This weekend I dropped the motor out of my Kawasaki ZG1200 Voyager. I bought the bike a few years back and had been listening to a rattling noise coming from the engine since I bought it. Well after many hours on the AVA forum asking questions about this noise and checking this and that and then spending another few hours consulting the forum Voyager guru over the phone the consensus of the cause of the rattle was a broken starter chain tensioner. So yanked the motor, split the case with fingers crossed and low and behold the tensioner truly had taken a dump. A small actuator spring was sticking out the top of the tensioner. But wait one minute, not so fast, a couple minutes of fiddle f*ckin with the tensioner and it works perfect. So I asked myself, "Self should I reuse this old tensioner that works perfectly now that I have fiddle f*cked it back together and save $100 or should I pop for a brand new one?" Well the $100 was quickly spent after just one thought of contemplating another case splitting weekend. So 3 days and $220 later my problem will be fixed for good. Savings for doing this myself, about $1500+. Anyway there aren't many mechanics out there that will touch a Voyager and few Kawasaki shops that have many mechanics that have ever touched one either. I can always count on myself to do the work and to do it correctly, not taking shortcuts to save a few bucks. OK alright already, I did take one shortcut. Made a tool to remove the flywheel because I'm to cheap to buy a impact wrench. Well my birthday is coming up soon so I will have something on the list for my wife to buy. She actually gave me some money for Christmas to do this repair so I guess I will have to consider keeping her around for a while.
Check the cam chain tensioner on that Voyager too. My Vulcan 750 has 2 cam chain tensioners, and both had started to fail by 15,000 miles. I replaced them with new oem parts, which only lasted 10,000 miles. Then I replaced them with aftermarket manual tensioners, the bike now has 89,000 miles on it, no more problems. Kawasaki made that bike for 22 years, and never did fix the problem, so a lot of engines failed due to broken cam chains.
I didn't feel the quakes down in North County. Or maybe I'm just too used to the subway being underfoot back East.
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