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Thread: 2012 R1200RT Cam chain rattle on startup, a cure?

  1. #1
    Registered User ajaxthegreater's Avatar
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    2012 R1200RT Cam chain rattle on startup, a cure?

    This cam chain tensioner upgrade from EnDuraLast claims to “cure” cam chain rattle on startup: https://www.euromotoelectrics.com/pr...nsioner797.htm

    Not sure what all is involved to replace a cam chain tensioner, but I sure to hate the racket my bike makes on a cold start. It has 80K+ miles on it.

    Could it be as simple as removing the old and screwing in the new? This one is only for the left side.
    Bill in Highlands Ranch, CO
    2012 R1200RT

  2. #2
    Registered User ajaxthegreater's Avatar
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    More detail

    I queried the company and got this back. They are in town and I have purchased tune up parts from them before. Good selection and prices. For $66 I am inclined to try one.

    ++++++++++++++

    Hi William,

    Yes, we have sold many of these tensioners with many happy customers that have no chain rattle.

    The right side tensioner is available from your BMW dealer, however it runs in oil and has minimal wear, whereas the left side tensioner runs dry and wears quickly. No need to change the right side tensioner.

    Regards

    Norman Schwab

    www.euromotoelectrics.com
    1.303.526.0901
    2505 W 2nd Ave Unit # 15
    Denver C0 80219
    USA
    Bill in Highlands Ranch, CO
    2012 R1200RT

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    William:
    Changing the left side cam chain tensioner is not an easy job. First you will need to remove the throttle body to get at it. You will need special pliers to get the clamps off. I made my own from a set of small channel locks. Removing the tensioner is easy. It will come out in (4) pieces, the body, the spring, the crush washer and the plunger. Putting the new one in can be difficult. You need to compress the spring while you turn the body to get the thread started. The thread is a fine thread that wants to cross thread. You will need a 15 mm ratchet box wrench to get the body threaded in. The tensioner is right under the pivot for the A frame for the front suspension and there is no room to get a socket in. I tried for hours, until my fingers were very sore trying to get the thread started. I finally went out and bought a set of metric ratchet box wrenches and it went in easy. The ratchet box wrench allows you to push down to compress the spring and then turn the body to get the thread started.
    I looked at the link you sent and the parts look just like the ones I took out. Is this item "new and improved" to keep the oil in so that on start up you do not get the clack clack clack? Let me know if you need more information.

    Good Luck
    Roger L

  4. #4
    Registered User ajaxthegreater's Avatar
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    Thanks

    Thanks Roger, I was hoping to hear from someone who had done this. Did it make any difference for you noisewise?

    I'll be doing this in conjunction with a "big" tuneup at 84K miles, so I'll have all the bodywork and valve covers off anyway. From the Reprom manual that looks like 90% of the job. Good advice about the ratchet box wrench, I don't have a set of those yet. When you have time if you could PM me a photo of your tool you made to remove the throttle body banding that would be greatly appreciated as I don't have that either.

    I went to Euro today and they were really nice and knowledgeable people. They told me that their "Enduralast" line parts are primarily ones they source from the same manufacturers that BMW does. So it's the same part BMW sells but at a lower price. The cam tensioner may be NEW but I have my doubts about the "improved" claim. That said if it stops the startup rattle I'll be happy. When I have the old one out I will compare them and do measurements to see if there is any difference anywhere.

    While I was there I picked up a spark coil removal tool for $10, a great deal. https://www.euromotoelectrics.com/Al...oil248tool.htm
    Bill in Highlands Ranch, CO
    2012 R1200RT

  5. #5
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    Bill:
    I removed my cam chain tensioner when I needed to remove my left side head to replace an exhaust valve. A C Clip came off allowing the cam follower came off and the cam lobe wore a flat on the end of one of the exhaust valves. With that being said I did not replace the cam chain tensioner I just needed to take it out and put it back in. My bike clacks a little occasionally on start up but not enough to go thru all of the work to replace the cam chain tensioner. I will send you a photo of the pliers tonight.

    Roger L

  6. #6
    Registered User ajaxthegreater's Avatar
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    So far so good

    Installed the new tensioner yesterday and so far after 3 cold starts in 60-70 degree weather the startup rattle is gone. Not sure I want to pronounce this cured yet but so far I am encouraged. The new tensioner was exactly like the old one except the spring seemed to be a few millimeters longer, I guess due to it being new. There was also some oil gunk residue in the bottom of the old one which may have limited oil dripping out the bottom hole. In all other respects they were the same and there were no signs of wear on the old one.

    Installing the tensioner is a tricky matter. It goes into a very small space under the pivot point for the front suspension wishbone. I leveraged it into position with a long screwdriver and then used a very short stubby spanner to thread it down. Torquing it is impossible in my opinion because the space is too small for any torque wrench to fit into.

    I did all this in conjunction with a "big" tuneup, so it was very little extra work beyond removing the stub throttle body. I used an old farm wire fence multi tool to undo the throttle body hose bands and it worked really well, like it as made for the job. I checked the valves at that time too and they were all within spec at mid range, so no change was needed and they didn't contribute to the noisy startups.

    I'll post one more time after a few weeks to see if the cure holds or not. Major thank you to Roger L for relating his experience with doing this same task, a great help!
    Bill in Highlands Ranch, CO
    2012 R1200RT

  7. #7
    Registered User pappy35's Avatar
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    Torque Wrench Offset Calculations

    This is one way to do it.
    '13 R1200RT 90th Anniversary Edition

  8. #8
    Registered User ajaxthegreater's Avatar
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    It's official

    Took a couple of rides today and it looks like my noisy knocking startup is a thing of the past. The hunting at idle seems to be gone too. I think I also cured a little oil weeping leak from the tensioner as it wasn't down very tight and came off easily. So glad I did this.
    Bill in Highlands Ranch, CO
    2012 R1200RT

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