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First off - thanks to all for the advice and posted materials on doing the DL650 valve adjustments. Between owner experiences and the service manual, it was a very easy job, the actual adjustment part taking me about 4 hours, start to finish. The complete tuneup and thorugh inspect, cleaning took me about two very easy days, but I took the opportunity to do all the 24000 km items and a few more at the same time while inspecting and learning more about where all these parts are/go.

One tip I found helpful: Another rider posted a set of notes regarding not removing the cam chain tensioners - they were very accurate and a big help. (Note to self - you cannot have too many long, skinny screwdrivers.) I did find however that the rear tensioner bolt was, as described, a real PITA to remove, retension because I could see the tensioner, but not the bolt head. For some reason, I couldn't hold a ratchet, 2 ft extension, U-joint and 12 mm socket steady enough to stop the whole thing from flopping around as I went in through the back wheel / brake line area (for some reason I kept thinking how miserable a proctologist's job must be). That's where this little idea of mine came in......

I took a balloon, cut about a 2 inch section off from the neck area and slipped it over the u-joint, then put the socket on. This allowed the u-joint to swivel but at same time gave a little rigidity to the joint/socket so I could feel the tensioner bolt and get it seated the first time.

Outside of the valve job I took the opportunity to add TB extensions. Finding vacuum hose was tricky, even Napa didnt' have any. I did locate some at B&B automotive in Newmarket (for those Toronto area strommers). This part of the job I found easier than described, getting the rubber caps off which I was able to do both with my fingers. The mouse-ear clamps were easily removable with tip # 2 - a dollar store pair of tweezers ground to a point (I have these already made for my flytying and was able to remove the mouse-ear clamps on the caps easily first, then the caps came right off with no marring or undue stretching of the rubber. The rest is history. After setting the idle, I found that the TBS were in synch to within 1/4 to 1/8 inch already so didnt make any further adjustments.

I should mention I made 1 mistake in the valve adjustments, using a rubber band on the rear cylinder to hold the cam chain in place. It broke. To ensure I got everything back together in sync I used the notes in the service manual on setting both camshafts back in place and adjusting the timing manually using the cam sprocket timing marks. Very easy to do. Next time a bungee or a tie-wrap.

I found that front exhaust and rear intake valves were at the tight spec, the remainder near the midpoint. I used the HotCams kit on these and left the rest for later. I did find that the refill kit was definitely the most useful, not even touching the main kit components.

To ensure I didn't lose any parts, I used a small piece of masking tape on each fastener on the stub end as I removed various bits. This ensures against loss but also allows each fastener to go back into it's original home.

A 500+ mile trip post tune-up gave me no problems with a MPG of 63.4. All the parts to make me go worked, similarly, all the parts that are supposed to make you stop worked equally as well. Very reassuring. I did not notice overall that there was any difference before or after - a good sign.

Overall, an easy job to do and the service manual I found to be quite easy to follow. I laid out a basic plan on paper of what I wanted to do, section by section and found it to be relatively easy and straightforward, if time-consuming.
IMO - if you can use a wrench without taking your eye out, this work is easily within the realm of your average owner.

Dear Santa - all I'd like for XMAS is a bike lift.

Safe rides and thanks,
Bob
 
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