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Discussion Starter #1
Guys, I know my title implies 2 different phenomenons.

However, my question is in regards of ways to test to confirm having an exhaust leak or not, before wasting my time changing exhaust gaskets that might not need to be changed.

I've read numerous posts stating that Vics are poppers, but I would still like to test and confirm if possible. It is a lot like me to engage in work that not need done, and end-up I don't know..... Damaging something like in this case scratching my pipes or breaking an exhaust stud.... You know... End up with frustration and dismay to fix a problem that wasn't there in the first place.

Latest example is cleaning my ignition wires and connections to the coil.... Of course the rear wire/ connection separated, leaving me with a 2 piece wire!!!! ( and NO I didn't pull on the wire, I know better)Just cause... So I temporarily rebuilt it and ordered new wires for new thundervolts that came highly recommended on this site, but still...

So when going through a village at around 35-40 mph, in a gear that keeps me just above 2000 rpms, if I stay on that gear a for a steady period of some 30 seconds to a minute, I have about a 25% chance of hearing a nice pop as I accelerate out of that village during the next gear change.

My front exhaust nuts were a bit loose when I first got the bike, and needed almost a full turn to be snug.... For a few rides after that, they needed about 1/8-1/4 turn after each ride. So much so that I wondered if the nut wasn't seized on the stud and the stud unscrewed from the block during the ride!! I have yet to confirm that.

I've read about the particularities of Vic shifting and not completely unloading the clutch etc...

It doesn't pop half as much as it did, but I still get the odd pop here and there. Especially in cold weather. During the super hot days, haedly ever but when cold outside, a bit more....

Hey, if it's really the nature of the beast, so be it!!! But if it ain't, I'd like to fix it.

So how can I test it?!!!

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Don't know exactly how to test unless you could put something that bubbles where the exhaust and the engine meet like soapy water but that will burn off if the engine is up to operating temps. My 2011 XR popped like crazy when I put the aftermarket exhaust on but now that 5 years have passed it rarely pops now. When it does it usually in the up shift from 1 to 2 and sometimes to 3rd. It will pop if the revs get too low like riding down a twisty mountain road and I don't keep a little gas on. My bike is all stock except for the exhaust.
 

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rare the stud would unscrew, are they snug now?
No real drama to r+r your pipes I done mine plenty of times when experimenting.
Personally I like a little snap crackle pop as long as it dont go bang near a policeman and he returns the fire!
We fitted the Lloyds gaskets at rebuild time and Ive had pipes on and off a few times no leaks.
I add a smear of hi temp copper silicon whenever I do it for insurance.
 

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My 09 Kingpin 100 has never backfired or popped. Still has stock pipes. Our 2011 Pin 106 popped with stock and aftermarket pipes?. I will keep the 09 stock, I like not having it pop.
 

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Minimizing throttle movement when shifting minimizes popping. 2000 rpm is too low. Try keeping 'er closer to 3K minimum. If you still have the OEM exhaust gaskets, they are crap. Get Lloydz, they're thicker and softer. Someone posted a long time ago that the ones for a certain Jap car will work and cost less. You gotta do a search if you're interested.
 

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Like Ric said, Keep the R's up. These bikes don't like to lug like Harleys, they like to run in the higher RPM ranges. When cruising, I shift at about 3k. When I am having fun, the tach will tickle 5k ;)

I would recommend you re-snug the exhaust bolts. You don't want snug, you want tight (I forget the spec). Otherwise you aren't forming the gasket to the head and you don't have a good seal.
 

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I've read of two ways to examine the pipe/head joint for leaks. One makes sense to me while the other does not. The way that makes sense is to start bike in a garage with no air movement (no fan or wind). Light a small candle or a fireplace lighter (long stem). Move the flame all around the joint and any leaks will blow the flame around. The way that does not make sense is to spray something like carb cleaner all around the joint. Allegedly, any leaks will cause the engine rpm to change since the carb cleaner is a fuel and will change the amount of fuel the engine is getting. This latter method makes no sense to me. It would work on an intake manifold joint where anything sucked in through a leaky joint would enter the pistons but at the exhaust pipe joint, it would not enter the piston to change the rpm. Oh well, I've still heard of this latter method being used.

G'day,

Vinish
 

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I've read of two ways to examine the pipe/head joint for leaks. One makes sense to me while the other does not. The way that makes sense is to start bike in a garage with no air movement (no fan or wind). Light a small candle or a fireplace lighter (long stem). Move the flame all around the joint and any leaks will blow the flame around. The way that does not make sense is to spray something like carb cleaner all around the joint. Allegedly, any leaks will cause the engine rpm to change since the carb cleaner is a fuel and will change the amount of fuel the engine is getting. This latter method makes no sense to me. It would work on an intake manifold joint where anything sucked in through a leaky joint would enter the pistons but at the exhaust pipe joint, it would not enter the piston to change the rpm. Oh well, I've still heard of this latter method being used.

G'day,

Vinish
It might burn good though.
 

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Dahammer
All vic's pop cause of the poor ECM/IAV that polaris put in the bikes. Stock pips hide the pops but there there.
Doesn't your bike have a fuel tuner like a PCV or something. If so that should take away 90% of the pops. A milled speed shift where you don't close the throttle will stop most poping. If you have exhaust leak you'll get a pop when you let off the gas. Am guessing the old owner might have not replace exhaust gaskets when he put on the short pipes.
Most auto parts store sell Felpro gaskets p/n 60659
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Don't get me wrong, it doesn't happen all the time. I could very well live with it. As said however, if it isn't normal, I'll fix it.

By the way, never ever have I gotten a pop when decelerating or downshifting. Always when upshifting.

I'll try the candle thing tomorrow. If it shows to leak, I will get the recommended gaskets.

Thanks.
 

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If you only get popping up shifting its normal. Like we all have said keep the R's up when shifting and you'll get very little popping
 

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The closer my tune got to correct air flow & gas mix (With a AF meter) the less up shift popping I had with open aftermarket pipes. Now virtually NONE at all with V&H and tuned to near perfection with my Dobeck EJK3.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If you only get popping up shifting its normal. Like we all have said keep the R's up when shifting and you'll get very little popping
Yeah, only upshifting. Went for a short ride today, and again, popped twice towards the end of my ride, and it was while upshifting.

When I got home, I tried the long lighter near and around the exhaust ports and nothing, the flame never moved.

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Did you try hardly moving the throttle when upshifting?
 

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Did you try hardly moving the throttle when upshifting?
Yeah..I got into the habit on my old 750/4 bobber of shutting the throttle every shift as the throttle return was non existent...old habits die hard.
I found out at the track you can actually leave it flat out very lightly fan the clutch and with preload it goes in like an automatic..
That being the other extreme!
Somewhere in between works fine on the street.
Vics change nicely once you work em out.
Like a woman really.:smile
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Did you try hardly moving the throttle when upshifting?
I have to say no to that.. Old habits die hard I guess... My reflex is to completely return the throttle to next to nothing before upshifting. In my mind, keeping the throttle open makes the clutch slip.... But I'll work on That for sure.

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A bit of open-minded practice and youll find we are correct.
No need to pull the clutch all the way to the bar.
With slight preload youll find fanning the clutch lightly to its friction point will have the next gear slip in almost seamlessly.
 

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Most auto parts store sell Felpro gaskets p/n 60659
That is the wrong gasket Johnny. Does anyone know what exhaust gasket I can get at an auto parts store that fits the 106 engine?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
A bit of open-minded practice and youll find we are correct.
No need to pull the clutch all the way to the bar.
With slight preload youll find fanning the clutch lightly to its friction point will have the next gear slip in almost seamlessly.
Oh I'll work on it for sure... I will end-up resetting my brain to adopt the correct way of driving that Hammer.

My VTX was so user friendly, that it was to me the perfect starter bike. No muss, no fuss, any motorcyclist could perfectly ride that bike from the get go.

Don't know if you're also a car guy, but now I see it as going from a fool proof user friendly 5spd honda civic , to a Porsche 911. Same principles, but much more technical. One has to learn to tame the beast.

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Or to use another analogy using women: Jap bikes are like a wanton woman - anyone can have their way with them. Victorys are a sophisticated, elite woman that requires one to get to know and become familiar with before you can proceed to have fun with her.
 
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