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this should be an easy one for you experts. the bike runs terrible, so I'm trying to do the valves for the first time but I don't understand how to find TDC using the flywheel.



2001 TW btw.



I looked at the sticky thread for the XT225, but the TW has no such grooves so they're obviously a little different.



the manual I downloaded says to line up the " T " mark, but I don't see one of those either. I rotated it several times and the only marks I see are " |---| " and " | " are one of those TDC?



another thing I don't understand, it says to make sure it's on the compression stroke. how do you tell??



please try to explain it as simply as possible, i'm not retarded but I am very novice at this maintenance stuff so I need a very simple step by step explanation and I'll have it down! I understand the adjustment part so that shouldn't be a problem, I just need somebody to help me with TDC so I don't throw the adjustment off.
 

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The last line is TDC and you will know if it's on the compression stroke by feeling the rocker arms, they should have a little play where you put the feeler gauge. If one of the valves is very tight or open then one more full revolution will put you in the right place.



Edit. Sorry the LAST line.
 

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As mentioned, the single " | " is TDC. Since you are planning to adjust the valves, you're going to need to remove the valve covers so this is what I do...

Put a socket on the crankcase bolt and turn the engine COUNTER CLOCKWISE. While turning, you will see the valves opening and closing for their respective strokes.

Watch the INTAKE valve (closest to the carburetor)...as it opens, this is the beginning of the intake stroke. Then, as you continue to turn the engine it will close and start compressing...now is the time to watch for the TDC mark, but be warned that it is VERY easy to overshoot it, with the buildup of compression, so it is best to remove the sparkplug before doing this.

If you go past slightly, it is OK to turn the engine clockwise to correct.
 

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As mentioned, the single " | " is TDC. Since you are planning to adjust the valves, you're going to need to remove the valve covers so this is what I do...

Put a socket on the crankcase bolt and turn the engine COUNTER CLOCKWISE. While turning, you will see the valves opening and closing for their respective strokes.

Watch the INTAKE valve (closest to the carburetor)...as it opens, this is the beginning of the intake stroke. Then, as you continue to turn the engine it will close and start compressing...now is the time to watch for the TDC mark, but be warned that it is VERY easy to overshoot it, with the buildup of compression, so it is best to remove the sparkplug before doing this.

If you go past slightly, it is OK to turn the engine clockwise to correct.


+1 also, I use a straw or something soft to poke down where the sparkplug is and feel for the piston and make sure that its reached its full "stroke"

It helps to use a flash light to look in at the crankcase, there is no actual "T" stamped inside it is more a T formation inside the case. Kind of hard to explain but if you look in you will see what im talking about. Use that to line up the lines.



Also, it is good practice to just rotate the crank and identify all 4-strokes. Through repeating this you learn pretty fast how to bring it to TDC.



Intake, compression, power, exhaust



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8cXXjsRg70
 

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Don't necessarily rely on the marks... Just adjusted my valves and 'by the book' it left me with an AWFUL rattle. Throw a popsicle stick, dowel rod or pencil into they sparkplug hole and check it for yourself. My actual TDC is just to the right of the "|T" - so much for following the manual.
 
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