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Discussion Starter #1
I spent an entire afternoon trying to replace the plugs, as I'm guessing it has never been changed. So anyway, moving the radiator was a real pain, with all the bolts rusted and no "specific" tools, it took some time and effort. But when I pulled off the ignition coil from the spark plugs, long behold, I find that actual spark plugs are sitting well below the surface, very deep inside the "hole," 5-6 inches below may be. On my previous bikes (FZR & SV), when I took off the spark plug caps, the tip of the spark plugs are situated 1/8 above the surface and visible, so getting them out was possible with regular wrench/sockets.

Now do I need some sort of Honda specialized tools/socket to go deep inside the hole and get it out. The space is quite cramped as it is, I can't even fit my hands inside or move it around with all the hoses and engine parts fitted in tiny space, how the hell do people extract their plugs on modern sportbikes? May be Japanese people have easier time working on them with their hands, but I sure don't. :p

Is this just a Honda thing or is it common among modern sportbikes? Thanks.

It just doesn't justify paying $35.00 for labor just to replace plugs,
 

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it is common to find plugs recessed in the cylinder heads on modern cars and bikes. Just use the right size spark plug socket (MOST LIKELY 5/8" for the bike) and an extention with a ratchet. When you thread them back in make sure you do it by hand first and then use the ratchet to "snug them". hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter #3
would you have a link to an online store may be, I looked everywhere (harbor freight, discount auto, sears, home depot, lowes, napa, and even Honda/Yamaha dealers), but they don't have the swivelling extension that I need for it. would be even better if it comes with the right socket.
 

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Take the tank off. Then it's real easy. You don't even need the swiveling extension.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
actually just the tank wouldn't do, have done it too as well as removing the ducts. I have to take off the airbox as well, and even then there are some hoses constricting the angle. plus it's a real pain putting the box back on again and connecting it to the carbs. either way, I'll need very long extensioner because it's really deep inside. normal sized extensions are too short.
 

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Yeah man, plugs are a horrible job on these bikes the first time you do it. When I first did mine, I put the plug socket on the plug, then measured how long I needed the extension to be and just hit up the local store.

With the right length extension, and very small turns of the ratchet, no swivel extension was needed... maybe it'll work out to be the same story for you, maybe not.

At least you can take solace in the knowledge that it just gets easier every time. And once you have the right tools and know exactly what steps to do, it's not a bad job really. Good luck.
 

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If you have an autozone near where you live you might try them. I bought a spark plug socket that had the universal joint already built in to the socket from them. Its definetly a tool that I have been extreemly pleased with. That thing has saved me a lot of frustration over the years with helping people change the plugs on their cars.

These are what you need, I promixe you will never regret purchasing them ever.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Thanks, I have similar sockets that I used, but can't remember if it has the actual universal joint (the ones I have may swivel one way and not the other). Right now I can't check my tool box because I'm in difference city. But does it work like swivelling kinds, as in able to rotate in all direction? Even with this, how long extensioner do you use on it? And I'll probably need a universal joint to hook it up between extensioner and ratchet.
 

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If you are referring to the F4 spark plugs, they are not that hard. Maybe a 20-25 minute job after the tank is off. It's best to use the tool that was included in the tool kit to remove/replace the spark plugs.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
duessel said:
If you are referring to the F4 spark plugs, they are not that hard. Maybe a 20-25 minute job after the tank is off. It's best to use the tool that was included in the tool kit to remove/replace the spark plugs.
I'm scratching my head... :p as I said, the cylinder heads (??) are banked in angle away from the airbox, so it sort of goes in a slant. Perhaps you have experience with them, but then you may have had the right tools. I took the tank off, and still there are tons of parts and hoses blocking the path if I was to do it directly from above. I figured the only way to do it from above was remove the airbox or go from the side after radiator is moved. So I went from the side. What length extension and universal joints did you use?? I don't have the Honda provided tools, because I'm guessing one of the previous owners decided to keep it before selling the bike, the owner I bought it from didn't have it. Fortunately, he had the manual. But even then the manual is pretty vague, it shows from removing the ignition coils to when the spark plugs are actually out of the cylinder heads. Like to A to C, no B in between or direction to use which tools.
 

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Yes, I owned an F4 and changed it's plugs a few times. I have plenty of experience with this.

Go buy the spark plug socket from honda(not expensive) and it will work for you. Basically, take off everything that is in your way of changing the plugs. The only thing that will have to stay in your way is the frame cross brace that is right above the spark wells. It's not hard, just takes patience.
 

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All you need to remove after the gas tank is the top of the air box so you can move the two air ducts. It's a piece of cake...
 

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Loud412 said:
If you have an autozone near where you live you might try them. I bought a spark plug socket that had the universal joint already built in to the socket from them. Its definetly a tool that I have been extreemly pleased with. That thing has saved me a lot of frustration over the years with helping people change the plugs on their cars.

These are what you need, I promixe you will never regret purchasing them ever.
The swivel is worth it for me esp since taking the tank off is insufficient for getting to the plugs very easily. Part of the problem with the swivel built in is that you can't determine on your own WHERE you want the swivel to be.
 

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Z_Fanatic said:
...So anyway, moving the radiator was a real pain...
You have to move the radiator? :eek: Damn, and I thought it was a pain to change my plugs. I just have to remove the rear covers to get the tank off and then remove the airbox. That is a pain to re-install because then I have to remove the windshield and instrument cluster cover so I can take the upper fairing loose enough to pull the two intake hoses back enough to get the airbox back in. Move the radiator? I guess I won't be complaining anymore about changing mine.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Well that's the recommended procedure from the manual, they don't want you to go from the top, but rather sideways :p. No pun intended. Btw, I don't why you have to tamper with front fairings and clusters, you can just jamm the ducts far enough from the air box. Well I guess different bike, but if you check your manual, I'm pretty sure it'll recommend going from the side.

I'll check it again this weekend. Problem with mine is I possibly have to take off the entire airbox to get a clear view, lifting the front is not possible. Just removing the top of the box, i.e. like changing filter, doesn't do much, since it's the bottom blocking the access. Imagine the bottom is covering the space where the two sides of the frame brace meets the triple clamp; plus hoses.

But seriously guys, I'm asking this like the hundredth time, what length extensions do you guys use to get the socket deep enough into the well? Ones I have came with the box set of sockets and ratchets I bought, and it wouldn't go deep enough even if I approach it from top.

P.S. oh yeah while I was trying to chang the filter, I found there was a leak in the rubber fuel tube, it was gushing gasoline everywhere. Then I lost two plastic tubes that bolts the tank to the frame, so I had the bike lying down naked on its side trying to get the tubes out. Never found it! :D

These bikes look harmless when you take off the hide and lying on its side.
 

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Z_Fanatic said:
...Btw, I don't why you have to tamper with front fairings and clusters, you can just jamm the ducts far enough from the air box...But seriously guys, I'm asking this like the hundredth time, what length extensions...
The first time I had the airbox off (I think it was the first time I changed plugs) I tried the jamming method...It was a total pain in the ass...The hoses come in through the frame so there is no lateral movement and with the fairings firmly in place, they will only back up a fraction of an inch. I tried squeezing them and wedging the box back in place, but the rubber the hoses are made of is pretty rigid. There's also only an inch or so of clearance between the airbox and the frame, so there isn't much room for my hand.

The windshield and cluster cover (not the instrument cluster itself) has to come off so I can get to the mirror bolts so that after taking the screws out of the side of the upper fairing, I can tilt the whole thing. That provides adequate room to pull the hoses through the frame. Then the airbox goes back with no trouble and the hoses easily pop back into place.

It sounds like more work, but I can do the job in less than half the time that way. I'm not sure what method the Clymer or Haynes manuals (I have both) recommend. Might have to check that out of curiosity.

As for the length of my ratchet extension, I have a 10" one that works perfectly. With the airbox off, it goes straight in with nothing obstructing it and the extra length leaves plenty of room to make big turns of the ratchet. I honestly don't see how I could go in from the side with an elbow extension on my bike. There just wouldn't be enough clearance under the airbox.
 

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Geeze for 30 bucks it could have been done by now! Maybe they'd let you watch then you could do it yourself next time.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
mac020 said:
Geeze for 30 bucks it could have been done by now! Maybe they'd let you watch then you could do it yourself next time.
LOL.... gotta learn sometime. They won't let you watch, they're not that nice. Besides, when I posted the topic, I was out of town, and now I'm back home, so I'll take it apart again tomorrow.

Thanks for the tip, hapmstr, now I'll know what to look for :thumb: . Found a 5 incher at Lowes today, they were asking $10.00 for just the extension.:confused:. I'm going to look elsewhere for it.
 
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