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harder to kick with SS valves and KW springs?

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It sure seems like my bike is harder to kick start since putting in the SS valves and springs. I did check to make sure the decomp release is adjusted correctly, even changed it to see what would happen (answer: it became *really* hard to kick :thumbsup: ). My ankle and knee still haven't healed fully from falling off that ladder but I'm sure the bike is harder to kick, does that make any sense?

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Yes, I would think that is a logical assumption being that the springs are stiffer which makes it harder to compress them while kicking the bike.

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I would triple check your valve timing. I put one back together and it dispalayed the same thing: hard to kick. Seemed to run fine. Turns out it was just one tooth off. Now you can start it with your hand. Just food for thought! :thumbsup:

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I have the same issue , hard to kick after KW valves and springs install.

It run fine and i checked the valve clearence after the first 65 miles ride and everthing seems ok.

Now i shall check the valve timing again after reading the post from MED :thumbsup:

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I put in KW stainless valves and the KW spring kit early this summer and didn't notice any difference on the kick starter. (except that it always starts 1st kick) :lol::thumbsup::lol:

BTW - After about 30-40 hours, the clearances haven't moved. :D :D :devil::awww: On the other hand, the last set of Ti valves I had put in were out of spec and ready for adjustment within 15 hours.

Note: It's important to do a REAL good job cleaning the valve seats (make em look new) and lap the new valves REAL good to ensure they seat nicely with very little or no adjustment needed.

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I would triple check your valve timing. I put one back together and it dispalayed the same thing: hard to kick. Seemed to run fine. Turns out it was just one tooth off. Now you can start it with your hand. Just food for thought! :thumbsup:

hey Med, I sent you a PM regarding this, please have a look when you get a chance.

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maybe run the decompression release a little on the tight side, so it activates sooner or more.

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maybe run the decompression release a little on the tight side, so it activates sooner or more.

that would make it easier to kick and probably not start. The decompressor is supposed to drop the cylinder pressure to 110 bls, but it takes a minimum of 90 to support combustion..

I'd think, if it were the decompressor it would have to be a tad loose.

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maybe run the decompression release a little on the tight side, so it activates sooner or more.

I'm pretty sure I've got the decomp set right.

I called Ron Hamp (RHC) and discussed this with him, he told me to open the Timing Hole Cap on the LEFT side of the bike and use the two marks you see in there; he says when the piston is at TDC and the second of the two timing marks is lined up (counting clockwise) that the cam sprocket should also be lined up (mine is off by one tooth using that measure), what bothers me though is that when the second timing mark is lined up, the punch mark on the crankshaft isn't perfectly aligned with the arrow on the case and the Honda Service Manual says to use that (it makes no mention of the ignition timing marks in relation to the cam timing). I know Ron has been doing this a looong time and definitely knows his stuff, I'm just confused as to why the marks don't agree. Could the left and right halves of my crank be a little off? I'm scheduled to bring the bike in to the shop on Thursday so they can open it up and have a look. BTW, the Service Manager does agree with RHC that using the ignition timing marks (the left side sight hole) should also work but he said he usually uses the punch mark visible thru the right side hole.

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It could be the angle that your looking at the marks too :thumbsup:

I'm conscious of that when I'm looking at it, but you're right, especially with the right side sight hole, the punch mark on the crank and the arrow you're lining it up with are pretty far apart, so a slight change in your viewing angle makes a big difference. Maybe that's another reason Ron suggested using the timing marks on the left side; the lines and the notch in the case you're lining them up with are much closer together.

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How did all that work out for you? What did you find? I've replaced my valves and springs using KW stuff and the bike is harder to kick, but runs and starts fine.

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How did all that work out for you? What did you find? I've replaced my valves and springs using KW stuff and the bike is harder to kick, but runs and starts fine.

okay, there's now way to explain this without giving the full story, so here goes:

I took the bike in and explained what was going on (how it seemed harder to kick and how the left side timing mark seemed off by my eye). The bike was also INTERMITTENTLY harder to start, but I had been blaming my sore knee (I couldn't kick as hard) and possibly weather-related jetting changes for that. They said they'd open it up and take a look, I said "okay, give me a call while you've got it open, I wanna see too" (I work about 2 minutes away from the shop). So they give me a call and I go down there. First thing is he shows me where a bolt was missing on the electrical doodad that mounts to the frame right in front of the valve cover. This was causing an intermittent ground which is why sometimes I'd kick twenty times and it wouldnt start, then all of a sudden it would fire right up. Fine so far, the strange part is the timing marks. He shows me how to spin the crank until the right side mark is lined up with the case, then check the marks on the cam sprocket (all of which I already knew and was doing correctly) and it all lines up. "But what about the left side mark (the one under the timing hole cap)?" I ask, "that's what looked off to me". He says "well normally I don't even look at that" but he opens that one up, and NOW it appears perfectly aligned with the SECOND mark. When I had it open at home I would SWEAR it lined up with the FIRST mark, which RHC told me would mean the cam timing is off by a tooth. So they close it up and I take it home. Service Manager calls me the next day to see how it's going. "Fired up first kick" I tell him. Bike now kicks completely normally (same as when it had the OEM Ti valves and springs) and starts in the first couple kicks hot or cold.

So, did the shop open it up, see that the timing was off and correct it before they called me, then pretend it was fine the whole time? (I find that hard to believe, I do trust these guys). Or did I somehow misread the left side timing marks when I had it apart at home, and think the bike was kicking hard because I couldn't get it to start due to the electrical issue? I *really* don't believe that either, it was hard enough to kick that if I had it on the wrong part of the stroke it would stop my leg cold at the top of the stroke, I'd have to nudge it through to TDC just to be able to kick it all the way thru the stroke. It was never that way before the valve work, and hasn't been that way since that last trip to the shop either. The electrical problem (missing bolt) was a very real problem, but I don't see how (and neither did the mechanic) that could change the way the bike kicked.

I guess I'll never really know :cry:

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Man you really ran the gamut. Here is my saga. After reading your post and all the input from the other folks, I set out to double check my timing marks. At first it looked as if I did infact miss the mark by a tooth. So I slipped the chain a tooth checked it again, it looked good. I put her all back together and tried the smoke test. Now talk about hard to kick!!! I was fearful of braking off the kick starter, but the bike did start and idle fine. I tried starting it after a good warm up, but it was still harder to kick than before. So I went back in for the forth time in three days. This time when looking for the timing marks I squatted down keeping my eyes level to the ground instead of leaning over the bike or tilting...whatever. It makes a difference. On the right side timing mark I used a steel ruler as additional pointer. You hold the ruler on the center of the allen head bolt that you use to rotate the crank, then lay it on the timing mark on the cases, then the dot on the gear should all be in line. Just a way to reduce the parallax effect. After that progression I could clearly see that I was now a tooth off. So I slipped the chain back to where it was, rechecked all the marks cranked it through a few times, checked it again, bingo on the money. Now I was back to where I was with the bike being hard to kick. I remembered reading in one of these posts that if you unbolted the cam chain tensioner all the way out and put it back without resetting it like the book says that simular hard to kick problems would occur. I made the little tool, followed the books procedure and.....it starts like it did when it was new!!! I don't know why but it seems the cam chain tensioner was my problem. :cry: :cry: I'm gonna go out tomorrow and scald that beast. That will be the test.

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I just put SS valves and springs in my bike too, and Im having the same kicking issues, but after seeing this I'll take it apart and make sure I got the timing right. :cry:

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hmmm, that cam chain tensioner issue sounds like a very plausible explanation for my situation. I could see the shop "rechecking" that before they called me. What worries me is that I rode the bike once or twice (and I don't just mean up and down the driveway) while it was kicking hard, I wonder if that would damage (stretch) the cam chain?

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I hope not, I rode mine too. I did notice that my oil got darker quicker. On hind sight I wounder if it was wearing on the cam chain slider a little more. If I remember correctly the guide in the front is white and the one in the back is black. I rode it today and the bike is running great, starts on the first kick,hot or cold, and the oil is still clean. :cry:

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