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when do I know its time for valve work

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well all i hear is about valves, something im not sure about. Well I find my bike is running fine, maybe a little bit of humming but i think its fine.

I wanna check my valve timing but im a little bit intimidated so i wanna hold off and i dont have the money to get my bike checked right now. But I would like to know when I have to do a check up, because i dont want to pay 300 bucks to find out it wasnt neccesary. What are some tell take signs that my valves need replacing or my timing need to be adjusted?

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You say timing. Valves don't go out of time unless the cam chain stretches or jumps. If you mean clearances, hard starting is the usual symptom. Just check it, you can't screw anything up by checking it. (Unless you strip a bolt or something like that.) I think Planet KLX has an article about it.

Oh, buy a manual.

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First off, your timing never needs to be adjusted. It's either right or wrong and is determined by having your crank at TDC and the timing marks aligned and the two horizontal lines on the cams paralell with the head. You can also count the pins on the timing chain between the cams to determine proper cam/timing as well. If the cam chain has not slipped or been taken off, your timing is OK. (Unless they messed it up at the factory)

Valves are a completely different story. They are not "timed" but can be adjusted via shims. The KLX's problem is that the intakes tighten and end up cupping. I highly suggest checking them every 500 miles. If you have a new bike, you;ll breathe a sigh of relief after checking them and seeing they are in spec. But.......check again soon, because when they start to move, you want to catch them before they close down.

Details for doing this are well laid out in the manual. Also some more info on planetklx.com

The tell tale signs are seeming lack of compression as you kick the bike over and hard starting when cold (especially when cold). My personal opinion is that if you don't have enough money to check your valves, you don't have enough money to ride. Park it or check them or pay the big bucks when they head south - your choice. Good luck.

bp

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Well I have the money but I dont' want to pay someone a huge amount of money to check my valves because my dealer charges 95$ an hour (CAD) when I know its possible to do it myself. And my bike has really good compression and starts like nothing but I'll take your advice and get em checked by either me or my dealer just for some peace of mind.

I'd like to learn myself but I dont have the owners manual and I cant find one, but I'll go check and see if my dealer can order one for kawi. And this would be my first time even opening up a 4 stroke dirtbike engine(as you can tell by my limited knowledge), so if I just follow the steps is it a no brainer?

thanks Bill & klxd

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Checking the valve clearance is a no brainer! You would have to try hard to screw anything up. If the clearance is out of tolerance, adjusting it will take a little thought the first time, easy after that.

Get a manual and get to work!

Ride on

Brewster

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You can order a manual on Kaw's site. I have one for $20 US, shipped if there isn't a problem shipping it to Canada. Never tried. It doesn't include the 300 Supplement but I don't believe there's anything critical in the Supplement.

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yes, it's pretty easy. brewster showed me how and i feel pretty confident that i can do it on my own when the time comes!

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you will know if your valves are out of wack is when your starting gets hard. becuase the engine is not igniting at the right time,letting air in at the wrong time, or the exhasust is not being opened at the right time.

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you will know if your valves are out of wack is when your starting gets hard. becuase the engine is not igniting at the right time,letting air in at the wrong time, or the exhasust is not being opened at the right time.

Yeah....but unfortunately, at that point it's too late to save your valves. Check often and adjust!!!!!!!

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I agree...check them every few hundred miles....better safe than sorry, and only takes an extra 20 minutes if done when changing out your air filter. I didn't check my valves until I had trouble starting my bike....bought the shim kit....kept shimming to get 6 more months out of the valves, then had to replace them. Check, and check often is your best insurance.

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I bought an OEM gasket, valves, seals & collets (could have re-used original collets). Don't remember how much it cost exactly....around $100 I guess....probably a little cheaper (try the TT store...they have cheap/good OEM prices). I made a valve spring compression adaptor out of 3/4" pvc, and used a c-clamp to compress the spring & remove the collets. Pretty easy job if you have the manual. I'll have the bronze seats put in the next time I have to replace the valves.....$200-$300 should cover it at a local engine shop.

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OEM PRICES -

Intake valve - (2) - $44.92

seals - (2) - $ 8.98

inner springs (2) - $16.68

outer springs (2) - $16.68

gasket (1) - $43.76

collets (4) - $ 7.16

total w/o tax - $138.18

you could just do the valves, seals & gasket for $97.66 (there are cheaper gaskets out there as well)

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I just checked my valve clearances and removed the shims myself w/ no experience at all. I used the PlanetKLX info. and it worked great. I would suggest however, that you zipty the chain to each cam wheel tightly. That way, you don't have to worry about counting links and marks and such. I didn't do this because I didn't know any better. Now, I'm afraid I'll screw up the timing. I'm having my valve shims surface ground by a buddy of mine. The intake clearance was less than .002"(my smallest gauge) and the exhaust ones were right at the minimum spec. Don't be afraid to check them. If I can do it anyone can.

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I did the surface grind thing the first time I shimmed (cause I was in a pinch). I recommend getting the shim kit for $70. It was well worth the money.

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Are there any recomendations for what shops do headwork on the KLX?

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I agree...check them every few hundred miles....better safe than sorry, and only takes an extra 20 minutes if done when changing out your air filter. I didn't check my valves until I had trouble starting my bike....bought the shim kit....kept shimming to get 6 more months out of the valves, then had to replace them. Check, and check often is your best insurance.

Just another entry after every ride and you should be okay. dont worry once you get the first time down it becomes cake. :applause:

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Just Adjusted valves on my '00. when I read about the cold starting issue I knew it was time. This was my first time doing it. Started out with confusion, but when I got a metric feeler gauge it all started to make sense. :applause: Bruce and I had the exhaust cam out when he did the ACR mod for me last June, so it all came back when seeing it again. I went two sizes down on both inlet valves (3.05 to 2.95) started right up and ran it around the block this afternoon :lol: Used a sharpy to mark the sprocket and chain to get back to the same timing. though lining up the marks on the sprockets to the head and counting the 32 pins on the chain would have been easy too. Dealer wanted $11.95 each for used shims would have been over $51 dollars. A local cycle shop sold me shims for $5 each with exchange, $7 dollars without. if you are nervous about it, like I was, don't be; it's easy. But I would definatly keep a rag stuffed in the motor so you don't drop anthing in. and, put a ziptie on the chain so if it goes down you can use it to pull it back up (a Brewster trick).

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Im not worrying about checking my valves right now cuz my bike might have a little over 100 miles on it. And it starts like nothing, takes me less than a minute to get it turned over in like -20 degress celcius weather.

But i should check my valves every 200 or so miles??

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