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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

Bike is a 2003 E10 (UK model), c.51k miles. Noise in full technicolor here, increases with revs.

A tapping noise from the top end of the engine came on quite quickly a few months ago, it gets worse when the bike is up to operating temperature. As per my other post i finally got around to checking the valve clearances, which were tight so brought back into spec (but tight shouldn't cause a tapping noise). I've also made sure that the spark plugs are in properly as I've had one blow out in the last year, which made an equally dodgy noise ahead of the big event.

What else should I be checking?

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've had a feel around the headers but can't feel anything blowing. I had some drama with the exhaust last year too, but all sorted now. Plus this sound is pretty regular/consistent, there's no splutter in it.
 

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while it's ticking over block the exhaust outlet listen to the engine if it splutters and stops the exhaust is fine and there should be a huge pressure wave when you release it. if the bike keeps running or the pressure doesn't build up the exhaust is blowing. note if you have twin pipes you will need to block both pipes. use gloves.
 

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"checking the valve clearances, which were tight so brought back into spec (but tight shouldn't cause a tapping noise)"

However, in reaction to finding tight clearances you've LOOSENED the clearances somewhat, right? Care to reveal both the initial, then those final, corrected clearance specs? Could very well result in some audible tapping....not present in the tight scenario. Tapping appeared immediately after the valve clearance correction?

in regards to exhaust header leaks...another method with cold engine, grab each header pipe and vigorously jostle both side to side and in/out, if any motion detected likely leaking. Is the collar hardware tight? (warning don't go gorilla and snap stud!)
 

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"checking the valve clearances, which were tight so brought back into spec (but tight shouldn't cause a tapping noise)"

However, in reaction to finding tight clearances you've LOOSENED the clearances somewhat, right? Care to reveal both the initial, then those final, corrected clearance specs? Could very well result in some audible tapping....not present in the tight scenario. Tapping appeared immediately after the valve clearance correction?

in regards to exhaust header leaks...another method with cold engine, grab each header pipe and vigorously jostle both side to side and in/out, if any motion detected likely leaking. Is the collar hardware tight? (warning don't go gorilla and snap stud!)
yeah if it's loose you will be able to tell that way. but if it is a gasket that's blown it could still be leaking yet tight. plus I know you said cold engine but I never recommend going near those babies hot or cold as not everyone is that bright.
write myself in that statement. when I had the plug issue and a misfire I touched the pipes to see which one was cold less than 1minute after starting from cold still burned the fingers by touching the wrong one first. DUH.
 

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I'd submit checking after sitting overnight may assure a nice cool engine, but I dunno. The copper ring exhaust crush gaskets conform to seal against both the header pipe ring and the head surface...and should retain a reliable seal....unless clamp hardware is loose, a very common cause of exhaust leak. Worth a go to eliminate the scenario. Check the clamp nuts too. Any weird sounds on the overrun, OP?
 

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ah yes I agree but has the OP got the copper ring gaskets. I fell for that trap. while building the GEN 1 I used the ones in the engine gasket kit a sort of silver ring with with wadding in the middle. fine to start with but failed after about 6 months when they blew through. like these. E-bay item no # 132219354537. I now only use the OEM copper ring but you never know what's on the bike. on a side note I have listened to the vid at least x5 with volume up full and with the hearing aids in. :oops: still sounds like an exhaust leak to me.
 

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on a side note I have listened to the vid at least x5 with volume up full and with the hearing aids in. :oops: still sounds like an exhaust leak to me.
Where is the video?
 

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Gen 2 was factory supplied with the flat copper exhaust gaskets. In any event, OP should check for loose hardware at exhaust clamps.
 

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Sounds exactly like a GPz500S running! In fact, loud exhausts were developed to hide the engine noise, but I can't prove it.

Maybe hearing typical GPz valvetrain noise for the first time is somewhat alarming? When is the last time that you heard a train of any sort which was quiet? On closer listen, might be a small jingly bit loose and it vibrates with revs.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Cheers guys, and sorry for the late response this week has been mental. The noise was present both before and after the valve adjustment, so it couldn't have been that. I've got the twin downpipes which were new last year, i didn't put them in but there have been a couple of times when i've needed to take them back to get re-seated (long story: v.sharp speed bump at work's car park kept bumping the gear side exhaust out of place, via i think the centre stand). Will try and block off the exhaust later once i've given it a run around.

to po18guy yes I know these engines are v.rattly in general but this it a lot more tappy than normal, i've had this bike from c.6k miles to current 51k so maybe i'm over-sensitive to any changes in the noise. Also a bit paranoid because it's my only means of getting around, so any failure normally results in a lot of lost time and money.
 

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yeah I think everyone with a EX/GPZ500 has had the same thoughts from time to time. mine has 88k on it now sadly few miles done this year due to China flu. I was hoping to pass the 100k mark this year but that will have to wait.

starting from cold it sounds horrible. (although is a lot quieter when warm) if a newbie heard mine they would swear it's about to explode. especially with the warnings of impending doom when they pass 25k. but it keeps going. due to the earlier than recommended servicing and maintenance (that is what kills these bikes more than anything else)

my lad has CBR600RR F2 and cringes when I start it from cold "what's that noise" I just remove the hearing aids and say "what noise" it just keeps on going (touch wood) ok one day it's going to go bang but for now I don't really bother I have a 7k gen 2 spare engine just in case ready to fit. but not needed it my goal is to pass 100k with it on the same unmolested engine we will see how that goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Just had a go blocking off the exhausts and it carried on running. But there wasn't any obvious blowing up near the gaskets, or anywhere else on the downpipe, and the ticking was still coming from the engine. Maybe two problems?

In terms of the relative rattliness - it is definitely noticeably worse than normal and not how i would expect it to run. Usually over 40mph i can't hear anything over the wind, i also have earplugs in, but this tapping gets over all of that!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I think i may have misunderstood your point about the exhaust headers. Nothing is blowing (i've put smoke around the header pipes to test), but i've listened to other videos where they've gone and it's pretty similar. In terms of diagnosis then is it possible that the gaskets aren't seated right which might cause this noise, but which wouldn't result in blowing?
 

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yes the fact it carried on running is the biggest clue. I test mine for time to time as I have had this issue. the bike runs on for about 20secs then stops when you release the blockage it pops with the pressure. if it not doing that there is a leak. mind you don't forget if you have twin pipes you have to block off both at the same time or it keeps running due to the transfer bridge under the engine.
 
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