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The bike I bought is a 2017 300 X and has 7400 miles. Accoding to the manual the valves should be inspected. My question is when members of the forum had the valves inspected at this mileage did they actually need adjustment or were they usually in spec? Any comments would be appreciated.
 

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2017 Kawasaki Versys-x 300 (non ABS)
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Welcome aboard !

See post# 4 on this -- @chucksklrst says exhaust valves were out of spec at 7,500 miles


Hope this helps !

JT
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Welcome aboard !

See post# 4 on this -- @chucksklrst says exhaust valves were out of spec at 7,500 miles


Hope this helps !

JT
Thanks, it was very helpful.
 

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What is the list of items that are needed to be purchased to do the valve adjustments by the owner? (me) I watched a couple of videos but no detail on what is needed - shims yes but, what shims? Where do you buy the correct set of shims for the X300? I have tools but is there something unique in the way of tools, fixturing, supplies that are needed? If the dealer wants over $1000 to do this valve adjustment, I would attempt to do it myself and learn a whole bunch of new skills.
 

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Pro-X shims available at RockyMountainATV, can also get "quarter" sizes.
Coming from a start position - what does quarter size mean? With some true effort to understand the materials and process performing the valve adjustments should be only a bunch of wrench turning. (In theory)
I looked up the Pro-X shims on RockyMountainATV and they don't list the X300 just other Kawasaki models - so, are they all the same?
I looked on the Pro-X web site and couldn't find X300 at all.

With mileage running up on the X300 what happens if the valves adjustment isn't done? I assume the shims wear on the cam lobes - so with this wear what happens if the adjustment just isn't done? Loss of power? or worse like parts being destroyed? (or engine valve train will be destroyed)
 

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What is the list of items that are needed to be purchased to do the valve adjustments by the owner? (me) I watched a couple of videos but no detail on what is needed - shims yes but, what shims? Where do you buy the correct set of shims for the X300? I have tools but is there something unique in the way of tools, fixturing, supplies that are needed? If the dealer wants over $1000 to do this valve adjustment, I would attempt to do it myself and learn a whole bunch of new skills.
Dave - for reference: I asked a local dealer what he'd charge just to do the valve adjustment job (nothing else) and he looked it up in his book for me -- it was about $440. So not cheap, but not $1K either. May be different in your area, but I'd ask a local shop/dealer before deciding. If cost vs. effort is in your calculation (as it is in mine) ... you need to make sure that cost data is accurate before making the decision !

Of course, if you do decide to do it, and post a video on youtube with details, I won't complain :unsure: ;)
 

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Dave - for reference: I asked a local dealer what he'd charge just to do the valve adjustment job (nothing else) and he looked it up in his book for me -- it was about $440. So not cheap, but not $1K either. May be different in your area, but I'd ask a local shop/dealer before deciding. If cost vs. effort is in your calculation (as it is in mine) ... you need to make sure that cost data is accurate before making the decision !

Of course, if you do decide to do it, and post a video on youtube with details, I won't complain :unsure: ;)
JT in GA, Yes sir, I will contact the dealership where I bought my X300 for a real estimate on the valve adjustment. At 7500 miles I believe there to be all kinds of preventative maintenance items on the list to jack up the total cost to over $1200 (going by what other X300 owners have said). If we lived somewhere in the PAC rim the cost would be way less. If I go through the valve adjustment myself, I will video "Da Hole Ting" and add it to my YouTube channel. I don't think I've run across an X300 valve adjustment video yet. There is a 300 Ninja video that I've watched twice, and I cannot follow what all is being done. The gross take offs and reassemblies yes but lacking on the shimming and detail. I will keep searching for a good video on going. I will do better if I create a video. As with most of my videos I talk people to death. lol But, I get a lot of compliments on all that detail as people can follow what I'm doing with less guess work - which is never good.
 
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Kawasaki uses 7.48 mm diameter shims, best verify the X300 uses same, but apparently they do according to this........

Example of normal shim kit sizes.... 1.00, 1.05, 1.10....... so the 1.05 is a "half" size. A quarter size is 1.025 or 1.075, Pro-X the only ones I've found for those......
Picking any Kawi listed by RockyMountain will likely default you to 7.48mm shims.
 

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2022 Versys X 300
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I do these sorts of valve jobs all the time. Just a lot of "if--->then" math involved. You measure the clearance, if it's too much then you look at the shim that's in there now, calculate how much thicker it should be by trying thicker and thicker feeler gauges until it feels right, and subtracting the in-spec thickness from that, and adding the remainder value to the existing shim. Slip the new shim in and recheck. The Vulcan 900s are so much easier because you needn't remove the cam, the followers just slide out of the way. You'll want to double check your math when doing the Versys so you're not tearing the cam back off multiple times.
 

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Dave and All
You have probably heard stories of VX 300 owners (myself included) asking their dealers about this very question, only to be told that the valves very rarely need adjustment at this mileage, etc. This is their way of saying that it's a PITA and they don't want to do it. Or, you might infer that they make more $$ by just blowing out oil changes and chain adjustments to make a quick profit on something that their "techs" can't screw up too badly. You'll also hear these owners (again, myself included) say that when the valves were checked at or near the 7500 mile mark that they did, indeed, need adjusting. Lots of this kind of testimonial on the various forums. I had "my guy" ( a mc race mechanic) do mine. Even he had doubts as to whether they would need adjusting but I copied him several of the threads about it and he found that mine were typical. IIRC, the intakes were within spec but the exhaust needed adjusting. It took him I think 8 hours, because he had to remove most of the stuff I've hung on the bike like engine guards and T-Rex HD skid plate. he was very surprised at how far he had to go into the bike to get to the valves and spark plugs, which I had him do while he was at it. I had let mine go till about 8600 miles to get a few more miles I had on my then most recent oil change, etc. But it was definitely needed.
There are also testimonials as you have mentioned that "It's the same as a Ninja--just watch one of THOSE videos", but since "I got a guy" I haven't watched any.
I'm not at all against turning wrenches myself and do have the tools needed, but I like the idea of a trusted and experienced guy doing it, better!
Now I'm nearing 15,000 miles. Most reports seem to indicate the valves are OK from that first check up into around 30,000+ miles, depending on where they are set at the 7500 mile check and riding style. So I have to talk it over with my guy and decide when to do my next one. I ride very conservatively and will probably wait as long as I can stand it...
 

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Dave and All
You have probably heard stories of VX 300 owners (myself included) asking their dealers about this very question, only to be told that the valves very rarely need adjustment at this mileage, etc. This is their way of saying that it's a PITA and they don't want to do it. Or, you might infer that they make more $$ by just blowing out oil changes and chain adjustments to make a quick profit on something that their "techs" can't screw up too badly. You'll also hear these owners (again, myself included) say that when the valves were checked at or near the 7500 mile mark that they did, indeed, need adjusting. Lots of this kind of testimonial on the various forums. I had "my guy" ( a mc race mechanic) do mine. Even he had doubts as to whether they would need adjusting but I copied him several of the threads about it and he found that mine were typical. IIRC, the intakes were within spec but the exhaust needed adjusting. It took him I think 8 hours, because he had to remove most of the stuff I've hung on the bike like engine guards and T-Rex HD skid plate. he was very surprised at how far he had to go into the bike to get to the valves and spark plugs, which I had him do while he was at it. I had let mine go till about 8600 miles to get a few more miles I had on my then most recent oil change, etc. But it was definitely needed.
There are also testimonials as you have mentioned that "It's the same as a Ninja--just watch one of THOSE videos", but since "I got a guy" I haven't watched any.
I'm not at all against turning wrenches myself and do have the tools needed, but I like the idea of a trusted and experienced guy doing it, better!
Now I'm nearing 15,000 miles. Most reports seem to indicate the valves are OK from that first check up into around 30,000+ miles, depending on where they are set at the 7500-mile check and riding style. So I have to talk it over with my guy and decide when to do my next one. I ride very conservatively and will probably wait as long as I can stand it...
First off - this valve adjustment task takes 8 hours by a experienced mechanic tells me I better think twice before I jump in and try it myself.
What happens when the exhaust valves are out of spec? Does the valve not open as much? Or worse would be if the exhaust valve didn't seat on the head fully. I'm just curious as what is the downside. Or damage side of failing to get the valves adjusted. It seems that just a tiny bit of wear on the shims will send the valves out of spec. I'm surprised I guess; however, I will do what needs to be done.
 

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2022 Versys X 300
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8hrs sounds insane to me. I replaced the entire cylinder and head on my Ninja 500 in less time. I get it there's quite a few plastic bits to undress but still...and shops near me charge $137.50/hr. I charge only $60/hr, though I may be bumping up my rate to $75/hr first of the year. Thing is too, shops charge "flat rate", meaning they charge what the book tells them the job will take. I charge actual time which is almost always less.
 

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Dave
There are others more qualified to speak on the matter, but with the hope they will chime in and correct me, I will say that somehow, the clearances between the valves and the head change (decrease? Help me out, folks) necessitating the adjustment by means of changing the shims that are installed for this purpose. My understanding is, there is a lot of basic wrenching involved just to get to them, and once they are accessed there is some basic, but critical measuring involved. Again, other posts indicate that the procedure is all outlined in the maintenance manual but since I don't have that I'm only repeating what I've read.
Anyway, once you have determined what clearances the bike has and comparing this to the specs, a little addition and subtraction and a bit more measuring lets one install the shims needed to put the clearances into spec. I had my guy change the spark plugs while he was in there. This is another job that kawa has turned into quite a project for such a seemingly simple task. If I may be so bold, I would suggest checking the Kawasaki VX 300 forum over on ADV Rider. We all seem to cross-pollinate between these two anyway. I'm sure that with your background you'll have it figured out once you gather the pertinent information. To be honest I would do it but my garage is such a mess right now it's a wonder I can even find my poor little Versys in there. But again, I am actually happy to let an experienced mechanic handle it as long as he is charging a reasonable price and I trust him. George
 

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8hrs sounds insane to me. I replaced the entire cylinder and head on my Ninja 500 in less time. I get it there's quite a few plastic bits to undress but still...and shops near me charge $137.50/hr. I charge only $60/hr, though I may be bumping up my rate to $75/hr first of the year. Thing is too, shops charge "flat rate", meaning they charge what the book tells them the job will take. I charge actual time which is almost always less.
What you are saying, is EXACTLY what this mechanic said to me before he got into it. He tells me how they swap out cylinders, heads, etc between races on Honda 650's etc. Then he went into my VX 300. And he saw why the dealers don't want to do it. I just looked up his invoice and to do the valves change the oil, change anti freeze (he said he had to pull the tank to do the other work) and change the plugs he charged 12 hours. He was incredulous and apologetic about the time but I visited him briefly while the bike was apart and it. was. APART! Since I know him his labor bill was ridiculously low so If he's willing to do the next check he'll definitely be seeing the guts of my bike again. Remember, too, that I have crash guards, lights, a skid plate, and probably some other extraneous stuff he had to remove to get to the good parts!
I believe 8 hours is what the Kawa manual calls for, but I can't remember where I read that. Ang again, I'm certainly not a motorcycle mechanic so I won't argue with those that are. And like anything else that allows 8 hours for a qualified and equipped mechanic to change a widget, if I were to change that widget I would probably succeed, but undoubtedly take twice as long to do it.
 

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What you are saying, is EXACTLY what this mechanic said to me before he got into it. He tells me how they swap out cylinders, heads, etc between races on Honda 650's etc. Then he went into my VX 300. And he saw why the dealers don't want to do it. I just looked up his invoice and to do the valves change the oil, change anti freeze (he said he had to pull the tank to do the other work) and change the plugs he charged 12 hours. He was incredulous and apologetic about the time but I visited him briefly while the bike was apart and it. was. APART! Since I know him his labor bill was ridiculously low so If he's willing to do the next check he'll definitely be seeing the guts of my bike again. Remember, too, that I have crash guards, lights, a skid plate, and probably some other extraneous stuff he had to remove to get to the good parts!
I believe 8 hours is what the Kawa manual calls for, but I can't remember where I read that. Ang again, I'm certainly not a motorcycle mechanic so I won't argue with those that are. And like anything else that allows 8 hours for a qualified and equipped mechanic to change a widget, if I were to change that widget I would probably succeed, but undoubtedly take twice as long to do it.
Fuel tank and airbox removal gets you access to everything you need at the top of this motor, and there just isn't hours and hours of stuff in the way, skid plate or not. Think I'd rather do valves on a Versys than carbs on a Magna and I'm doing TWO of those presently...
 

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Thanks for that tip and I'll pass that along the next time he checks my valves. There are always tricks of the trade that can be learned by just asking the right questions. Again, not having access to the repair manual I'm just going by what I have read on the various forums. Maybe when the time comes for your valve check you could let us know what you find, along with a few pics of your method of checking them. It seems to be a subject that lots of folks are interested in learning about, myself included.
 

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Thanks for that tip and I'll pass that along the next time he checks my valves. There are always tricks of the trade that can be learned by just asking the right questions. Again, not having access to the repair manual I'm just going by what I have read on the various forums. Maybe when the time comes for your valve check you could let us know what you find, along with a few pics of your method of checking them. It seems to be a subject that lots of folks are interested in learning about, myself included.
I'll have my bike torn down to that level in a few weeks for the custom 3D printed intake. Letcha know how long she took to undress.
 
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