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Discussion Starter #1
Just under 600 miles on my bike and getting everything rounded up to do the first service myself. I got a magnetic oil plug m12 x1.5, k&n 112, oem o ring for filter cap, and a quart of Lucas 10w-40 motorcycle with wet clutch oil. I also picked up the three pack chain cleaner and lube from Maxima. My plan is to wash the bike and clean the chain, change oil, check chain for proper amount of play and adjust if needed and then lube. I often look at the brake fluid window as it's in plain sight and it's still all the way full and I adjusted the clutch cable about 100 miles ago as the clutch was sloppy and I would pull it in a good distance before it would engage. Any other suggestions or bits of advice?
 

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^ Agreed, that thing has to be flapping around in the breeze by now. I didn't make it 80 miles before my chains were too loose.

If you're feeling anal it's not a bad idea to buy a new clutch cover gasket and oil screen and replace the oil screen. The factory uses inspection paint on the bolts in the engine and that paint chips off and clogs the screen. Probably a few larger chips of metal from the gears as well.

It's pretty common for these screens to be roughly 1/3 clogged just after break-in. So while it won't hurt anything to use 2/3 of your oil screen, it's even better to use the whole thing. While you have it in your hand marvel at the fact that Honda doesn't equip the Grom with anything more than that dinky screen.

A little late for tbswope but for others reading this thread prepping for the first service I would do it all sooner. We've already touched on the chain, it stretches... a lot. Check it every time you go for a ride. I also recommend dropping the oil and replacing the filter between 100-200 miles. My bike got new oil (no filter) at 18 miles and I still found plenty of sparkles at 200 miles. No reason to let that circulate for another 400 miles.

K&N has had bad press with oil filters literally falling apart. Consider yourself warned. (No judgement here though, I'm personally working my way through my stash to get to my OEMs for the longer maintenance periods)
 

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I did the first oil change at 100 miles. Clutch and chain adjusted at the same time. As a track bike its not racking up the mileage but I will likely do another oil change after the next race and then check on that chain again at the same time. These little things can't last till the 600 Mile first recommended service.... However lubing every 600 is fair I think.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Ando I'll get get one of those gaskets and screens you mentioned, makes since to get that screen cleaned out. As far as waiting to long to do the first service I was just going by the manual and haven't noticed hearing the chain making noise or it riding any different. I just go around town on it and 95% of me riding has been 45 mph or less. Don't know if that means I'm not riding it as hard as other guys or not. Once everything gets here and I get it taken care of I'll let you guys know what I find with the chain.
 

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Just check the slack at every gas fill up and make a mental note if it needs to be adjusted. Checking takes 2 seconds and it can save you from having a very bad day. A buddy of mine had the chain come off the rear sprocket on his magna as he was riding down the road. Chain got jammed up and locked up his rear wheel. SOMEHOW that lucky SOB kept the rubber side down... but man was that a sight to see.



Reason I check chain slack during fill ups is that gas stations have paper towels so you don't get **** on your fingers. It also ensures that the certain maintenance items get checked at reasonable intervals.
 

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Huh, I guess I didn't realize the manual recommended 600 as the first interval. No shame in following the manual I guess. Though the manual does say to do a 10 point check including chain slack and lube, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I bought new and the sales guy walked me through the break-in as they recommended. Never realized the 100-200 mile oil change wasn't a Kawi thing. Then again, they want you to wait until 6000 miles to check valve clearances too. (☉_☉)
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Was looking how to get access to the screen for the oil pump and found the service manual at this link. https://manualzz.com/doc/27588434/z125-pro--2017--factory-service-manual
It states in the section about oil screen removal "Clean the screen thoroughly whenever the engine oil is changed." Kind of curious why the owners manual doesn't mention this bit of advice. Thanks Ando for pointing it out to me and getting me on the right track. Also, thanks crakerjac for the advice on checking the chain, will definitely start doing the gas up and chain check procedure.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Though the manual does say to do a 10 point check including chain slack and lube, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ )
Just saw the Daily Checks section your talking about, I have definitely slacked on all of those not just the Drive Chain. I was looking at the Maintenance Schedule and it shows Drive chain lubrication every 400 and Drive chain slack every 600. I knew I was over on checking the lubrication but figured not riding in the rain and a visual look of it not being rusty was ok until the 600 mile mark. This manual contradicts itself just a little a bit.

The place I bought it from did a here's how you turn it on watch out that it's not in gear and the side stand is down or it won't start, otherwise have fun and bring it back at 600 miles we will do the service for you at a reasonable price.
 

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Yeah, I do "as needed" service for chain clean/lube.

Honestly I think everything about the chain is boilerplate language from Kawi's other bikes. 600 miles sounds perfectly fine for a high quality chain (after initial break-in stretch). Unfortunately our chain is not that.

Don't feel too bad, dealer went above and beyond on certain things like maintenance schedule but they also didn't know how to properly route the vent hoses and let me ride 30 miles home with 10 psi in the tires. ಠ_ಠ

Sure accelerated the break-in of the tires though. They were HOT when I got home.
 

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I think everyone should get rid of the stock chain as fast as possible. We all know they stretch insanely fast due to there Tensile Strength and Wear Factor :(

BUY A QUALITY CHAIN FOR THE WEAR FACTOR !

High Tensile Strength numbers importance is mostly for high HP performance bikes. Very few chains ever break on smaller HP bikes. Most chains will go past there stretch replacement limit before they break. The ones that do break are typically from lack of maintenance or adjusted wrong. But Tensile Strength does typically dictate the Wear Factor as well, The Wear Factor is more important when buying a new chain for the Z'. Most quality chain manufacturers include the Wear Factor in there spec' charts. Your not saving money when buying a cheep chain, it's actually more costly in the long run and not so much do to you have to buy 2-3 cheep chains to last as long as 1 quality chain, but because cheep chains with low Tensile Strength or low Wear Factor numbers have rapid chain stretching and wears out your sprockets faster and those are more expensive than chains. And worn out sprockets wear out new chains faster.

$$ Buy Once, Cry Once :(
Just some more of my .02 babbling :rolleyes:
 

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Yeah, but not many people are putting 20,000+ miles on their Z, or even riding off road, and the O-rings do rob you of power. We do not have power to spare on these bikes. So for street use, I keep the non-sealed chain and deal with the increased maintenance for the marginal performance benefit. Plus, it's free.

If my $0.02 cents contradicts yours, are we left with $0.04 or $0.00? ;]

Unless you were saying we should all go out and buy high quality non-oring chains. In that case, I take it all back, I agree, but I'm still a cheap *******.
 

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Yeah, but not many people are putting 20,000+ miles on their Z, or even riding off road, and the O-rings do rob you of power. We do not have power to spare on these bikes. So for street use, I keep the non-sealed chain and deal with the increased maintenance for the marginal performance benefit. Plus, it's free.

If my $0.02 cents contradicts yours, are we left with $0.04 or $0.00? ;]

Unless you were saying we should all go out and buy high quality non-oring chains. In that case, I take it all back, I agree, but I'm still a cheap *******.
No mention of O-Ring or 20,000mi here :confused:

Slow down on the Caffeine sir :grin2:

Recap main point : The fast wear of the stock chain is wearing the sprockets, which in turn .......... blapp, blapp, blapp

And are any of our posts really worth 2 Chit's :rolleyes:
 

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And are any of our posts really worth 2 Chit's :rolleyes:
Lol... you are pretty dang helpful to the community, if anyone was keeping track I'm sure I'd OWE the forum money.

Wasn't trying to throw anything in your face, you certainly didn't imply that everyone is riding cross country or in the dirt every day. I'm just wondering how many miles you need to log on an 8HP machine before the low quality chain actually screws up your sprockets.

The limitations of the drivetrain mean that miles stay pretty low on these things. I can count the number of Groms and Zs I've seen on CL with over 1000 miles on one hand.

My main point was Kaw'ee, Mr.EvilPirate, and JimG are all exceptions to the rule of who's buying these things by riding primarily off road, riding for thousands of miles at a time, and obsessing over every detail respectively. The vast majority of Z owners blast a 10 mile commute, ride around town, or experiment with stunting.

For most people these bikes are toys. And a toy chain for a toy bike is completely acceptable for 80% of owners. A chain upgrade is a very smart thing to do, it's just not required if you can put up with a little more maintenance.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Probably made this more complicated than it really is, but..... I looked at the service manual and am somewhat confused by which part of the chain is supposed to be tight when checking the slack. It states rotate the wheel to find the position where the chain is tightest. So with the bike in gear I pushed it forward a bit and then checked the chain deflection with just like we talked about early with a rag just to see if it seemed terrible. I thought it was pretty tight so I rolled the bike back and checked just out of curiosity and the chain goes all the way up to the swing arm. Now my thought is that if I follow Kawasaki's "turn wheel to the point the chain is tightest", will I ever have a chain showing slack? I watched some youtube videos on chain slack and nobody showed turning the wheel to the tighten the chain before measuring. Just curious what you guys suggest. Also, I'm riding my scooter now till I can be sure I'm not going to loose a chain and crash.
 

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Chain is probably frozen up of you have that much swing in the chain tension. To check chain slack, I take my pointer and lift up on the bottom side of the chain just until the chain on the top of the swingarm starts to move. If the chain on the top of the swingarm is suspended off the swingarm, you are pushing up too hard. I adjust my chain so it almost touches the bottom of the swingarm. Loose is better than tight, but too tight is better than too lose...



For your chain, I'd give it a good cleaning and make sure that all the links move freely. If you have a rusty link, it's likely the reason you are going from loose to tight to loose....
 

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The time you moved the bike backwards is your real measurement. Rolling the bike backwards against a gear tightens the top of the chain and brings all the slack to the bottom for you to measure. Rolling forward does the opposite, now all your slack is resting on top of the swingarm and doesn't look loose while the bottom length is tensioned between a sprocket held by the ground and the rear hub, and a sprocket held by the gearbox. Pushing on that segment of chain is going to feel tight regardless of chain adjustment.

When Kawasaki mentions checking slack in the tightest position they are essentially saying the same thing as crakerjac, when the chain on the top slightly lifts off the swingarm you know the slack has been removed from the top and is being accounted for by your input.

Just need to make sure you have all your slack on one side of the chain. Bottom is standard because of simplicity of procedure and measurement.

(This transfer of slack back and forth is one of the reasons it is important to keep a properly tensioned chain. When you roll off the throttle your chain goes from tight on top, the bike freewheels while the slack is gathered, and then your chain is tight on the bottom as the bike engine brakes. Too much slack causes a jolt of tension whenever this transition happens.)

Hope that all makes sense and helps more than it confuses.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The time you moved the bike backwards is your real measurement. Rolling the bike backwards against a gear tightens the top of the chain and brings all the slack to the bottom for you to measure.
In my head this is what I thought was correct, when I read the service manual a second time I started second guessing.
Hope that all makes sense and helps more than it confuses.
It does make sense and help, thanks.
 

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Thanks for the link to the service manual tbswope! I didn't know there was a screen in there!? I will be searching for this at my next oil/filter change this weekend.

As others have mentioned, I too am overkill on the oil changes since new ( 100 mi , 400, 700 ...) . I have 1800 mi and ave done it ~every 450 mi. Chain is monitored with a similar attitude. I will relax that schedule now.

My question: to those who have some real time on their engines, what has been your general freq between oil changes when the bike is being ridden - moderately hard (steady 7-8500 RPM, moderate accelerations, hills )? The manual recommends changing yearly or every 7000 Miles. That seems way too long for 1qt of oil.
 
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