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Old 11-25-2013, 10:23 PM   #1
marchyman OP
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Using any GSW Special Tools?

Some of you have had the bike long enough to rack up enough miles to need some normal maintenance. Are you doing it yourself? If so what special tools do you find you need?

Example: do you need the TDC/BDC locating pin tool or can you use any 8 mm pin. Would it be accurate enough for checking the valve timing? How about the valve timing locating device? Needed?

Just curious as to what people are doing.
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:12 AM   #2
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I haven't checked my valves yet on the GSW but I'm getting close.

It should be easy enough to find TDC on the compression stroke without the need for BMW's special tool, I'm sure there are marks like in previous versions models, can always use a stick in the spark-plug hole if all else fails.

Should be able to use a straightedge in place of the valve timing locating device as well.

Nobody buys BMW's special tools.
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:18 AM   #3
JimVonBaden
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No special tools needed at all.

LINK TO WETHEAD SERVICE SCHEDULE!

Link to Tool Lists Download in Word Format!
Link to Valve Chart!
Link to Torque Values!




This is all you need to check valve timing:




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Old 11-26-2013, 05:26 AM   #4
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My dealer is doing it next week.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:28 AM   #5
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I'd be interested to see what the valve clearance looked like at the 20,000km service.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:42 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by JetSpeed View Post
I'd be interested to see what the valve clearance looked like at the 20,000km service.
The one I did recently had only 2300 miles on it, and the clearances were basically dead center. I have a chart, above, that I captured the numbers on. I will be doing the service on this bike so I will keep track and see what kind of drift we get. I am not expecting much.

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Old 11-26-2013, 09:19 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marchyman View Post
Some of you have had the bike long enough to rack up enough miles to need some normal maintenance. Are you doing it yourself? If so what special tools do you find you need?

Example: do you need the TDC/BDC locating pin tool or can you use any 8 mm pin. Would it be accurate enough for checking the valve timing? How about the valve timing locating device? Needed?

Just curious as to what people are doing.
If you are simply talking checking the valve clearance nothing special is needed. If you are checking the valve timing then you will need three tools to do it accurately.

The 8mm locating pin is the baseline for the cam timing where a degree can make a difference. I ordered this tool and see no way to get an accurate base location for the purpose of cam timing. This tool is also handy for finding BDC with the 6mm side. This would be used for clutch work engine work etc. Part # 83 30 2 327 790

Now that you have an accurate TDC with the tool you will need a cam chain tensioner to eliminate cam sprocket movement while checking and aligning the cams. This tool replaces the hydraulic tensioner and is designed to apply a specific force to the chain guide that will not damage the guide. There is a collar that goes with the tensioner for this specific application. Part # 83 30 0 444 292, 83 30 2 339 885

Finally after all is located and locked into place you need the locating device to align the cams. If an adjustment for the alignment is needed you will need to slacken the cam gear bolts and align the cams with the locating tool. Once the tool fits due to adjustment it will need to remain on the cams to tighten the gear bolts to 65 nm. Part # 83 30 2 327 796

These tools allow you to do a professional job of accurate timing adjustment with ease. Several owners have reported rough running engines that were corrected when the dealer found the cam timing off and adjusted it. I purchased these tools for my bike and find them useful for my maintenance routine. My bike hasn't seen a BMW dealer since it was purchased and it won't unless it is for a warranty issue. I plan to do a timing check/adjustment every 12000 miles along with the valve clearance check. This allows me to correct for timing variations due to chain stretch and gear wear. All of the tools cost me about $290.00 and I figure I have already paid for them and the GS911 WiFi when it comes out.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:43 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gr8ridn View Post
If you are simply talking checking the valve clearance nothing special is needed. If you are checking the valve timing then you will need three tools to do it accurately.

The 8mm locating pin is the baseline for the cam timing where a degree can make a difference. I ordered this tool and see no way to get an accurate base location for the purpose of cam timing. This tool is also handy for finding BDC with the 6mm side. This would be used for clutch work engine work etc. Part # 83 30 2 327 790

Now that you have an accurate TDC with the tool you will need a cam chain tensioner to eliminate cam sprocket movement while checking and aligning the cams. This tool replaces the hydraulic tensioner and is designed to apply a specific force to the chain guide that will not damage the guide. There is a collar that goes with the tensioner for this specific application. Part # 83 30 0 444 292, 83 30 2 339 885

Finally after all is located and locked into place you need the locating device to align the cams. If an adjustment for the alignment is needed you will need to slacken the cam gear bolts and align the cams with the locating tool. Once the tool fits due to adjustment it will need to remain on the cams to tighten the gear bolts to 65 nm. Part # 83 30 2 327 796

These tools allow you to do a professional job of accurate timing adjustment with ease. Several owners have reported rough running engines that were corrected when the dealer found the cam timing off and adjusted it. I purchased these tools for my bike and find them useful for my maintenance routine. My bike hasn't seen a BMW dealer since it was purchased and it won't unless it is for a warranty issue. I plan to do a timing check/adjustment every 12000 miles along with the valve clearance check. This allows me to correct for timing variations due to chain stretch and gear wear. All of the tools cost me about $290.00 and I figure I have already paid for them and the GS911 WiFi when it comes out.
Great write-up! Thanks.
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Old 11-26-2013, 12:15 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mountainguy View Post
Great write-up! Thanks.
But 100% unnecessary for the average DIYer doing scheduled maintenance.

As I posted earlier, a straight edge is all you need.

Yes, I am fully aware of the tools BMW has for these, and none of them are necessary to remove the cams for valve shim replacement.

Jim

PS The average DIYer will not be messing about with valve timing.
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:48 PM   #10
marchyman OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gr8ridn View Post
The 8mm locating pin is the baseline for the cam timing where a degree can make a difference. I ordered this tool and see no way to get an accurate base location for the purpose of cam timing. This tool is also handy for finding BDC with the 6mm side. This would be used for clutch work engine work etc. Part # 83 30 2 327 790.
That's what I wondered (with regards to cam timing) but didn't know. I'm sure a straight edge is good enough for checking valves. Thanks for the part numbers. The price for the tools does not seem to be outrageous.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimVonBaden View Post
But 100% unnecessary for the average DIYer doing scheduled maintenance.

As I posted earlier, a straight edge is all you need.

Yes, I am fully aware of the tools BMW has for these, and none of them are necessary to remove the cams for valve shim replacement.

Jim

PS The average DIYer will not be messing about with valve timing.
Hi Jim,

Your right, not normally necessary but the straight edge method is flawed. It tells you the cams are roughly aligned but disregards the position of the crankshaft. What do you do if the straight edge doesn't lay squarely on both cam flats? On my 2013 GSW the left cams were found to be out of time while the right side was spot on. I could eyeball the cam flats were not parallel at TDC with the tensioner tool. The left cams adjustment was easy and straight forward with the tools.

Without the tools there is no way to accurately see this issue. First the alignment pin tool must be locked on TDC. The cam alignment does change with the tension on the lower chain guide so to get a true reading I had to go with three clicks on the tensioner tool. Upon replacing the bike's tensioner the the cams were not aligned as was the case with the tensioner tool. Not enough spring pressure from that tensioner to take out the chain slack without hydraulic pressure of the engine running.

Service procedures call for checking the alignment with these tools anytime the cams are removed to change the shim plates for the valves. Your call, but I like following the published factory procedures.

Will the engine be damaged by removing the cams and re-installing them with the tools? I don't think so as long as the cams are installed in the original position they were removed from. Marking the gear teeth would help.

Will you know if the engine is running as efficiently as designed? There is no way to know unless the cam timing is verified and maintained.

My bike with all cams timed is running much smoother for the couple of degrees the left two cams were off. I'll have to put on some miles before I know if the smoother running translates a nicer power curve under load. I think that will be the case.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marchyman View Post
That's what I wondered (with regards to cam timing) but didn't know. I'm sure a straight edge is good enough for checking valves. Thanks for the part numbers. The price for the tools does not seem to be outrageous.
Your welcome. Ordered my tools from A&S. They pay sales tax and free shipping. It took them about three weeks to get the parts. Plan early
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:32 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gr8ridn View Post
Hi Jim,

Your right, not normally necessary but the straight edge method is flawed. It tells you the cams are roughly aligned but disregards the position of the crankshaft. What do you do if the straight edge doesn't lay squarely on both cam flats? On my 2013 GSW the left cams were found to be out of time while the right side was spot on. I could eyeball the cam flats were not parallel at TDC with the tensioner tool. The left cams adjustment was easy and straight forward with the tools.

Without the tools there is no way to accurately see this issue. First the alignment pin tool must be locked on TDC. The cam alignment does change with the tension on the lower chain guide so to get a true reading I had to go with three clicks on the tensioner tool. Upon replacing the bike's tensioner the the cams were not aligned as was the case with the tensioner tool. Not enough spring pressure from that tensioner to take out the chain slack without hydraulic pressure of the engine running.

Service procedures call for checking the alignment with these tools anytime the cams are removed to change the shim plates for the valves. Your call, but I like following the published factory procedures.

Will the engine be damaged by removing the cams and re-installing them with the tools? I don't think so as long as the cams are installed in the original position they were removed from. Marking the gear teeth would help.

Will you know if the engine is running as efficiently as designed? There is no way to know unless the cam timing is verified and maintained.

My bike with all cams timed is running much smoother for the couple of degrees the left two cams were off. I'll have to put on some miles before I know if the smoother running translates a nicer power curve under load. I think that will be the case.
The OP was asking about normal maintenance, which I took to be service by the service schedule. This is what I am referring to.

The factory manual calls for removing the cam chain tensioner for cam removal. Yes, TDC alignment can be off, but I am not talking about doing an alignment, I am referring to checking and replacing the shims. IMHO, the average backyard tech doing basic services by the schedule should not be messing with cam timing for any reason unless they know what they are doing. If you reinstall the cams the way they came out there is no danger of damage to the motor.

If an owner is wanting to mess with cam timing, they will need to lock the motor and then check. Locking the motor can be done without expensive tools, as can cam timing, but I am unwilling to take on the liability of teaching that.

Jim
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:26 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimVonBaden View Post
The OP was asking about normal maintenance, which I took to be service by the service schedule. This is what I am referring to.

The factory manual calls for removing the cam chain tensioner for cam removal. Yes, TDC alignment can be off, but I am not talking about doing an alignment, I am referring to checking and replacing the shims. IMHO, the average backyard tech doing basic services by the schedule should not be messing with cam timing for any reason unless they know what they are doing. If you reinstall the cams the way they came out there is no danger of damage to the motor.

If an owner is wanting to mess with cam timing, they will need to lock the motor and then check. Locking the motor can be done without expensive tools, as can cam timing, but I am unwilling to take on the liability of teaching that.

Jim
That's fine. Your liability would be an issue any time you facilitate non trained owners to perform tasks they are not qualified to do correctly. As I said before doing this by your method will not harm the engine. I get that.

I was responding to Marchyman who from past postings appears to have an aptitude and interest beyond average DIY interest. He asked a question about special tools and I responded to that. My comments were not aimed at your target market. Thankfully the GSW and it's future iterations will probably require very few actual valve adjustments. Most of this will not be a concern to the casual DIY owner.

My comments were hoped to help owners with reasonable skills desiring to perform this task correctly which is part of the service schedule when adjusting valve clearance.

For those paying the dealer to do their service be sure your service department is equipped with the tools and training to do this job correctly should an adjustment be required. You are paying to have the job done correctly.
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Old 11-27-2013, 05:40 AM   #15
JimVonBaden
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Originally Posted by gr8ridn View Post
That's fine. Your liability would be an issue any time you facilitate non trained owners to perform tasks they are not qualified to do correctly. As I said before doing this by your method will not harm the engine. I get that.

I was responding to Marchyman who from past postings appears to have an aptitude and interest beyond average DIY interest. He asked a question about special tools and I responded to that. My comments were not aimed at your target market. Thankfully the GSW and it's future iterations will probably require very few actual valve adjustments. Most of this will not be a concern to the casual DIY owner.

My comments were hoped to help owners with reasonable skills desiring to perform this task correctly which is part of the service schedule when adjusting valve clearance.

For those paying the dealer to do their service be sure your service department is equipped with the tools and training to do this job correctly should an adjustment be required. You are paying to have the job done correctly.

Cam timing and valve clearances are not the same thing. While the manual does mention using all the above tools to adjust the cam timing, it is not part of the standard service. When changing shims, the cam timing is not effected, therefore I do not put that in my instruction.

Testing cam timing can be accomplished, IMHO, without the BMW tool kit, and though I would take on correcting the timing without the kit, I would never advocate it to others. Nor would I advocate taking this on under warranty unless you are very sure you are doing it right.

However, I can see the value in understanding how to do this, and it would be great to make a tutorial on how, with lots of photos. Next time you do it, please make the tutorial for those who wish to try it themselves. I am sure it would be most appreciated.

Thanks for the reasonable discourse on this subject.

Jim
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