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 C14 Engine Vibration - What to check? 
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Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 3:48 pm
Posts: 40
Hi folks,

Hoping to tap the experience of all you ZX14/ZX14R engine guys...

I have some vibration in my C14 engine.
2010 with only about 11k miles on it.
Starts around 4000 RPM, and gets noticeably worse at 5000 RPM and above.
There's no loss of power, and it's not a misfire...it's just vibrating.

I've had a dozen Kawasaki's over the years, so I'm familiar with the typical handlebar 'buzziness', and this is not the same.
It's more of a 'shake' than a high frequency vibration like bar buzziness.

Seems worse in the higher gears...5th-up, and is pretty bad at 5k RPM and above in 5th gear.
Bike still pulls hard...no problems with power.

It is not the tire/wheels. Brand new tires on, freshly balanced, and the wheel bearings feel fine.
I've run the bike up to 110-120 MPH, and if I pull the clutch in, it rolls along smooth as glass.

Any suggestions, tips, or advice on what to check or look into?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Rem :thumbs:

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Sat Apr 19, 2014 4:52 pm
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Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 3:34 am
Posts: 77
Location: New Brunswick Canada
Did it just start after the tire change? Something out of alignment in shaft drive maybe?

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Sat Apr 19, 2014 5:04 pm
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Zx996 wrote:
Did it just start after the tire change? Something out of alignment in shaft drive maybe?


No, it was doing it before the tire change. I can pull the clutch in at 110-120 MPH and the bike rolls as smooth as glass.

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Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:32 pm
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Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 3:34 am
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Location: New Brunswick Canada
Its those damn nova Scotia roads,make anything vibrate lol. No I have no idea then.

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Sat Apr 19, 2014 9:24 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:13 pm
Posts: 613
Location: Kentucky
Hi Cory.......

I posted this for "nando" on the COG forum a while back. If you think you are getting excessive vibration to your bars or anywhere else and you think it is from the engine then that is the place to start. First the balancers. Then the motor mount torque procedure. It is very important on a monocoque frame to torque the engine mount bolts exactly the way the service manual states....and in the proper order. I think if you do both of these "by the book" you will at least be at the best starting point for minimizing vibration.

By the way I am eagerly waiting your findings on using the 14R air filter..... :bigthumb:

Here is that post copied from the COG thread..... 8-)




nando, please take your bike to a reputable technician ( or do yourself if you feel comfortable ) and have this procedure performed. I think it will cure what ails you.... :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
I don't know how to post this page so you can see the illustrations.......maybe someone can help... :D

Section 9 page 33 of the ZG1400 Service Manual.


Charles




Balancer Adjustment
•Remove:
Right Rear Middle Fairing (see Middle Fairing Removal
in the Frame chapter)
NOTE
○First, adjust the front balancer [A], next the rear balancer
.
•Start the engine and warm it up thoroughly.
•Adjust the balancer gear backlash with the engine idling.
The amount of backlash can be changed by turning the
balancer shaft which has eccentric journals.
○Start the engine and let it idle.
○Loosen the clamp bolt [C] and turn the balancer shaft
[D] clockwise [E] until the balancer gear makes a whining
sound.
○Turn the shaft counter-clockwise [F] until the balancer
gear whining sound disappears and tighten the clamp
bolt.
Torque - Balancer Shaft Clamp Bolt: 9.8 N·m (1.0 kgf·m, 98
in·lb)

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 5:36 pm
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Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 3:48 pm
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Hiya Warbird!

No good news on the ZX14R air filter unfortunately. I just tried it today. It fits in the bike's frame (airbox), but it didn't fit well enough for me. There was a little bit of play in it (approx. 1/8"), and there's nothing to really hold it in place properly. It slides in, and likely wouldn't move...but the loose fit and the fact that there's nothing on the back end to hold it place was enough for me to not do it.

I wonder if there is a more defined "slot" in the ZX14R frame for the filter to stay in place? I have no idea.

Ok, on to the vibration...

This isn't the typical handlebar buzziness that I think most people complain about. I'm getting more of what I'd call an engine shake...it's more of a thumpy vibration. Bar buzz I can take, but this vibration is not cool. This isn't going to go away with heavy bar ends or softer grips.

I checked, loosened, and re-torqued the two rear engine mounts, and they didn't make any difference. I will go through the full sequence and do them all this week. I still have my doubts that the engine bolt torque adjustment will cure this, but as with everything else, I will try it.

I was wondering about the counter balancer adjustments....but haven't been able to find much info where this adjustment has anything to do with vibration. The external adjustment just adjusts the gear backlash no? I will try it also, but I haven't really found any reports where adjusting them cured vibration issues. I found a thread where a guy said that his balancers were installed out of phase at the factory....that's troubling. I wish there was a way to check them without splitting the cases. This makes me sad...lol.

In looking around today, I did find that the throttlebody holder boot screws were only finger tight. I tightened them and the intake stacks, and no dice...still vibrates.

Going to pull the valve cover next...check valves and change plugs, see what I find. I expect nothing.

I hooked up the KDS and dropped the individual injectors and coils with the bike running, and they all seem ok. Bike still has all it's wonderful power, but you can't even ride it at 5000 RPM in 5th.

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 5:52 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:13 pm
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Location: Kentucky
Sounds frustrating for sure. If you do both of those procedure's by the book then at least they will be eliminated as possible causes for the vibration. How about the clutch area for an idea? Basket, plates, gear????? :dunno:

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:05 pm
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Warbird wrote:
Sounds frustrating for sure. If you do both of those procedure's by the book then at least they will be eliminated as possible causes for the vibration. How about the clutch area for an idea? Basket, plates, gear????? :dunno:


Hey man, I'm wide open to ideas and suggestions!!

I've never touched a clutch before....would it cause vibrations like this?

What's the best way to check it? Rev the engine with clutch pulled?

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:11 pm
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PS: I looked down the throttlebodies at the intake valves today, and they are carboned up pretty badly. Most of them are black with crust. Well, all but two are black...one is almost shiney clean, and one has a little bit on it...not sure if that means anything or not.

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:17 pm
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Rembrant wrote:
PS: I looked down the throttlebodies at the intake valves today, and they are carboned up pretty badly. Most of them are black with crust. Well, all but two are black...one is almost shiney clean, and one has a little bit on it...not sure if that means anything or not.
That will make a motor run bad , Can cause vibrations because of poor fueling .. Try more cleaner like Brocks sells .. The power charger he using is some nasty stuff and will clean that carbon off the valves ..


Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:26 pm
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SmokinZX14 wrote:
That will make a motor run bad , Can cause vibrations because of poor fueling .. Try more cleaner like Brocks sells .. The power charger he using is some nasty stuff and will clean that carbon off the valves ..


Ok, I'll contact Brock and see if I can get some. I'm in Canada, so shipping may be an issue. We don't have access to all of the products you guys have in the states.

Maybe the bugger just needs to be cleaned out. The tops of those valves are pretty crusty...well, most of them are.

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:31 pm
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Location: Kentucky
Send it to Lee for a test and tune night......it will get cleaned out for sure........ :vroom: :bigthumb:

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 7:25 pm
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Warbird wrote:
Send it to Lee for a test and tune night......it will get cleaned out for sure........ :vroom: :bigthumb:


Haha...well, I ran her pretty hard yesterday with the Gumout 'Regane' injector cleaner in it, and burned through a whole tank in 135 miles...lol.

I'll see if I can get some of that nasty stuff to clean it out better. A few of those intake valves are really covered in a black carbon crust.

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Sun Apr 20, 2014 7:34 pm
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