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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey folks, in need of some smart ideas...

I was doing a routine replacement of a coolant pipe and rubber bushings/dampers for it, no big deal. Had all the pieces ready, and I started getting in there and drained the coolant, all was well.

Here's where this all took a massive turn for the worse. So the hard coolant line that comes off the cylinder head (39192-0131) has two rubber bushings that hold it in place, clamped under the cylinder head cover. I have these two rubber piece as well, so I was going to put them all in, along with a new O-ring on the pipe. Great plan.

Well, I am so stupid. I forgot to cover the coolant channel on the cylinder head where the pipe goes, and I managed to drop the rubber piece (92161-0690) inside the cylinder head coolant output channel. It is just small enough to fit down inside that hole, and make the sharp 90 degree turn into the cylinder head water jacket. Cue unbelievable anger and profanity, and 6 hours of depressing inability to remove the piece. I cannot see it anymore. There is a small chance the piece is not actually inside my engine, and fell onto the floor somewhere, but I am 95% sure it is in there. Floor is clean.

The piece is rubber, so magnets won't work. The piece sinks in water, I checked with a similar piece, so I can't float it out.

  • Tried compressed canned air to blow the piece out of the coolant channel, no dice.
  • If I can find someone with a powerful air compressor, gonna try that.
  • If that fails, going to try using a household vacuum cleaner, maybe paired with a mesh screen to prevent the piece from being sucked into the canister.
  • If that fails, probably going to find a random clear rubber hose from a hardware store and route it around the thermostat, and try running the engine filled with distilled water, and see if the coolant flow will push the piece to the radiator where I can just shake it out. The clear hose would let me see it flow to the radiator, and prevent it from getting stuck in the thermostat.
  • If that fails, I will have to remove the cylinder head to fish it out, and replace the head gasket and studs and washers. Really do not want to do that.

The nice thing I guess is if I leave it in there, the piece of rubber cannot get to the water pump, since the water jacket and head gasket channels are too thin, and obviously the piece won't get through the thermostat or radiator fins. The piece is also designed to be on the cylinder head, so it won't melt. So at least the piece won't cause catastrophic damage if I leave it in, but I don't want it to get stuck on or in the thermostat should it make it there. So if I have to leave it in there until I get the parts to remove the cylinder head and all the other methods of removal fail, I may have to devise a mesh or filter of sorts right before the thermostat to prevent damage.

Super ultra frustrating. Track day this upcoming Saturday, and this repair to fix a leak and clogged radiator should have taken a few hours, and now it is at best going to be a few days of trying to fish out this stupid bushing...

Any bright ideas? I'm just so frustrated this happened. What a terrible way to mess up a simple repair.

-Mike
 

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84' Goldwing Aspencade, 91' EX500, 98' Ninja 250 w/ 17' 300 engine, 07 EX500
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Are you talking about the small black rubber thing that just slips on the head water pipe?
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If so, I had that exact same thing happened to me a few weeks ago.

I had the coolant system apart doing the pipe O-rings etc.. and it popped off and fell in. I took my air compressor and blew air into the the rear pipe on the left side into the engine to blow it back out. It worked just have a rag over the head to catch the piece.

Hope this helps, if you have any questions let me know.

It's a shame you don't live closer
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Man YES. That is the thing!
Oh god, a success story. I am so pleased to hear this. Can you describe exactly which pipe or P/N you blew with the air compressor into?

Man this is great news! I will just have to find a buddy with a compressor or finally bite the bullet and buy one and eat cardboard for a while. Lol.

Indeed it is a shame I don't live in your area, you've always got cool stuff going on!

-Mike
 

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84' Goldwing Aspencade, 91' EX500, 98' Ninja 250 w/ 17' 300 engine, 07 EX500
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I can do you one better, I'll take pictures of mine, and what I did, just give me a couple of days to get down to my toy box.

It was extremely easy, until I didn't cover the opening, then searching around the shop til I found the tiny pain in the ass. Remember to cover that port with something, rag, small fishing net,etc...you get the point.

I did put a little bit of Permatex inside the rubber, then inserted the water pipe part, wiped away any excess so it doesn't get glued into the head.

Permatex 82180 Ultra Black Maximum Oil Resistance RTV Silicone Gasket Maker, 3.35 oz. Tube https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0002UEN1U/ref=cm_sw_r_apan_i_FP2XZRGVWGKE3SY71N5F?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1


On a sidenote, the older 250s didn't use it, and the EX500 doesn't use it either. So I don't know how important the small rubber thing is. I was thinking if there's a next time, it's goin in the bin, and if I didn't find it I was going to just pop the water pipe and don't worry about it
 

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84' Goldwing Aspencade, 91' EX500, 98' Ninja 250 w/ 17' 300 engine, 07 EX500
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Okay I looked at the photos I took, unfortunately none of getting it out, it's just me and two hands.

But maybe this will help
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If you look at this picture, you're looking at the rear pink silicone hose. All I did I just slid it back enough to get the blow gun in there, blow towards the engine, not the other way going down. Then started easy, and slow, I could see it, but couldn't even get a hold of it with a dental pick. Then I increased the air flow, and POP ! it was out.

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I just loosen it up, and slid it backwards on the pipe, keep in mind I was installing the silicone hoses, new O-rings, radiator, etc.. so everything was new, and greased up, so it was easy enough to do, without removing the pipe itself.

Hope this helps you out, let me know if you need anything else.

Scott
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I GOT IT. The compressed air into the cylinder head did the trick! I just did it in that hose you pictured at the bottom there. Thank god.

I can move on with my life now. Lol.

I will have to find a way to get the rubber piece in, now I have plugged the hole with a paper towel. Thanks for the good idea!

-Mike
 

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84' Goldwing Aspencade, 91' EX500, 98' Ninja 250 w/ 17' 300 engine, 07 EX500
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Glad to help, I don't know how important that rubber thing is, but as I said Kawasaki didn't use it on any small parallel twin engine that I know of until the 300.

Maybe Kawasaki was trying to do something nice and made a pain in the ass or it's nearly not needed I wouldn't worry about it. It's outside the valve cover gasket area, so no oil leak should happen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I believe that rubber piece is just to hold the cylinder head water pipe in place. The O ring on the pipe doesn't fix the pipe into the engine, just seals it. So I think that rubber piece is what "locks" the pipe into the cylinder head. When, for some reason, they decided the simpler single bolt didn't make enough sense.... lol.

Engine is sealed up, and I am going to do a coolant flush with water and vinegar. The black paint from the stupid coolant line I just replaced had clogged my radiator, and my thermostat is worn out, it won't close fully anymore. Lame.

-Mike
 

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84' Goldwing Aspencade, 91' EX500, 98' Ninja 250 w/ 17' 300 engine, 07 EX500
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My 2¢,

If the thermostat is not closing all way, it's gonna cause cooling issues. You'll probably overheat it a lot more often.

If coolant is going thru the engine too fast, it doesn't have a chance to absorb the heat from the metal, then the engine keeps getting hotter, until the radiator can't dissipate the amount of heat/BTUs, then you overheat. Possibly causing serious engine damage.

I'd say bite the bullet now, replace it with on OEM part, don't forget to order that O-ring as well.

If you can't do it now, put it on the next to do list, I'd hate to see you post "blown head gasket" or worse.

Sorry I keep giving you bad news, but at least it's mostly cheap stuff to do, just labor.

Good luck,
Scott
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Indeed. I hadn't said yet, but of course I have already purchased a new thermostat. It's going in ASAP. I did the coolant flush and that went well. Fan came on, no overheating, good signs.

Yeah the thermostat stays just cracked open instead of fully closed. probably about a millimeter or so. Of course that may be kinda a lot lol. But indeed, planned repair asap.

Also learned about how many engine starts you get in a row with a lithium battery when doing a coolant flush until the battery warning light comes on, followed by not riding around up to speed. Lol. Maybe I should have brought my backup lead battery for doing maintenance.

And oh my gosh, when I drained and did the flush, those paint flakes were EVERYWHERE. Stuff was terrible. Glad I got it all out. It was enough to make the radiator not work well, paired with the thermostat issue.

Guess when these bikes just get old enough stuff starts happening lol. Seems like the practical lifespan of most mechanical parts on these bikes is around 50,000 miles or so with good maintenance. Water pump, thermostat, engine mount bushings, etc.

@Ghostt do you have any experience replacing stick coils? Mine are just old, but seem to work fine. Is there a reason to fork out the cash for new ones if these are working? They are a bit dirty and some surface rust, but never dropped them or damaged them.

Thanks for the advice!
-Mike
 

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84' Goldwing Aspencade, 91' EX500, 98' Ninja 250 w/ 17' 300 engine, 07 EX500
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Yup sure do. When stuck coil goes bad you'll notice it really quick, as in they just stop mostly.

I can see going new, just find some low mileage used ones off eBay. I wouldn't even want to know how much they run new...... Nevermind had to look about $100

For the most part I've only had one or two go bad on me. Both of my EX500s, and the old 250 engine I did the stick coil upgrade several years ago.

Maybe have a spare pair in your shop just in case, or in your track tool kit.

Also Kawasaki used the same part # for a bunch of bikes, 21171-0033
 
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