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Discussion Starter #1
Ok. I purchased a used Sportsman 500 last year and it is along the lines of 2000 to 2001 model year to my knowledge. I’ve looked for the VIN with no luck (yes, looked on frame by front/left strut). It has EBS. From what I can tell by narrowing down based on parts from the service manual and pictures, it is a 2000 or 2001. Anyone have a good way to tell for sure what model year I have (hand controls, dash style, shift lever, etc.)? It gets difficult to buy replacement parts without knowing what I have for sure.

Let me know what questions you have and I’ll respond when possible. Thanks
 

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The VIN will reveal the model, year, date sold, recall info and other things - why does everybody have problems with identifying their vehicles - VIN's have been around since the 80's - just give me the VIN, I'll tell you what you have.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Latebird....as I mentioned, i can’t find the VIN. I understand what a VIN is for and I wish I could find it.
 

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Left bottom frame rail... NOT by the strut. Its on back where the foot well starts. Under the rear of the front fender right under the front of the clutch housing unless its been ground off for some reason lol. :devil
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks. I’ve spent hours looking and yes, I’ve looked where you mentioned. That is one of my fears that it has been ground off for whatever reason but yet, I don’t see any signs of grinding...lol. Anyway, back to the original question....any other way to tell?
 

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I have a 2000 500 and I had trouble reading the VIN because stamping isn't very defined at all. Instead of solid numbers, it's sort of like digitized micro-dots (for lack of a better description). You might try running a piece of sandpaper over it. A previous owner might have painted the frame and covered it up.
 

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Also, it is NOT the 500 HO
I have a 2000 500 and I'm curious. How do you tell if it's a H.O.? What is the difference between the HO and "standard"?
A sticker that says "HO" lol.
If I'm not mistaken, there was no "HO" for 2000. The "HO" models came out in 2001.
The 2001 HO has a slightly larger carb (34mm vs. 40mm) and a different cam profile than the 2000. I think the 2001 is supposed to have about 5 hp over the 2000 (30 vs. 35 hp). The "HO" thing is mostly a marketing gimmick but there was some increase. There's not much real differences otherwise. I think there was a very slight gearing reduction in 2001 as well to give it a little more low end grunt.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Commanderjjones,, you think you are able to take a picture (with your finger pointing) to the location of your VIN?
 

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So theoretically, I could stick a cam and 40mm carb on it and gain 5hp?
Yeah, theoretically. You'd need the carb adapter too. I'm not sure if there's any differences in piston, head, cdi, etc. Someone on here a couple years ago was having to replace a worn cam and doing a rebuild anyway and planned to go with the HO cam and carb while they were at it. I don't remember if they posted results or not?? You might try searching for cam related threads to see if you can find it.
Not sure what the dollar to HP cost would be but it would sure beat wasting money on a loud pipe that actually does NOTHING other than make the machine loud and obnoxious lol.
 

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Yeap, I've outgrown loud pipes. I use this thing for hunting and it's already louder than my Rancher. So an aftermarket pipe isn't on the menu.
 
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