Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

New Head or Refurb?

Recommended Posts

I just checked my valve clearences. One In Take was unchanged and the other barely needed a new shim. The exhaust valves were zeroed out. Strange because 12 months ago they were well within tolerances. I was at my local Honda shop and they suggested that it would be cheaper to buy a new head less the valves and springs and buy the Kibble White Valves and Springs and have them installed. I am not sure which way to go. I don't know the costs involved, but I am sure some of you may have made a similar choice. Would I still have to have the Valves lapped with the new head?

Suggestions/experiences would be appreciated. Happy Holiday,s Spit51

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the valve seats and guides are worn to the point of needing replacement, then the cost in machining and labor may equal or exceed to a new head. You will not know wether the seats and guides need to be recut or replaced until the head is off and all that can be checked.

A complete head ready to go from http://www.bigborethumpers.com/newheads.html is $575, I got mine done by Ron Hamp (re-cut valve seats,install SS valves, replace springs and keepers, check intake guides and replace exhaust guides...these are the things he said are normally required to recondition a head ) quote was $450 ( a while back I might add, not sure if rate would be the same)...I got my head back with a $50 refund because the exhaust guides checked out OK. So the end cost for mine was $400.

ANd your valves zero'd backwards, it is usually the right intake that zeros...and 12 months is a long time, any idea on hrs ridden?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also be very careful who you let do the work, I talked to one dealer mech about the task and he talked about lapping the valves in, BIG BIG HUGE nono! It is no wonder people get this done and many times the repair last 10 hrs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depends on who you talk to because there are alot of different viewpoints on how to do it "right" and what not to do when it comes to replacing valves and related valve train parts. Can get alittle confusing when considering all the different advise about what to do when its time to consider the different options, where to send it, how much it should cost, etc etc. If the $ spent arent really the decision maker you can upgrade your valve train for more power and/or in some cases more reliability. I think first you want know if you are looking for more reliability or more power and about how much you want to spend.

You didnt say how old your bike is or how many hours on the valves so that might be a deciding factor.

We've tried most of the options with our 05 bike since its been freshened several times. Replaced the original valves with OEM parts, used the old faction mx valve components, used KW valve components-a good choice, also replaced the head with a newer design and once had the seats cut by a professional with a serdi machine.

At this point the best choice for us has been to purchase the seat cutting tools so now I dont have to send it out to anybody, I do the cyl head reconditioning whenever it needs it and am now back to using the lighter OEM intake valves. Frankly I wouldnt do it any other way at this point.

Edited by TDW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Depends on who you talk to because there are alot of different viewpoints on how to do it "right" and what not to do when it comes to replacing valves and related valve train parts. Can get alittle confusing when considering all the different advise about what to do when its time to consider the different options, where to send it, how much it should cost, etc etc. If the $ spent arent really the decision maker you can upgrade your valve train for more power and/or in some cases more reliability. I think first you want know if you are looking for more reliability or more power and about how much you want to spend.

You didnt say how old your bike is or how many hours on the valves so that might be a deciding factor.

Right didn't even think to add the extra life value, but the OP did state he was going to use SS valves, and the refurb work and replacemnet option I gave him were both for oem quality and performance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BTW valve lapping "alone" whether the valve is new or not, is generally not a good idea if the seats arent new or havent been cut. Although some do it and say theyve had good luck which is possible, but consider yourself lucky if it works well for you. Some valves such as the OEM titanium intakes will not survive lapping and go on to live a long life in your engine but here again you may hear some people claim the opposite and that it worked for them. But if you get a new head and new SS valves your chances are good of being able to lap the valves and having a long lasting set up. Of course there are exceptions to everything. Anyway for most guys just sending it to someone who can do what you need for a fair price is the best choice.

Edited by TDW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am in the same boat and a not sure what to do. For me, long life is the main factor, and cost would be runner up to that. I am OK with the power I have so increased power is not important.

I have an 04 and since getting it have read many many things about the valve issues and have dodged them until now. In all the reading, I have seen several ways to go but have not seen a post that said that "this way" is definitely the best way to go compared to "that way".

I do not know enough about engines to know how to proceed without some guidelines from someone or some post directing the best way to go forward.

Any help would be appreciated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IF the valve guides are not worn, and it's very likely that they are fine:

Buy a Kibblewhite or comparable set of valves and springs for around $150.

Have a shop touch up the valve seats. Maybe $50-60 bucks. Install new valves. Consider a piston while the bike is apart.

Install and be done for less than $250, gaskets and all, unless you add the cost of a piston, rings, and head gasket.

The bike is closer to being bulletproof.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's simple, if it is in the budget, get the new head. It is a nice performance upgrade and when done this way you shouldn't have to get back into it (for valves) for a long time.

R heads are just over 200.00 from service honda, my local dealer always matches there price for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

More background... My bike is a 2005. The Intake Valves are original. The exhaust valves were replaced 3 years(Aprox 380+ hrs) ago by a local shop who has since gone out of business. Valve Clearences were checked last time about 130 hrs ago. All required new shims, but the differences were very minor. I am all about reliability/longevity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow your bike is an 05 with the original head and intake valves, and has almost 400 hours on it. Thats good life out the OEM intakes. Sounds alittle different that the exh valves needed to be replaced but anyway not to bad for a 05. IMO the kibblewhite kit is as reliable or more so than most of the other options if your wanting longevity. Also in my experience if you ever have questions or need to talk to the guys at KW, they are helpful and good to deal with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I took the head off today and spoke to a guy at CRF Heads in Utah. I want longevity as opposed to power and made the request as such and sent the head to them this PM.

The local Honda shop insisted that Valve lapping was necessary, but some of the comments recommended aganist this. I took that advice and made the decision to get the job done right instead of trying to save a buck and have to deal with the problem again. Fingers crossed that I made the right decision (CRF Heads). Thank you eveyone for your input. It helped greatly in my decison.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lapping ti intake valves is a no no:bonk:I went ss int and cut seats:thumbsup:.Im look after the bike,always staying ontop of clean airfilter and airbox. But on track i often have it bounceing of the limiter so i can be very hard on valves.But they have done 40hrs ish and have not budged a bit:smirk:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I took the head off today and spoke to a guy at CRF Heads in Utah. I want longevity as opposed to power and made the request as such and sent the head to them this PM.

The local Honda shop insisted that Valve lapping was necessary, but some of the comments recommended aganist this. I took that advice and made the decision to get the job done right instead of trying to save a buck and have to deal with the problem again. Fingers crossed that I made the right decision (CRF Heads). Thank you eveyone for your input. It helped greatly in my decison.

Generally a dealer shop/mechanic does not have the equipment to actually cut the seats, so they tell you the way they do it is ok.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×