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Checked valves on KTM 350. Only one valve tight? What to do?

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Hello! New to the forum here.

I recently picked up a 2011 KTM 350 from a fellow with unknown hours (got a hour meter to take care of that). He only had it for 6 months and never checked the valves or anything. He said his son only rode it about 4-5 times. Figured that would be the first thing I would check before getting it out on the trails. Pulled her down this afternoon and to my surprise everything was pretty good in there. Left and right exhaust was basically right in the middle of spec from the 20 million times I checked it seemed like haha. .15mm just had a touch of drag and .13mm was really smooth. Called those good. Now on the intake side of things. My left side Was .10mm smooth and .13mm had a bit of drag, didnt seem major but there was some drag to it. I put two feelers together to make a .11mm and it felt good still. Now on the right side I came out with .08mm smooth and .10mm had more drag than I would have liked to feel. Had a tough time getting the .11mm feeler pair in there, would almost say it didnt want to go in. Didnt help it was in a turd of a spot where it was tough to get anything in there to even get a measurement. 

Kinda stumped on whether or not I should pull her further down and go ahead and shim up that side and maybe the other intake side as well. Seems like alot of work for a few mm. (This is my first time fiddling with valves on something dirt bike size with shims). I do have a Dirt Tricks cam tensioner I bought to replace that oil pressure driven tensioner. So I know the tensioner has to come out anyway. The bike seems to run really good and starts easy from what I can tell. I dont hear to much racket from the engine. Really dont know what these motors are suppose to sound like to begin with though.

Would you guys bother with this, or run it a while longer before adjusting valves?

 

 

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That is your call.  Lazy me would probably leave it knowing I need to do them soon.  On a side note, I picked up a good trick when I just adjusted mine.  I duct taped a shop towel on the frame and wires above the motor to keep dirt from falling in the engine.  You can never wash that area well enough too keep dirt out of the motor.  Next time I am going to try syran wrap.  Probably will work better. 

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23 minutes ago, XRYoda said:

That is your call.  Lazy me would probably leave it knowing I need to do them soon.  On a side note, I picked up a good trick when I just adjusted mine.  I duct taped a shop towel on the frame and wires above the motor to keep dirt from falling in the engine.  You can never wash that area well enough too keep dirt out of the motor.  Next time I am going to try syran wrap.  Probably will work better. 

What is minimum spec a guy would want to let their valves get to? Half of what the inspec measurement is? Say for the intakes a .06mm feeler would fit right in with proper drag. I don't mind doing the work I just want to see what others would do in this situation with just one valve actually out of spec a little. 

I really like the idea of the Syran wrap. Will be trying that for sure. I pressure washed that thing off for a good hour with a commercial grade unit. Still had quite a bit of funk up above the engine area.

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It's apart, you're doing the tensioner anyways. I would just shim it....major peace of mind ya know.

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Went ahead as suggested and shimmed up. Got it right in the middle of spec. With my slight OCD it did make me feel better about it. Put her back together in quick order before leaving for vacation. Fired right up and sounded good. 

Bonus to going ahead and doing the job was I found that the bike already had a dirt tricks cam tensioner which I purchased before even doing the job. Might be sending that back or selling it to someone on here. Also let me see that everything bearing and cam wise looked really good. It shows by some of the stuff I found condition wise that the previous owners seemed to know their bikes and, cared for them properly. 

My two issues I ran into. #1 the cam tensioner housing was leaking slightly after startup. It showed a certain torque for the large retaining cap with brass washer. But, there isn't any room for a socket with the frame in the way and I didn't feel like hunting for crows foot to torque down so I just winged it by hand with my open end wrench. I assume o can try snugging it down some more to try and stop the leak. If not I am going to have to pull the valve cover off again I guess. Unless I can find TDC with it on using the crank lock bolt. 

Next issue I ran into was sealing up the valve cover gasket cam area. Manual says use a sealing compound there. But previous owner that has had the cover off before seems to have really put quite a bit on the cam dip area. I would obviously need to clean that off but it seems like it would be quite difficult to do that without damaging the gasket. I just installed it untouched and am hoping it doesn't leak. Turd of a design if you ask me. They should have made the gasket to where no compound would be needed. 

Really wasn't a difficult job in the end. My biggest problem is my OCD with keeping everything clean.  It works against my speed of the job in the long run. 

 

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2 hours ago, rodney24 said:

Went ahead as suggested and shimmed up. Got it right in the middle of spec. With my slight OCD it did make me feel better about it. Put her back together in quick order before leaving for vacation. Fired right up and sounded good. 

Bonus to going ahead and doing the job was I found that the bike already had a dirt tricks cam tensioner which I purchased before even doing the job. Might be sending that back or selling it to someone on here. Also let me see that everything bearing and cam wise looked really good. It shows by some of the stuff I found condition wise that the previous owners seemed to know their bikes and, cared for them properly. 

My two issues I ran into. #1 the cam tensioner housing was leaking slightly after startup. It showed a certain torque for the large retaining cap with brass washer. But, there isn't any room for a socket with the frame in the way and I didn't feel like hunting for crows foot to torque down so I just winged it by hand with my open end wrench. I assume o can try snugging it down some more to try and stop the leak. If not I am going to have to pull the valve cover off again I guess. Unless I can find TDC with it on using the crank lock bolt. 

Next issue I ran into was sealing up the valve cover gasket cam area. Manual says use a sealing compound there. But previous owner that has had the cover off before seems to have really put quite a bit on the cam dip area. I would obviously need to clean that off but it seems like it would be quite difficult to do that without damaging the gasket. I just installed it untouched and am hoping it doesn't leak. Turd of a design if you ask me. They should have made the gasket to where no compound would be needed. 

Really wasn't a difficult job in the end. My biggest problem is my OCD with keeping everything clean.  It works against my speed of the job in the long run. 

 

I believe valves tighten up after use so middle of spec wouldn't be what I would aim for.

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Well my numbers came out to bring them right at .14 on both sides. The .13 fit nicely and the .15 was just a little grabby. The intakes are difficult to get a good reading on in my opinion. Bad angle to get in there and no room.  I'm comfortable with where they are at now compared to before

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For sealing the valve cover near the cams use a little bit of Threebond 1194.  I had some leaking issues in that area and that's what the KTM dealer recommended I use to get it to seal properly.  Worked like a charm.

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1 hour ago, ScootMcGoot said:

For sealing the valve cover near the cams use a little bit of Threebond 1194.  I had some leaking issues in that area and that's what the KTM dealer recommended I use to get it to seal properly.  Worked like a charm.

I will look into this. How much and where should it be applied. The previous owner or shop seamed to have smeared it around both half moons and to each corner of that side of the gasket. 

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1 minute ago, rodney24 said:

I will look into this. How much and where should it be applied. The previous owner or shop seamed to have smeared it around both half moons and to each corner of that side of the gasket. 

Just a nice thin coat on the head in the half moons to the edges will be all you need.  That's exactly how I did it as well.  I put it on with my finger so I could get a nice even but thin coat.  Make sure you give it time to setup as well.  I think it was 24 hours but I don't remember off hand.

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