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This thread is a work in progress and will document step-by-step my 1091cc motor build. The service manual provides excellent guidance on removing and disassembling the engine, but there are certain omissions and tips that I will share so that others can better tackle some difficult steps. I will also share any mistakes and blunders I make along the way so that others can avoid them.

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a professional mechanic or engine builder. I'm a physics teacher who enjoys working on bikes in my spare time. Given the amount of special tools required, it would be SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper to take your engine to a professional engine builder if you only care about the end result of having a 215+ rwhp engine.

Current plan for this build is as follows:
Millenium Tech. M-spec CNC head port w/ valve job​
Millenium Tech. +2mm overbore w/ Nikasil replating​
APE +2mm stroker w/ race balance and removal of balance gear​
APE Ti valve retainer/springs​
APE adjustable camshaft gears​
78mm JE 13.5 comp. pistons​
HRC transmission​
HRC camshafts​
HRC thermostat​
Carrillo H-beam rods (104.5mm)​
+1mm cylinder base shim plate​
EVR slipper clutch w/ APE Trac King plates​

Tentative sections
basic tear down to send off cylinder head, crankshaft, and cylinder block - complete​
crankshaft bearing selection - pending​
rod bearing selection - pending​
cylinder block installation - pending​
JE piston installation - pending​
Carrillo rod bolt "stretching" - pending​
bearing clearance verification - pending​
crankcase reassembly - pending​
compression ratio calculation - complete​
cylinder head reassembly - pending​
setting valve clearances - pending​
degreeing camshafts with adjustable gears (MANDATORY, IN/EX marks will be slightly off with this setup) - pending​
clutch upgrade - pending​
engine installation - pending​

Drain the coolant and oil before this process. It would be best to remove all the radiator hoses as well and plug up the orfices. I left them on and it ended up dripping every time I tilted or moved the engine. Either way, there's a lot of residual coolant and motor oil to drip when you least expect it, so keep some shop towels handy.

1-person removal of the engine is best done with the bike supported off the ground with an engine crane via straps through the ram air holes and a floor jack underneath. The front forks should be removed so that the engine can slide straight out the front of the bike in a controlled manner. I will share more pictures during the installation process.

With the final upper hanger bolt removed, it's necessary to lift the frame while moving the engine forward. I only used the engine crane to lift the frame up, because my floor jack is difficult to control on the way down, as I slid the floor jack forward out of the bike. I had this part snag on the frame and complicate the process, so I recommend removing this part marked with a star.
262102


I strongly recommend an engine crane if there is no one else to assist because the engine has a tendency to lean to one side and also use masking paper, towels, and tape to cover areas around engine mounts to prevent scratches.

With the engine removed and lifted onto my work bench, I disassembled and removed the cylinder head. This is fairly straightforward but you may run into issues with the camshaft holders. It is best to loosen them all 1/2 turn at a time, then take a nylon pry bar and pry up all around the holders. Take another 1/2 turn out, and pry again, etc. This is because if one side is lifted more than the opposite side, the alignment pins will get stuck and you will have to tighten down the side that is lifted more.

You do not "have" to disassemble the head to send in for porting, but I chose to do so because I intended to replace valve seals on my 12 year old bike with 30k miles. To protect the bucket walls from getting scratched by the valve spring compressor, cut a strip of plastic (from a plastic jug) and wedge that around the valve spring and retainer. The valve retainers are around 22mm wide and will "pop" when you first break loose the retainers so do not be alarmed if you hear a sharp snap as you tighten down the compressor. Be sure to use a folded sheet of paper to cushion the other side of the valve.
262103


Next, remove the side covers by prying on the tabs with nylon tools. Before prying any two surfaces apart on the engine, leave 3 bolts partly threaded in to prevent the cover from flying off unexpectedly. The stator side is magnetic, and I found it helpful to wedge some wood shims between the stator cover and crankcase as I pried around the cover. I had some difficulty with the clutch side cover, and ultimately removed it by using a pair of snap ring pliers to "spread" in the region marked with a star in the picture below.
262104


Removal of the flywheel and clutch components is very difficult due to the large amount of torque (100+ ft-lbs) to break loose the clutch nut and bolts on each side of the crankshaft. To remove the clutch, the Honda OEM tool is required ($30). Do not try to use the EBC tool, it is too short and will be difficult to use. Honda put a punch mark on the nut to keep it from coming loose so you must unstake it with a hammer and small flat blade screwdriver. I held the tool in place with a 1/2 breaker bar attached to my bench vise and strapped the engine down to my bench so it would not move and allow the tool to slip off. Alternatively, you could remove the clutch nut with the engine in frame and a 2x4 through the wheel/swingarm, but it was too late for me. Note that it is not possible to remove this nut by holding the crankshaft in place as I will show in the next step, because the clutch will slip before the nut breaks loose.
262105


The nut retaining the flywheel and starter clutch can be removed by holding the starter clutch in a vise with aluminum soft jaws. The manual says to use a flywheel holder tool but the tool shown in the manual has sharp teeth that will mar the starter clutch and flywheel, which is unacceptable to me. I tried to use a rubber coated flywheel holder, but it will slip/bend/break long before the bolt breaks loose. The setup that worked for me is shown below. Note that it is not possible to remove this nut with the engine in frame and 2x4 through the swing arm because the clutch will slip before the nut breaks loose. You could try using a pin spanner through the holes in the starter clutch, but you will have to somehow hold it in place while you break the nut loose.
262106


With the engine in this position, pull the flywheel off with an M18x1.5 tool. You must ensure that the puller tool allows for at least 4-5 threads of engagement or you may strip out the threads. In my case, the Motion Pro puller I purchased barely had 2 threads of engagement because of the large unthreaded portion. I had to turn this down on my lathe. You will put quite a bit of torque on this puller, so it's essential to ensure full thread engagement and grease the threads. The flywheel is seated on a taper, so you will hear a loud crack when the taper breaks loose.
262108


Removal of the clutch basket, various sensors, oil pan, oil pump, water pump, oil cooler, starter, camshaft chain guides, etc. is fairly straightforward and well documented in the manual. If the starter sticks, use a nylon pry bar to gently work it loose. Also, the crankshaft counterweight can obstruct the removal of the clutch basket. I marked this area with a star below. If this is the case, simply rotate the crankshaft until the counterweight is out of the way, then the clutch basket can be lifted slightly and removed. I prefer to cover the main shaft with some paper before removing the clutch basket to prevent marring the shaft surface.
262109


With the crankcase stripped of all parts, flip it upside down and prepare for a little oil to leak out. Before I did this, I wrapped the cylinder studs in paper to avoid scratching the pistons when they will be removed later. Do NOT remove the bolts/parts marked with a star. These hold the balance shaft and gear in place and will only be removed once the crank is separated. Also note there is a hidden bolt in the area marked with two stars.
262111


I spent 2 hours trying to figure out how to separate the crankcase without bending or damaging any parts. The large contact area for the sealant makes it difficult to do with nylon pry tools alone, and what I eventually worked out is to take one bolt and partly thread it in the position shown below and leave about 1/4 inch gap. Then, I used the soft rubber handle of my hammer to push down on the bolt and therefore separate the case. Leave a few other bolts partly threaded and pry around the perimeter with a nylon tool to break it free from all sides, then lift straight up and it will come off without issues. I had planned to use the engine crane to lift it off, but the case was very light and I had no trouble lifting it by hand.
262113


IMMEDIATELY examine the case you removed for missing crankshaft bearings that stuck to the crankshaft. Place all bearings back in the proper location and mark all the bearings 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and mark the adjacent metal on the case with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 as well. The bearings are NOT interchangeable and must be returned to their proper locations. In my case, one bearing shows signs of uneven wear, so I will order a full replacement set once my crank comes back. More on how to do this later! At this time, I removed the counterbalance gear. There is a washer on each side of the gear so be careful not to drop those and ding the crankcase.
262114


To remove the connecting rods, first place 2 cylinders at TDC (deep down from your perspective) and use a 10mm 12 point driver to loosen but not remove the connecting rod bolts. Do NOT use an impact wrench on the connecting rod bolts. Then rotate the crankshaft until the other 2 cylinders are at TDC and loosen those connecting rod bolts. Now rotate the crankshaft so that all 4 pistons are about even with each other. Remove all the connecting rod bolts and remove the connecting rod halves. The cover is a snug fit, so use a brass rod partly inserted through the bolt holes to gently rock the halves back and forth until they come off. Be careful not to mix up any bearings! Prior to removing the crank, place some paper under each connecting rod to prevent denting the lower crankcase when the rod falls.
262115


Take a rubber mallet, and gently tap upward on both ends of the crank to "un-stick" the crankshaft from the bearings. Then, with your shoulders directly over the crankcase, lift the crankshaft straight up. It is quite heavy so go very slowly and use your thumbs to push down on the crankcase as you initially lift the crank.
262116


Here is the crankshaft prior to packing and shipping off to APE for +2mm stroking. It will be welded and reground to retain the OEM bearing size. The large gear (*) that drives the crankshaft counterbalancer, normally designed to reduce secondary imbalances intrinsic to a 4-cylinder engine, will be removed and the stock counterbalancer will be replaced with a dummy shaft. You cannot simply install the original shaft without the counterbalancer weight because an oil hole will be exposed, so an alternative would be to weld up the hole on the counterbalancer shaft. However, the OEM shaft is steel and the dummy shaft is aluminum, which is much lighter.
262117


Prior to removing the pistons, wrap each connecting rod in paper so it does not mar up any part of the crankcase or cylinder block. Then, push each piston from the crankcase side so it comes out the side with the studs. Alternatively, since the cylinder block will be removed, the pistons can be taken out after the block is separated from the crank. I noticed a thick layer of carbon on the pistons. The valves also had a thick layer of carbon. I suspect that it is the crankcase breather allowing oil mist to enter the intake.
262118


Here is the cylinder block prior to shipping to Millenium Tech. for overbore and replating. Remove the 2 pins if any are stuck to the cylinder block. Even if you send your cylinder block to APE it will go to Millenium Tech. in the end so I opted to send it directly. However, I later realized that APE offers a $100 discount with a piston purchase so I will go that route next time. It's a bit dirty, but it will be blasted as part of the +2mm overbore process so should look much better when it returns.
262119


Removal of the transmission is poorly described in the manual. To remove the "larger" set of gears, gently pry both sides up at the same time until the rubber seal on the sprocket side breaks free. Lift each side slightly and pad the bearing edges with some paper to prevent it from sticking back down and slowly lift it straight up. The "smaller" set of gears is far more difficult, because it needs to be moved and tilted in a particular way. I have described this in the picture below on the left. The blue line shows the original position of the shaft. Prior to starting, place a plastic freezer bag over the shaft and gears to avoid marring. Move the shaft back until it clears the bearing on the other side, then tilt it as shown in the red line. Note how the red line is tilted, backed out, and offset in the picture. It's a very precise fit and has to be moved to exactly this position before it will clear the lower crankcase.
262120


It is not necessary to remove the remaining parts, so I will leave that. In the meantime, I am removing the remnants of gasket material. I tested various solvents in an inconspicuous area and found that ODORLESS MINERAL SPIRITS in addition to a small nylon scraper will melt the OEM gasket material right off with no damage to the painted surfaces of the engine. Put some mineral spirits on the mating surfaces and scrape all the gasket material off. Use a rag soaked in mineral spirits to remove any residue and the mating surfaces will be in pristine condition for reassembly!

That's all for now (3/14/2021). The turnaround for crankshaft stroking is 8-10 weeks and I have the Carrillo connecting rods, pistons, retainers, etc. on back-order as well. So I will follow up with updates as various parts arrive.

While waiting on parts, perhaps it's appropriate to explain a bit of theory behind a stroking a crankshaft. Increasing the stroke of a crankshaft decreases piston clearance (at TDC) and increases compression ratio. These factors must be compensated for by one of 2 options:
(a) shorter connecting rod (piston does not go up as much)​
(b) move entire cylinder block up with a shim (piston has more room to go up)​

Option A requires custom length Carrillo connecting rods ($$$). Option B requires a $38 aluminum spacer plate. I chose the second option so I could use standard length Carrillo rods (also compatible with stock pistons and overbore only builds).

To maintain the same compression ratio for a KNOWN piston/rod/crankshaft setup (i.e. JE piston kit designed to have 13.5 comp. with, stock thickness head gasket, stock cylinder base gasket, stock length connecting rods, stock stroke), the relationship between the amount a crankshaft is "stroked", compression ratio, and additional "cylinder height" must be known.
262132

Using two critical concepts, we can write the following equations:
at TDC: 1/2 the additional crankshaft stroke subtracts from the volume of the combustion chamber and the spacer (or shorter rod) adds to the volume of the combustion chamber​
at BDC: 1/2 the additional crankshaft stroke adds to the volume of the combustion chamber and the spacer (or shorter rod) adds to the volume of the combustion chamber​

262133

Using the definition of compression ratio, we can write the following equations:
262134

All these equations simplify nicely to give us this very important relation that allows us to calculate the required spacer thickness (or reduction in connecting rod length) needed to maintain the same compression ratio for a KNOWN setup when using a stroker crankshaft.
262135
It may be intuitive to think that reducing the connecting rod length or shimming the cylinder block by 1/2 the stroke length would balance out perfectly, and while this will address piston clearance issues, it will still increase the compression ratio because while the combustion chamber volume at TDC will be identical, the combustion chamber volume at BDC will be greater. If we want to maintain the same compression ratio, it is necessary to shim the cylinder block or reduce the connecting rod length slightly more than 1/2 the additional crankshaft stroke.

In my build, I will be using 78mm (overbore but accounted for by the piston manufacturer) JE pistons with a compression ratio of 13.5 and a +2mm stroker crankshaft (NOT accounted for by the piston manufacturer). Therefore, to maintain the manufacturer's intended compression ratio of 13.5 (and simply to know the compression ratio without tedious volume measurements), I will need a 1.16mm spacer.

It may not seem like much, but 0.15mm is the difference between a compression ratio of 13.5:1 vs 14:1.

APE's website states that "the height of the cylinder base spacer plate needed is EXACTLY half the stroke of the crankshaft." According to this equation, wouldn't a thicker spacer plate would be required? No, because this extra height comes from the additional cylinder base gasket required (stock base gasket + 1.0 mm spacer + 0.15mm HRC base gasket).
 

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Time to shoot an email over to Ten Kate and see if they have any leftover braced 09 frames to handle that 215+ rwhip!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Time to shoot an email over to Ten Kate and see if they have any leftover braced 09 frames to handle that 215+ rwhip!
Unfortunately, it's a street bike and needs to remain registered/inspected under the original VIN/frame.

I doubt I'll ever put the frame under that much distress. More of a learning experience for me because it's the last part of the bike to upgrade besides the rims.
 

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Awesome project! Finally, someone else building a high performance engine! I've been wanting to do a stroker on my sc57, but with the one-piece cylinder/case, I'll have to go with shorter rods or custom pistons. Which HRC cams do you have? I would stick with the 1mm spacer...you'll need more compression than 14:1 to hit 200whp.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
HRC JSB camshafts. Same part for 2008-2016. Same lift but more duration. Will post spec sheet later.

Project is at a stand still for 10 weeks due to large backlog at APE.

Update! Got a call from APE looks like its more like 14 weeks at this time. July at best.


2009 CBR1000RR (Ohlins FGR900 SBK forks, TTX-GP shock; Brembo GP4-RR billet mono-block calipers, RCS-19 master cylinder; Galfer wave rotors, SBK direct thread lines; IMA Evo 4 52/58mm billet clamps; Woodcraft Bars; Yoshimura R-77 exhaust, GripOne S4 TC/WC, MP Rev2 throttle, CRG clutch perch)

Pending: 1091cc motor (78x57.1mm)
 

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Following! Replaced my original 09 engine due to low compression and have been storing it to rebuild it eventually.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
5 months later, the APE +2mm stroker crank with lightening and race balance is back. It's dynamically balanced to 1/3 gram, which is different from static balance because it takes into account how the crank behaves under rotation. To illustrate this consider the following scenario with a shaft that has 2 equal masses attached 180 degrees apart the same distance from center line of shaft.
263303

If you put both ends of the crank on a balancing stand the shaft would not roll because it's in static balance. However, if you start spinning the shaft at high speed, the two ends will start to wobble. For this reason, balancing a crank requires a machine, that spins the crank up to 14,000rpm, hooked up to sensors and a computer that tells the operator exactly where to remove material and how much to remove.

Here is the finished crank. The counterbalance gear has been removed. Crank is noticeably lighter than when first sent in. Since mass removed is far away from the center line of rotation, the moment of inertia is reduced dramatically.
263304


Note how the bearings have been moved outward 1mm so that the crank goes up 1mm extra and goes down 1mm extra for a total of +2mm stroke. A beautiful radius on both sides keeps the connecting rod big end centered.
263305


The counterweights are all knife edged, which APE says also reduces drag through the oil mist in the crankcase.
263306


The balls that originally sealed the oil passages have been ground flush with the crank. You also have the option to remove the balls and drill/tap set screws, which I did not have done.
263307


Bearings have oil holes in the same location. Unlike the OEM holes, these holes have a nice large bevel to increase the amount of oil in contact with the connecting rod bearing.
263308


Here you can see where material was ground off to balance the crank.
263309


APE has been excellent to work with. Jay (the owner) responded to dozens of technical questions quickly throughout the process and despite the long wait, the result is well worth it. APE stroker cranks maintain the same bearing size as the original crank, so next step is to measure the crank, crankcase, and connecting rod big end to order bearings.

A Mitutoyo or Starrett micrometer is mandatory because we need a tool that can repeatably measure to 0.0001" (one ten-thousandths of an inch) because the difference between different bearing sizes is only 0.0002-0.0003". I tried cheaper micrometers, and it's a struggle with improperly printed Vernier scales, inconsistent thimble pressure, not to mention poorly aligned carbide tips that make it impossible to hit the same number with any sort of consistency. Lock the micrometer and slide it off to read each measurement. It should slide off glassy smooth with the same amount of drag for every measurement. Repeat the measurement 2-3 times to confirm. Reference the chart in service manual to select correct color bearings.
263351


My data for the 5 bearings on the crankcase:
Flywheel Side
1.3385​
1.3385​
1.3386​
1.3385​
1.3384​
Clutch Side
Crankcase Code​
A​
A​
A​
A​
A​
Bearing​
pink​
pink​
pink​
pink​
pink​

My data for the 4 bearings on the connecting rods (APE got all 4 welded/reground crank pins to within 0.0001 inch of each other!)
Flywheel Side
1.4362​
1.4363​
1.4362​
1.4363​
Clutch Side
Carrillo Rod​
1.5551​
1.5551​
1.5551​
1.5551​
Bearing​
brown​
brown​
brown​
brown​

Next step is to check the bearing clearances with a Plasti-gauge. Refer to service manual for the crankcase bearings. All 5 can be done at once. Oil clearance must not exceed 0.002". Unlike stock connecting rods, Carrillo rods use a pair of split pins that are quite hard to remove. I used a brass rod in the bolt hole and a back and forth rocking motion to loosen the two halves of the big end bearing. I held the crank vertically in a vise and pinched a longer section of Plasti-gauge to hold it in place as I put the two halves of the connecting rod together. Cover bolt with included lubricant and fasten as described in CP-Carrillo Steel Bolt Instruction. Oil clearance must not exceed 0.0025" (per APE).
Automotive tire Water Fluid Liquid Font


Update: To avoid wasting Plasti-gauge, a small dab of grease can be used to hold the plastic piece in place.
Auto part Bicycle part Personal protective equipment Electric blue Metal
 

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Awesome that your build is still in progress! You pay attention to detail, so I see this being a successful build. I still say 13.5 compression won't get you to 200whp without all the other internal moving parts having been lightened/anti-friction coating applied. If you don't already have the pistons, I would go with 14.5 or better custom pistons and tight squish. Are you going to do any windage mods to your engine cases? I really want to see you break 200whp, so I'm just offering advise based on what i've seen/tested... there's a well known engine builder's 2008 cbr1000rr 2mm overbore engine with ported head and cams that makes 175whp SAE... I've seen a few other builds from different builders that make around the same power with 13.5 pistons. I done a stock bore 14.5 compression engine with regrind cams that made 172whp SAE on the same dyno as the above 08 cbr. The big bore engine made more HP and torque throughout the pull just up to redline where my engine closed the gap (I think it's cam timing that caused that). So adding 2mm stroke; I don't see that gaining an additional 30HP over engines with the same build specs as yours (they have ported heads and web cams)...either way your engine is going to be a powerhouse, the acceleration should be phenomenal!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Awesome that your build is still in progress! You pay attention to detail, so I see this being a successful build. I still say 13.5 compression won't get you to 200whp without all the other internal moving parts having been lightened/anti-friction coating applied. If you don't already have the pistons, I would go with 14.5 or better custom pistons and tight squish. Are you going to do any windage mods to your engine cases? I really want to see you break 200whp, so I'm just offering advise based on what i've seen/tested... there's a well known engine builder's 2008 cbr1000rr 2mm overbore engine with ported head and cams that makes 175whp SAE... I've seen a few other builds from different builders that make around the same power with 13.5 pistons. I done a stock bore 14.5 compression engine with regrind cams that made 172whp SAE on the same dyno as the above 08 cbr. The big bore engine made more HP and torque throughout the pull just up to redline where my engine closed the gap (I think it's cam timing that caused that). So adding 2mm stroke; I don't see that gaining an additional 30HP over engines with the same build specs as yours (they have ported heads and web cams)...either way your engine is going to be a powerhouse, the acceleration should be phenomenal!
Thanks for sharing this information. I have a guy near me who does superfinishing I may have him do my transmission. Do you know if any of the bikes mentioned had timing adjustments done? The USA bikes from 2008 to 2016 have a 5 degree retard from 10-13k that costs nearly 10hp.
 

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Thanks for sharing this information. I have a guy near me who does superfinishing I may have him do my transmission. Do you know if any of the bikes mentioned had timing adjustments done? The USA bikes from 2008 to 2016 have a 5 degree retard from 10-13k that costs nearly 10hp.
The 08 I mentioned has been flashed by guhl...i never looked at the actual maps though, but i will. You are correct I assume, because my 2006 model gained 4-6hp from ignition timing changes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
If I had to do it again, I would not have opted for the CNC head port. It's very expensive ($1300), and the money is better spent on other parts for the bike.
263366


Starting with a bare cylinder head assembly, the lower spring retainer has to be installed before the valve stem seals. The intake side has larger holes than exhaust side. Apply some moly-based grease to the valve stem seals and use a socket to push it into place. The intake side has a larger holes than the exhaust side. Verify that the valve stem seal is seated fully by rotating it a couple turns.
263367


APE titanium retainers will be a snug retention fit on only one end of the spring. If you try to put the titanium retainer on the wrong end of the spring, it will just fall out. Cut a sheet of plastic from a bottle or food container and bend it into a cylinder to protect the bucket contact surface. Insert the spring/Ti retainer. The intake side retainer has a larger hole than the exhaust side. Apply a thin coat of moly-based grease on the valve stem and install the valve. Compress the valve spring until the valve stem sticks out 1-2mm above the retainer. Use tweezers to install the two cotter halves (different size: intake > exhaust). A bit of grease helps the cotters stick in place and not fall down too far. Carefully release the spring compressor a couple turns at a time and check that the groove on the valve stem is engaged. Install a 1.95 to 2.05 shim on top of each valve stem and cover it with a well lubricated bucket. Install the camshafts with lots of assembly lubricant.
263368


The camshafts should turn easily with a 10mm wrench. To check the valve clearance, rotate the lobe up and check that lobe with a bent feeler gauge. Use a piece of paper behind the feeler gauge to avoid scratching the cylinder head gasket surface. A nylon pry bar is useful to pull out the feeler gauge since it is at an odd angle. Find the largest feeler gauge that will fit in the gap between the bucket and lobe.
263369


The idea behind swapping shims is illustrated below. It's important to have a micrometer for measuring shims, since the printed size is often hard to read once the shim has been used. The shim size needed is equal to (measured clearance) - (target clearance) + (measured shim).
263370

Intake example (HRC camshafts need 0.008" valve clearance):
Measured Clearance​
0.0170​
0.0140​
0.0160​
0.0180​
0.0140​
0.0100​
0.0140​
0.0160​
Target Clearance​
0.0080​
0.0080​
0.0080​
0.0080​
0.0080​
0.0080​
0.0080​
0.0080​
Measured Shim​
0.0778​
0.0807​
0.0789​
0.0778​
0.0820​
0.0817​
0.0807​
0.0779​
Target Shim​
0.0868​
0.0867​
0.0869​
0.0878​
0.0880​
0.0837​
0.0867​
0.0859​
Target Shim (mm)​
2.20​
2.20​
2.21​
2.23​
2.24​
2.13​
2.20​
2.18​
Available Shim (mm)
2.20​
2.20​
2.20​
2.25​
2.25​
2.15​
2.20​
2.20​

Exhaust example (HRC camshafts need 0.012" valve clearance):
Measured Clearance​
0.0160​
0.0160​
0.0140​
0.0160​
0.0120​
0.0110​
0.0160​
0.0160​
Target Clearance​
0.0120​
0.0120​
0.0120​
0.0120​
0.0120​
0.0120​
0.0120​
0.0120​
Measured Shim​
0.0769​
0.0770​
0.0800​
0.0790​
0.0808​
0.0806​
0.0769​
0.0767​
Target Shim​
0.0809​
0.0810​
0.0820​
0.0830​
0.0808​
0.0796​
0.0809​
0.0807​
Target Shim (mm)​
2.05​
2.06​
2.08​
2.11​
2.05​
2.02​
2.05​
2.05​
Available Shim (mm)
2.05​
2.05​
2.10​
2.10​
2.05​
2.00​
2.05​
2.05​

7.48mm diameter shims are readily available in 0.05mm increments, so the most you should be off by is 0.001", which is within the acceptable range for valve clearances.

Here is the complete cylinder head.
Tableware Gas Auto part Engineering Plastic
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Cylinder block suffered a mishap at Millennium, where an employee dropped the block and deformed one of the alignment pins. Rather than put the block on a mill and re-cut the hole properly, someone took a Dremel to it and the result is a crooked/wobbly pin. To Millennium's credit, they did resolve the issue by re-boring/plating another block 100% free of charge, so I will not hold it against them.
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JE 78mm pistons come de-burred but I noticed one spot (red arrow in 1st picture) in the wire lock groove that had a small metal burr on 2 out of 4 pistons. If it is not removed, the wire lock may not seat all the way. To install a wire lock, hold the piston in a vise with soft jaws and insert one end of the ring into the groove as shown in the 2nd picture. Curl the wire lock over the edge while pressing down on the ring with your thumb (not shown in pictures) to keep the ring from coming out. The last portion is difficult to press in by hand, so use a nylon pry bar to push it over the edge and into the groove. This technique ensures that the wire-lock is bent evenly and not put out of shape. Carefully examine the wire lock to ensure that it is seated all the way around. For now, install one wire lock per piston.
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JE piston rings are pre-gapped for 78.00mm bore, so it's only necessary to double check each gap size (feeler gauge) with the ring squared in the bore. I referenced JE's recommendations for "high performance street-strip." Be sure to convert from 78mm to 3.071in before using the table.
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If by some chance that a ring needs filing, you can do this very precisely on a lathe using a simple setup shown below. It's much easier than trying to use a manual ring grinder and keeps the ends square. Dial indicator allows lathe carriage movement to be precisely measured so no need to guess and check as needed with a manual grinder. Lightly deburr with a diamond file if you do end up grinding rings. From now on, sets of rings needs to be sorted in labeled bags to pair up with a particular cylinder.
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While waiting for extra parts to arrive, I decided to clean the gasket mating surfaces. This proved to be a tedious task, because the rubbery gasket material forms little strings/balls that get everywhere. Also, there were some light marks on the mating surfaces from the nylon scraping tool. I ended up completely stripping down the crankcase halves and also used a thread chaser tool (NOT a tap!) to clean out the thread locker and bits of gasket in all the threads. To create a clean smooth finish for the new gasket without changing surface tolerances, I completely stripped down the crankcase and blasted all mating surfaces with 100 grit Armex baking soda media in my blast cabinet, taking care to mask external painted areas with tape or window putty. Before blasting, I rinsed all the parts in mineral spirits (will not harm painted surfaces) to remove oil that would otherwise get everywhere in the blast cabinet. Baking soda dissolves in water, so it can be thoroughly removed from all the crevices and channels. After blasting, I washed all the parts out with Simple Green HD, rinsed with hot water, and blew out all the orifices with compressed air. I checked all the oil channels to ensure there were no bits of gasket material, since even a small piece can clog the tiny oil ports. The result is a perfectly clean matte finish on the aluminum mating surfaces. Cleaning up the stator/clutch cover, oil pan, and crankcase halves has been the most labor intensive part of this project so far. For assembly, I will use Permatex #3 to make clean up easier next time the engine comes apart for service.
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SuperMod
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681 Posts
Nice write up.
not only you seem have a great attention to detail and perform meticulous work, you take nice closeup pictures.
 

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Classifieds Moderator
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638 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Prior to putting together the piston, wrist pin, and connecting rod, I weigh all the components. JE pistons and wrist pins were very closely matched to 0.4g maximum variation. I mixed and matched the lightest wrist pin with the heaviest piston (and vice-versa) to avoid "duplicating" weight variation. This alone got my 4 piston and wrist pin sets to within 0.2g, which is a tiny ~0.1% variation. Of course, you can be more meticulous than me and remove material to get even closer.
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The CP-Carrillo rods are not so simple to weigh, because the "little" end and "big" end are doing different motions in the engine. Little end goes up and down (mostly) and big end goes round and round (mostly). The proper way to weigh this is to use a jig then grind material away from sides of the big end and curvature of the small end to balance the rods. The total mass of the rod is listed as 282g on the spec. card but I was alarmed to find 1 out of 4 rods at 281g. I contacted CP-Carrillo technical department and APE to ask and they both said to use the rod as is and NOT to try balancing the rods. Reason is the rods are matched at the factory based on rotating and reciprocating mass.
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Crank balance was taken care of by APE. I have faith in their work and am not knowledgeable enough to comment on what the numbers mean on their spec. sheet.
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I also checked the OD of the wrist pin and ID of the connecting rod small end to verify clearance (subtract: ID of rod - OD pin). For me it was a bit over 0.001" for each pairing, which is well within the service limit. Apply assembly grease and assemble the piston, wrist pin, and connecting rod. The correct orientation is shown below. Note that aftermarket pistons do not have the "IN" mark mentioned in the service manual. Install the wire lock as described previously and verify that the wire lock is fully seated in the groove all the way around.
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Be careful not to mix up the bearing caps on the rods!
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If the motor is to retain the stock transmission, you must replace the 3rd gear! You can purchase a special 3rd gear from Nova Racing in the UK for $250 USD. This is an expensive but necessary modification because stock 3rd gear on 2008+ (non RR-R) bikes is known to stress crack and shatter with heavy track use. The OEM 3rd gear is a ticking time bomb as we increase torque of the engine so it must be replaced. Images used from the UK Fireblade forum.
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Alternatively (as I have done), the entire stock transmission can be replaced with the HRC transmission that has hardened gears. An additional advantage is HRC transmission has undercut (red lines) to reduce slipping out of gear. Note that because of this undercut, it's NOT advised to mix and match HRC and non-HRC gears. Not a difficult job, but must refer to service manual regarding clip orientation as it is assembled.
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Before I do further work on crankcase I installed the APE dummy shaft to block off oil passages for the counter-balancer. Note that all the balancing done so far is for primary balance only. Inline 4 engine has secondary imbalance that is impossible to eliminate without the counter-balancer assembly. Since we removed it for this build (OEM balancer wouldn't work on different weight aftermarket components anyway), our engine will have a small amount of vibration due to secondary imbalance. This is negligible and in fact some 600cc supersport engines lack a counter-balancer.
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The OEM retaining bolt for the balancer shaft is too long and won't work with the dummy shaft. A shorter ~10mm long M6 bolt and copper washer are needed to seal its hole.
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I also took this opportunity to replace the bearing that is pressed into the upper crankcase.
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