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Thread: What is the difference in a polaris carbureted 500ho and a 500?

  1. #1
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    Default What is the difference in a polaris carbureted 500ho and a 500?

    I'm just getting into the ATV world. I just picked up a 2004 Sportsman 500 and I'm looking for some info. This one is actually the 2004.5, which as I understand they made a few changes too. What changes exactly I don't know yet. If it helps, my model is A04CH50AS. On most online parts lists they only show models ending in AA or AQ.
    Questions I have:
    1- What is the difference in a 500 motor and a 500HO? Assume both are the carb models.
    2- What aftermarket fluids and lubes can I use for this model and year? (yes, I know the OEM lubes are made to match the ATV, but somebody somewhere is making them for Polaris.)
    3- I won't discount Polaris dealers, but to date the prices I get for parts are incredibly high. I'd like to do business locally, or in state, but I can't afford $500 for an OEM starter and bendix. It hurt bad enough to pay $65 for a recoil rope reel. OUCH! Where do you consistently find a good supply of Polaris parts, aftermarket or OEM, at good prices and quick shipping? I'd like to find a one source outlet if possible rather than jump around.
    4- Does anybody have a service/repair manual for the 2004.5 Polaris Sportsman 500HO that they are willing to sell, share, trade or.....?
    5- Do you have any experience changing out the cams? Or, experience with a machine that had to have the cam changed?

    I am hoping, maybe naively, that I won't have to pay aircraft prices for ATV parts. I'm willing to bet you guys have been through most of this before. Thanks guys for any answers.
    ARR

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    I think I'm right about this, someone correct if wrong.
    The Sportsman 500 was made in the year 2000 and OLDER. The Sportsman 500 HO started in 2001.
    I think all the 500's after 2001 are the HO's.
    The cam problem I think you are talking about was the year 2000 and older 500's.
    Some had a soft cam. I have a year 2000 500. 4,000 miles haven't had a cam problem.
    Some of the differences from a 500 and 500 HO, cam profile, timing, and a larger carb on the 500 HO.
    The 500's have a little more torque at the very bottom of the power band.
    The 500 HO's are faster overall.
    Can't help on places to buy parts, I've only needed oil changes and rubber boots.
    "The older I get, the better I was."

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    www.babbittsonline.com For OEM parts.

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    I'll try this again. It may come out as a double post because I think I screwed up my first attempt. Sorry.

    Travelers is correct about the cam and carb changes between the two motors. Back in 2001, Polaris was advertising a 20% increase in HP for the High Output motors.

    The 04.5 Models were a cross between the 2004 and 2005 models. If memory serves me correctly, the big difference was Polaris increased the front wheel travel by about 2". If you ever need to replace anything in front, you will probably need to know the build date. My 2001 has a sticker on the front hood right under the pod that has this on. Here is a link that you might find useful for Polaris parts and interchangability: http://parts.polarisind.com/Browse/Browse.asp

    I read a few ATV specific forums. From what I have read, all the fluids in your machine can be substituted with other brands. The only exception would be the oil in the front gear housings that have the centralized AWD clutch. The people that have tried other oil, reported unreliable AWD engagement (or disengagement) and went back to Polaris.

    I have never seen a service manual for a 04.5 model. Your machine would be more like a 2005 model. If you check out some of the ATV specific forums, occasionally someone will post a link to a website where you can download a service manual. However, since these are copywrited material, the link is usually deleted (but not always). If you are lucky and want to go that route the info is out there.

    I can't really comment too much about where to get parts except there are a lot of aftermarket parts available for a lot less money than Polaris charges. A few years ago, I had to replace an O-ring in my gear selector box. I went to my local dealer and they wanted $6.oo each for these 2 o-rings about the size of a dime. No thank you. I took one to the local autoparts store and matched them up and got them both for less than a buck.

    If you don't have one, you can go to the Polaris website and download an owners manual for free. You just need to create and account with them.

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    Default Thanks Dreamer

    I appreciate the time you took to respond.
    I have some more questions:
    Are Polaris ATV, and specifically my 2004 500HO, SAE or Metric or both?
    Has anybody had any luck rebuilding axles with boot and CV Joint kits? Any input as to how well aftermarket axles or parts work, especially in cold wx, as compared to OEM?
    I'm still looking for any cam experience if it is out there?
    This engine has a rattle/knock. The rattle stays as the engine is accelerated, and as it comes back down. I don't think it is a rod in that when I let off the throttle, and the engine "floats" the rattle or knock is still there. Do you want to hazard a guess?
    thanks,
    ARR

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    Please explain the rattle/knock better. By stays do you mean stays present or stays constant? As long as the engine is spinning a knock will likely keep knocking. You really aren't looking for a valvetrain or rotating assembly noise unless it varies with the RPM

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    Has anybody had any luck rebuilding axles with boot and CV Joint kits? Any input as to how well aftermarket axles or parts work, especially in cold wx, as compared to OEM?

    I just rebuilt my Gorilla axles on my foreman and put new Gorilla boots on the outers. Cv's would have been fine but I lost the bands on the outers and found mud and grime.
    Do yourself a favor and purchase a boot band tool for 30 bucks to get the bands good and tight for long lasting service.

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    Default On your cam problem... ZDDP?

    I don't know if Polaris (or any 4-wheeler for that matter)has a problem with this but I know that older cars are experencing problems with this.
    See this site
    http://www.ttalk.info/Zddp.htm
    As I said I don't know if this might be a problem in 4-wheelers but I know the I am now taking greater care of my old VW's.

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    In your original post, you made mention of the model letters, AS, AA and AQ, I went on the Polaris website and looked at the parts schematic. It appears that these letters really only designate the plastic color. Everything else seems to be the same within the model line.

    As for the metric or SAE, I would guess both. The quad is made in the USA, but I think the motor is made in Japan. I was looking at my Polaris service manual (2001) and all the bolts on the motor are metric. Dimensions are both inch and millimeters. Also, torque specs show ft. lbs and Nm.

    Most of the 500 motors had a knock. It is most noticable at idle and it sounds like it is coming down by my left foot. This is just the oil pump. I bought my machine new in 2001 and it made that noise then. I would be more concerned if I didn't hear it.

    I have no experience with axles so I can't help you there. Except from what I have read, Gorilla has a good reputation.

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    Default Big rattle

    The engine noise is significant. It is quite loud and quite distinct. As I increase RPM, the noise speeds up too. A couple of guys indicated that sometimes rod noise will diminish when you let back off the throttle. This engine continues to make noise regardless if it is idling, accelerating, or decelerating. I guess I'd describe it as a very determined little guy inside with a solid but equally tiny ball peen hammer. You could call and I can put the phone next to the engine.
    I figured on axles, if rebuild kits worked as well as full axle replacements, I'd go to the expense of getting the boot band tool and whatever else I might need. I'd rather invest in tools than parts.
    As for the model, again I think Dreamer nailed it. The color is Sonic Blue, and I think the last 2 letters match that. I do have the VIN number if/when I have to order parts just to be sure I don't get caught by the 1/2 year change that happened in 2004.
    As for Metric, I sure was hoping because I had to replace the flywheel nut and standard did not seem to work. I think 16mm x 1.5 was what I used and it went on without fuss. Note to self, a Jam nut does not have enough threads on it to use a 1/2" impact to try and turn the motor over.
    I did pull the inop starter and did a quick clean and shine rebuild on it. I was able to get it off without removing the belt cover, clutch, and backing plate. I think I did it without hurting anything, but it was tight. I'm going to probably buy a starter and bendix off e-bay for $100 as a rebuild kit costs $60 and an aftermarket Bendix about $70.
    The 3500lb winch was not working so I stuck a set of batter cables to it and a battery. WALLAH! Winch turns. So I have a solenoid or switch problem. Pulled the 2 power lines from the switch to the solenoid, and that is good, so looks like the solenoid gets pulled. It only clicks one way, does nothing the other. Thought I'd pull the screws holding the caps and see what is going on there.
    Lots to do, so little time.

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    It's me again.

    You have some concern about the cam. Could the noise you hear be valve noise? The valves are adjustable in the 500 motors. It might be worthwhile to pull the valve cover and check them. If you need the procedures and specs, let me know and I can email them to you.

    As far as your winch goes, is that a Warn? If so, there was a recall on 2500lb and 3500lb 8 post contactors. Here is a link to the CPSC recall notice: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml07/07027.html Maybe you will be lucky and get it replaced free.

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    Default back at it

    Work, family affairs, and chores took me away from the 4 wheeler for a while. And on top of that I bought another one. This one is a 99 King Quad. What a sweety!
    Dreamer, if you don't mind sending me the valve adjustment info I'd appreciate it. I'll try to get in there and take a look. Whereas I'm not a pro mechanic, I follow directions ok, and am not afraid to take stuff apart. Now putting it back together in the right order is a bit of a challenge for me at times.
    I don't plan on using these for hunting, but I should get them both up and running before too long, or they'll just end up sitting.
    Thanks again guys for the input. If anybody else has experience based info on the Polaris 500 let us know.

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    I can send you the valve adjustment info. If you don't wish to post your email address online, send it to me at keenkls@aol.com
    I will send it as soon as I know where to send it.

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    Default Thanks ak dreamer!!!

    Thanks to AK Dreamer I have all the info needed to service and repair my Polaris 500. When I get some breathing room, first thing will be to change all the fluids and filters, then to check the valves to ensure they are adjusted correctly.
    This site provides the platform for good people to share their knowledge with people they have never met. Pretty awesome if you ask me.
    I did run into a guy that has an older Polaris 500. When I started up mine so he could hear the engine rattle, he thought that is pretty much what his sounds like. I've heard from more than one person that they are noisy. Any other folks have input on that?

    Thanks again Ak Dreamer for all the help,
    ARR

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