The ATPase (EC 126.96.36.199) of sarcoplasmic reticulum vesicles was reacted to various extents with thiol-directed spin labels. By suspension of the preparation in appropriate solutions, the enzyme could be placed and held in certain intermediate states of the ATPase cycle, or it could be set into steady-state catalysis. Ascorbate added to the system destroyed the spin-label signals with undetectable distortion of the electron paramagnetic resonance spectrum. In general, in the presence of ascorbate, undestroyed signal as a function of time could be described as the sum of two first-order reductions going on in separate compartments with different ascorbate concentrations. In different enzymatic states the proportion of total signal in the two compartments was different, but the first-order velocity constants remained the same. If the labeled membrane was first attacked with Triton, then exposed to ascorbate, signal was destroyed according to a single first-order constant, equal to the faster of the two constants observed with intact membrane, and equal to the constant whereby ascorbate attacks free label in solution. The data were reconciled by a simple rotary model, envisioning that an enzymatic state corresponds to an average angular position of the ATPase and thereby determines the proportion of labeled thiols exposed to external and internal ascorbate concentrations.