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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

I have a 1980 KZ750H1 and at the end of last year it developed a slight ticking sound. Since then it sat around over winter and after I cleaned the carbs, I fired it up and brought it back. Now the ticking sound is a bit louder and it increases with the rpms. I'm guessing it's the valve clearance and was going to pull the head cover off this weekend.

One question I have is I've been reading a bunch about valve adjustments and it sounds like the valves get tighter over time, not looser, however the ticking sound would indicate loose clearance. What else could the problem be here? What else should I check while I have the head cover off? Also, which gaskets am I going to have to definitely replace? I figure I'll order them ahead of time and try to get this back together quicker. The bike's got around 25k miles on it.

Thank you
 

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I suggest looking at the exhaust pipes where they meet the head, you will probably locate the source of the ticking there.

A 3' piece of garden hose makes a great stethoscope, but one end up to your ear and fish around with the other end till you locate the exact source of the noise.


At 25k miles the valves are way overdue an adjustment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply.

I think the valves have been adjusted, just not by me and I got the bike recently (a year ago). At any rate, it most likely should be done.

I'll try the garden hose trick to figure out where the noise is coming from.
 

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I had the same type of clicking, wouldnt you know it was one of my exhaust pipes leaking, torque your pipe blots down and see if any are loose or the exhaust gaskets might be due for a change.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I pulled the valve cover off and the clearances were all between 0.002" and 0.004" - a little too tight. I haven't pulled the cams off yet, but was hoping to do it this weekend. The manual calls for a tool to remove valve lifters. What do I need to get for that?
 

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Aye, the 2 thous are too tight, the 4 thous are low-end of ok but while you're getting cams off you might as well take all of them up towards the 0.18 max (7 thou) if you've got or can stretch to the shims.

The buckets (lifters) only need a magnet or valve-grinding sucker to remove m8.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you for the reply. That sounds easy enough - the magnet be pretty cheap to grab at a hardware store. Hopefully, I'll get everything done if I can find the shims locally. We'll see how the tick goes.
 

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The noise can be:

1.Loose clutch basket.

2.Magnets getting loose on the alternator rotor.

3.Cam chain needing a manual tensioner.

4.The copper exhaust gaskets need replacing(I understand the Sukuzi ones that Z1 enterprises sells are thicker than what Kawasaki supplies).
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
This took forever because of school and weather, but I got everything back together and the tick is still there. I tried figuring out where exactly the sound is coming from and it really sounds like it's from the head. It goes up and down with the engine speed, and sounds like valve tick to me. I checked the cam chain for wear while I had the head cover off and it was within spec.

I tried tightening the nuts on the exhaust pipes, but that didn't seem to do anything.

How would I check if it needs a manual tensioner? What are the risks of not doing anything about the valve tick?
 

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Is the sound louder at idle or when you give it gas? At idle you should get some valve noise which should go away as revs increase. If it does not go away you may have some carbon buildup on a valve.
 

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If all else doesn't show owt maybe also remove the tachometer drive-gear to see if the noise disappears.

Try firing the bike up in a dark garage or at night to see if there is any electrical-shorting apparent under the tank (from HT-leads, caps etc), can sound like an engine tick although the bike might sound a bit rough in this case v0v
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
It seems like the volume of the tick doesn't change at higher rpms, but only the frequency. I could be fooling myself, but I also thought that I could hear much quieter tick from the exhaust pipe. I can try pulling the tach gear.

I'll try the new gaskets once I have time again. Another thing is the bike doesn't have the stock exhaust, but a 4-1 on it and the exhaust pipe holders are missing on it. I don't know how important they are or if they would contribute to this. I am fairly certain I rode it without the tick for most of last year and it appeared suddenly.

Also, I made a video of it, so maybe you guys could listen to it and give me a better idea of what could be going on. Here's the link: YouTube - KZ750 strange tick
 

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I'd suggest ordering new exhaust clamps and the "C" shaped parts that hold the exhaust pipes tight against the ports. Z1 Enterprises, Inc. - Specializing in Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Parts should be able to get them for you. Don't forget new copper crush washers for the ports.

When I pull my exhaust system off for repainting/repair, it's a minor pain to get it back on the bike. I've found using heavy grease will make the new crush washers stick inside the ports. The "C" shaped clamps are used two to a pipe,I use masking tape to hold them in place, sliding the exhaust clamp against the "C" clamps while starting the nuts going on to the studs.

The grease and tape will smell for a while, but it's no big thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
All right, makes sense. I'll start looking for the parts. Z1 doesn't list the "C" shaped holders or exhaust clamps, but I'll look for them on other sites. Do you think the bike is rideable until I get around to dealing with that?
 

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Don't forget though lads that some 4-into-1 systems don't need the split-collars, they have a collar already on the downpipes that the clamp bears directly on, if Timuralp was missing all his collars i think he'd have more than a tick ;)
 

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I have EXACTLY the same problem with my '82 GPz750R1 which I've been chasing for a month (at least). I'm not game enough to ride it. I've been mucking about with valve clearances and have got no where. I've checked the exhaust (new gaskets, etc). All I'm left with was trying to close the valve clearances right down (which isn't working for you), or fit the manual tensioner I have. Sounds like I'll be fitting the tensioner ..

Keep up the posts. I"ll be VERY interested to see if you can solve your problem as it might help me with mine! :)
 

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....aaaaaand today i have been looking into a top-end tick on a Suzuki TL1000R, stripped out the top-end on the offending pot and found no problems aside from slightly tight clearances.
There's a virus going round, we'll all be driven mad by it :)
 
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