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Discussion Starter #1
Bought a 2007 with 12k miles and a base gasket leak. After much contemplation, I've decided I'm too broke to go to a mechanic and I've got no choice but to take it head on myself! I've got little to no mechanical experience but I think if I take my time and ask questions when I'm confused, I should be ok. I'll be replacing my stock sprockets with 14/47 and putting in an x-ring chain as well. Is there any other recommended maintenance, or parts to replace while I've got the engine disassembled?

Thanks guys!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
You can try to retighten the headbolts to specified torque before disassembling.
I may fix your leak.
Do you happen to know the torque specs for the head bolts? also: Is it recommended to back off the bolts before retorquing? Or torque them to spec from where they’re currently sitting. I read you can’t get an accurate torque reading unless u loosen them first, is this true?
 

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At 12000 miles you should consider a new cam chain and slipper. (if you take it apart for the gasket)
 

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Back 'em off a bit (diagonaly), then re-torque (again, diagonaly)

This releases the tension lock between the metals that can give you a false torque reading ....
 

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If it were me, I would take the bolt completely out and clean the underside of the head of the bolt, the washer, and the top of the head. Lube it, put it back in, and re torque it. I would do it one at a time and when done I would go back and re torque the bolts again. It won't take long.

When you re torque the bolts, if you see oil squishing out of the base gasket chances are excellent you have solved the leaking problem. If you don't see oil squishing out it still might work, about a 50/50 chance.

Report back what happens so that we all may learn from your experience.
 

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Re-torquing often helps, the root cause of the problem is uneven machining between the case halves. If you remove the jug you'll probably be able to feel a slight ridge where the cases meet. My first TW had a slight leak, I sanded the ridge down when I had the jug off to put a wiseco piston in, along with a new gasket and the problem vanished. My second one did not have this problem, and when I had the jug off the halves lined up almost perfectly. I could feel the very slightest little ridge with my fingernail but it was much smaller than the first one. Seems like mostly luck of the draw, variances in manufacturing, of if your bike was assembled after the friday afternoon sake break at the factory.
 
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