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Old 28 Sep 2011
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XR250 Tornado valve clearance check... help

Hello, I'm hoping to find advice/help for checking the valve clearances on my Tornado 250. I've got the feeler gauges ready to go, and I think it's an easy procedure. But I've never done it, and I can't find any information... except I think the clearances should be:

intake .12mm
exhaust .14mm (or .16mm?)

The "certified Honda mechanic" (at a brand new dealership where I live in SE mexico) says he'll just "listen to the engine". I talked to him about using feeler gauges to check the valve clearances and he looked at me like I'm nuts. I think he doesn't want to, or maybe doesn't know how to check the valve clearances properly.

I'd do it myself if I could find any information on how to do it. Any help is appreciated, thanks!

Steven

ps- my tornado has 18.000 km and runs pretty good. The valves have never been checked.
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Old 28 Sep 2011
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Hi Steven,

The Tornado has the same basic engine as the XR250 in the US. It is much easier to describe in pictures so I will point you to a pictorial essay on XR250 valve adjustment:

The Flight of the Platypus: Valve Adjustment

The main difficulties I had the first time I adjusted my XR250 is figuring out where top dead center is on the compression stroke, and getting the feeler gauges to fit into the inspection holes. While there are special made feeler gauges for the XR that are pre-bent, you can bend any feeler gauge to a 90 degree angle to fit in the confined space by folding and creasing it.

I can sympathize the difficulty of finding "espesores de calibre" (thickness gauge) in Mexico. I lost my feeler gauges years ago on a long trip to southern Mexico and ended up using a 100 peso note for the intake and a folded over note for the exhaust on my old beemer. Not recommended but it was okay at the time. This was years ago. Maybe they have feeler gauges in the bigger
Repuestos de motos (motorcycle parts store) these days.

Checking the pdf manual for your bike at:

http://doc.razorscript.com/moto/hond...ers_manual.pdf

it lists the valve clearances as .005 inch intake, .006 inch exhaust. That translates to .12 mm intake .15 mm exhaust in Mexican metric feeler gauge talk. So your above numbers are correct. The gauges you will be using are paper thin. If the tolerance is adjusted too loose, your bike will clatter like an old sewing machine. But it is better to err on the side of too loose than too tight. It sometimes takes a few tries to get the feeler gauge to glide through with just a little resistance since it tightens up slightly when you tighten down the locking nut.

It is not hard to do if you take your time. I wouldn't totally discount the Mexican mechanics ability to adjust by sound if he has a good feel for Honda Tornados. It's always better to do these things yourself and make sure it gets done right though. No better time to start than now.

Best luck!
John Downs
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Old 28 Sep 2011
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thanks John... big help! I've got two sets of virgin feeler gauges ready to be broken in, a flat set and a bent set. I've just been waiting for a good tutorial, so this is great.

Steven
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Old 28 Sep 2011
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In case it helps, a very good video of valve clearance adjustment for a bigger sister: Honda XR650L Valve Clearance Verification & Adjustment

Esteban
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