Valves: To Check & Adjust Or Not - Kawasaki Ninja 1000 Forum
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post #1 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 12:11 PM Thread Starter
OCL
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Valves: To Check & Adjust Or Not

Well I'm torn.

With C-19 keeping us all home, and non-Essential businesses in my area closed, I'm left with a conundrum.

My 2012 has 22k miles on it. She's approaching that time to check/adjust its valves. Minimum parts to do this (gaskets mainly) is well over $100 shipped to me, not counting the shims (if needed). Local dealers are closed so it must be mail ordered. Partzilla is my friend. It will take a week to get all the gaskets. Most likely another week if I had to order shims.

I already have the fairings off, and about to raise the fuel tank to replace the spark plugs. Now that I'm not riding the bike to work, this is a perfect time to check the valves. Or is it?

I'm a bit nervous. If something were to go wrong, I won't have any local resources to turn to. I feel like I really should save my money right now as I never know what the immediate future has in store for me financially. At least for the next 6 months. Perhaps I should just replace the spark plugs and be done with it. It's the safest bet and least costly as I already have the spark plugs on hand.

What would you do?

My Partzilla Cart is ready to go but I haven't hit the send button yet. Damn!
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post #2 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 12:46 PM
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Unless you have a pressing problem with the bike (because of the valves), I'd sit tight...
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post #3 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:14 PM
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I'll swap shims with you. I'll send you what you need and you can send yours back. I've done it with several people. No need to buy individual shims.
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post #4 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:20 PM
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Given my experience with 25k and 50k valve checks, I'd say don't sweat it unless you're noticing an issue. Mine were all mid-range values and between 25k and 50k hadn't moved a mil. Actually, a few valves had moved a mil but were still in the middle of their range. There's always a chance something has drifted or was set wrong at the factory but I'd say it's pretty small. You probably flog the motor harder than I do so ymmv.
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post #5 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:25 PM
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Some dealers will also swap shims, maybe for a nominal fee. Worth asking.

In your situation, it might be better to do the minimum necessary to keep the bike operable. But, the work you are describing are all mostly labor, with only a few parts. So if you have the time, it's better than watch TV. If you go methodically, I don't really see anything major that could go wrong. If you do decide to go for it, might also consider adding throttle body balancing after the valve check.

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post #6 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kenors View Post
You probably flog the motor harder than I do so ymmv.
Maybe...maybe not. My normal shift points are between 5k-6k RPM. Highway cruising at 80-85 mph and 75% highway with very little to no stop and go traffic. I may have given it WOT a few times but that's rare. I mean in 10k miles I probably did it 5x. And then I take it easy on the engine until up to normal operating temp...or after 3 - 5 miles.

I feel like I'm easy on the N1k most times because it moves really fast if I ride beyond 6k RPM or give it more than 50% throttle. Hence I have a clean driving record so far.
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post #7 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 57x View Post
I'll swap shims with you. I'll send you what you need and you can send yours back. I've done it with several people. No need to buy individual shims.
I may take you up on that. I'm dying to know if my '12 valves are in spec or not.
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post #8 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by naren View Post
Unless you have a pressing problem with the bike (because of the valves), I'd sit tight...
No issues. The damn thing starts easy, idles smoothly, gets normal fuel efficiency, and has tons of power. Did my first WOT last month in a long time...in 1st gear. The front end came up and went down gently. That felt weird because I felt the front end feel vague, then when the front came back down I got front end feedback again!
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post #9 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 01:44 PM
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If it were me, I'd hold off unless I noticed problems. Seems like these engines don't need critical adjustments at the recommended intervals. However, I'd be sure to have it checked as soon as you can do so.
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post #10 of 51 Old 03-23-2020, 02:32 PM
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Haveing numerous extended high rpm runs I really thought mine would have been in need. At the first inspection everything was still good and only recently at 47k did I have one valve that was nearly at its minimal clearance.
My recommendation is if you know how the bikes been ridden, maintained and you still hear valve train noise let it go at least till this none sense blows over. We know members of this site have put 80, 90 and over 100k on theirs and not done a lash job.

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