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I doubt you'll find anyone who has had to do it, because even if they have the first production year, they would need to have ridden about 8000 or 9000 miles per year to get to that first valve check!

Jim G
 

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Almost there May 2015 - 5351 miles my daily rider.


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Not good enough! The R3 requires valve clearance checks only every 26,600 miles! That means you would need to have averaged 26,600 / 3 = 8870 miles per year. You're going to have to make the sacrifice and spend more hours on that seat!

Jim G
 

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My dealer did mine at the 20k km service, even though it wasn't specifically required.

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Doing them when it is NOT yet recommended is not good because:

- It costs a LOT to have ti done by a dealer, because it is a ton of work

- It adds unnecessary risk: Valve clearance adjustment is one of the most demanding oeprations that ever needs to be done on a motorcycle engine outside an engine factory. It also requires EXCELLENT and uninterrupted and undistracted attention all the time for the duration of the work. What if the mechanic makes an error? What if he drops a small part into the crankcase down the valvechain cavity and is afraid to confess it to his boss and so leaves it there? What if he does not torque the camshaft retainer bolts to proper spec? What is he gets distracted during the (very detailed) job and forgets a step or two?

- The very best and most consistent assembly of a motorcycle engine is done at the factory, since those guys, unlike dealership mechanics, assemble engines all day long every day of the year, AND they have super accurate, consistent, and highest quality tools that the dealership cannot afford. No dealership mechanic can truthfully fully replciate what the factory does inside an engine.

- The R3 valve adjustment interval is so long that many (most?Almost all?) owners will NEVER have to have it done. Why pay the money and take the risks when you don't need to?

Jim G
 

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Doing them when it is NOT yet recommended is not good because:

- It costs a LOT to have ti done by a dealer, because it is a ton of work

- It adds unnecessary risk: Valve clearance adjustment is one of the most demanding oeprations that ever needs to be done on a motorcycle engine outside an engine factory. It also requires EXCELLENT and uninterrupted and undistracted attention all the time for the duration of the work. What if the mechanic makes an error? What if he drops a small part into the crankcase down the valvechain cavity and is afraid to confess it to his boss and so leaves it there? What if he does not torque the camshaft retainer bolts to proper spec? What is he gets distracted during the (very detailed) job and forgets a step or two?

- The very best and most consistent assembly of a motorcycle engine is done at the factory, since those guys, unlike dealership mechanics, assemble engines all day long every day of the year, AND they have super accurate, consistent, and highest quality tools that the dealership cannot afford. No dealership mechanic can truthfully fully replciate what the factory does inside an engine.

- The R3 valve adjustment interval is so long that many (most?Almost all?) owners will NEVER have to have it done. Why pay the money and take the risks when you don't need to?

Jim G
Who knows why they did it. I didn't specifically ask them to. One thing I can say is that dealer has since lost their Yamaha distributor deal to another dealership. I guess that there could be some overlap there.

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Who knows why they did it. I didn't specifically ask them to. One thing I can say is that dealer has since lost their Yamaha distributor deal to another dealership. I guess that there could be some overlap there.

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How much did they charge you to do it?

Jim G
 

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I've sold the bike since that time, complete with all service history. However, I don't remember it being outrageously expensive. Not expensive enough to stand out anyway. I got a new rear tyre fitted at the same time as the 20k service. The total cost was probably around $700 to $1000 NZD. The going rate is normally around $90 per hour plus expenses. The new tyre would have been approximately $350.

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I've sold the bike since that time, complete with all service history. However, I don't remember it being outrageously expensive. Not expensive enough to stand out anyway. I got a new rear tyre fitted at the same time as the 20k service. The total cost was probably around $700 to $1000 NZD. The going rate is normally around $90 per hour plus expenses.

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If the cost did not stand out, there is a reasonably good chance that the mechanic never actually did it, or that he stopped early because none of the valves was measuring via feeler gauge as being out of spec. If a mechanic actually does the work, and has to actually remove the camshaft to gain access to the shims because one of more valves is out of clearance spec, the charge would be substantial - at least a couple of hours at $100per hour or more, because there is a lot to it.

Jim G
 

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If I remember right, it was around $700 US for the full 26,000 service when I considered doing it on my fz8. Wound up selling it with 27/28k on it though and never brought it in. Several guys on that forum that did check them found all but one or 2 within spec, many found them all in spec.

I'm at 17k miles or so now, and should be near 22/23k by the time summer is over. Doubt I'll bring it in until next summer though. Going back to school is putting a damper on my budget...

Definitely a few guys that have done 15k miles in their first year here, but I don't think many kept it long enough to actually get the valves done.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'm at 19k on mine so far. Bought it used at 8k about 8 months ago, so I'll definitely be checking my valves within a year. I've started hearing a tapping noise at around ~6500 rpms, but I'm hoping that's from the plug in my front tire. I do remember hearing a tapping noise right before I discovered the screw that I ended up plugging.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I'm quickly approaching that 26.6k mile mark. Currently sitting at just under 21k miles, so I need to start buying tools now (seems all my savings is going straight into this bike). I've got a couple questions.

1. Do I need to change the valve cover gasket?
2. How many shims should I purchase in advance? It looks like there's 8 valves total, so I would need a few shims of varying thickness for each valve?
3. As far as maintenance goes, the most involved thing I've done is take off the fairings and gas tank to adjust synchronization. That took me about an hour or two, which included figuring out how to use the vacuum gauges and how to unplug the fuel tank. Would changing out the shims be more than a days' worth of work?

I'm debating taking the valve adjustment class at my local moto-guild, but it costs ~$400. I might just check them with the feeler gauges and decide from there if I will. If they don't need adjustment, I'll prolly pass, but if they do, then I can sign up.
 

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2016 R3, bought in July 2016 - 12525 miles at the moment.
 

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My experience has been that the intake valves may tighten up some as the new motor wears in. Those are usually the ones that need adjustment. After the first valve check/adjustment on many of the Japanese motors, you may find out that the valves will stay in spec for a very long time.

I would not bother buying new shims until I knew what sizes I needed. You may not need any.

If you do an adjustment keep all of the open passages at the cylinder head packed with clean rags just in case if you drop a small part it will not drop to the bottom of the crank. Those shims are very small and slippery. You do not want one of those floating around in your motor.
 

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I'm quickly approaching that 26.6k mile mark. Currently sitting at just under 21k miles, so I need to start buying tools now (seems all my savings is going straight into this bike). I've got a couple questions.

1. Do I need to change the valve cover gasket?
2. How many shims should I purchase in advance? It looks like there's 8 valves total, so I would need a few shims of varying thickness for each valve?
3. As far as maintenance goes, the most involved thing I've done is take off the fairings and gas tank to adjust synchronization. That took me about an hour or two, which included figuring out how to use the vacuum gauges and how to unplug the fuel tank. Would changing out the shims be more than a days' worth of work?

I'm debating taking the valve adjustment class at my local moto-guild, but it costs ~$400. I might just check them with the feeler gauges and decide from there if I will. If they don't need adjustment, I'll prolly pass, but if they do, then I can sign up.
1. Do you need to change the valve cover gasket? Yes, each time you take the valve cover off.

2. Many people do the work in these stages:

(a) Get access to the valves and measure and RECORD the valve clearance for each valve on a paper DIAGRAM so there is no confusion about which valve had what clearance

(b) For the valves that are outside of the proper clearance range ONLY, remove the current current shims ONE AT A TIME, carefully recording the thickness of each one on the diagram, before proceeding to the next out-of-spec valve

(c) Calculate the NEW shim thicknesses needed for each out-of-spec valve and mark it on the diagram. In some cases, an existing shim in an out-of-spec valve can serve as the ideal replacement shim for a different out-of-spec valve. Determine how many new shims, and what thicknesses, are needed

(d) Buy the calculated new shims

(e) Replace the out-of-spec shims with the replacement shims

An alternative is to buy a large "set" of shims, but that is costly at OEM prices.

For someone like a typical R3 owner, who will only need to do the valve clearances once every 5 or more years, doing the valve clearance check and adjustment himself is not smart. You cannot be "good" at remembering all the correct steps and good at doing them. There are also risks - like dropping the camchain into the crankcase, or making a shim calculation error on a 12,500 rpm engine.

The $400 for the class is hard to justify for 2 reasons:

1. Since you will only be doing this once every 5 or more years, you won't remember the steps and precautions between the 25000 mile adjustment sessions

2. $400 is MORE than your dealership would charge you for this service, and the dealership mechanic, who does this a LOT more frequently then every 5 years, will be far less likely to forget a step or make an error. My dealer charges around $300 Canadian I think, which means about $300/5 = $60 per year to keep my valve clearances in proper adjustment. So, my plan is to have the dealer do it.

Jim G
 

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i got prepaid maintenance with my bike and they told me i'm covered for valve adjustment when that time comes..

it was something like $1200 for three years of no questions asked fully covered service days according to the service manual, and unlimited chain adjustments anytime i want
 
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