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Discussion Starter #1
I'm putting new rings in my 84 vt700. i'm getting ready to put it back together and i'm reading over the steps in the honda manual. I'm a little confused as what i'm supposed to do with the hydraulic tappets. If i'm just putting the head back on without any new parts or modifications, do i need to bleed the tappets. I would guess that they no longer have oil in them, but it's my understanding that upon starting that they will fill with oil anyways (but could there be air locks?). If i'm supposed to bleed them can i just try to pump oil through them by hand and not use a tappet bleeder or kerosene (why kerosene?). Thanks for any advice.

On a side note, do you guys put paper gaskets on dry or do apply any sort of gasket maker or sealant? The honda manual doesn't mention any sealants except for the cylinder head cover gasket (the one with round rubber grommets that commonly leak). Thanks again.
 

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I had an 85 VT1100 that I tore down to do some transmission work. I didn't do anything special when I put it back together. There were small areas that the manual said to prefill with oil to prevent high pressure foaming but that was it.
I used non hardening Permatex on the gaskets during assembly, but mostly to make sure the gaskets stayed in place.

Hope this was of some help.

Mark
 

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I do recommend bleeding your tappets using kerosene and a small nail or something to pump them. It's not hard, no big deal and could of course save you some issues later.

As mentioned, the Permatex works well. Do watch that there are some spots that you don't want to put it. Namely around the tappet area. You don't want to seal them off....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the advice. Why kerosene and not oil? If i just submerge the tappet into kerosene and pump it, that should be good enough (not using bleeding device).

I did find an earlier post in which the tappets were submerged in oil and pumped to remove as much air as possible then installed. Comments?

I'm definitely going to use the non-hardening permatex. Hopefully i can find some in a aerasol can instead of brush on.
 

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All the manuals recommend kerosene as it's thinner than the oil and will get inside and displace the air easier. There's also not enough kerosene to cause any harm to the engine.
 

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Some ten plus years later.. did it work? I'm stuck at the part where my tappets wont compress with any short of force, or would the kerosene loosen that up. Luck would have it if they need to be replaced I have a spare motor for it so I could snagged the tappets from that motor. Curious if that would work being the same year/make/model. Or would I have to go through a re-measurement process for the shims if I swap tappets.
 

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Oh, enough force will move (and break) them alright. Ask me how I know... 😳 The kerosene will eventually evaporate after the lifters are bled of air and ‘reset’. My shims were okay after I’d measured and retested all of them, so this time around I shouldn’t have to do it again.

I used a little drill bit to press down and ‘unlock’ the bleeders, but I’m thinking enough oil pressure would do the same thing, which is how they must self-adjust.
 

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I've been feeling super cautious messing with this but i also suppose its good to be. I'm picking up some kerosene tomorrow and going to try it out. I decided to take the valve covers off the other motor (needs a rebuild anyhow) and those tappets pump freely around .2 mm. Good to know I have another set if needed.

Another failed mention was when removing the valve covers I wasn't focused on the fact the tappets had shims and dropped a couple. None had made it in the motor (thankfully) but cant recall which tappet had the thicker or thinner shims underneath. Suppose that's another head scratcher, more tools for the shop.
 

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You can get a cheap dial indicator and vernier caliper from Harbour Freight, I think. Just a pain doing the clearance tests on them bare, and then having to take the cover back off to do the shims. My test just confirmed the shims that were in there already were the correct ones. Now I have a few bags of shims I had made up, just in case! 😄
 
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