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Discussion Starter #1
Bought my 07 Burgman Executive a year ago last month with 3500 miles on it. Now is has 10350 miles on it and was wondering if I really to have my valves checked anytime soon. I ride my bike sedately and never over 65-70 MPH and even then it aint for long. Half and hour or so and that's it. The rest of the time I am just cruising along from 45 MPH to 60 PMH or so all day long here on the wonderful back roads of Idaho. I just LOVE HElls Canyon. Go there several times a year because it is so dang gorgeous.

So.....skip the valve check at 17K? Maybe do it next time? Time after that? Never? Who says what? Even my Golding mechanic told me that I did not need to bring in my GL1800 for valve checks again because they were fine the first time and should stay that way forever.

IF I don't need to bring my Burg in for that expensive valve check I would be much happier buying me a Veskimo cooled jacked for next years riding season.

So what say you all? Do it? Don't do it? I am leaning not to do it. At least for another year or two down the line.
 

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I assume you aren't doing the valves yourself then? Did mine at around 27,000 miles in conjunction with cooling system maintenance. It's not a bad DIY task at all. Frankly the most difficult items to remove are the two inner bolts on the front fender tupperware. Take off the front wheel and radiator and you have excellent access to the cylinder head cover (service manual doesn't mention front wheel but it's trivial to remove).

I found one intake within .001" of the limit and two exhausts within .001" also. I'm definitely checking them again at around 35,000, prepared to change shims. You really don't want to ignore this, as the engine wears the valve clearances go toward zero, at which point there's a good chance that you'll burn valves. Repairing that is way more expensive than checking/adjusting.
 

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I've never had the valves checked on either of my bikes. BUT I do feel really guilty about it.

Watching this one with interest.
 

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My recommendation is to check them at 20,000 TO 25,000 mile intervals. Most folks that I know of did not actually need to adjust the valves until somewhere around 70,000 miles. However a few have had to do it earlier.

As miken6mz said they seem to go out of adjustment on the tight side so you do not want to ignore them.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I am just wondering if anyone out there actually had damaged the engine on their 650 Burg because the valve check wasn't done. Even my mechanic told me that the valve check interval was always worst case scenario and that rarely if ever the valves got out of spec enough to bother adjusting. I would like to believe him too.

At only 13,000 miles the bike for sure runs great as it should, but like all of you I want to keep it that way but don't want to be spending hundreds of dollars for nothing other than peace of mind.
 

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I did no damage to my bike but at 72,000 miles the clearance had closed up enough that I was below spec on two of the valves. At 16,000 miles you probably don't have any worries.

If the normal were for the clearance to open up due to wear on the cam lobs then you could just ride it until performance started suffering. The only issue would be that the valves would get noisier. However, It seems that the normal for change on these bikes is for the clearance to close up because of wear on the valve seats. If they close up to tight then they will start leaking and a burned valve will result. Fixing that will cost a lot more than adjusting the valves.
 

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I followed the manual and had my valves checked on my 07 at 15k at the dealer. Just wanted to be safe than sorry. The service guy's eyes kind of popped open and he asked "really?" I should have taken that as a hint not to spend the extra $$. The Burg ran fine, values were dead-on spec, and I probably should have waited to 25k. Cost me a couple hundred bucks.
 

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Almost 34,000 mi, bought the Burgman used,so no idea if it's been done or not. Guy at the Suzuki dealer told me it should be done, but the price was incredible. He finally admitted when they get bad you can tell by the power loss. You adjust them and it's OK again. I let it slide. Only $3,200 into the bike anyhow. If they wanted you to do it constantly they'd have made it a little easier to do. Had a Toyota with the same bucket and shim foolishness, the manual said to adjust every 30,000 mi. Talked to the mechanic and he said he'd never heard of adjusting Toyota valves. Seems like something you'd do after a rebuild. My 2¢ worth.
 

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I talked w/the head mechanic at the dealer and he told me he's never seen one that needed adjustment. I waited till about 20 k mi. and they were on spec. I probably will have em checked again around 45k. I now have 34k on it and it goes like a raped ape. Especially w/the power commander on it.
 

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no two bikes are alike and parts wear out differently on all of them.

I did my first valve check after the 50k miles and they were still within spec.
I will probably do it again at the 75-80k miles mark.

I think you would be safe to wait till the 25-30k miles before checking the valves,
but don't listen to me, do what your gut tells you.... and what is best for your ride.

good luck....
 

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I must admit, I'm a bit baffelled by this whole valve clearance thing. It seems the least followed OEM recommendation Suzuki puts out.

We all change our oil like clockwork. Belts and rollers on my 400 every 20k or less, religiously. We're generally pretty good about filters and the spark plugs. But valve clearance... That's all over the board it seems. And the ones who do the check almost always say they were in spec, or at least very close.

To date, I've only read ONE actual problem on this board, Quantum's 400 customer that were too tight and burned up the engine.

We're an experienced group of riders here. Anyone have any real consequences with valve clearance problems? On any bike you've owned? Ever?

Of the hundreds of owners I've known and bikes they've owned over my life time, I just have never heard of any one having an actual problem. Maybe I'm just lucky. But I'd be interesting to hear what the board has to offer.
 

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It's costly, in time or in money, but this is something you don't want to ignore. Maintenance pays and valves out of adjustment can lead to burned valves and even a dropped valve and engine destruction.

Which would make the scoot a total loss.

Even given the deep discounts Burgmans are offered today, there's no sense in risking a $7000-plus investment.
 

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It's costly, in time or in money, but this is something you don't want to ignore. Maintenance pays and valves out of adjustment can lead to burned valves and even a dropped valve and engine destruction.

Which would make the scoot a total loss.

Even given the deep discounts Burgmans are offered today, there's no sense in risking a $7000-plus investment.
Understood and a good point.

But both my bikes are worth $3k total. No one wants a 400 scooter with 42k on the clock and my 650 has plastic damage. So is it worth $600 to get valve checks on both? My loss wouldn't be that great on either bike, and I have a back up bike should one go south.

These maintenance expenditures vs bike value start to get really questionable when your bike is not that valuable on the open market. Especially when very few people ever experience real problems with the item being checked.

Wouldn't it be more prudent to take that $600, invest it, and create a fund for the bikes eventual replacement? There is a lot of potential expenditures on a 10 year old bike. Good money after bad, comes to mind

I love my bikes and will keep up the consumables (oil , tires, belts, etc). But At some point, one must just say, F it. Ride it till it dies.
 

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How much will it cost you if a valve fails on the road? Say, locking up the rear wheel and dumping you? Or just on a longer trip...all of a sudden, you're on the hook for a tow, a cab rescue, a hotel room and a flight or bus home?

Because it won't fail in your garage. It will fail at speed when hot; and that means it can risk your LIFE.

If the $600 is an issue...get a manual, take several weekends and learn how to do it. But owning a bike does require investment.
 

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Of course if you learn to do it yourself it cost almost nothing. For the 650 just the cost of a bottle of antifreeze and possibly a new valve cover gasket. On the 400 just the gasket.
 

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How much does it cost when a person without training, proper tools or even a place to perform said service screws up on the job and has to have the bike towed and pay a mechanic to fix the screw up? I live on the side of a hill, I literally don't even have a level driveway to perform any major maintenance, or a garage for that matter.

Or even worse, I could easily mess up the job, think I got it right and put myself at riding peril as well. Who's to say, it would have been better left alone?

Have you known anyone or even heard of anyone locking up the rear tire and dying from a valve clearance issue? That is akin to my original question. Perhaps we, as a group could share some real-world, anecdotal evidence on the subject, instead of fear-mongering possibilities, we could learn something useful.
 
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Have you known anyone or even heard of anyone locking up the rear tire and dying from a valve clearance issue? That is akin to my original question. Perhaps we, as a group could share some real-world, anecdotal evidence on the subject, instead of fear-mongering possibilities, we could learn something useful.
If a valve "drops" - breaks off at the stem where it is burned and falls into the cylinder - it will lock up the engine. IMMEDIATELY.

That will lock up the rear wheel. Years ago, when air-cooled cycle engines were universal, an overheating would frequently produce an engine seizure, lock up the rear wheel and dump the rider. New riders were trained to go for the clutch in an emergency.

On a Burgman you HAVE no clutch. How long the transmission would remain locked up with the engine suddenly arrested, is anyone's guess...I wouldn't want to be the person to try it.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
What could possibly happen if the valves were not checked regularly still appears to be extremely unlikely from ever happening.

The question was asked if this had ever happened to anyone with their 650 Burgman and, for the time being anyway, it appears that it has not.

I am not destitute by any means, but spending a few hundred dollars on something that does not have to be done seems questionable.

After you buy your bike, the dealer makes no money off of you ever again unless you are back in there for work done to it. Suzuki and all of the other big manufacturers want to keep their dealers happy by having you bring your bike back into them for general maintenance- whether it needs it or not.

When a shop manager tells me that he has never seen a Burgman with a wrecked engine due to never getting the valves checked I can only praise him for being honest.

Besides, it would be my luck to finally pony up and get the valves all checked at 50K only to have the CVT fail at 51K.
 

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Your bike, your money.

But when things go wrong on two wheels, it is MUCH more serious than on four. I don't know what the likelihood is you'll have a dropped valve. But you spent money on that machine; if you choose not to take care of it...I would suggest that is not a wise or prudent course.

You could make the same argument for not changing the oil. But eventually, you pay...neglect always costs, and the price is never clear until after the fact. Bald tires, an engine failure at speed...light out, no helmet (costs too much, and anyway I don't LIKE those things!)...all have future costs to be set only by Chance.
 
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