Sunday, March 21, 2010

Kawasaki Concours Valve Cover - Well Seal Replacement

I spent today taking the Conc apart again so I could pull the valve cover to check and replace the spark plug well seals. The original seals, and dowel pins which align the seals, were in place. The seals had lost their springiness which was allowing oil to splash into the spark plug tubes. The most tedious part of this job was cleaning the old gasket maker material from the grooves in the valve cover where the seals sit.

I didn't use any sealant on the new seals but I made sure they were in place when I got the valve cover pushed back on. I also didn't replace the dowel pins since they seemed to be press-fit in place and there wasn't anything wrong with them. I cleaned and tightened the spark plug wire connections at the plugs and the coils while I was in there. I took the bike out for a run and it gets up and goes just fine.

I noticed the bike was missing the coolant reservoir cover on the bottom fairing in front. I thought I might have forgot to reinstall it last time - but I think what happened is that it vibrated loose because I didn't tighten the two screws that hold it in place. I am fabricating a cover using some scrap plastic, fiberglass mesh and ABS glue. A new OEM cover is 30 or 40 I'll see if my homemade one does the job.

It's amazing how much time I can spend fiddling around with this bike - but I'm learning and it's better than watching TV, mindlessly eating or aimlessly surfing the web. I didn't refer to any instructions or manuals today other than to check the torque values for some of the critical bolts. I spent a quite a bit of time fitting screws back into the fairings and side pockets. Using the screw map that came with Murph's screw kit will be a big time saver.

I still want to repair the crack in the upper fairing, install the Murph screw kit, and install the knee savers peg lowering kit when that arrives. I was thinking about replacing the spliced main fuel line - had my hemostats ready - but I decided against it since I put in a full day anyway and can image it could take a lot of futzing to get the new line on the carb bank and I'm not sure about ever getting a clamp on that line given the access. The splice I put in there is working fine.

Right now the bike is good to go and I hope to take it for a ride tomorrow after I install the coolant reservoir cover and make sure those screws are good and tight.