Author Topic: Top end rebuild, do I replace the camchain?  (Read 178 times)

Offline SteveW

  • SOHC Expert
  • Posts: 364
    • View Profile
Top end rebuild, do I replace the camchain?
« on: October 27, 2020, 03:14:42 PM »
My 550 runs and rides pretty good, no obvious knocks or rattles or smoke.

I'm going to rebuild the top end over the winter simply because I have a few oil leaks coming from between the barrels and the head.

I'll do the usual things but just wondered if its worth changing the cam chain while its apart?

Bike has done 16K miles, obviously I don't know how well its been looked after over its life, I've done about 1500 miles in the last couple of years on it without any problems.
1974 CB550 K0
2000 CBR929RR Fireblade
1966 Lambretta LI150 Series 3
1981 RD350LC
1972 Raleigh Chopper
1974 Raleigh Tomahawk
2011 Henry Hoover

Offline Bryanj

  • Grogu
  • *
  • Posts: 7519
    • View Profile
Re: Top end rebuild, do I replace the camchain?
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2020, 07:46:24 PM »
When you lift the cam cover see it the chain will "lift" off the cam wheel when tensioned and if possible check how much more movement left on tensioner.
If minimal lift and lots of tensioner movement left i would leave it, i know i will get shouted at but i dont like joining cam chains without a proper soft link(500 twin will fit) and the proper tool for riveting which costs, otherwise you have to split cases and get into a whole bigger job

Offline K2-K6

  • SOHC Jedi
  • Posts: 3179
    • View Profile
Re: Top end rebuild, do I replace the camchain?
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2020, 07:56:44 PM »
Ordinarily the cam chain "should" be ok at that mileage.  But worth inspecting it when you lift the rocker cover for condition, it should be tight still on the sprocket (not be able to significantly lift links away in the centre) and with the adjuster able to exert gentle pressure to prevent slack. Realistically it should be more than capable of twice that distance without a problem. If it meets inspection I'd be confident it's not going to be a problem.

Consideration if you want to change it is that it's endless,  so crankcase split and crankshaft out to swap. I know there's some you can join in situ but although I'm quite happy to join and hand rivet most chains,  I chicken out for cam chains unless there's no option.

In addition to that,  it's the primary chain that's ordinarily more vulnerable to premature wear,  so if you split the cases you'd plan that as well.
Worthwhile pulling the sump to assess the primary as it'll more or less dictate if more in depth work is sensible.

Really then, inspect the chains and consider from there.

Offline K2-K6

  • SOHC Jedi
  • Posts: 3179
    • View Profile
Re: Top end rebuild, do I replace the camchain?
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2020, 07:58:16 PM »
Oops, I crossed over with Bryan there as I was typing.

At least you've two consensus in the same direction though.

Offline SteveW

  • SOHC Expert
  • Posts: 364
    • View Profile
Re: Top end rebuild, do I replace the camchain?
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2020, 08:04:38 PM »
Thanks guys 😊
1974 CB550 K0
2000 CBR929RR Fireblade
1966 Lambretta LI150 Series 3
1981 RD350LC
1972 Raleigh Chopper
1974 Raleigh Tomahawk
2011 Henry Hoover

 

SimplePortal 2.3.5 © 2008-2012, SimplePortal