Author Topic: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment  (Read 1560 times)

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Offline Roger B

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Here are my valve clearances when I completed the valve adjustment at 18,150 miles on my 2010 C14.   Exhaust  (3) .006,  (1) .0065,  (1) .00675, (3) .007      intake  (1) .0045,  (1) .005,  (1) .00525,  (1) .00575,  (3) .006, (1) .00625  .    The quarter sizes I estimated with the tightness/looseness of feeler gauges.    This may help some of you that are contemplating when to complete your valve adjustment.

I adjusted the valves on the looser part of the range, exhaust .009, intake .006....mostly.   Next adjustment will be 20-25k.

Fred's videos helped in doing the job but it is still a large task...it will be much easier next time.  If you attempt it yourself take many pictures and note how all the wiring is routed and what fasteners are used where.    I'm glad I completed it myself because now I know what my settings are and that it is put back together like Kawasaki built it.  It would be tough for a motorcycle dealer mechanic to complete the job correctly in the hours allotted if they had never done the job on a C14 before in my opinion.  In saying that if you have an experienced person that you trust hire it out.

You can do it without the DVDs if you have the service manual but they are helpful.  I used the DVDs also for reference of the wire routing.

Roger in Ohio

Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2017, 05:25:29 am »
Thank you greatly for sharing those numbers  :great: :beerchug:
Where in Ohio are you located? I'm up on the lake, east of Cleveburg.

30 YEARS OF KAW.....Rich R. (the other one..)  COG 5977  JUSTAMEMBAHNOW

Offline 4Bikes

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2017, 09:46:00 am »
Thanks for sharing your results. One more testament that you need to check them to know where you stand. Also more proof that those who do the work themselves need adjustments, and do not report back like dealers that they are "all in spec".  Just say'in.  :??:
Silver 2011 C-14. Previous rides: KZ-400, KZ-750, KZ-1000.  Keep the rubber side down.  Ride Fast......Live Slow......

Offline OKC14

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2017, 12:09:28 pm »
Forgive my ignorance, where does one go to get copies of Fred's videos? I have a valve adjustment coming up in about 5k.

Offline robertv

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2017, 12:22:47 pm »
Once in awhile someone will post theirs for sale after buying them from Fred, so check the Emporium section. Otherwise, you can get it here => http://www.angelridevideos.com/concours.html
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Offline Roger B

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2017, 12:28:47 pm »
Man of Blues, I am in Fostoria, OH, around 35 miles south of Toledo.

I wouldn't ever think any C14 with 15k plus miles would ever not need some valve adjustment to get the bike back to the mid range of the specs.   The exhaust clearances especially will be tightening up by then.  Everything could still be in spec if inspected but you would still want to adjust to optimal, especially if you already did or paid to have the work completed to get to the place to do the valve adjustment.

I purchased my set of DVDs from someone on the COG but you can order them yourself new from Fred Harmon's website.

Offline jwh20

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2017, 12:36:04 pm »
Man of Blues, I am in Fostoria, OH, around 35 miles south of Toledo.

I wouldn't ever think any C14 with 15k plus miles would ever not need some valve adjustment to get the bike back to the mid range of the specs.   The exhaust clearances especially will be tightening up by then.  Everything could still be in spec if inspected but you would still want to adjust to optimal, especially if you already did or paid to have the work completed to get to the place to do the valve adjustment.

I purchased my set of DVDs from someone on the COG but you can order them yourself new from Fred Harmon's website.

That, of course, is the problem with a dealer service where they actually open up the engine and check the clearances.  As long as they are all within the specs, even if right on the bottom figure, they will pronounce it "in spec" and hand you a bill.  Strictly speaking they are correct but...

When you do it, you are not motivated to provide the least possible effort for the money, you want it checked and adjusted properly.  So you will adjust the clearances even if they are technically in-spec so that you don't have a bunch of valves right on the edge of being too tight.

This also doesn't address the unscrupulous dealer who will just take your money and do nothing as they say "it's all good, thank you."

It's possible that a C14 with 15K miles might not need an adjustment, but my experience is that they do.
2012 Concours 14 Arabian Red
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Offline OKC14

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 12:38:52 pm »
Once in awhile someone will post theirs for sale after buying them from Fred, so check the Emporium section. Otherwise, you can get it here => http://www.angelridevideos.com/concours.html


Thank you sir!

Offline Rod

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2017, 03:23:38 pm »
Went 26000 before I had my valves adjusted 15 of 16 were out of spec.Had a fela i met on the forum here thats  local do them.I got lots of  pictures &charts .I have no dout he did my valve's right.He is a connie owner himself.

Offline Rev Ryder

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2017, 03:31:20 pm »
Man of Blues, I am in Fostoria, OH, around 35 miles south of Toledo.

I wouldn't ever think any C14 with 15k plus miles would ever not need some valve adjustment to get the bike back to the mid range of the specs.   The exhaust clearances especially will be tightening up by then.  Everything could still be in spec if inspected but you would still want to adjust to optimal, especially if you already did or paid to have the work completed to get to the place to do the valve adjustment.

I purchased my set of DVDs from someone on the COG but you can order them yourself new from Fred Harmon's website.

That, of course, is the problem with a dealer service where they actually open up the engine and check the clearances. As long as they are all within the specs, even if right on the bottom figure, they will pronounce it "in spec" and hand you a bill.  Strictly speaking they are correct but...

When you do it, you are not motivated to provide the least possible effort for the money, you want it checked and adjusted properly.  So you will adjust the clearances even if they are technically in-spec so that you don't have a bunch of valves right on the edge of being too tight.

This also doesn't address the unscrupulous dealer who will just take your money and do nothing as they say "it's all good, thank you."

It's possible that a C14 with 15K miles might not need an adjustment, but my experience is that they do.
I'm currently in the middle of a C-14 Valve adjust and found only two valves to be at optimum clearance.  That means I will adjust/change the lash on 14 of 16 valves.  Ultimately this is requiring the replacing of 8 shims.  Had the bike gone to the dealer or some other service center, 4 valves would have been out of spec (barely) and many on the tight edge and so, I ask would anything have been adjusted at all?  I don't know.  THe greatest reason for me to believe some of the horror stories is that I called ALL OVER Houston looking for the shims and no one stocks them.  Nor was I able to get dealership service departments to ask their techs if they had any.  All of them claimed to do the adjustments when I asked, but none had any leftover shims or any new shims.  Amazing.  All of Houston.  I called Victoria Texas and they said they had them.  I drove the 60 miles post haste to retrieve them and when I arrived, the lady had them bagged and tagged and ready to go.  Only they were too small in diameter.   :-[      BUT she had a bunch of shims.  She even had a place in a hotcams box for the ones I needed.  But it was an empty place.   :(

Finally ordered them from Jake Wilson and they arrived two minutes ago.  $27 freight for a few shims, but I have them now.  How can a dealer have no shims and do this adjust I asked, the responses were typically that the parts are only a couple of days away from Kawasaki.  But they don't have leftover shims.  THat is a telling feature... OR they just didn't want to mess with me.  But I promise, they probably had to mess with me longer this way because of the grilling I gave them. LOL  Anyway, I gotta get back to work. 

Yeah, these bikes NEED to have the valves checked AND adjusted.  It IS a huge undertaking as valve adjustments go, but you certainly wouldn't want to have them run out of clearance at 10k rpm.   :-\
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Offline Roger B

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2017, 10:42:14 pm »
I found the same scenario with shims. A large dealerships with all brands except Harley and they didn't have much of a selection. They should be doing adjustments nearly everyday.
Guys it is a tough job to do but I could probably do it in 8 hours beginning to end now that I did it once. I'm not a professional mechanic.   Thanks

Offline Bruiser

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2017, 11:22:53 pm »
I had mine done at 25k by a trusted friend/mechanic. He admitted it was a bitch of a job. Only 2 were out of compliance. He also told me, unless I'm doing track days, or like riding a lot, I should never have to have them checked again. I like to ride at a fast pace, but don't drag race, and just occasionally take the RPMs above 7-8k. I changed the plugs at 15k, and that alone was a damnable job. I now have 30,000 on it, and it runs like a dream.
« Last Edit: May 20, 2017, 12:29:32 am by Bruiser »
Bruiser

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Offline angelo

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2017, 11:55:21 pm »
Short version:
Question - got my 08 ABS used at 16K - did the valves at 34K miles.  What is the group finding for valve migration from there?  All were 9s and 6s when the job was done.  I too ride aggressively, decel braking into curves.  Hardly ever hit the rev limiter though.  A good rpm for me (when I look down) is something like 5 - 7 at apex, throttle out.  What do others find 10, 20, 30K miles later? 


Longer version:
So got lucky.  All were out of spec but only needed 11 shims.  Bought a few but the rest I got from a local shop that mic'd and "traded" me the rest I needed for my 11.  Happy to see my mic numbers agreed with his!

Wondering because I plan on keeping this bike for a long time time as it handles touring, two up, and cold weather sport riding very well for us/me.  Getting a second lighter bike for summer sporting. 


Offline jas

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2017, 12:09:02 pm »
I also did my first valve check/adjustment this spring. I have a 2011 with 22,274 miles.  This turned into a multi-week process working nights and weekends.  I took literally hundreds of pics to help with reassembly.  While I had everything apart I also changed the plugs, air filter, and coolant.  I used Fred's videos as well as all the excellent info available here on the forum.  I purchased Murph's kit (thanks to Murph for putting the kit together!).  I had the exhaust cam sensor oil leak so I installed MOB's larger O-ring (thanks MOB!), which is included in Murph's kit.  The job went smoothly, but it is very tight working between the engine and the frame.  Before I started I purchased a set of 1/4" drive allen sockets.  Even then I had to cut the 5mm socket down to a very short length to get it to work.  I also bought a 1/4" drive (e.g., small) torque wrench.  One difference I noted from Fred's videos was to remove the three bolts and lower the radiator out of the way.  I just set it with hoses still attached on a towel on top of the exhaust headers and the back of the front fender.  This gave a ton of room to clean up the oil from the exhaust cam sensor leak.  My valves were all out tight!  I will try to attach my shim map.  Four valves went down one step, eleven went down two steps, and one intake went down three steps (from a #30 to a #23).  I also had an issue that I needed five 2.225" shims.  These were not available from Kawasaki ("backordered across the country"), so I did end up using Honda shims (Part # 14942-MBB-000).  The delay in ordering and receiving the correct shims was a multi-week delay.  Overall a "painful" job, but well worth it.  She is running fine and nothing has fallen off...yet!

Offline 4Bikes

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2017, 06:44:59 pm »
Nice job reporting your fine work Joe. As you found out the heat shroud on the 2011 Gen II changed from Fred's video and the tilt forward is a required FSM step. Next time you will find even more clearance by completely removing it. It also a great chance to clean it and flush your coolent system.

Where in the Northeast are you located?  You might want to check the COG calendar and stop by Matt's wrenching session and share your experience.
Silver 2011 C-14. Previous rides: KZ-400, KZ-750, KZ-1000.  Keep the rubber side down.  Ride Fast......Live Slow......

Offline Roger B

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #15 on: May 21, 2017, 02:23:32 am »
I removed the radiator also and did all other maintenance while apart except synchronization. Hopefully good for another 25k.

Offline Salish14

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2017, 03:49:33 am »
Well damn, every time I read about these valve checks my blood pressure rises. I'm an experienced mechanic, but not professional. Meaning: I've done most jobs on a car, including valves and all the usual DIY stuff. But doing these valves sounds like it will be the most technical thing I have ever done. And I think I will take it on this summer or early fall, so the garage is warm enough to work in! My 08 is still shy of 15, but I ride enough that by next summer it will be over 20 for sure. Sounds like everyone around here who has done it recommends doing it at the 15K interval.

I used to have an FJR, and bought it new and sold it before the first valve check. Word on that forum was that no one who checked their valves at the recommended interval found them in need of adjustment. Guys all said leave it buttoned up much longer. Can't think of a mechanical reason why the Connie would get out of optimal range before the FJR, but so it goes.

In any case, I will soon be reading all these threads voraciously and appreciate every little bit of detail you folks are providing.  :??:
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Offline jas

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2017, 12:19:52 pm »
Hey 4bikes,  thanks for your comment.  My name is Jeff and I live outside Pittsburgh, PA.  And yes, I should have just removed the radiator!  At the time, I had so many parts off the bike I didn't want to remove any more!  Oh well, next time.  Another thing that struck me was the strength needed in your fingers to pull some parts.  My stick coils were very difficult to remove.  I spent a considerable amount of time twisting and pulling to get them out. I lightly greased them with some high-temp rubber compatible grease when I reinstalled them.  Also tough to remove were the the cam covers.  They get a little crooked when loosening the bolts and they hang up on the dowel pins.  Lots of light tapping and pulling finally let them come off.  It seems like you are always walking that fine line between using too much force or a tool (e.g., screwdriver or pliers) to get parts off.  The last thing you want to do is to damage anything.  As Fred says in his videos, patience!  Walk away for awhile and come back later. When I was ready to start the bike for the first time after putting everything back together, I pulled in the clutch.  Nothing!  I'm not sure what happened, but I had to bleed the clutch lever.  Sure enough, bubbles came out when lightly pulling the lever.  Next thing to do: bleed the brakes and the clutch.  It has been over two years since I did these the last time. Always something...   

Offline 4Bikes

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2017, 07:21:04 pm »
Agreed on the patience part.  The nice thing about being an amateur is that you can take your time and not worry about keeping the boss happy or making money. What you experienced with the CAM caps is the valve spring tension pushing them up. It would be nice to have a tool that wedged in there and held them down. It wouldn't be too hard to make one, and if I did the job often, I would figure out a way to do it.  ::). Not sure why your clutch acted up, but convenient to do that work with the plastic off. 
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Offline olie

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #19 on: May 31, 2017, 03:13:46 pm »
here below you have the results after 39k miles, mostly long distance ones...This is the 3rd time this trusty mechanic did valve checking on my bikes and also at least 5 on one of my friend bikes. A snip from his email ...

"All the valve clearances, while to the lower end of your preference, were within spec and relatively close to each other, which is good.
                              INT  RH          INT LH                       EX RH        EX LH

Cyl #1:                     .14                  .14                            .20              .21

      #2                       .13                  .14                            .215           .21

     #3                        .135                .13                            .205           .21

     #4                        .145                .145                          .205           .21

     There may need to be some shim replacement at the next service interval to keep them within your preferred range... "

I have given him a window outside of which he needed to re-set the valve clearance... 2 of the intake valves were just a "my" minimum of .13 mm and 1 exhaust just at "my" minimum of .20 mm.

Most like some people will not agree with me... they are entitled to have their own opinion and also express it.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2017, 04:09:51 pm by olie »

Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #20 on: May 31, 2017, 05:51:27 pm »
If you are happy, that's the important part.


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Offline Rev Ryder

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Re: My valve clearances found when completing the valve adjustment
« Reply #21 on: June 03, 2017, 04:02:28 am »
I just did one with clearances as tight as 0.09mm on one intake and as tight as 0.165mm on two exhausts.  This was a 20k mile, FIRST adjustment. All valves were tight except 2.  So only 2 were not corrected to be slightly looser than the mean.
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