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From the top half up to Maximum is the ideal. IF one winds up with a loose fitting .008" intake or .010" exhaust and You KNOW it Might be the reason for a slight tick, tick, tick that is fine.
Valve shims are only available in .05mm / .002inch increments. And most people Do Not have the proper equipment to thin those very Hard Shims and NOT Recommended at all.

I not only have to satisfy myself, but also my customers.

How finicky am I, my customers, yourself, PeteK or anyone else?
I'm finicky about valve tick. I'll aim for the middle. I bought a bunch of shims. Thank you.

I don't mind checking them again in 7.5k miles. Now that I've gotten this far and know it's not hard to get to.
 

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2022 KLR650
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I'm finicky about valve tick. I'll aim for the middle. I bought a bunch of shims. Thank you.

I don't mind checking them again in 7.5k miles. Now that I've gotten this far and know it's not hard to get to.
The valves on my KLR are set to their maximum clearances, and there’s zero valvetrain noise…even when hot.
Real no gain if you set them somewhere in the middle, other than you’ll need to adjust them more frequently…which I’m NOT doing anytime soon :cool:
 
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The valves on my KLR are set to their maximum clearances, and there’s zero valvetrain noise…even when hot.
At .008inch intakes & .010inch exhausts there shouldn't be any "valvetrain noise", due to the profile & lengths of the opening & closing 'ramps' of the actual cam lobes.
But it's pretty rare with .05mm / .002inch increment shims to attain 'perfection' on all 4 valves.
 

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KLRs: 2013, 2005, 1998; 2017 HD Electraglide Ultra
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"Perfection" on all 4 valves? Surely you jest. :D

And I'll agree with KLR-Mule that when adjusted to the maximum spec, I don't have valve ticking.
 

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The valves on my KLR are set to their maximum clearances, and there’s zero valvetrain noise…even when hot.
Real no gain if you set them somewhere in the middle, other than you’ll need to adjust them more frequently…which I’m NOT doing anytime soon :cool:
Hmmm...ok. I actually bought a bunch of shims so I can go high or low now, and believe it or not I might experiment a bit. I even bought a second CCT gasket in case I don't like the results. Yeah I'm weird. I had a bike once that required dropping the motor to inspect valves. So this KLR procedure is "easy" to me. As long as it's not riding season.
 

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I even bought a second CCT gasket in case I don't like the results.
I don't even remove the entire cam chain tensioner.
I only remove its top cap & spring from the tensioner before even removing the valve cover on Gen 1s or the steel cam chain bridge on (Gen 1.5's &) Gen 2s. Therefore it can't extend and alter chain tension or need to be reset nor need a new gasket.

With the top slider removed from between to 2 cam chain sprockets there is enough chain slack.
 
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I don't even remove the entire cam chain tensioner.
I only remove its top cap & spring from the tensioner before even removing the valve cover on Gen 1s or the steel cam chain bridge on Gen 2s. Therefore it can't extend and alter chain tension or need to be reset nor need a new gasket.

With the top slider removed from between to 2 cam chain sprockets there is enough chain slack.
This is very good information. Thank you!
 

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2022 Pearl Lava Orange
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My shims and gasket are due tomorrow so I'll wrap it up this weekend.

I'm also thinking of installing a rigid industries LED light bar I had on my super tenere. It's a great light with mega output. Spot/flood combo.
It will need to go under the headlight so that means I'll need to fabricate a bracket.
 

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2022 Pearl Lava Orange
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Update>
Shims and gasket showed up and I buttoned it up. Clearances are exactly where I shot for.
One thing I removed during reassembly is the silver mount on the upper right fairing side that houses the ABS module. I have a base model so it's not required and gets in the way of the valve cover removal and install. Much easier now. The main wire harness was clipped to it but it was easy to clip it to a nearby hole. All tidy and clean and more unnecessary parts removed. The take off parts bin is BIG now, and heavy!
 

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2022 Kawasaki KLR 650 Gen 3
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212 Posts
Discussion Starter · #70 ·
Update>
Shims and gasket showed up and I buttoned it up. Clearances are exactly where I shot for.
One thing I removed during reassembly is the silver mount on the upper right fairing side that houses the ABS module. I have a base model so it's not required and gets in the way of the valve cover removal and install. Much easier now. The main wire harness was clipped to it but it was easy to clip it to a nearby hole. All tidy and clean and more unnecessary parts removed. The take off parts bin is BIG now, and heavy!
Nice job and thanks for posting that. I'm going to check mine again at the 10K mile mark and see if there are any massive changes in the clearance.
 

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PDWestman your tip about lifting the cams to change shims worked! Thank you.

I guess my bike did need an adjustment because it idles much smoothly now, and feels a bit more peppy. A bit smoother at high RPM too!

I also deleted the AIS and that got rid of the little backfiring on deceleration.
 

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2008 Kawasaki KLR 650
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346 Posts
Oh no he didn't.... now I gotta add a Pivot Bolt grease to my "To do List"! I've seen/read here of "mods" to this area to make it "more maintenance free". Things like grease fittings (Zerk's - little know fact, this is a company not a fitting name) and passages drilled. Any thoughts on "Mods"? Something like a Bel-Ray Waterproof Grease?

My problem is once I start, I can't stop! I'll have the whole thing torn apart because I didn't like how "they" did that...

And, yes.... it (mess) can be a senior thing! ;)

Willie
In Australia we call them "grease nipples"
 

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2022 Adventure
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I don't even remove the entire cam chain tensioner.
I only remove its top cap & spring from the tensioner before even removing the valve cover on Gen 1s or the steel cam chain bridge on (Gen 1.5's &) Gen 2s. Therefore it can't extend and alter chain tension or need to be reset nor need a new gasket.

With the top slider removed from between to 2 cam chain sprockets there is enough chain slack.
You reference Gen 1's 1.5's and 2's for this method, but do you see any reason why this method would not work on the Gen. 3 as well? I'm about to perform the valve clearance check on mine.
 

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2022 Kawasaki KLR 650
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61 Posts
I have had the old dried up valve cover grommets leak and I do seal the cam holes. I run the valves on the loose end and eventually you run our of size, im almost there at 85000 miles. I know a guy that milled his shims to get thinner. We have a local shop here in MESA AZ that stocks the shims too, Eastside Performance and I think Procycle sells a shim kit. That valve cover is a bitch!
I wonder why the valves continue to get tighter over that many miles. From the cam getting worn down maybe? Or the valves stretching or springs loosing their springiness.
 

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2008 KLR650/685 tricked out / 2008 XR650L / 1988 XLV750R
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I wonder why the valves continue to get tighter over that many miles. From the cam getting worn down maybe? Or the valves stretching or springs loosing their springiness.
The valve gets hammered into the valve seat thousands of times per minute. They both wear which reduces the distance to the cam.
 

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2008 Kawasaki KLR 650
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346 Posts
Yes, unless someone screwed up a previous adjustment and set the clearance too large.
Well - wouldn't it be nice if the manufacturer (Kawasaki) actually specified what shims were in place on each of the four valves and gave this information to the buyer? Then you could go ahead and order the required shims without needing to take the existing shims out of the buckets...but then again - wouldn't it be nice if manufacturers actually greased steering head bearings and axles...
 
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