Shims and valves and camchains, oh my

Blah, it’s 10:37am and I’m already bored with today. I’ve been on the phone all morning, trying to find a bike shop in town that stocks shims and valve cover gaskets, to no avail. I understand that shops keep their inventory low intentionally, but yeesh, gaskets and shims take up no room at all. Pout pout pout. Or perhaps they all know something I didn’t (but do now), which is that doing a valve adjustment on an SV is a huge pain in the ass.

Derek, he of recent Bandit 400 acquisition, came over yesterday to oversee the big mess I’d made of my bike — he owns a shop in Oklahoma City and generally Has A Clue about these sorts of things. I made a great impression right off the bat by immediately dropping one of the shims down into the bowels of the bike somewhere. Not into the engine, thank god, so thwapping around with the extendable magnetic pointer eventually found it. Can’t take me anywhere.

I’d already measured the valve clearances and found that my rear cylinder’s exhaust valves were too tight. I took off the camshafts, found the shim to note its measurement, blah blah. I was nervous about putting everything back together, though, so Derek walked me through doing that until the cams were back on and the timing was set, etc. Obviously, I have to take it apart again to actually fit the new shim, but now that I’ve done it once before, I’m not downing Xanax over it.

So, yeah. Now I just have to find a shim and some gaskets in stock. Oh, and the *&@^! Suzuki special tool for locking the cam chain tensioner adjuster thingamabob in place while I re-install it.

Yes, there’ll eventually be a write-up so that this whole rigamarole is explained clearly and concisely.

This entry was posted in SV650S, Wrenching. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Shims and valves and camchains, oh my

  1. Geoff says:

    I can relate to your frustration about trying to find a shop that stocks even BASIC parts. Trying to find a new chain, air filter or even a dang brake lever for a CBR929 in Redding is like drilling for oil on the moon! It just ain’t there!! Instead of referring to that long counter area of the local m/c shops as the “parts department”, I instead like to call it the “mail order department”.
    Hey, now that your well on your way to becoming a track day junkie, have you considered trying Thunderhill?

  2. Gene Cash says:

    Actually, you can’t really stock a million each-one-slightly-different bits&pieces. Do you stock for the more popular bikes? Those are usually the ones that people don’t do themselves.
    I get my parts at since I can’t be bothered to ride all the way over to the dealership, get financially raped, then ride back, then have to ride over again when the piece shows up. It would probably be different if it wasn’t 45 miles of nasty expressway.
    I’m usually lucky enough to be able to work at home when UPS is due to deliver a package.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *