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Discussion Starter #1
My 06 Wee has started a light clicking that sounds like it is coming from the area of the front cylinder. Only when it is moving (I think) I first became aware of it when it was raining. I thought it was just water on the exhaust/cat, but now it is doing it more frequently, and regularly. It is still intermittent, but only when warm. However, it is getting more frequent, and I am starting to wonder if it is a valve thing. At first I dismissed this because it is such a light click (I do know what a ticking valve sounds like), but its increasing frequency has me wanting to know what it actually is. My best description of the sound would be like a small drop of water instantly evaporating like a small click on a hot cat. Anybody have any ideas?
 

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You say only when moving, is there a chance this is a (front) wheel bearing? A bearing can make that sound when the races are worn.
 

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I had a truck years ago that made the same kind of noise it ended up being the spark plug wire. There was a little crack in the wire and it was sparking to the valve cover making a clicking sound like you are explaining.
 

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Bring it up to speed, pull the clutch in and kill the engine. See if the sound goes away. If it does, it's motor related and if it doesn't, check what others have suggested.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I had a truck years ago that made the same kind of noise it ended up being the spark plug wire. There was a little crack in the wire and it was sparking to the valve cover making a clicking sound like you are explaining.
Hey that is a good candidate! Intermittent, light clicking, it fits. Easy to test also, I just need to stick my finger down there when its running and see if I get shocked. And it even fits with the rain factor, conducting better at first when wet.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
pre-ignition?

I could not find any arching wires. It sounds kind of like what I would imagine pre-ignition would sound like on a smaller engine. It doesn't entirely fit, as particularly while being under load, but does fit in that I think it only manifests when warm. I am becoming increasingly convinced that I got some sub par gas, but I won't be able to test the theory until I get low enough on gas to fill up again.
 

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I don't think it is that far forward, and the bike only has 7k miles.
Only 7k? I am thinking the cam chain tensioner has not picked up the slack yet. Did you have a 600m valve clearance check?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Only 7k? I am thinking the cam chain tensioner has not picked up the slack yet. Did you have a 600m valve clearance check?
I don't know about the 600 mile valve check as I am the second owner. I have never heard any tapping. The problem has only just started to manifest itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Well it's not the gas. I am convinced it is something with the valves. Since it doesn't do it cold, I'm going to try an oil change and see what happens.
 

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Exhaust pipe can make a clicking sound when it changes temperature. ie; "when the load increases" & "in rain". If it's in the valve train it may be a journal bearing, I have heard them make a rapid clicking noise. You would easily see the smudging of the surfaces if this is the case.
As I mentioned before, weak tension on the cam chain tensioner will result in a clicking sound. What's happening is the lack of tension in the chain allows a valve to close late (lag) and then as the lobe moves over it's high point, and the torque on it is suddenly less, it snaps forward and produces the "click". Sometimes this happens just before the tensioner ratchets up the slack. When it finally moves, the noise leaves. Sometimes the tensioner spring is weak/short and just can't get enough tension on the chain. Sometimes the tensioner rod is seizing due to gum or damage. These are all things that are easy to check during valve check. You will probably reference Black Labs excellent writeup for valve adjusting, but scroll down to where he shows you how to take the tension off the chain. You will notice that before he releases the tensioner, he can't get much slack. If you can, there is something wrong. You can unbolt the whole tensioner from the motor to inspect it. Best of luck. http://www.stromtrooper.com/maintenance-how/50552-supplemental-guide-dl-650-valve-adjustment-thanks-whistler-greywolf.html
 

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Do you hear the sound louder when you ride close to a cement wall? If so it is possible that your chain is a bit loose.
 

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I noticed some noise this morning on my ride in to work. The bike's a 2011, and has 2500 kms on it. It rained hard before I left, so the roads were wet, but there was no standing water anywhere. It only happened while I was moving, and was not consistent in any way. I am thinking it was water coming off the front tire hitting something hot on or near the engine. Anyone else ever experience this?

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I eventually found out that it was the front exhaust header at the junction of the rest of the exhaust, right next to the small heat shield baffle. I put a couple of the screw type metal hose clamps on it and it stopped.
 

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Only 7k? I am thinking the cam chain tensioner has not picked up the slack yet. Did you have a 600m valve clearance check?
The first valve check on the DL is 14,500 miles. If it were a DR , then 600 miles would be the first valve check.
 

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Touch wood, I think mine was just water hitting something hot. The roads were dry on the ride home, and there was just the normal (if one can say that) noises coming from the engine.
 
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