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Author Topic: Motorcycle valve clearance  (Read 987 times)

Roger2561

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Motorcycle valve clearance
« on: July 14, 2018, 05:23:05 PM »

So, I own a 2007 Kawasaki VN900 Classic LT motorcycle, she's approaching 26,000 miles.  I generally use it as a commuter when it's dry and/or warm, to work and back home.  The only service I've done is replace the stator a couple of years ago when the original went belly up, tires when needed and the usual yearly oil and oil filter changes at the end of the riding season.  The one thing I never gave any thought to was the valve clearance so I decided to check to see what the service manual says; they should be checked at the 600 mile interval, done; should be checked and adjustments made at the 15,000 mile interval - oops, never did that or any checks since the 600 mile check.  So, I'm nearly done tearing her down to check the valve clearance.  The great thing about this is if they need adjustment, simply remove the shims that are problematic and replace with the one that will put her back in spec.  The service manual has an easy to follow chart to show you which one that's needed.  Oh, I need to change the Air switching Valve, the one in there is rattling like the dickins.  It's nothing that's going to hurt the motor if I don't change it, it's just the rattling is driving me up the wall.  Roger
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mlappin

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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2018, 08:10:25 AM »

Air switching valve?
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Roger2561

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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2018, 10:51:35 AM »

Air switching valve?

That reminds me, I need to search for an answer as to what the thing does for I have no clue other than it makes a lot of noise when it goes bad and takes about $130.00 out of my pocket for a new one.  Roger   
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wreckit87

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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2018, 11:57:46 AM »

As terrible as drivers are here, you'd never catch me commuting on a bike lol. My riding is limited to the occasional evening trip to the bank or the Saturday lunch run. My 2015 Highball has just 400 miles on the clock. I've always hated Polaris everything, but REALLY liked these Vic bikes until last weekend. Went on a little run with my brother up to see our folks at the cabin 30 miles away. Halfway home, we bounced through a nasty dip in the road where they trenched a cable or whatever through, which was brutal enough to bottom out my rear suspension. At the same time, it killed the engine. The kid is too oblivious to notice his riding partner is no longer behind him, so he just rides home and leaves me sitting on the side of the road for an hour until he came back with my truck and trailer. Originally I figured something had come unplugged in the bounce, but after tearing the whole damn thing apart I found the culprit- a faulty fuel pump. Of course now that they stopped making Victory, the parts are nice and spendy and warranty is nonexistent, so now I have a lovely $900 fuel pump replacement to pay for on a bike with 400 miles on it. Great job Polaris, thanks for confirming my lifelong hatred for your junk. I'll be going back to a metric bike next time, apparently they don't need any maintenance until 26,000 miles lol. That would take me 100 years
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2018, 12:40:56 PM »

Didnít realize Polaris quit making Victories.

I love my Polaris Ranger Diesel. Over a thousand hours on the engine already. Just installed a thermostat on that. Have changed one front CV shaft from a tree limb ripping the boot off. Have changed all four wheel bearings as well, but this thing gets muddy and covered in cow crap regularily which is what it was bought for basically. Everything Iíve had to work on so far is a damn sight easier than a four wheel drive truck, thats for sure.
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Roger2561

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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2018, 12:49:10 PM »

As terrible as drivers are here, you'd never catch me commuting on a bike lol. My riding is limited to the occasional evening trip to the bank or the Saturday lunch run. My 2015 Highball has just 400 miles on the clock. I've always hated Polaris everything, but REALLY liked these Vic bikes until last weekend. Went on a little run with my brother up to see our folks at the cabin 30 miles away. Halfway home, we bounced through a nasty dip in the road where they trenched a cable or whatever through, which was brutal enough to bottom out my rear suspension. At the same time, it killed the engine. The kid is too oblivious to notice his riding partner is no longer behind him, so he just rides home and leaves me sitting on the side of the road for an hour until he came back with my truck and trailer. Originally I figured something had come unplugged in the bounce, but after tearing the whole damn thing apart I found the culprit- a faulty fuel pump. Of course now that they stopped making Victory, the parts are nice and spendy and warranty is nonexistent, so now I have a lovely $900 fuel pump replacement to pay for on a bike with 400 miles on it. Great job Polaris, thanks for confirming my lifelong hatred for your junk. I'll be going back to a metric bike next time, apparently they don't need any maintenance until 26,000 miles lol. That would take me 100 years

Yeah, but they sure look nice.  :)

I've heard other people experience the same nightmare with the Polaris bikes.

I plan on doing a lot of maintenance to it now that's apart; change the spark plugs (original), change the air filter(original), change the coolant(original) and every fall before I tuck her in for the winter she gets fresh engine oil and oil filter. 

I used to be an EMT with our local ambulance crew, did that for about 20 years before my back gave out.  One thing our town used to require of us was to take a defensive driving course.  Everything I've learned at those courses I apply while riding the bike.  It's saved my backside/neck (some will say they're interchangeable) a few times.  Roger   
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2018, 02:25:21 PM »

Yeah Marty, 2017 was the end of production. Really not sure what the idea behind it was, supposedly they are going to focus on that hideous POS they call Indian. I'm a little sour about the whole ordeal if you can't tell.

Roger, which nightmare is it that you're referring to? The premature failure of parts or the lack of warranty? My Jackpot was an 07 and I did the whole spark plug and air filter thing in 2016, swapping from original. Those plugs were nasty and the air filter didn't look much better lol
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2018, 06:19:34 PM »

Air switching valve?

Marty - From what I can gather, it takes the unburned fuel and redirects it to the intake to be burned, essentially it's part of the emissions system.

On cylinder #1 I had to replace 2 of the 4 shims; 1 ea for the intake and exhaust to bring them back to spec.  I haven't had time to get to cylinder #2, maybe end of the week or sometime next week.  I'm also going to flush the coolant, change the spark plugs and air filter.  All of them are original when I purchased the bike in '07 so what the heck.   Roger   
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2018, 03:23:08 PM »

Like an EGR kinda? Glad you got in there. Was it making any noise up there that is now quiet or didn't you notice anything?

Dealership called this morning and said they got my fuel pump in and ready to go; get this though- Polaris is paying for the part! I got $140 labor in it but certainly could've been much worse paying for it all
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2018, 04:04:04 PM »



Dealership called this morning and said they got my fuel pump in and ready to go; get this though- Polaris is paying for the part! I got $140 labor in it but certainly could've been much worse paying for it all

Iíve been real happy with my Ranger. Oil gets changed at a minimum of twice a year, sometimes three times so get 200-300 hours a year on it. The little Yanmar diesel in it always starts to matter how cold it may get and still goes a 100 hours without needing any additional oil.

One winter had a weird noise coming from the belt drive once in awhile, figured it was ice, kept it up once in awhile once it warmed up so took it to the dealer as it was under warranty yet. Turns out something wasnít right about the clutch/sheave alignment right from the factory so they replaced the entire assembly, installed a new belt and extended the warranty for another year. They also replaced the brake switch as sometimes you really had to pump it before the starter would engage.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2018, 04:06:18 PM by mlappin »
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Roger2561

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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2018, 03:23:59 AM »

Like an EGR kinda? Glad you got in there. Was it making any noise up there that is now quiet or didn't you notice anything?

Dealership called this morning and said they got my fuel pump in and ready to go; get this though- Polaris is paying for the part! I got $140 labor in it but certainly could've been much worse paying for it all

Yeah, I'm thinking along the same lines; like the EGR valve.  I noticed one day coming home from work that it was making all kinds of noise.  I didn't know where it was coming from so I ask one of my co-workers who used to turn wrenches for a living, listen and he immediately went to the air switching valve and you "feel" the noise coming the part.  It only made noise when you were in the throttle which quite a bit in these hills of NH.

Last evening I finished checking the valve clearance and on cylinder #2 I had to change 1 of the exhaust shims, it was closed, couldn't put a 0.2mm feeler gauge through it no matter how I tried.  I had to put in 2 sizes smaller to get it to the 0.2mm gap.   

That's good on Polaris to pay for the part.  We had a local Victory dealer who went out of business a couple of years and he said they simply could not compete with the likes of the rice burners and Harley Davidson.  Roger
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2018, 08:49:50 AM »

Well, I decided to have a look at the air filter.  I think it's time for it to be replaced. 
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2018, 04:26:09 PM »

Holy macaroni I'd say! Will act like a new bike once you get that thing replaced lol better hang on!
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Re: Motorcycle valve clearance
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2018, 05:50:36 PM »

Well I said the same thing but the word you used following holy isn't the one I used.  :)  I kinda figure that the she should run a heck of a lot better.  I wonder if they make seat-belts for motorcycles, I think I'll need one.  :)  Roger
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