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I've been folowing along and reading just about everything I can get my hands on in this site - and it's been great so far. I thought I would post this because you all seem to have a lot of experience with bikes in general and Kawasaki specifically. I know this is a 12R site, but I was hoping you could help. I bought my first bike last fall as a used 99 Kawasaki ZX-6R. I bought a Haynes manual and have been doing all the maintenance that I can. I started on valve clearances yesterday and the measurements are all very off. Intakes are about 0.76 where the range is supposed to be 0.11-0.19 and exhaust are about 0.127 where the ranges are supposed to be 0.22-0.31. Now the bike has about 10500mi on it and I can only guess that this is the first time the clearances have been checked. Can I be doing something so wrong to get these measurements? The bike seemed to be running great - but like I said this is my first bike so I don't know exactly how it should feel. And I've measured and adjusted valves before on a car so this isn't completely new. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks guys.

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Welcome to the site sixxer. I'm afraid I can't offer any advice as I'm not familiar with the valve train on the 6R. Do the cams have to come off? Did you loosen them before checking clearances? I'm sure some others will have other things to say. Hang in there!

When Life Throws You A Curve Head For The Apex And Lean!!!!</p>
 

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I'll assume your spaeking in mm and not thousands of an inch with those numbers. Strange that the intake clearance should grow to that extent. I would be inclinded to recheck with the dealer on your specs and checking procedure. Personally I wouldn't trust the Haynes Manual at all. I had one that called for a cylinder head torque that was twice what it should have been. Cost me big time to have the stripped case threads repaired. Use it to lite your fire place instead!!!

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I agree with sprint, re-read the manual. They will give the clearences in both MM and in inches.

I would think intake .004 to .008, and exhaust .005 to .009 or in that range.

rich

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Twistedsixxer,

Sounds like an interesting problem. A few things to look for,

1) As the guys said are you using imperial (Thou) or metric (mm)feeler gauges.

2) Have you got the correct cylinders, as you sit on the bike facing forward, the No1 is on you left with No4 on your right.

3) Are you rotating the engine the correct way? Easy check is to press the starter and see which way the crankshaft rotates, just a quick stab on the starter will do!



It is most unusual to have them all out of tolerance at the same time. Also remember that you can swap shims about within cylinders thus, saving on replacing all the shims that are out of tolerance. Let us know how you get on!

Regards

Ted

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I agree with these guys. For the 12R (NOT 6R),

In: 0.15 - 0.24 mm (0.0059 - 0.0094 in.)

Ex: 0.22 - 0.31 mm (0.0087 - 0.012 in.)



Are you sure the 0.76 isn't 0.0076 in? And, the 0.127 isn't 0.0127 in.?



0.76 mm or 0.76 in. is a big gap!

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For sure, something is amiss here....



If you were looking at 0.7-0.8 mm, them babies would be clattering like there was no tomorrow.



I'd first get a KHI factory shop manual, and throw the Haynes in the fireplace.



Also, a common misconception is that on shimmed valvetrains the clearance increases with wear. This is incorrect. As the valve seats wear the tappet clearance DECREASES.



Assuming someone who didn't know what they were doing did not incorrectly adjust your clearance, your measurements are going the wrong way for normal wear.



I agree with the guys above - make sure you are comparing mm or thousenths of inches across the board.



As a side note - shimmed tappets are very durable and even at 10.5 K miles, it's highly unlikely that all your tappets would be out of spec by this degree, +/-.





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Oops - where I wrote 0.76 for intake I meant to write 0.076 - and these values are in mm. But my problem is still that all the valves have a smaller gap than recommended. I'm checking the right cylinders - 1-4 left to right as you sit on the bike. I'm rotating the engine by the timing rotor in a clockwise direction and lining up a T1.4 mark to the crankcase mating surfaces. I looked on the Kawasaki web site and the valve clearances are shown as Intake 0.11-0.19mm and Exhaust in 0.22-0.31mm - so the manual seems right for something. The feeler gauges that I'm using have a number on top a number underneath it and then MM - so one feeler looks like 0.0015, 0.038, MM. Could I be reading the feeler gauges wrong?? Thanks again for your help. I know that the gap should decrease with time and my initial measurements seem to be following that path. The gap is just very small compared to what it should be and I was wondering if this would be something you could expect from a bike with that many miles on it that could have never had its valves adjusted.

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The KAW valve trains are durable mothers. My 98 zx11 had 4800 hard earned miles on it when I traded it in, and not one tappet was out of tolerance. This is not unusual for Kawasakis.



One of my riding buddies has a 96 Ninja 6r with 9200 miles on it, and it has never had to have the clearance adjusted. This bike gets excellent maintenance and also frequently see's 13k on the tach.



I have not personally owned a 6, but from my buddy that owns one and others, my understanding is that they are just as bullet-proof as any other KAW inline 4.



I think you're worried that your bike has less wear than you expect? :)

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