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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Geez. If I didn't have bad luck I'd have no luck at all.

I tried to race my car this past weekend and had another bad outing. I drove a handful of laps, then the engine started to feel lower on power, like running on three cylinders. Unfortunately, I didn't think it was a mechanical problem and continued to run the engine. I guess it wouldn't have mattered. Once a valve breaks there's not much to be saved.

Other than the disappointment of not being able to race (after untold hours of prep, towing to the track, etc.), I'm afraid I'll never know the cause of this failure. I don't think it was an over-rev. There is no evidence of the other cylinders' valves hitting pistons. Heck, I wasn't even driving hard yet, although I may have hit 12,500 RPM's a couple of times. The oil pressure was never low. In fact, it was higher than ever (60 lb.) after shimming the relief valve.

I'm using the stock air box, so it's doubtful I ingested anything. I think it's just more bad luck.

At least I've got all winter to recover.
 

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That sucks! :headshake: Could've been worse I guess though.
 

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Hillbillie Mod
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bummer bro!
 

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Sucks to happen, but at least now you have an excuse to build it :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sucks to happen, but at least now you have an excuse to build it :thumbsup:
Well, only if I thought I wouldn't get caught. Our rules say no internal modifications. :).
I have some brand new OEM exhaust valves in the package in your need them.
Thanks for the offer. I'll keep it in mind when weighing options.

I heard two things this past weekend, kinda interesting. These Kawasaki titanium valves start out as two pieces, and are then attached together (I assume via welding). A well respected engine builder says that's where they tend to break.

I also heard that some people prefer stainless steel valves because they tend to bend rather than break.
 

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I've heard of valves being an issue on these bikes.
Even know a guy with a 2nd gen who had a failure and he was working at a kaw dealer.

What year was that motor? an 04 or 05?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I've heard of valves being an issue on these bikes.
Even know a guy with a 2nd gen who had a failure and he was working at a kaw dealer.

What year was that motor? an 04 or 05?
I think this one was an '05. I've got remnants of 4 ebay engines. I need to do an inventory and see what I've got that's good.
 

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Postwhore with an 04
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Man that sucks. Sorry to hear it. I had a valve guide break in my mustang and did a number on the motor and cylinder heads.

n9345232_51541488_6188.jpg

Good luck with the rebuild
 

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I just switched from a ZX12 to a 06 ZX10 in my motorcycle powered car, love it. I bang the rev limiter every straight, it seems to be holding up good. I pulled it out of the bike with 1200 miles on it so I know it wasn't somebody elses junk. It's hard to know what you are getting on ebay.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I can't believe your luck man, 4 engines...:headshake
I agree about the bad luck, but it's not really 4 blown engines.

Brief recap:

1) Went to a race at Roebling Road. Thought I had a major engine problem (lots of smoke out the tail pipe), but it turned out to be an oil plumbing problem. Crankcase oil was sucked into the air box.

2) Lost a generator at Road Atlanta test day. Known problem with early '04 engines. Just bad luck. No serious damage done to the engine, but pulled it and replaced it with an '05 ebay engine (which had very good leak down numbers).

3) Spun a rod bearing at Carolina Motorsports Park. Best guess is that it was caused by high oil temps (270+F).

4) Reinstalled '04 with upgraded generator. Also improved oil cooling. At Barber Motorsports Park the oil pump shaft snapped. Best guess is that some small hard part got jammed in between the teeth.

5) Bought another ebay motor. Apparently, it had sat outside a bit and water had rusted an intake valve & seat. We fixed that (by installing the good head off the '05 engine) and installed it into the car. This is the engine that dropped a valve this past weekend.

The good news is I have another ebay engine. Between the four, I can create one, maybe two good ones.

In the past we did leak down tests to see if the engines were healthy. If so, we'd install them and cross our fingers. Going forward, we're planning to tear the engines down completely, inspect and rebuild. That will cost more, and still may not prevent all problems, but it should greatly increase the chances that the engines will stay together. I'm also planning to shift at lower RPM's for a while.
 

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Sorry, i misread your post ( i also remembered 2 engines).
Anyway, your luck is still the same :headshake
 

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might be time to upgrade to an 08 motor if all else fails! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
might be time to upgrade to an 08 motor if all else fails! :)
Fun to think about but too much for the budget. The used engine prices are pretty good for 04-05. As you can imagine, the price goes up for the later engines. I considered moving up to an 06-07 but I have a dry sump system, custom header, beefed up clutch, modified harness and a pile of spares for the 04-05. I'm kinda vested, if you know what I mean.
 
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