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  • Thinking about doing a valve adjustment.

    Didn't know where to post this so I figured "Bike Talk" would do.

    My 09 has 24K on it and don't know the history of the bike so figured it's time in case it's not been done. Logic tells me that there should be 0 lash on the adjuster side of the rocker? With the pushrod side setting at 0 lash, the adjuster should just contact the other valve then tighten? Also, do I need to replace the gaskets or can they be re-used?

    The bike runs fine, just think it they should be checked. The again, I can't leave things alone.

  • #2
    Just keep thinking about doing it and put your tools away! Not necessary and you risk making things rattle. That’s what happened to me on my 08. I had to use Permatex copper gasket spray to seal my gaskets.

    Comment


    • #3
      I've reused the same valve cover gaskets about a half dozen times with no leaks. Just make sure everything is clean and dry when you put the covers back on. Remove the gasket and wipe down both sides as well as the head and cover. Be gentle with the gaskets; they're several razor thin lays of metal that can bend easily. If a little oil seeps out after putting the cover back on, but before you put the bolts in, not too worry.

      Make sure you either have an inch pound torque wrench or just go "good and snug" with standard "L" shapped Allen key. It's important you crisscross when tightening the bolts. DO NOT tighten each bolt all at once, make several passes through all the bolts, tightening them little by little with each pass until fully tight. Just be patient and take your time.

      Also, before you remove the covers, get an empty cardboard box and draw a rough outline of the cover on the box, marking the spot of each bolt. Then take a screwdriver and punch holes in each spot. As you remove the bolts from the cover, place them in their corresponding hole in the box. This will keep you from mixing up the lengths or loosing track of any bolts.
      Last edited by Doc_V; 4 weeks ago.

      Comment


      • #4
        Plus 1 on keeping track of the valve cover bolts. I laid mine down in the pattern they came out on a table and wound up mixing them up later. It is a real pain to figure out which ones go where after that. I should have done something with cardboard like doc said that would have made life a lot better. Live and learn.

        Comment


        • #5
          Tinkeritus is the number one problem for Road Stars.

          Comment


          • #6
            To those who have checked valve lash, was it at near 0? Just curious to see what most have found.

            Comment


            • #7
              A bit of information. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLuKyoxhv-c

              Comment


              • Dick M
                Dick M commented
                Editing a comment
                He should be changing that bald front tire too.

            • #8
              I've never ever seen a stock Roadstar crunch a motor that was due to valves being out of spec. I have hear several people over the years post things like "...had valves adjusted and now it has a funny noise ...." or "...did valve adjustment on my bike and now the motor stopped running 1000 miles later".

              if it runs and feels good leave it then fuck alone. If you want to tinker....rebuild the starter with a brush kit....detail the bike....anything but valves !

              Comment


              • #9
                Alright kids... Listen up. Adjusting valve clearance is NOT a big deal, it's part of the regular periodic maintenance* listed in the OWNER"S Manual.It's the first thing listed... Before oil changes, plug changes or even filter changes. The 1700 Service Manual says to check it every *six* months.

                And I frankly don't know how the hell someone's motor could *stop working*(???) after a 1000 miles because of they adjusted their valve clearance... Not unless they poured some sand and glue in the motor at the same time.

                Hey, I get it, if you're not comfortable doing it, then that's OK. Best to leave well enough alone. ...But to make statements like this about things you don't understand is just not productive. Worst case, if you don't do it right and it makes noise afterward, you do it *again* until you get it right. ...Just be sure burn some sage and circle the bike in pig's blood before you start.



                *Sometimes referred to as "tinkeraitis" by the less motivated.
                Last edited by Doc_V; 4 weeks ago.

                Comment


                • Kenkaman
                  Kenkaman commented
                  Editing a comment
                  New guy here...I was talking to the mechanic at my local bike shop and he said something similar. He showed me the repair manual for the RS and it said something about the recommended "Valve Adjustment" being every 4000 miles and being that I have 16000 miles right now, that I should probably do it, since it would normally be due, and we don't know if it's been done before..?

                • Doc_V
                  Doc_V commented
                  Editing a comment
                  If the bike is running fine, I'd leave it be, but if you feel there is ***excessive top end*** noise, it wouldn't hurt to check. But honestly, R*'s are noisy bikes, and since you're new to them it can be hard to discern normal noise from excessive noise. I won't hurt the bike to leave as is for a while so I'd wait until the end of the season to get more used to the bike and reevaluate then.

              • #10

                Eh! Save a pig and if it’s not ticking there isn’t a clearance problem between the two corresponding valves.

                Only time I hear them ticking is when a lifter fails and won’t pump up or it trashed a cam lobe.

                Comment


                • #11
                  Here's a tip to make life much easier when checking and adjusting your valves if you have a floor jack: Getting the motor to TDC
                  - Put the bike in 5th gear and jack it up until the *rear* tire is an inch or two off the ground. [set the jack toward the rear of the bike so the front wheel stays on the ground]
                  - Remove 1 spark plug from each cylinder. Be sure to cover the open spark plug holes with a rag or paper towel.
                  - Remove the cam cover on the right side of the motor to see the timing marks. [You may want to put a rag under the cover to catch dripping oil.]
                  - Sitting on the ground, on the right side of bike, use your left foot to turn the back wheel clockwise while watching the the timing marks. Be careful not to unsettle or rock the bike; it would seriously suck if that thing landed in your lap. Proceed at your own risk.

                  This will save you the trouble of having to remove all the crap from the left side of the motor and it's easier to watch the timing marks while you're doing it. You can also stick a plastic straw in the open spark plug hole to watch as the piston goes up and down.
                  Last edited by Doc_V; 4 weeks ago.

                  Comment


                • #12
                  Want to really take some short-cuts? No need remove side covers and watch the timing marks. You’ve already got the rocker box covers off.

                  Just watch the valves while spinning the engine over.

                  After the exhaust valves close the intake valves will immediately open. Once they close watch your straw on the compression stroke till it reaches TDC.

                  Doesn't have to be exact. 10-20° from TDC (either side) is close enough.

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Originally posted by Doc_V View Post
                    Alright kids... Listen up. Adjusting valve clearance is NOT a big deal, it's part of the regular periodic maintenance* listed in the OWNER"S Manual.It's the first thing listed... Before oil changes, plug changes or even filter changes. The 1700 Service Manual says to check it every *six* months.

                    And I frankly don't know how the hell someone's motor could *stop working*(???) after a 1000 miles because of they adjusted their valve clearance... Not unless they poured some sand and glue in the motor at the same time.

                    Hey, I get it, if you're not comfortable doing it, then that's OK. Best to leave well enough alone. ...But to make statements like this about things you don't understand is just not productive. Worst case, if you don't do it right and it makes noise afterward, you do it *again* until you get it right. ...Just be sure burn some sage and circle the bike in pig's blood before you start.



                    *Sometimes referred to as "tinkeraitis" by the less motivated.
                    I'm with ya Doc.

                    Adjusted the valves on my RSV this past winter. Compared to that job (16 valves) and 1 hour just taking stuff off just to get to them, the RS will be a walk in the park. Instead of going through the hassle of removing covers to find top dead center, I use an easier and quicker way. With the bike in 5th gear, put a straw in the spark plug hole then rotate the tire and watch the rockers. When you see that both the intake and exhaust rockers are at their lowest point, watch the straw until it gets to it's highest point. Your at top dead center on the compression stroke. Works every time. If you have any doubt, pop the cover off the timing hole

                    More I think about it, probably going with the 0.0016" since typically, valve clearances usually get tighter as time goes on with the valves banging on their seats for thousands of miles. This is why clearances should be checked periodically.

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Originally posted by Bikerron View Post
                      Want to really take some short-cuts? No need remove side covers and watch for watching timing marks. You’ve already got the rocker box covers off.

                      Just watch the valves while spinning the engine over.

                      After the exhaust valves close the intake valves will immediately open. Once they close watch your straw on the compression stroke till it reaches TDC.

                      Doesn't have to be exact. 10-20° from TDC (either side) is close enough.
                      Jeez, you type fast. I said basically the same thing but it took me longer to type it.

                      Comment


                      • #15
                        I've done the straw only way, and to be certain there's NO pressure on the rocker arm, I grab the push rod with my fingers and try to twist it. [I even do this when using the timing marks for the hell of it] If the push rod won't twist you're not at TDC. Only problem is, not everyone has the finger strength to do it this way, and I personally wouldn't trust the straw alone if I couldn't turn the push rods, so to be safe I tell people to use the timing marks. If *you can* twist the push rods when you think the motor is at TDC using the straw, then you should be fine.

                        The smallest feeler gauge I have is a .001 and If I can't fit it under both arms, I call it good. I figure, as long as both are the same, the hydraulic lifters are going to make up for any change in clearance. Though I may try the .002 next time just for the hell of it.
                        Last edited by Doc_V; 4 weeks ago.

                        Comment


                        • #16
                          I wouldn't mind doing valve inspection /setting on my bike at all...if it needed it. I've seen too many propel do it or have it done and then have problems they never had before. I'm sure it's because the person doing the work did something wrong. I discourage most everyone from doing this IF they have never run the valves in any motor before because most instructions aren't clear enough for a complete novice. If mine starting ticking bad il inspect/adjust but will never do it as a point of "regular maintenance" on a Roadstar. Nearly 19 years and 40k miles and never been adjusted to my knowledge.

                          I see too much room for error if you have "some shop" do it or if you yourself do it and aren't competent. Hate to see people spend time/$ on something and the have it snowball into more time/$ for no good reason.

                          Comment


                          • #17
                            I’m not opposed to working on things that need to be done if there is a symptom, but you have no symptom. The lifters are hydraulic and will compensate for minor adjustment. Tinkeritis can get you in trouble as several here can attest like stripping threads, breaking bolt heads off, dropping indexing pins into the engine, scratching gasket surfaces, etc. There are several things in the manual that 15 years of this forum have proven to be unnecessary like 4.3 quarts of oil, scheduled valve adjustment, need for the AIS, torque values, etc. Don’t rewrite history. Most folks who have adjusted their valves and reported back say they were fine. I feel I made the mistake of “adjusting” the valves on my 08. I was not satisfied with the typical upper end noise so I opened it up. Did it twice even. Was quieter for a few miles, then the noise returned even louder. Now I just ride and quit being anal.Remember, much of any upper end noise is from lateral rocker movement which can’t be adjusted unless you fab some shims which several here have done with mixed results.

                            Comment


                            • roadiemort
                              roadiemort commented
                              Editing a comment
                              Mixed results like wear on the aluminum shims and a possible collapsed lifter?

                            • J89k
                              J89k commented
                              Editing a comment
                              How much oil should I be using?

                          • #18
                            If someone is happy with the way their R* is running, then by all means, leave it be and go ride. However, if someone suspects there may be a problem, then by all means check, and if necessary, adjust the lifters.

                            The point of my six month comment was that those who choose to adjust are not wrong for wanting to do so. But you can bet that I won't be checking mine every six months, and as long as my bike is running well, I'll let it be, however until I get to the point, I'll continue to do what's necessary to get there and I encourage others to do the same if they so choose.

                            Be grateful if you haven't needed to mess with yours. You may just be one of the fortunate ones who got a midweek build. If so, I suggest you go thank your R* and take it for ride as show of appreciation.

                            Comment


                            • #19
                              Originally posted by Kenkaman View Post
                              New guy here...I was talking to the mechanic at my local bike shop and he said something similar. He showed me the repair manual for the RS and it said something about the recommended "Valve Adjustment" being every 4000 miles and being that I have 16000 miles right now, that I should probably do it, since it would normally be due, and we don't know if it's been done before..?
                              Don’t listen to mechanics. Listed to members here. Leave them alone unless you have a performance issue. These engines typically have a noisy upper end.

                              Comment


                              • #20
                                According to the manual, the clearance should be .004 which is .001 thicker than a piece of notebook paper.

                                Comment


                                • Bikerron
                                  Bikerron commented
                                  Editing a comment
                                  The goal is .000 for clearance on both rockers and valve stems.

                                  .004 is the maximum allowable slop.

                                  The hydraulic lifter takes care of the rest.

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