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Old 10-02-2008, 07:09 PM   #16
kdxkawboy
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The decompression lever should only engage when starting the engine, its only there to make it easier to kick over. Once idling the engine speed should be high enough to disengage the lever.
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Old 12-23-2008, 05:46 PM   #17
mtn500 OP
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i know it has been a while since i last posted but i have been terribly busy with work. i got a few days off and started tearing the xl down to see if i could visually see any problems.
after cranking the bike to get it warmed up i noticed a clicking noise coming from the top of the engine; nothing seriously loud, but noticeable. it could be the valves but i adjusted the valves before the aforementioned episode happened.
when i removed the crankcase cover i noticed that part of the gasket was not in the correct place; it had somehow shifted, probably during installation of the cover.

this is what the inside of the cover looks like

and where my finger is pointing is where the gasket was not in place

by not in place, i mean it was shifted slightly so that it was not sealing around the recessed area. the part on the motor that this recessed area matches to is here:

does anyone know if the area that i am pointing to above is a channel to direct oil to another part of the motor (the upper part) and if so, could the gasket not sealing around the said area cause a loss in pressure or cause oil not to be circulated to another part?

i still have more teardown to do, but for the most part there was nothing visibly out of place. the clutch plates seemed to be intact and there were not pieces in the case or in the filter screen.

thanks for any input
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Old 12-24-2008, 08:02 AM   #18
Mtncrzr
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I think you found the problem. Gasket leaking and not sending oil through the oil tube in the side cover.
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Old 12-24-2008, 09:06 AM   #19
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Yep, I'd say that's your problem. You can see the cast-in oil line inside the cover.

Your damage is probably limited to the top end; first a compression test, and if that's ok, pull the valve cover and check for scoring on the cam lobes. My guess is you are going to find some, and at least one valve out of spec as the source of the clicking.
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Old 12-24-2008, 11:26 AM   #20
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The oil line someone was talking about is actually internal- not sure on the newer bikes like yours, but the older 350s actually sent the oil up the right rear cylinder stud hole to the head.

You have to look REAL close to see the arrows:



little bit more info on my site: http://mysite.verizon.net/dorkpunch/id21.htm

It looks like the part you are pointing at is on the intake side of the pump, so if the gasket wasnt in place it could have been sucking air and not pumping enough oil to the top end. If it runs, ride it. Its a honda, itll probably run like that forever. BUT- The cam has no bearings- it just runs in the aluminum in the head. If any damage ocurred- thats where it happened. The clicking in the top *might* be because the came ate into the head a bit and now there is more play between the cam and the rockers. Of course, theres thems that say a noisey valve is a happy valve...
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Old 12-24-2008, 04:54 PM   #21
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thanks everyone for their input. i was betting that was the problem as soon as i saw the gasket. i'll gonna pop off the valve covers and check the specs on the valves and anything else i can check with the engine in the frame.
i agree with you dorkpunch, it is a honda, so im gonna go the easy route and get another gasket and see how she runs then. if that don't fix it to my likings, i guess a teardown and rebiuld will be next in line. it will be a few days before i can get another gasket but i will keep those that are interested updated on the situation.
thanks again
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Old 12-24-2008, 05:04 PM   #22
brucifer
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Here's the lubrication flow chart for a XL250S, but it's the same for your 500.
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Old 01-11-2009, 06:35 PM   #23
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first off, thank everyone for their input and suggestions.

i finally received a new crank case gasket from the local dealer. i previously had purchased a new clutch nut and intended on removing the clutch plates and inspect them, but upon inspection of the clutch plates in the basket, it appeared that all were still in excellent shape and no plates had broken or contributed to my problems (i'll save that expensive nut in case it is necessary in the future). i installed the new gasket, taking every measure to ensure that it stayed in place where it should be (note*--the gasket that i installed after the clutch replacement was an aftermarket gasket that came in a complete engine gasket kit--the material that it was made from was different from the material of the gasket from the honda dealership. the aftermarket gasket was "slick" and seemed to not want to hold its shape, which probably/definitely contributed to the problem), added fresh oil, connected the decompression cable and adjusted to specs, and adjusted the valves again.
upon adjusting the valves, i did find that one of the exhaust valves was tight. i inspected the cavity where the valves sit and everything seemed normal, but i did pick up a burnt oil smell coming from the exhaust valves. the rocker arms still moved and eventhough it wasn't necessary for all the valves to be adjusted, i loosened the locknut on all four valves and readjusted all to specs.
after i was sure that everything that needed to be adjusted was adjusted and checked, and everything was assembled, i started her up. she started up on the second kick and seemed to run fine.
there was still a clicking sound coming from the cylinder area. i loosened the cam chain adjusting nuts for self adjustment, hoping that would help quiet down the noise, but it didn't.

so after that long winded update, the new gasket, i hope, is facilitating ample lubrication of the topend. the bike "seems" to run fine, though it was too cold to thoroughly ride it and check it out.

there are two concerns that have come into play. 1) the top end clicking noise that i hear. the clicking is not overwhelming, but i certainly notice it, and it doesn't seem right. could this be piston slap? the clymer manual said that excess engine noise could be from piston slap, but i really don't know what that sounds like. i do however, have a new camera that could record the sound of the engine and the clicking if that would help narrow down the problem for someone who knows what piston slapping sounds like.
2) when i kickstart the bike now, it seems that the kickstarter is not engaging as it should be. what i mean is, "normally" it engages at the top of the kick stroke which is detectible by the compression of the engine (even though there is a compression release, you could still feel it). now when i kickstart it, it feels as if the compression is not felt until almost half way through the stroke. Perhaps the kickstarter gears are finally wearing out and that is a totally separate problem thats coming upon me now, or low compression?. what would low compression mean?

anywho, there is my long winded update on my xl500s situation. any suggestions about the top end noise would be greatly appreciated.
thanks
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Old 01-11-2009, 07:43 PM   #24
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uh oh

caveat: I have never worked on a honda xr. i am a shadetree mechanic at best. but....

looking at the oil system schematics shown above brings up some concern for me. in both cases, that clutch cover oil gallery feeds the conrod end and the camshaft journals.

even worse, in one diagram (the 2nd one) it shows that the piston skirts are being sprayed by oil from that circuit.

it looks like the camchain carries oil to the cam lobes, no worry there.

The original post sounded like a sticky piston, easily explained by the misplaced gasket/oil passage problem.

can someone confirm the source of oil for the piston skirt, conrod end, crank bearings etc?

i thought the lc4 was unique in its oil thru the clutch cover design.

I would get the piston to bdc and look through the spark plug hole for cylinder damage, would that be fruitful?

sorry to be a pessimist, hopefully i'm wrong. good luck
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:16 PM   #25
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a leak down test helps , harbor freight has em, tells ya if valves, piston/rings are sealing.
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Old 01-12-2009, 08:10 AM   #26
mtn500 OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dentvet
I would get the piston to bdc and look through the spark plug hole for cylinder damage
that is something that i haven't tried, though it is worth a shot since it is easy and cheap and could provide info on any potential damage. one question though,...to get to tdc i remove two plugs on the left side crank case cover, one plug is a sight plug and the other allows for a socket to turn the engine. i turn the engine counterclockwise using the socket until the tdc mark is visible and lined up through the sight plug. im pretty sure that there is no mark for bdc, so how would i know that the piston is at that position? -- i guess i could remove the spark plug and look through the hole whilst turning the engine.

"a leak down test helps , harbor freight has em, tells ya if valves, piston/rings are sealing"

what is this "em" that you speak of?
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certs and destroy

If... the machine of government... is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law.

When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, "This you may not read, this you may not see, this you are forbidden to know", the end result is tyranny and oppression no matter how holy the motives.


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Old 01-12-2009, 08:30 PM   #27
HighwayChile
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sorry, I'm a lazy typist, I meant to say "has them"
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=94190

brief read on leak down test vs compression test
http://www.dietersmotorsports.com/Co...akdowntest.htm
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:50 PM   #28
JustinT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtn500
that is something that i haven't tried, though it is worth a shot since it is easy and cheap and could provide info on any potential damage. one question though,...to get to tdc i remove two plugs on the left side crank case cover, one plug is a sight plug and the other allows for a socket to turn the engine. i turn the engine counterclockwise using the socket until the tdc mark is visible and lined up through the sight plug. im pretty sure that there is no mark for bdc, so how would i know that the piston is at that position? -- i guess i could remove the spark plug and look through the hole whilst turning the engine.

"a leak down test helps , harbor freight has em, tells ya if valves, piston/rings are sealing"

what is this "em" that you speak of?
Just use a wooden dowel or something (not metal) that is long and skinny...put it in the spark plug hole while turning over(or even with kick starter since your not adjusting valves)...when its at the lowest point--> BDC
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Old 01-13-2009, 04:44 PM   #29
johnnyandjebus
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mtn500

I hope you don't mind if I high-jack your thread; I am wondering if anyone can tell me where I can get a drawing similar to the one below for my dr350.
Sorry mtn500 no advice for you but I am watching, hoping for a success result.

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Old 01-13-2009, 04:53 PM   #30
mcma111
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Bdc

How to find BDC. Put it at TDC and then rotate the crank 180'.

Or with the socket wrench at the top, turn it 1/2 turn until it's at the bottom.
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