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Timing Question

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I have a used 04 CRF. It had poor compression and I found the exhaust valves were zero'd. So I took the head off, replaced all valves (intakes and exhausts) and seals. Had the seats cut too. Used stock intakes and Pro X exhaust valves/springs. I have the copper Be seats.

Here's the beef. This is a used 04 and I found out that the timing tick mark is not lined up correctly when I am at TDC. The previous owner must have done some bottom end work or spun a gear or something - but I am 100% certain it's off. So when putting everything back together, I put the piston as close as I could to top dead center before putting the head back on - saw the piston at the very top of the stroke. Put the head on then I lined up the cam tick marks, put in the cam w/ the lobe pointed to the back, and tightened everything down and torqued. I checked the clearances one more time before buttoning everything up - they were still in spec. Put everything back together and added fluids. I also sealed the air boot.

When trying to start it the first time, it was a real beotch! Granted, I had the bike out of commission for about 3 months. It back fired a few times pretty good while kicking. Pop starting wouldn't get it going. I tried everything. No throttle at all with choke out. I tried pumping it a few times (which works on my other 04 CRF250), then kicking with the choke open. Nothing. I tried blipping it 1/8 throttle and kicking. Nothing. I always make sure I'm at TDC too (forgot to mention that). Eventually, it kicked over after the throttle blip technique. It will NOT ever start without blipping the throttle. I warmed it up, ran it for about 5 minutes. It ran SUPER smooth, good power, never would have noticed it was hard to start and ran pretty much like one would expect it to once I got it going. The only issue is, it won't idle good. I played around with the idle and still is pretty inconsistent. I can adjust it up and it will idle when I have it set at about 3K. But if I try to adjust the idle down to <2K it dies. And then it is a REAL bitch to restart. Once I kick it and blip it after about 30 kicks, it starts. Then it runs really smooth, just won't idle.

Questions:

**EDIT**

Ok, after doing some researching on here I didn't realize how important it was to make sure the Cam chain tensioner had no tension on it while putting the chain tensioner back in. When doing this, I used the screw driver/vice grip method. I think the screw driver popped out before I had the two bolts all the way in when putting the tensioner back in which would have put some tension on the chain before it was fully installed - too much tension. This is likely what made it hard to start. I didn't realize it was that critical.

Now, my question is. It still started and I ran it for about 5 minutes (maybe less). Just went down the street and back (not even 1/4 of a mile). How much damage can be done to the bearings and cam in that short of a time? I didn't rev it hard or do any hard riding. I'll try to start it first thing tomorrow morning (it's too late now, will wake everyone up in the neighborhood).

The bike ran smooth and seemed fine, it was just really hard to start. Can I really ruin a bearing in that short amount of time?

Edited by Stemo

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