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Old 08-29-2014, 09:14 AM   #1
Bernie Kap OP
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2011 KLR Balancer chain adjustment

Hi- Today I did the balancer adjustment on my 2011 KLR. I backed out the bolt three quarters of a turn. I tapped the bottom of the motor with a rubber hammer. When I tightened the bolt back in ,it only tightend one quarter of a turn. I torqued it to the correct value. I am concerned that the bolt only tightened 1/4 of a turn.
Does this sound right to you? I am concerned about the bolt only going back in a quarter of a turn. The motor started ok and runs great with no problems. Am I headed for future problems with it? Thanks Bernie.
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Old 08-29-2014, 10:36 AM   #2
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ya.... sounds funny. did some one else do the adjustment in the past? maybe they over torqued it. I have only changed out a half dozen Gen II doo levers & springs but all except one had little to no adjustment left. they seem to work up to about 5000 miles, then no.... the spring is too long. also, the G2 lever is stronger, but it fits loose on the shaft. the lock bolt holds the "doo" lever... but the spring attaches to a second lever on the shaft. because of the loose fit, the shaft can still pulse with the engine & that makes the spring pulse too.... I think that is why so many springs break. the long & short is.... Eagle lever & spring are in order if it hasn't been done. the torsion spring will never run out of adjustment. we used to do a lot of tech days to fix these levers before the Gen II came out.... people thing Kawi fixed the problem but it ain't so
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Old 08-29-2014, 10:53 AM   #3
Bernie Kap OP
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Originally Posted by Beezer View Post
ya.... sounds funny. did some one else do the adjustment in the past? maybe they over torqued it. I have only changed out a half dozen Gen II doo levers & springs but all except one had little to no adjustment left. they seem to work up to about 5000 miles, then no.... the spring is too long. also, the G2 lever is stronger, but it fits loose on the shaft. the lock bolt holds the "doo" lever... but the spring attaches to a second lever on the shaft. because of the loose fit, the shaft can still pulse with the engine & that makes the spring pulse too.... I think that is why so many springs break. the long & short is.... Eagle lever & spring are in order if it hasn't been done. the torsion spring will never run out of adjustment. we used to do a lot of tech days to fix these levers before the Gen II came out.... people thing Kawi fixed the problem but it ain't so

The bike has 20k miles on it. I am going to do the adjustment again, but I am only going turn the bolt out 1/4 of a turn and see what happens.
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Old 08-29-2014, 03:56 PM   #4
XDragRacer
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The bike has 20k miles on it. I am going to do the adjustment again, but I am only going turn the bolt out 1/4 of a turn and see what happens.
Your bike, Bernie, but . . . the balancer chain slack will not be taken up unless the bolt is sufficiently loose
. . . only a quarter of a turn may be pushin' it, IMHO.

Spring tension remains critical for a proper adjustment, but--the doohickey must be freed so the spring can "do its thing."
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Old 08-29-2014, 05:06 PM   #5
Bernie Kap OP
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Your bike, Bernie, but . . . the balancer chain slack will not be taken up unless the bolt is sufficiently loose
. . . only a quarter of a turn may be pushin' it, IMHO.

Spring tension remains critical for a proper adjustment, but--the doohickey must be freed so the spring can "do its thing."
I thought I would first try 1/4 turn, then do 1/2 and then 2/3 turn. I have done the 3/4 turn before and never had a problem. Maybe somthing got caught on the bolt. If I removed the side cover on the motor could I see the bolt and maybe spot a problem? Thanks.
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Old 08-29-2014, 05:46 PM   #6
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yep... you an see the doo with the outer cover off. the spring is harder to see, but you can at least tell if it's there. to diddle with the spring the inner cover has to come off too & that means pulling the rotor. you should drain the oil if you take the cover off, so you can work it with the bike upright, but you can also flop the bike over on it's right side & the oil will stay. you don't have to go all the way over, only about 1/2.
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:48 PM   #7
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Still on the stock Doo Hickey?
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Old 08-29-2014, 09:20 PM   #8
Bernie Kap OP
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yep... you an see the doo with the outer cover off. the spring is harder to see, but you can at least tell if it's there. to diddle with the spring the inner cover has to come off too & that means pulling the rotor. you should drain the oil if you take the cover off, so you can work it with the bike upright, but you can also flop the bike over on it's right side & the oil will stay. you don't have to go all the way over, only about 1/2.
If I turn the tensioner bolt out 2/3 of a turn will that be enough to release the spring? I want to be very careful when I do it. Or what do you think would be the leased amount of turn distance to release the spring? Thanks.
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Old 08-29-2014, 09:23 PM   #9
Bernie Kap OP
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Still on the stock Doo Hickey?
Yes I still have the stock Doo Hickey. I might change it this winter if I can get this problem resolved.Thanks.
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Old 08-30-2014, 12:20 AM   #10
Beezer
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you can un-do the bolt even more than that if you want.... it ain't going to be a problem. 3/4 turn should be plenty loose though. then, once you have proper torque back on the bolt then it's OK.... no worries there. only question is whether the spring is still in there. sometimes they break, sometimes they get loose & fall off. biggest problem is it's a terrible design that is overly complicated for the task. too many parts for a simple job, and some of the parts are crap to boot. why Kawi didn't just put in a tensioner like the one on the cam chain is beyond me, but no, gotta put that cruddy lump of shit in there.... and worse yet, leave in there for almost 3 decades. if I wasn't so lazy I'd make good one, but the Eagle takes the pain away well enough with minimum fuss.

will your bike explode? dunno.... can't tell whats going on without pulling the cover. if the spring falls off, it might just lay there. it might fall into the sump.... lots have. it might also take a journey through the chains & sprockets.... I've seen couple do that too... makes a mess.

as an aside... not many know this, but you can drill through the bottom of the 1st bolt hole forward of the tensioner bolt and see the spring with a borescope with the cover on. that's what I did to mine. it only works with the coil spring though, the torsion spring sits different

if you don't want to buy parts, take the cover off, pull out the spring (toss it) & tension the chain by hand.... it'll be fine
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Old 08-30-2014, 04:24 AM   #11
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If you have the stock Doo in there, know that the stock spring has been seen to "fail" or lack tension on bikes with as low as 5,000 miles. At 15,000 miles, when I took mine apart I could remove it with just my fingers, there was no tension what so ever- I have seen at least 3 other ones like it.

Replace the Doo Hickey and get a Torsion Spring. All of the loosening/tighten and banging with a stock spring is not going to be productive, sorry.

It's not a tough swap.
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Old 08-30-2014, 10:30 AM   #12
Bernie Kap OP
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you can un-do the bolt even more than that if you want.... it ain't going to be a problem. 3/4 turn should be plenty loose though. then, once you have proper torque back on the bolt then it's OK.... no worries there. only question is whether the spring is still in there. sometimes they break, sometimes they get loose & fall off. biggest problem is it's a terrible design that is overly complicated for the task. too many parts for a simple job, and some of the parts are crap to boot. why Kawi didn't just put in a tensioner like the one on the cam chain is beyond me, but no, gotta put that cruddy lump of shit in there.... and worse yet, leave in there for almost 3 decades. if I wasn't so lazy I'd make good one, but the Eagle takes the pain away well enough with minimum fuss.

will your bike explode? dunno.... can't tell whats going on without pulling the cover. if the spring falls off, it might just lay there. it might fall into the sump.... lots have. it might also take a journey through the chains & sprockets.... I've seen couple do that too... makes a mess.

as an aside... not many know this, but you can drill through the bottom of the 1st bolt hole forward of the tensioner bolt and see the spring with a borescope with the cover on. that's what I did to mine. it only works with the coil spring though, the torsion spring sits different

if you don't want to buy parts, take the cover off, pull out the spring (toss it) & tension the chain by hand.... it'll be fine
beezer- I think you were right, I might have over torqued it the last time I did the adjustment. Hence when I checked it this time the bolt only had to travel 1/4 turn and it was tight. I redid the adjustment and all seems to be ok.
This winter I think I will change the doohickey just to be on the safe side with 20k on the bike. I will have to do some research because I don't quite understand the part about drilling the hole for the torqstion spring. And also what tools I will need to do the job and where I can get then. I don't trust the dealer tech's in my area. Thanks.
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Old 08-30-2014, 10:46 AM   #13
Beezer
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unless you have 1 in a million, at 20k the spring will be loose. when you go in there just put on the torsion spring & be done with it. I modified mine before the torsion spring was made & stick with what I have for no good reason.

as for the hole you drill for the torsion spring... pretty easy, comes with a picture I think. EM sends the drill bit along too as I recall
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Old 08-30-2014, 04:13 PM   #14
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I'm kinda new to KLRs myself

So, I've been meaning to ask...
I've got an '04 with 50k on the clock. I have fairly meticulous records from two of the three P.O.'s. My KLR has a Mike's doo in it and I read the instructions for how to periodically take up any chain slack. It says to loosen the bolt under the rubber cap, then re-torque it. My question, is that seriously all there is to it?
Just loosen, let the spring do its thing, and tighten it back to lock it?
I woulda thought one would have to turn the motor one way or the other to assure the slack was at the spot where the tensioner is.

part b: How critical is the torque value do ya think?
I simple turned it from 12o'clock 360 degrees left then 360 back to the right and returned to driver to 12o'clock carefully feeling that it was neither bottomed out nor slippy loose. 8-12 lb/ft.
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Old 08-30-2014, 09:18 PM   #15
Beezer
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do NOT rotate the engine with the adjuster loose. the tensioner is system is supposed to work right when the engine is shut off & where ever it stops. don't rotate the engine backwards either.

the torque on the bolt varies depending on who you use as a source. 60-80 INCH pounds is enough though I believe some sources say 90. the bolt has a lock washer, so all you need to do is flatten that... the big worry is stripping the hole. there were at least 4 doo lever iterations, maybe 5 from Kawi & some were more robust than others, I believe that is where the different numbers came from. Eldon Carl did a bunch of testing & had lots of info, but when he retired his web site went away. Top Gun took over his products, but the good info is gone. anyway... I use about 75 in/lb. if no torque wrench.... then go good & snug with you hand forward on a 1/4" drive ratchet.

BTW.... older klr's, like in the 90s.... there was a batch of inner covers that had casting flaws & the lever doesn't have a good flat spot to lay on unless you mill it. it can bend the lever or at least make it hang up. next time the outer cover is off, look at the milled flat on the inner cover where the lever sits... some are only half there & the rest is pebbly casting

Beezer screwed with this post 08-30-2014 at 09:25 PM
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