Yamaha XT 350 valve adjustment ...ggrrrrrrr

Having a bitch of time with it. Have a Clymer manual, and even went so far as actually buying the correct adjustment tool. The photo is vague and I've been dicking with it for almost two hours. Needless to say, I'm out of ciggies and getting pretty pissed off.

Has anybody actually adjusted ther valves on a yamaha TT/XT 350 That could give me some advice? I cant seem to get the tool in the right(any) position to just depress the lifter so the shim can be removed :thumbsup:



Just make sure you're at TDC after the COMPRESSION stroke; NOT TDC after the EXHAUST stroke . . . all valves will be closed, valve lash at maximum clearance at TDC after the COMPRESSION stroke. At the other TDC, after the EXHAUST stroke, valve clearance may be zero; valves may even be slightly open because of cam grind duration and overlap.

Air rushing from the spark plug hole when the engine is rotated identifies the copression stroke.

Not trying to be condescending;; you may be trying to work on the valves at the wrong TDC position.

Hey Racer,

Thanks for the reply, no offence taken on double checking the obvious, Been know to pull some doosies. :thumbsup: ...But not this time.

Five hours later, and after educating my kids with language I haven't used since the navy.....the shims are out and have figured the correct shims I need. Needless to say, none of them slid out, it took some delicate prying to get them to lift out of the lifter. I THINK the problem is the tool is just a hair to wide and binding the shim and the lifter at the same time. I have taken the liberty to narrow the overall width a little with a file and will make a follow up post once the job is done.

Any other input would be very much appreciated, there was'nt much to find on a search of the XT350 DIY valve adjustment.


Once I figured out what size shims to get, I pulled the cams. It seems like an idiot way to do it and the adjustment never ended up exactly where I wanted it after retorquing, but life is too short to agonize over that miserable experience any longer than needed.

The other method I used was to pay the shop to do it. I will never own another shim and bucket engine.

try the yamaha forum...much better chance of multiple replies

Removing the cams is just eight bolts.

Go U.S.C.

Update: mission accomplished. The exhaust valves were tight and what a difference in kick starting and overall preformance.They went in easier than they came out. I say the problem is the tool is too wide. I thinned it some and it helped, but think on the next rainy day I'll make a new one of 1/8 plate steel with the same profile. I think the real prob is the tool is too wide and binding the shim while depressing the valve bucket.

Thank you guys for all the responses.


I just pulled the cams on mine, but I had no choice because my chain was stretched and it jumped time, causing the intake valves to hit the piston and bend.

Have any of you other XT350 owners experienced timing chains stretching or failure of the automatic tensioner? I'm on my second XT350 and the chain is also stretched. Does anyone make a manual tensioner?

I picked up my 85 XT350 for 65$ due to this. It has about 11,500 miles on it. I bought it with the top end apart. Turned out it had 4 bent valves due to the tensioner failing. There is like a recoil spring inside. The tang that holds the spring broke off rendering the tensioner useless. That is why the valve timing was lost and bent the valves. Weak design in my opinion.

well i know the thumpertalk store sells a manual timing chain adjuster. i just do not know if it fits a xt350.

if you have the cam bolts out, make shure you clean and locktight them!! one fell out and cost me my new chain and a lower case. expensive lesson.

The tool does work well. The trick is to have the cam lobes at a angle to the buckets. Slip the tool in, pressing on it and rotate the engine. The cam will pull it right into place. Once the valve cover is off, swapping shims is a five minute job.

+2 on the poor quality tensioner. Should be a maintenance item, at 7.5K miles, replace.

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