Extreme Restoration on a 1991 Honda CR 500

Oct. 07, 2010 By Rick Sieman
A no-holds-barred CR 500.

We’ve seen plenty of bikes brought back from the scrap heap over the years, but the CR 500 owned by Jason Meyer is a quantum leap beyond that. Rather than just take a popular 20-year-old bike and breathe life back into it, Jason decided to pull out all the stops and make his bike a real eyeball popper!
Here are a few of the comments that were made about his dirt bike at the 2010 Good Vibrations Bike Show in Salem, Oregon.
"Immaculate attention to detail."

"Seeing this bike makes me want to get back into dirt bike riding."



The bike that he built is based on a 1991 CR500R. It recently won first place in the Off-Road category at the 2010 Good Vibrations bike competition on July 16th-18th.

Seemingly out of place at the bike show, Jason’s bike was a head turner.

“Building this bike has fulfilled a dream of mine, and I hope to have future opportunities to restore and modify motorcycles of all types and of any year,” Meyer said. “This build has also helped me to gain points toward my Master Bike Builders Certification through the IMBBA (http://www.masterbikebuilders.com/). The IMBBA helps legitimize bike builders in the field, and most of the big-name custom builders belong to this organization.

“CR500s are my favorite dirt bike and I have owned four so far. I decided I would build a custom one from the ground up and wanted to build a dirt bike like no one else has done. Anyone can paint a dirt bike, put on new plastic, and throw a bunch of aftermarket parts on it and call it custom. I wanted to build a truly custom dirt bike; a one-of-a-kind.

The winner!

“The bike took me roughly 14 months to build, but I have a full-time day job as a motorcycle mechanic. I started the project with a rough outline. I knew the horsepower I wanted. I used to have a 2003 Service Honda CR500AF with a Boondockers nitrous kit that dyno'd at 73HP at the rear wheels. I really liked that amount of power and wanted to build the motor to that specification on pump fuel. I found my top-end porting "guru" through the cr500riders.com web site. Glen Howell at GSS Race Porting performed the work. The motor is at maximum power on stock bore for pump fuel. I also knew the color scheme I wanted. I found the blue color that I used about 10 years ago on a piece of bar pad plastic and always wanted to use it in a build. So, for this build, I had the color analyzed and then custom mixed. I also knew of some pieces I wanted to incorporate into my vision: a Honda HPSD steering damper, Vortex adjustable ignition, and Kawasaki KXF DLC coated forks to update the suspension, to name a few.

A Honda 450 steering damper keeps the head shake away.

“With money being an issue, I started one piece at a time. The rear wheel assembly was first, then the front wheel, next the swing arm and so on. As the bike progressed, I started becoming very excited and knew I had something special. I thought it would be worth entering into a bike show. Since I live in Central Point, Oregon, the Good Vibrations Bike Show in Salem, Oregon, was the largest and closest show during the time frame I expected to finish. Winning first place was a great honor for my first bike. I received great complements from the predominantly Harley crowd and from the judges. The build cost me roughly $7,000.00, not including the hundreds of hours of my time.”


“For this build, parts were used from multiple makes and years as well as aftermarket pieces, including 1989-91 Honda CR500, 2009 Honda CRF450R, 2007 Kawasaki KX450F, 2010 Kawasaki KX250F, 2002 KTM 250SX, and 2010 Kawasaki Ninja 250,” Meyer said. “The bike has been completely reworked in a Resto/Mod fashion. All parts are restored, customized, or new. This bike is custom from front to back.

A Tusk wave rotor works with a Nissin brake set-up.

“My vision was a high-power, low-noise, "wolf in sheep's clothing" that would run on pump fuel and rock the custom bike industry with a fresh idea that is a true show-and-go piece. The bike is mainly designed to easily switch from torquey off-road/single track riding, to hill-shooting dune predator in about an hour. A true "Jekyll and Hyde" transformation. This bike is spec'd at 73 hp at the crank on pump fuel.”

Trick electronics are mounted forward of the gas tank.

# Complete lower-end rebuild with Hinson Racing clutch basket and cases port matched to cylinder.
# Wiseco Pro-Lite Piston, cylinder, head, intake boot, and Atomic 22 exhaust manifold all custom race ported by Glen at GSS Race Porting
# Custom reed cage is a very short-run series designed for hill climbing
# Decompression valve by Larry Wiechman
# Keihin PWK carburetor, 39.5mm,  bored to 41.5mm and two-way adjustable throttle
# Cylinder and head thermal dispersant coated by NIC Industries
# Piston crown and head dome thermal barrier coated by NIC Industries
# Piston skirt dry film lubricant coated by NIC Industries
# Magura hydraulic clutch with custom handle

GSS Race Porting massaged the cylinder.

# 2007 Kawasaki KX450F 48mm inverted, Kayaba AOS with DLC coated fork sliders,  12.4” travel, valved and sprung by Pro Action, .42kg spring, adjusted for 180-190lb rider
# Lower fork tubes smoothed and armor coated
# 2007 KX450F Kawasaki triple clamps smoothed and armor coated
# Custom steering stem

# 1991 Honda CR500R Showa with updated shock seal head, bottoming bumper, spring adjuster
# Smoothed and armor coated

Trail Tech data center gives valuable info on demand.

# Fully welded and smoothed, armor coated
# 2010 Kawasaki Ninja 250 swing arm linkage bolt hole covers

# 1991 Honda CR500R race gusseting, fully welded and smoothed
# Custom brackets
# One-off custom blue paint

# Custom AC aluminum, 5-lbs lighter than stock

An aluminum sub frame is mated to the stock frame.

# 2007 Kawasaki KX450F hub, smoothed and drilled for over-sized 6 gauge spokes
# 21 X 1.60 front rim
# One-off custom blue paint

# 1989 Honda CR500R hub smoothed and drilled for over-sized 5 gauge spokes
# 18 X 2.5 over -sized rear rim
# One-off custom blue paint

Levers were drilled for aesthetics and improved grip.

# Front-Pirelli Scorpion XC 80/100/21 (3.25 X 21)
# Rear massive Cheng Shin 145/80/18 (5.60 X 18)

# 250mm (9.8”) Tusk wave rotor
# 2007 Kawasaki KX450F Nissin dual piston caliper and master cylinder with custom handle
# Custom Hel stainless brake line

# 222mm (8.75”) Tusk wave rotor
# 1991 Honda CR500R Nissin single piston caliper and master cylinder with custom pedal
# Custom Hel stainless brake line
# 2010 Kawasaki KX250F brake line brackets
The attention to detail is astonishing.

# 1991 Honda CR500R radiators with thermal dispersant coatings by NIC Industries
# One-off white Samco Sport silicone radiator hoses
# Water pump cover thermal dispersant coated
# Redline SuperCool coolant
# Euro-style silicone hose clamps

# 09 Honda CRF450R HPSD
# Revalved for increased damping

# Pro Circuit “works” expansion chamber ceramic coated by JetHot and port matched to exhaust manifold
# Custom FMF Stealth "Q" series muffler/spark arrestor, 96 DB
# Custom Atomic 22 o-ringed exhaust manifold port matched to cylinder

# Trail Tech data center – speed, tachometer, temperature, distance, shift light
# Vortex CDI with 10-way adjustable mapping. Switch between max HP and broadest TQ on the fly
# AM Racing Monster ignition coil, 34% more energy than stock
# Custom wiring on all of the above

# Pro Taper Evo

This bike is a visual stunner.

# 2002 KTM 250 SX front fender and front number plate
# 2007 KX450F Kawasaki fork guards
# 1991 Honda CR500R Fuel tank, radiator grilles, shrouds, air box, rear fender, and side number plates
# All plastic modified for tighter fitment
# Custom modified hand guards
# Custom graphics
# One-off Two Brothers gas cap specially made for CR500R gas tank

# Custom modified Works Connection lower glide plate
# Custom modified Moose rear brake rotor guard
# Custom modified Primary Drive rear chain guide and sprocket protector
# Custom modified Works Connection frame guards and case guard
# Custom modified Maier pipe guard
# Custom modified rear caliper guard

# Custom pan and seat cover
# 98% stainless steel Allen fasteners

Off-Road.com Newsletter
Join our Weekly Newsletter to get the latest off-road news, reviews, events, and alerts!