HOW TO: Install APE Cam Chain Tensioner (CCT) to get rid of noise, rattle, etc. : Honda CBR 600RR Sportbike Forum : 600RR.Net

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Old 04-07-2009, 12:59 AM   #1
icbluej
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HOW TO: Install APE Cam Chain Tensioner (CCT) to get rid of noise, rattle, etc.

My bike was making a weird rattle noise. At first I didnt know what it was. I searched the forums and everyone said it was probably the Cam Chain Tensioner. The noise did sound like it was coming from that area. I would have liked to change it out a few weeks ago when I checked my valves since the camshaft cover was off, but this still seemed like it worked ok. I dont know how many people are hearing the engine noise or how many miles they have on my bike, but I have a little over 37,000 and I noticed the noise around 33,000 miles. Not sure how many 03 to 06 bikes have started making the rattle, but hopefully this will help.

I did this write up combining a post made by bad06rr (hope you dont mind that I copied and pasted a lot) and Jdub916 from CBRWorld.net . I quoted their other posts and made minimal grammatical corrections. Much thanks to them as their posts really helped me. This How To was made to show a few more pictures and make it a little more detailed. If people feel that it is a repost please feel free to delete or move. Comments, advice, and criticism are all appreciated.

1. Remove right mid fairing. Then remove the toolbox out of the way by removing the fairing stay mounted to the frame (10mm bolt). Some people have asked what the tool box is; here it is in the picture. My bike (06) did not really come with any tools, just a 5mm Allen wrench and the helmet strap thing which I keep under my passenger eat anyways.


2. The OEM CCT is visible (when you move the foam/rubber dust cover out of the way). Remove both 5mm hex bolts using a 5mm Allen wrench. I tried using my socket adapter but it did not fit. So I had to use a slightly longer hex tool since it was kind of tight. After loosening the two bolts, I found it was much faster to remove them the rest of the way using the longer end of the Allen wrench that has a ball end.


3. Remove the OEM CCT.


4. With the APE CCT: Loosen the lock-nut, and back the bolt out as far out as it will go. Make sure the rubber ring is about halfway too because if its sealed in the CCT already its hard to tighten the tensioner bolt. The dimpled, non-bolt head side is what goes in the motor, so don't try to jam the bolt head into the motor lol. After you back off the bolt, make sure the OEM gasket is still in place, or use a LIGHT coating of RTV silicone. Then install the new tensioner and torque the Allen bolts back down (I don't have the exact specs on hand, but tighten them without going muscle-milk on them.) The torque is actually 9.8 Nm (1.0 kgfm, 7lbfFt).


5. Now the fun part...tuning it. Tighten the big middle bolt on the tensioner until it is hand tight. You feel some pressure on the chain then back it out a 1/4 of a turn. Start the bike and give it a few revs to where you were hearing the chain rattle, most likely between 4000-6000 RPM. Turn off the bike. Tighten the tensioner bolt in small increments and retest until your rattle is gone. Both the bolt and lock-nut are 5/8 inch. You don't want it too tight, so a little rattle is ok. A little loose is better than too tight. After you find the sweet spot make sure you remember to tighten the lock-nut as well. I had to actually go for a test ride to make sure. I just left the fairing off, went for a ride, came back and decided to tighten it a little more.

6. I used some LocTite on the lock bolt. Not sure if its necessary but I like to think it will help. Tighten lock all the way, reinstall toolbox and right fairing and you are done.


Conclusion: Happy news. The noise went away. No more rattle. After removing the fairing and toolbox, the install takes less than 5 minutes. It might take a little longer if you use some silicone to make a gasket. After that you just adjust it to our liking. If anyone needs more pictures or larger pictures please let me know and I will try to post them.

PS: Next week I will probably be synchronizing the throttle bodies. Would anyone want a write up or is it unnecessary because there is already enough information available? Either way let me know.
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Old 04-07-2009, 10:26 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icbluej View Post
PS: Next week I will probably be synchronizing the throttle bodies. Would anyone want a write up or is it unnecessary because there is already enough information available? Either way let me know.
i want a rite up... we can never have to much info :icon_lol:...and besides why wait till next week do it 2morro...
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Old 04-08-2009, 09:49 PM   #3
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I am about to order the Carbtune, so it probably won't arrive till next week. Then I'll be able to do it.
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Old 05-19-2009, 09:53 PM   #4
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This might not happen for a while I only have 5,000 miles on my bike but now I know how to do it. Nice write up.
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Old 05-20-2009, 06:17 PM   #5
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Very handy info, I'm going to fit one to mine as it's had the camchain rattle at 4-5k rpm for a while now.

Just one question - my brother's got a new APE tensioner which was sent to him in error (should have been for a Busa or summat) which might be ok to use on my RR. Without pulling the standard tensioner I can measure and compare the mounting bolt spacings but can anyone give me the diameter of the boss which locates into the hole in the cylinder head?

Thanks in advance
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Old 05-22-2009, 05:18 PM   #6
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I'm changing mine out as well and was wondering if I needed the special tool
(cam chain tension holder # 07ZMG-MCAA400) per instructed by the service manual. It states to use the tool to turn the tensioner shaft fully in clockwise and securing it with the special tool in order to prevent damaging the cam chain.

Since the write-up doesnt say anything about this procedure, would like to know if it is required when changing the OEM CCT to the APE CCT.
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Old 05-23-2009, 03:45 AM   #7
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I think you only need that if you are putting the OEM back in. That is so the tensioner doesn't stay out and push too much on the cam chain when you put it back in.
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Old 05-26-2009, 03:11 PM   #8
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Yup reckon that could well be the little plate you use to lock the tensioner in the retracted position before you fit it, so it them moves out to the right tension instead of overloading the tensioner by being out too far.

Icbluej - I've checked the bolt spacing now on the tensioner I've got (which is ablue one btw) and that matches up but the tensioner body is oval in shape and I reckon it won't match up to the lopsided shape of the original tensioner which I think has an oil feed hole in it? Cant really see that side of your tensioner from your photo.
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Old 05-27-2009, 01:55 AM   #9
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Troy, you are right. The tensioner I used does have a lopsided half where there is an oil feed hole. As long as it covers that hole and doesn't leak it should be ok. I used some silicon gasket stuff just in case.
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Old 05-27-2009, 12:57 PM   #10
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Just as I thought then. Got the right one on order now so should have it fitted in a week or so.

cheers for the info :)
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Old 05-29-2009, 11:30 PM   #11
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Geat wite up!
I only have 8k miles on my '06 and I'm hearing a rattle around 4-6k rpm. No matter if I'm moving, on stand, clutch in, clutch out, in gear or neutral. I'm thinking of trying this, looks very easy!
Is there anything that can get messed up by doing something wrong? Looks pretty staight forward.
Where is the best place to get an APE CCT and about how much do they run?
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Old 05-30-2009, 11:43 AM   #12
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It is easy to do.
Worst case scenario: Tensioner comes loose, backs out, CAM Chain skips teeth on the sprocket. Very bad.
Also, if you put it too tight the tensioners inside use hard plastic that can wear prematurely. Or if its real tight will probably make a lot of plastic shavings that end up in your oil.
Anyone else know what can happen?

I got my tensioner from eBay for about $50. Some of the vendors probably have them for a better price.
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Old 06-05-2009, 03:50 PM   #13
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My bro fitted mine for me today :) took him all of 5 minutes, didn't need the new gasket I'd got just in case. He used a spare locking tab to lock the old tensioner in position so he could measure it's set position and initially set up the manual one to the same. Still got some noise at 4-5K but he says it's general engine noise.

Nice easy job to do which makes a change.
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Old 06-13-2009, 11:16 AM   #14
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i have a rattling sound coming around 3-4k in first gear, I am thinking that may be it since on my f4i it had the same problem except it sounded a million times worse and it was in every gear. I haven't ridden my bike in over two months (military deployment) but should be riding again in a month
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Old 06-13-2009, 11:46 AM   #15
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good write up but....if your bike is making noise with the cam chain, specially at 33000km you should change the chain not get something to hold it tighter! eventually it will stretch to the point and it will break then a little rattle is the least of your worries when you bend valves,smash buckets. smash pistons bend cranks or worse!!!!
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Old 06-15-2009, 10:09 PM   #16
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Do the 05 bikes have this tensioner issue or is it just the older models? I just purchased a 05 with 15k and I hear a slight rattle in the clutch cover at startup if I rev the bike. It goes away after the bike comes up to temperature. Does this sound like a cam tensioner issue. I am not the concerned as it goes away once the bike warms up.
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Old 06-17-2009, 05:12 AM   #17
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Cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by icbluej View Post
It is easy to do.
Worst case scenario: Tensioner comes loose, backs out, CAM Chain skips teeth on the sprocket. Very bad.
Also, if you put it too tight the tensioners inside use hard plastic that can wear prematurely. Or if its real tight will probably make a lot of plastic shavings that end up in your oil.
Anyone else know what can happen?

I got my tensioner from eBay for about $50. Some of the vendors probably have them for a better price.
Hi

The problem i got is that i had the same rattle then replaced my tensioner and noise went away. but then out of the blue the noise reappeared and now the noise is at idle quite badly.

Please help guys
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Old 06-17-2009, 04:50 PM   #18
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it may not be a chain tensioner, could be a clutch that needs replacing
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Old 06-24-2009, 05:57 PM   #19
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ilips, the problem is usually not the chain, its just the automatic tensioner not providing as much tension.

Mike, I would not worry about the noise if it goes away. Don't know if its just mine, but before I switched the tensioner, it would make more noise as my bike warmed up. Mine is an 06 so I am guessing it is almost exactly like the 05.
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Old 08-06-2009, 10:53 PM   #20
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Hi

The problem i got is that i had the same rattle then replaced my tensioner and noise went away. but then out of the blue the noise reappeared and now the noise is at idle quite badly.

Please help guys
did you make it super tight? you could have demolished the guides if so. i'm not a big fan of these instructions that the OP posted. what i've been told to do is start by tightening it til you feel it touch (not "hand tight," what does that MEAN? too ambiguous) then turn it 1/4 turn past that. start it.

if it's rattling still after it warms up, then tighten til the rattle is gone and no more beyond that. you will know if it's too tight because it'll make a "whirring" sound, too loose and it rattles. also, if it is too tight the idle will fluctuate. the only fool-proof way to do it is to actually follow the instructions that APE provides which is to adjust it based on chain slack with the valve cover off and the engine at TDC (1/4"-3/8" of freeplay). however, many have had good results going by sound alone. you can back it out slowly until you hear the rattle (it will be really obvious at a very distinct point), then turn it in very slowly until the rattle is juuustt gone, and that's it- tighten it up and ride.


i will be checking my valves in a couple thousand miles. at that point i will check my chain slack, see how it is using the "sound" method i just detailed and report back.


these things are the greatest thing since sliced bread when they're tuned right, but if they're too tight they can wreak havoc on the guides and cam sprockets. i've talked to an engine builder who says that most engines he sees with these installed, the people have made the adjuster too tight and the guides and sprockets are beat to ****.
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Old 08-30-2009, 12:31 PM   #21
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does anyone know how of the tool needed to replace with a stock cct??
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Old 08-30-2009, 11:48 PM   #22
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^^ pg. 9-9 and 9-10 of the 03-06 cbr600rr service manual
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Old 10-02-2009, 01:39 PM   #23
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where did you buy the new tensioner?
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Old 10-03-2009, 04:02 AM   #24
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I got mine from ebay. But I'm sure the vendors here can give you a good price.
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Old 04-11-2010, 01:54 PM   #25
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Just put one on.. I can still notice the rattle but its alot better
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Old 04-11-2010, 07:52 PM   #26
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Interesting...
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Old 05-09-2010, 08:43 PM   #27
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The OEM CCT is perfectly fine...what rattles is that tip. Don't buy that crap manual chain tentioner...

Look in his photo, you can see the tip of the CCT is held on by a pin...what I did was welded my tip and no more rattles. I don't like the manual chain tensioners b/c they don't ever add tension and squids can over tighten them.
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Old 05-09-2010, 08:45 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icbluej View Post
ilips, the problem is usually not the chain, its just the automatic tensioner not providing as much tension.

Mike, I would not worry about the noise if it goes away. Don't know if its just mine, but before I switched the tensioner, it would make more noise as my bike warmed up. Mine is an 06 so I am guessing it is almost exactly like the 05.

This is 100% false...it is an old rumor.. The stock tenstioner is providing plenty tension....there is more then enough room in the oem tensioner to provide for even excessive amounts of chain wear.
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Old 05-10-2010, 09:10 AM   #29
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I think you only need that if you are putting the OEM back in. That is so the tensioner doesn't stay out and push too much on the cam chain when you put it back in.
its ridiculous that this little tool costs $50. i guess that's why most buy the APE CCT

Last edited by soymilk; 05-10-2010 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 05-10-2010, 09:14 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by TBFGhost View Post
The OEM CCT is perfectly fine...what rattles is that tip. Don't buy that crap manual chain tentioner...

Look in his photo, you can see the tip of the CCT is held on by a pin...what I did was welded my tip and no more rattles. I don't like the manual chain tensioners b/c they don't ever add tension and squids can over tighten them.
really? i thought the sound is the chain slapping inside because of the loose tension. i wonder how the OEM automatically adjusts tension
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