35707376@N00/50855348636/in/album-72157713681398176/

  2. I had the 83 & I have to say you totally nailed it. I didn’t race so it’s short comings you mentioned never bothered me. It made an excellent trail bike though . Like a lot of open class riders back then I did go back to 250’s as they are still the perfect size.

  3. Hi Tony, I live in Australia over here 1985 was the last of the rm500 came with gold wheels and a bronze colored engine and slightly different suspension to the 84. I have an 1985 which i have had since about 1986 it is about 95% restored back to showroom condition. I have never in AUS seen another one for sale this would make the 1985 RM500 super rare.

  4. Like the last responder said, Suzuki did add a front disc brake and updated the graphics/paint to sort of keep up with the rest of the line up in 1985. Didn’t see the US market tho. I think they still had tons of ‘84’s in crates, like they did in ‘83 with the outdated 125.

    Might seem nitpicky, but then AND now I think the thing that truly shows Suzuki was ‘mailing it in’ was that they never even gave it a safety seat. Square side plates wouldn’t have cost too much to retool either, geez.

    Neither would have made the bike better, but lipstick on a pig sometimes sells the pig.

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