Valve Clearance Time - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-03-2017, 09:26 PM Thread Starter
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Valve Clearance Time

ODO shows 14700 miles and the weather is going to be crap so it's time for a valve clearance check. Official book says 15200 but what's 500 miles among friends.

Man this little V-650 is easy to work on. Removed parts down to the cams in about 2 hours or so.

Here is what I found.

Exhaust valves .28 .23 .23.25 spec range is .22 to .31mm

Intake valves .18 .18 .15 .18 spec range is .15 to .21mm

All within spec. Just the one intake was right on the tight end of spec which surprised me as it's usually exhaust valves that are the problem Children.

So will button it back up tomorrow and will check the valves again when I do the air cleaner and plugs in another 8k miles or so.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-04-2017, 09:59 AM
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Valve shim

Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkerjet View Post
ODO shows 14700 miles and the weather is going to be crap so it's time for a valve clearance check. Official book says 15200 but what's 500 miles among friends.

Man this little V-650 is easy to work on. Removed parts down to the cams in about 2 hours or so.

Here is what I found.

Exhaust valves .28 .23 .23.25 spec range is .22 to .31mm

Intake valves .18 .18 .15 .18 spec range is .15 to .21mm

All within spec. Just the one intake was right on the tight end of spec which surprised me as it's usually exhaust valves that are the problem Children.

So will button it back up tomorrow and will check the valves again when I do the air cleaner and plugs in another 8k miles or so.
Personally if you are that close, I would set all exhaust at 0.31 mm and all intake at 0.21 mm. I agree about the exhaust as both my 07 and 15 had tight exhaust valves. The relationship to vacuum sync being off balance and tight valves is a alert , since I don't like pulling things apart if not needed, I brought my vacuum sync ports out and capped them. The cost was about $5 for vacuum line, now I can check the sync and be riding in less than 10 minutes, both bikes I went to the maximum of 0.31 mm exhaust and 0.21 mm intake, on the 07 after 15,000 KM there was no change
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-06-2017, 01:11 PM
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I would suggest OPENING your clearances to the MAX now, also.

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 10:05 PM Thread Starter
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I appreciate the advice fellas.

My experience with valves on a number of bikes is the clearance will change the most on the initial check and adjustment. After that you typically don't see much if any movement.

I will check them again around the 20k mark when it's again time the change air filter and plugs.

Friendly comment: Anywhere within spec is just that, within factory tolerance. The suggestion to adjust all the way out to the loose end of spec assumes the valves are going to tighten up a lot by the next check. In theory this may be the safest way to operate but in actual practice I have not seen tight valves on any of my past bikes after the initial adjustment.

Cheers and ride safe mates.

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 10:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkerjet View Post
I appreciate the advice fellas.

My experience with valves on a number of bikes is the clearance will change the most on the initial check and adjustment. After that you typically don't see much if any movement.

I will check them again around the 20k mark when it's again time the change air filter and plugs.

Friendly comment: Anywhere within spec is just that, within factory tolerance. The suggestion to adjust all the way out to the loose end of spec assumes the valves are going to tighten up a lot by the next check. In theory this may be the safest way to operate but in actual practice I have not seen tight valves on any of my past bikes after the initial adjustment.

Cheers and ride safe mates.
I agree with the statement of initial check, however I have owned a 07 and now a 15 650 Versys, I found both with tight exhaust valves on both and my 2015 was at 11,000 KM, less than half the recommended mileage, many on this forum found the same, this statement goes back to 2008, when many were just joining this forum. It sounds like you have the ability to get into this with about the same amount of effort that many on this forum would exert just to change sprockets and a chain. Both Eddie and I recommended this not only to you but for other members reading this. My plan is to check my valve clearance at 30,000 to 35,000KM next time, since the extra effort involved to go maximum was only about 10% more time than if I just buttoned it up, plus I had tight valves. Actually I would need to read my notes, as I recall several intake just in spec , and one tight valve.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-08-2017, 10:44 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by onewizard View Post
I agree with the statement of initial check, however I have owned a 07 and now a 15 650 Versys, I found both with tight exhaust valves on both and my 2015 was at 11,000 KM, less than half the recommended mileage, many on this forum found the same, this statement goes back to 2008, when many were just joining this forum. It sounds like you have the ability to get into this with about the same amount of effort that many on this forum would exert just to change sprockets and a chain. Both Eddie and I recommended this not only to you but for other members reading this. My plan is to check my valve clearance at 30,000 to 35,000KM next time, since the extra effort involved to go maximum was only about 10% more time than if I just buttoned it up, plus I had tight valves. Actually I would need to read my notes, as I recall several intake just in spec , and one tight valve.
A big factor in the valve clearance question is how the bike was set up at the factory. Mass production does not always produce the result that we can achieve in our own man cave. They pretty much slap it together and if within spec then down the assembly line it goes. Being within spec may have some valves towards the loose end of the spec while others may be towards the tight end. In my case I had just one valve right at the tight limit and it was an intake valve, much to my surprise.

I bought a new Yamaha FZ 09 back in 2014. The scheduled valve clearance check is at 26,000 miles. Then guys on the forum were reporting tight exhaust valves at 15k miles, so I checked my. At 19k miles I found all my exhaust valves were tight by quite a bit. Pulled the cams did a shim job and life was good again. All this to say I was quite pleased when I checked my Versys at the recommended mileage and found all valves to be in spec.

Here are the numbers of the FZ09 exhaust valves for perspective: Exhaust: .15/.23 .15/.18 .20/.23 Normal range is: .26-.30mm. As you can see the two at .15 were a fair bit below the tight limit of .26mm. None the less no valves were burnt and compression test showed normal on all cylinders.

I give this example to ease any worries about burnt valves if you have any right on the tight limit. There still is some wiggle room before disaster strikes.

On my bike I am pretty sure the valves are done with their "big" move and have reached their stable, very little movement stage going forward. This is why I am not worried about one valve on the tight limit and will check them again in 5k miles to verify.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-08-2017, 02:52 PM
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Sorry to thread highjack guys, but I recall reading that having valves looser improves fuel mileage. Is this true (or true with caveats)? Are there any downsides to a looser adjustment? Do valves ever loosen up further on their own, or do they usually only just get tighter?
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-08-2017, 03:51 PM
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Sorry to thread highjack guys, but I recall reading that having valves looser improves fuel mileage. Is this true (or true with caveats)? Are there any downsides to a looser adjustment? Do valves ever loosen up further on their own, or do they usually only just get tighter?
If a valve, especially exhaust valves are too tight, they won't completely close and exhaust gases will escape preventing complete combustion, reducing power and fuel efficiency. The valves will also be damaged by the escaping partially burned fuel.

During the period of break in, the valves seat themselves and sometimes reduce the clearance (tighten), therefore needing adjustment. After the first adjustment, my experience with Kawasakis is that there is little change over the remaining life of the bike.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-09-2017, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkerjet View Post
...Here is what I found.

Exhaust valves .28 .23 .23.25 spec range is .22 to .31mm

Intake valves .18 .18 .15 .18 spec range is .15 to .21mm

All within spec. Just the one intake was right on the tight end of spec which surprised me as it's usually exhaust valves that are the problem Children.

So will button it back up tomorrow and will check the valves again...in another 8k miles or so.
I'm willing to bet that when the dealer "does" a valve-check, w/ numbers like yours he would say that they all were w/in limits [which IS correct], and button it back up, charging LOT$. Then you MIGHT have a problem w/ the 'tight' valve(s) later, but after your warranty is over.

And THAT is why quite a few of us do our own valve checks, opening up the valves to the 'loose' end of the range. Previous KLR owners had a 'mantra' - a happy KLR is a tappy KLR....

Quote:
Originally Posted by aemacleod View Post
...Are there any downsides to a looser adjustment? Do valves ever loosen up further on their own, or do they usually only just get tighter?
As long as you're NOT grossly outside of the loose end clearances, I don't believe there are any downsides, and MY experience is that they DO tighten, but slowly after they've been opened to the loose end.

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Originally Posted by Buffalo_Bob View Post
If a valve, especially exhaust valves are too tight, they won't completely close and exhaust gases will escape preventing complete combustion, reducing power and fuel efficiency. The valves will also be damaged by the escaping partially burned fuel.

During the period of break in, the valves seat themselves and sometimes reduce the clearance (tighten), therefore needing adjustment. After the first adjustment, my experience with Kawasakis is that there is little change over the remaining life of the bike.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-27-2018, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
I'm willing to bet that when the dealer "does" a valve-check, w/ numbers like yours he would say that they all were w/in limits [which IS correct], and button it back up, charging LOT$. Then you MIGHT have a problem w/ the 'tight' valve(s) later, but after your warranty is over.

And THAT is why quite a few of us do our own valve checks, opening up the valves to the 'loose' end of the range. Previous KLR owners had a 'mantra' - a happy KLR is a tappy KLR....



As long as you're NOT grossly outside of the loose end clearances, I don't believe there are any downsides, and MY experience is that they DO tighten, but slowly after they've been opened to the loose end.




I had the same experience on my last shim bike, Tiger 1050, valves were close to min spec but stayed that way for 48k miles (checks are 12k). Once they bedded in little change. The only reason I'd adjust to max is to skip the next 15k check as that one may need an adjustment. This bike looks pretty easy to get access to the valves compared to the Tiger. That one cost nearly 800 dollars for a valve check (a quick learner after that) so now I check them myself.
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