Author [NL] [FR] [ES] [DE] [SE] [IT] Topic: Automatic timing chain tensioner issue  (Read 572 times)

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  • Offline sprint

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    Offline sprint

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    Automatic timing chain tensioner issue
    on: Sep 12, 2021, 09.30 am
    Sep 12, 2021, 09.30 am
    I have a Gen 3 2018 Tiger 800 XRt, which is now coming up to 9K miles.

    Been away with some friends and during the week we travelled around 60 miles and then parked up for around 4hrs. On starting the bike it started to clatter very loudly so I immediately switched the bike off and then re-started only to have the same sound!

    On inspection it was coming  from the timing chain side. A friend who was on his earlier Tiger 800 suggested raising the engine revs and on doing  so the clattering reduced but did to go away. It was considered that the automatic timing chain tensioner was the issue.

    We set off back and the clattering noise reduced in time but it was some miles of use before the noise subsided and went away.

    Since then there has been no issues, to date.

    So the most likely cause is that the tensioner had a bit of a hic-up but why?

    Is this a known problem with the bikes and what would physically have caused the clattering? I know that it is both sprung and oil pressure operated but it should have a cam operation such that once it has moved to take up the slack it cannot move back?

    Not  going  to touch anything at this moment but would like some reassurance that it is not a major issue or is it a sign that all is not well and that the tensioner require an overhaul or replacement?

    Thanks

    Andy   

  • Offline awjdthumper   gb

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    Offline awjdthumper

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    Re: Automatic timing chain tensioner issue
    Reply #1 on: Sep 12, 2021, 11.22 am
    Sep 12, 2021, 11.22 am
    When the bike is started and the oil pressure is zero, the tension is provided by the spring in the tensioner which seems to then produce various levels of clattering from the cam chain depending on each particular bike. When the oil pressure rises then this provides a much higher level of tension to the cam chain and the clattering normally goes away. My understanding is that the ratchet mechanism built into the tensioner via the resistor spring probably only comes into play when the oil pressure is low and the spring is providing the tension simply to limit the amount of lateral movement of the chain.

    I would have thought that providing the cam chain noise subsides as the oil pressure builds up then there's nothing much to worry about.
    Suzuki GSX1400, Armstrong MT560 + collection of classic British bikes

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    Re: Automatic timing chain tensioner issue
    Reply #2 on: Sep 12, 2021, 12.11 pm
    Sep 12, 2021, 12.11 pm
    Thanks for the reply.

    As indicated this is the 1st time this has happened in the 2 1/2 yrs and 9K miles of ownership, so what ever has happened it is/was not part of the start up noises that I am familiar, which is usually nothing more than the normal rustling of the engine.

    As far as I am aware the ratchet mechanism should not allow the tensioner to relax once engaged to take up the normal wear slack?

  • Offline awjdthumper   gb

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    Offline awjdthumper

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    Re: Automatic timing chain tensioner issue
    Reply #3 on: Sep 12, 2021, 12.35 pm
    Sep 12, 2021, 12.35 pm
    I think the ratchet mechanism is designed to allow a limited amount of movement of the tensioner piston under normal circumstances (a few mm). If the ratchet mechanism stops working properly, the effect might be a allow a greater amount of movement and therefore clattering of the cam chain while the oil pressure builds up. Apart from ore noise during warm up of the engine, I doubt that this would result in any engine damage.

    It's a relatively simple job to take off the tensioner (new gasket required) to give it a close look especially at the resistor spring providing the ratchet mechanism.
    Suzuki GSX1400, Armstrong MT560 + collection of classic British bikes