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Mark C

Camhead vs Hexhead

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Mark C

Is the camhead that much of an increase in torque worth the dual cams and shims, requiring dealer visits more frequent?

Mark

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Bernie

Why does a CamHead require more frequent dealer visits?

CamHeads burn almost no oil and they hardly ever have to have any of the shims changed.

I know several CamHeads that never had to have the valves adjusted.

If you can maintain a HexHead or OilHead, you can service a CamHead and have extra time on your hands.

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DaveCinNO

I have 60k on my '13 RT and the valves have yet to be adjusted. They're at the upper limit so last time I checked them I documented the semi-sphere sizes and will order the next size up for each one prior to my next service. It's actually easier and more accurate to change the semi-sphere than to adjust rocker arm nuts imho.

 

 

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6speedTi

My 2012 had two valves adjusted. I believe once the engine fully breaks in the valve clearances settle in. I'm sure there are exceptions since we are dealing with a machine.

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Dave_in_TX

During 106k miles of ownership, my 2011 camhead only required taht two or three shims be replaced (I can't remember exactly). Those were on valves that were already on the loose side of spec when I got the bike at 1800 miles.Replacing a shim is easier than adjusting clearance on a hexhead.

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Mark C

Problem is , when you are hours away from a dealer, and you need parts to finish the adjustment.

I always did screw adjusters in seconds with no parts needed.

Going to the dealer is a PIA and I avoid at all costs.

I suppose if you let the shop do all your work and they are around the corner it is different.

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dirtrider
Problem is , when you are hours away from a dealer, and you need parts to finish the adjustment.

I always did screw adjusters in seconds with no parts needed.

Going to the dealer is a PIA and I avoid at all costs.

I suppose if you let the shop do all your work and they are around the corner it is different.

 

Morning Mark

 

You are micro focusing on a very very small part of owning a camhead bike.

 

I can understand not wanting to venture out to your dealer but the valve thing is just not a big deal (at all).

 

First valve adjustment just take a couple of extra minutes to record the valve lash on all valves & mike the current semi-sphere's along with noting their location. (make a chart)

 

If any current valve lash settings are close to the limit one way or the other then order (online) the next size semi-sphere sized for the direction that particular valve is heading BEFORE the next scheduled valve adjustment.

 

Seldom do they change & on the very few that ever do they are pretty predictable on where they are heading so just buy those semi-sphere's in advance.

 

In the long term ownership I think that you will find the camhead valve adjustment MUCH easier & more predictable than messing with those darn elephants feet.

 

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Pappy35
...They're at the upper limit so last time I checked them I documented the semi-sphere sizes and will order the next size up for each one prior to my next service.

When I got my ride in April I checked the clearances and logged them but it did not occur to me to check and record the installed shim sizes. Brilliant idea! I can be clever at times but sometimes the little things completely escape me.

 

Going to the dealer is a PIA and I avoid at all costs. I suppose if you let the shop do all your work and they are around the corner it is different.

I do all my own work and have yet to need to go to the dealer for anything beyond lusting after a new machine and BMW club meetings.

 

You are blowing this out of proportion. Yes, you are correct that it is easier to adjust screw-type adjusters and doesn't require any consumables but the Camhead shim change is DEAD SIMPLE and hardly ever needs to be changed. In contrast, the Wetheads need to have their cams removed (also pretty simple) to adjust.

 

When I do the 12k service next month I'll pop the followers off and document what's installed. Before doing that I'll order a dozen or so of the C-clips that retain the followers (they are dirt-cheap and one-time use only). I assume no adjustment will be required but if needed I'll order the shims from MaxBMW and wait two days for them to bring it right to my door.

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Mark C

Thanks guys.

Interesting shares.

l

Last year I bought another couple of hexhead auction bikes from CHP. One was said to have a blown motor with 100k. They usually don't retire a bike til 140-150k unless it's crashed.

I adjusted one tight intake valve and it started right up, been riding it ever since!

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Rogerl

Dirtrider has some very good points about the Cam Head. I am sure that the Cam Head design cuts down on the time necessary for the dealer to do a valve check and adjustment. I have to agree with Mark C about adjusting the valves on the HexHead. You can be as anal as you want to get them just perfect. You do not need to go to the dealer to buy and spheres that they usually do not carry anyway. I had one of the C clips come off and the cam follower on the upper exhaust fell of and the cam hit the end of the valve. I needed to replace the exhaust valve. Since then I and very gun shy about those C clips.

 

Just my 2 cents

 

Roger L

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MichiganBob

Good Evening,

 

I'm going to do my first check on my 2012 this winter. It seems that the biggest hassle will be removing everything to get to the shims. The DVD I bought is very straight forward. Should not be too much of a chore. I'll keep you posted if I garner any lesson's learned.

 

Bob

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Rogerl

Bob:

My advice is if you remove any of the C-Clips do not re-use them replace them with new. Expect that your local dealer will not have any of the clips or shims in stock and will have to order them. Also. the manual calls out a specific orientation for the C-Clips for some of the C-Clips. Make sure that the clips are in that orientation before you put the valve covers back on. Good luck with your valve check. It is not very difficult to do. Another word of advice, If they are in spec do not take things apart. Put the valve covers back on and go for a ride.

 

Just my 2 cents.

 

Roger L

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Paul Monk

I bought a 2009 R1200GS rather than a 2010 camhead GS just because I was afraid of the valve adjustment. My brother bought a 2013 RT (camhead) and has never had to do an adjustment. When my GS was totaled because of the Harvey flood, I bought a 2011 RT (camhead). I have checked the clearances and all valves are exactly in the middle of the limits. The camhead seems to be a little stronger and gets better fuel mileage but that may just be the difference between a GS and an RT. I will continue to monitor the valve clearances when I do the services and if I ever find one or more that is at the limits, I will bring it to my dealer for service.

No big deal, both are fine bikes.

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MichiganBob

Good evening. Thanks Roger L. If I recall,you learned the hard way about changing the clips. Seems worth the cost. I'm interested in the orientation. Are they different for each or is the opening all pointed down or different for each shim on the valve train?

 

Bob

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duckbubbles

The E clips are stamped out of sheet metal. If you look at them closely, you will notice that one side surface has a more rounded edge, while the other has a sharper edge. I have always been told that the sharper edge goes toward the outside. Make sure the clip is fully snapped on the shaft in the groove. I LOVED the adjustment system on my camhead and wish it would have continued with the wethead.

 

Frank

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MichiganBob

Interesting duckbubbles. I thought that orientation would have been the clip opening which does not make a lot of sense. Which side orientation is more understandable. Thanks.

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Rogerl

MichiganBob:

My manual says nothing about putting the sharper or rounded side towards the outside. My Haynes Manual states "secure the follower with a new E-Clip. Ensure that the open end of the E-Clip securing the upper exhaust cam follower faces the cylinder head". If you are looking at the cam follower the opening is at 7 or 8 on the clock face. When I replaced my E-Clips I can not guarantee that I had the open end facing correctly. That might of caused the E-Clip to come off. When I replaced the exhaust valve the E-Clip I put the E-Clip in the correct orientation.I think this orientation would keep the ring from possibly falling down or maybe the valve cover keeps it on. Why they only tell you to do this for the upper exhaust valve is a mystery to me. Maybe DirtRider knows.

 

 

Thanks

Roger L

Edited by Rogerl

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MichiganBob

Thanks Rogerl,

 

Holy Moly, the mystery deepens. Anyone else out there with an opinion on this?

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dirtrider
MichiganBob:

My manual says nothing about putting the sharper or rounded side towards the outside. My Haynes Manual states "secure the follower with a new E-Clip. Ensure that the open end of the E-Clip securing the upper exhaust cam follower faces the cylinder head". If you are looking at the cam follower the opening is at 7 or 8 on the clock face. When I replaced my E-Clips I can not guarantee that I had the open end facing correctly. That might of caused the E-Clip to come off. When I replaced the exhaust valve the E-Clip I put the E-Clip in the correct orientation.I think this orientation would keep the ring from possibly falling down or maybe the valve cover keeps it on. Why they only tell you to do this for the upper exhaust valve is a mystery to me. Maybe DirtRider knows.

 

 

Thanks

Roger L

 

Morning Roger

 

I don't know the answer but a guess on my part would be so there is no possibility of pushing one partially loose when using the cam alignment tool?

 

My BMW service manual neither mentions the exhaust E- clip install direction or requiring one side or the other facing out.

 

It does mention to replace the E-Clips when removed but most dealers don't do that as most don't even stock the darn things.

 

I seldom replace the E-clip but am very careful on how I remove & re-install them & IF one doesn't feel secure, or snap on with authority, I do replace that one.

 

It does pay to go back over the valve train before re-installing the valve cover to be sure that ALL the E-clips are snapped on/in ALL the way as it is sometimes possible to snap them on & have the center tab hang up on the shaft slot & not snap all the way into the notch.

 

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MichiganBob

Good morning all. I see a part number 16 07 110 932 872 called a Securing Clip-9PHR at $2.30 each. That sound like the real deal?

 

Bob

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freetime2247

I have four right at the limit now on my 2012RT with 31K. No adjustments yet. I'll check again at the next interval.

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lkchris

All the talk that dealers don't stock Camhead valve adjustment shims and clips seems ridiculous to me.  I'm sure mine does, although I've never needed any and consequently haven't checked.

 

They are regularly maintaining State Police and several local Police jurisdiction bikes.

 

They are not a combined make dealer and in fact are a combined BMW car/bike dealer so are not afflicted with "cheap" ... rather with winning customer service awards.

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dirtrider
11 minutes ago, lkchris said:

All the talk that dealers don't stock Camhead valve adjustment shims and clips seems ridiculous to me.  I'm sure mine does, although I've never needed any and consequently haven't checked.

 

They are regularly maintaining State Police and several local Police jurisdiction bikes.

 

They are not a combined make dealer and in fact are a combined BMW car/bike dealer so are not afflicted with "cheap" ... rather with winning customer service awards.

 

 

Morning Kent

 

It 'depends' on a persons definition of 'stocking', one of the dealers that I deal with doesn't STOCK (for over-counter sales)  a lot of the semi-spheres  but they do maintain a large assortment of them for service tec's to use. While I don't know it for a fact I presume that large assortment were removed from past bike's during valve adjustments. 

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Mark C

Yeah, that's what I used to do with Ducatis I serviced and got a large supply for my own. 

 When ever I asked a dealer to get me a specific one, larger than,  I had,  they would charge me for an extra  service department fee to find it cause the parts guy couldn't handle it! They considered it more than a parts sale.

Mark

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