Vulcan 500 bigger carbs! - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-13-2009, 11:21 AM Thread Starter
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Vulcan 500 bigger carbs!


I have a 2006 Vulcan 500. I was told by a mechanic that he has a much older one, and he was surprised to see that the newer models come with way smaller carbs and that my new vulcan feels a lot slower than his old one.

Now he is offering to sell me his carbs for 80 bucks, i get to try them first. However I will get to try them first.

I was just wondering about two things:
1) Has anyone else heard about this thing that they ship them with smaller carbs from the factory?

2) Even if they are not original carbs, but are bigger, will this be a good idea? will I get more juice out of the bike without any other drawbacks?

Thanks, -D
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-13-2009, 03:54 PM
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I know the ninja 500...which is the same block, uses bigger carbs, but also I thnk it has a different camshaft, and advanced timing. I'm not reall sure, but if you get more power please inform us. I personally would like a little more power... maybe say 20 to 25 hp
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-01-2009, 08:59 PM
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please let us know!!!!!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-01-2009, 09:16 PM
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I've read where the older ones had bigger carbs, by about 2mm I think (34 vs. 32 mm ??)

2006 Vulcan 500

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-05-2010, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
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No luck

The bigger carb was tried on, it actually felt slower and sounded a lot more "hollow" if that makes sense. Stayed with the default one. Any other suggestions for a little more power boost?
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-05-2010, 03:33 PM
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I got the most power from just the EX500 camshafts and stock carbs/airbox. They give a nice growl and pull at about 2/3 throttle and up.

Over the years I've tried pod air filters, 34mm carbs (stock is 32mm), and the camshafts. While having the larger carbs can help in high rpm ranges the exhaust system on our machines is very restrictive and limits high rpm flow. Since noone makes one that breathes better we're stuck with that mama Kaw has made.

For what it's worth, the EN500 and EX500 engines are identical from the wrist pins down. The piston rings and valve gear are also the same. Just the pistons, cams and followers are different inside. The cylinder head may flow a little better but I'm not so sure. The passages in there are quite roomy.

Opening up the mufflers doesn't help either since it's the header pipe that is small.

'Biker' Bill
'97 EN500LTD 'Hidalgo' 208,000+ miles so far
'98 EN500LTD 'Sioux' 19,000 miles so far
VROC #3833 IronButt #6024
Levelland, TX

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-05-2010, 03:44 PM
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Oversimplifying things the older Vulcan 500's and ninja 500's have higher compression pistons and different cams as well as advance timing This tweaked a few more horses out of the 500 engine. This also moves the power band up in RPM so you lose low end grunt.

Probably the easiest thing you could do is buy a different bike. There isn't really anything you can do to the 500 that would be worth the money like swapping in an engine from a ninja 500. You could remove the air intake box and put some K&N pod filters on and put on some free flowing mufflers. This may yield a negligible hp gain and you will almost certainly have worse mileage and/or blue pipes.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-05-2010, 06:48 PM
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Smaller carbs = more velocity or faster acceleration as you would feel in your "seat of the pants " dyno (street riding with appropriate gearing/cams/ compression)

Larger carbs = more sluggish acceleration with same combination above. Hence the EX is modified in the areas of cams/ compression/ gearing and possibly lighter crankshaft also. Therefore it is able to use the 34's for better breathing at higher revs.
Remember these are CV carbs and the throttle action is applied to the throttle plate and the slide in the carb is actually a "variable venturi" it will only lift up as the engine demands. The 34 opening will still be more "sluggish" off the line due to the time it would take to build up enough velocity when the throttle is twisted wide open to lift the slide.
Why the earlier EN500's used larger carbs is a good question, probably because it was what was at hand or for advertising purposes, because it has bigger carbs they just gotta be on it because it needs it! WOW!.....again "variable venturi " it will only open as much as the engine needs so they can get away with it being slightly larger.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-06-2010, 03:04 PM
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cvk 34

my 94 has 34mm carbs
and ive read somewhere that the older 500's made slightly more power
but i dont remember where
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