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Started my first valve job!


waylap

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Well it's going much smoother and easier than I thought. Thanks to FLARS and Richard D with the technical support before I jumped in.

I have a couple questions that have popped up as I go along. Brian was really nice and gave me his plastic tool that's used to pull off the stick coil (I stepped on mine). He said he found it to be useless and now uses an aluminum one. I found it to be exceptionally useless.

Q? #1 Can I just remove the stick coil by gently pushing it out from the rear of the cylinder head once it's removed?

 

Q? #2. Should I be replacing all 4 spark plugs while I have such good access to them right now? After all- the bike was running really rough and I want to make sure after all this that it's going to be running real sweet.

 

Q? #3. How would I know if one or both of my stick coils needs replaced and why wouldn't I just do that anyway as PM on a bike approaching 5 years old? Are they costly?

Thanks for your continued help on my quest to keep more money for riding and less for the mechanic!

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First finish the tune up with all new plugs and see how the bike runs. I think you'll find the best price on parts from BMW of Chicago. http://www.chicagobmwmotorcycle.com/store/ You must call with your order and then ask when he will be shipping them. Then call again on the day you were told to follow up. They are very busy and need the follow up calls. I never had trouble pulling my stick coils with the plastic tool. http://www.ascycles.com/Illustrated_catalog/R1150RT/catalog_frameset.html This will help if you find your part #'s to give when you call. Someone else will have to chime in on how to tell if you need a stick coil. Make sure you have no vacuum leaks. Cracked or loose hoses.

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Q? #1 Can I just remove the stick coil by gently pushing it out from the rear of the cylinder head once it's removed?

A#1. No. - I think you mean rocker cover. One surefire method I use to remove the stick coil is to make a loop with some cord. Carefully disconnect the electrical connector from the stick coils. Slide the loop along where the electrical connector plugged in. MAKE SURE it is as close to the coil as possible. Then smoothly pull the coil out of its housing. This method is cheap and with care, will do no damage. (it also takes up no room in your tool roll & you can throw your broken plastic one away!).

 

Q? #2. Should I be replacing all 4 spark plugs while I have such good access to them right now? After all- the bike was running really rough and I want to make sure after all this that it's going to be running real sweet.

 

A#2. It depends on what mileage they have done, what state you find them in and if you want to budget to replace them. They are relatively cheap, so it won't matter if you do. If your bike had problems before, then this is a very easy thing to do to rule out one problem. (I don't generally replace mine though!).

 

Q? #3. How would I know if one or both of my stick coils needs replaced and why wouldn't I just do that anyway as PM on a bike approaching 5 years old? Are they costly?

A#3. If your bike ran OK before, then you WON'T need to replace them. They are not a service item. You would generally notice your engine running badly under load with a stick coil gone bad. In the UK they cost about £55 each, so this would indeed be an expensive thing to replace. Their failure does not seem to be mileage related. (unfortunately they are one of the weaker reliability items on the twin spark model).

 

Hope this helps.

 

Andy

 

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To test the stick coil:

With the bike warmed up and idling reach under one side and remove the secondary spark plug wire. If there no change in the way it is running, it means that that main plug (stick coil) is working good and it's not that coil. If the idle changes (stumbles or bogs down) it means that that cylinder is only running on the secondary plug and the main (stick) coil is not firing properly. If the idle doesn't change then try the other side. The coils are anywhere from 88-150 each, depending on where you buy them.

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Waylap -

 

I believe you said it was running poorly before you started the job? If it's been a while - 12-20K miles, it's pretty cheap to pop some new autolites (uh-oh, here comes the spark plug debate!) in while you're working on it. Also serves to eliminate a bad plug as possible cause of poor runnability.

 

If, after you do the valve adjust and TBS (don't forget to pull out the BigBrassScrews and clean the black gunk off) it still runs poorly, just try (while the bike's idling) pulling off one coil stick, then the other. See if that makes a difference in how it sounds.

 

Also - check to be sure that the connection between coil wire and stick is good and tight -- I actually had a broken connector, which made for an intermittent bad ride.

 

And like already suggested, be sure all your vacuum lines are tight, no leaks.

 

Let us know how it goes!

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I think I found it on a search. After you do the TBS. Pull the # 5 fuse, turn the key on and open the throttle fully twice to re-set the Motronic.

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I believe that should be pull the fuse for the Motronic for 5 minutes, replace the fuse, then turn key on and twist throttle full open to close twice.

 

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