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Cam install help 23 Jul 2021 09:15 #852355

  • hardrockminer
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When you were trying to install the tensioner and it wouldn't fit....what was the problem?  I've never had a problem installing the tensioner by the method I described above.

If all of the slack is between the cams it is impossible for the intake cam to rotate.  But if there is slack on the tensioner side it will allow the intake cam to rotate forward as it's tightened down.  
I have a couple of Z1B's restored, an '80 KZ1000LTD restored, a 1981 KZ550 restored and a 2008 KLR 650 for off road fun. My wife has a 2019 Suzuki DR 650 for on and off road.

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Cam install help 23 Jul 2021 10:50 #852364

  • Rick H.
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Perhaps I just got lucky twice with my KZ-1000, but I don't ever recall going thru all of this "effort" to install my cams.  I followed what the FSM said and everything just seemed to fall into place.  After installing the cams I tightened them into place by turning each cam cap screw a little at a time and it went smoothly.  After the cams were in and caps torqued down I went back and double/triple checked the pins and marks and installed the top idler.  I don't recall checking for chain slack front or rear.  2600 miles later it still runs and runs great.  Maybe ignorance is bliss.  I will admit that I never thought to use the starter or kicker to rotate the engine at any point in this process.  I just used a wrench on the end of the crank shaft so I could hopefully feel for any interference before it caused real damage.

Rick H.
Rick H.

1977 Kawasaki KZ-1000A1

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Cam install help 23 Jul 2021 18:27 #852399

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I used to use a wrench on the timing bolt until one day I broke the pin located on the crank.  Had to tear the entire engine down, replace the pin and then rebuild from square 1.  That's why I use the kicker now.  If you're careful you can be just as accurate.  Just don't do it with the plugs installed.
I have a couple of Z1B's restored, an '80 KZ1000LTD restored, a 1981 KZ550 restored and a 2008 KLR 650 for off road fun. My wife has a 2019 Suzuki DR 650 for on and off road.

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Cam install help 24 Jul 2021 07:48 #852425

  • Rick H.
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Interesting HRM, how and why did that pin break?  That seems like a pretty rare occurrence to me.  Not to split fine hairs, but I found I had a better "feel" for any hitches using a wrench versus the kicker, but that is just my opinion.  When I was doing my engine I had the bike on a lift and the kick lever was up much higher than it would be with the bike on the ground.  I didn't have any real feel for the kick lever so the wrench was a better option.

Rick H.
Rick H.

1977 Kawasaki KZ-1000A1

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Cam install help 24 Jul 2021 18:47 #852470

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I can only speculate on the hows and whys.  Bottom line was a complete teardown, plus a 200 km drive to my favourite machinist to remove the stub and install a new pin.  Then put everything back together again.

Go with what works Rick.  The manual recommends a wrench on the crankshaft timing bolt. But the only thing holding it is the pin to set the timing device in the correct position.

I use a lift as well.  
I have a couple of Z1B's restored, an '80 KZ1000LTD restored, a 1981 KZ550 restored and a 2008 KLR 650 for off road fun. My wife has a 2019 Suzuki DR 650 for on and off road.

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