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I've had my 07 Custom for about 2 months. I love the way it looks and handles but the tick is driving me crazy. I tried ear plugs and that helps, but most of my rides are 30 minutes or less and I wouldn't typically wear ear plugs. Plus I like to hear the exhaust note. Which brings me to my question. I am looking at after market exhausts to cover the tick. Will this work? If so, what exhaust is recommended that won't be so loud as to set off car alarms and piss off the neighbors? If I get after market pipes, do I HAVE to do any other mods such as air filter of fuel intake? Can a novice mechanic install the needed pipes and/or mods?
 

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Why don't you try debaffling first? It costs next to nothing (depending on what tools you already have), and it will give you an idea if you want to pursue the aftermarket pipes thing. Go gradually though, a full debaffle may be a little loud. I've just done the first stage. Drilled out the little plugs in the baffles. I can still hear the tick, so you'll probably want to do at least stage 2.

If you decide on new pipes, it's not that hard to change them, as long as the new ones are a perfect fit. A torque wrench is the only thing out of the ordinary that you'll need.
 

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The only tick you can do anything about is the exhaust at the head. Check the acorn nuts. Look up the debaffle thread if you don't to hear the noises a 900 makes. You don't have to change the intake to debaffle or install new pipes. You also shouldn't need a fuel processor for changing the pipes. I don't know of any aftermarket pipe that won't set off alarms. Even my debaffled pipes do it...but you don't need to do a full debaffle either.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Debaffel sounds good. Can someone explain the "stages"?
 

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What is this 'tick' you all speak of?

I've just received my 09 Custom SE and can't hear anything but a beautiful rumble from the exhaust :p
 

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Debaffel sounds good. Can someone explain the "stages"?
Stage I: Just drilling or punching out the screen ('08 & before) or plug ('09 &up). 7/8" hole saw & drill extension needed.

Stage II: Remove cover plate at end of pipe and cut off the little flat bracket thing. Dremel will work, but most seem to say a sawzall works better. Then drill 2-8 holes (3/8" I think) in the ends of the baffles.

Stage III: remove the entire baffle. There are other threads here & elsewhere on the net (youtube even has some video tutorials) that can explain it better than I can. Just search "debaffle".

It's recommended to do 1 "stage" at a time & live with the results for a little while. You can't put these baffles back in. But you can get a used stock exhaust pretty cheap.
 

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Do a google for "900 debaffle how to" and you'll find a couple of good threads with in depth instructions and pics. ;) You'll still hear the tick a bit, though. A good quality oil will help a bit as well... I won't make any recommendations, as that usually starts a war, but there are plenty of oil discussions here and abroad. LOL
 

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ticking noise

I hear the tick on mine all the time when I'm coming to a stop and the engine idles down, once it gets to lower idle I hear the dreaded tick. I just figured it is normal with all the 900 engines? Is this the case for everyone, is there a way to get rid of it?
 

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I have the tick on my new 09 Classic Lt. Just bought it a few weeks ago with 0 miles on it. It has done it since at least from 100 miles. Think I was just too excited to notice it the first 100. The only time it is NOT extremely annoying is when I am lugging it or really getting down on it. Have already had the first service done at 500 miles and spoke to the mechanic who done the work and he said it is the valves and he could adjust them but they would still tick. Said all the 900's he has heard has the sound. He did test drive it for 4 miles. Said basically to learn to live with it. Called dealer I bought it from and the just suggested I get pipes for it. I would love to talk to some higher up at Kawasaki and find out if the ticking is indeed normal and if it is then they should do something about it. If it is not normal then they should do something about it to the bikes that do have the problem. I spent all this money on something I can not enjoy and then have to send 400-500$ to cover it up with pipes or just learn to live with it...I think not.
 

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I have the tick on my new 09 Classic Lt. Just bought it a few weeks ago with 0 miles on it. It has done it since at least from 100 miles. Think I was just too excited to notice it the first 100. The only time it is NOT extremely annoying is when I am lugging it or really getting down on it. Have already had the first service done at 500 miles and spoke to the mechanic who done the work and he said it is the valves and he could adjust them but they would still tick. Said all the 900's he has heard has the sound. He did test drive it for 4 miles. Said basically to learn to live with it. Called dealer I bought it from and the just suggested I get pipes for it. I would love to talk to some higher up at Kawasaki and find out if the ticking is indeed normal and if it is then they should do something about it. If it is not normal then they should do something about it to the bikes that do have the problem. I spent all this money on something I can not enjoy and then have to send 400-500$ to cover it up with pipes or just learn to live with it...I think not.
Dude. It's a normal noise from a fuel injected engine. FI cars do it as well, it's just not noticed as often because of the separation from the engine, but ya gotta think you've got all those moving pieces making their racket in an open, uninsulated engine area that's just a few feet away from your ears. If ya don't want to spend the "400-500$" for new pipes, perhaps look at the different stages of debaffling? You eventually get used to it, trust me... it's just the nature of the beast. Google "Kawi Tick" and you'll see, it's been around for ages. You can also find lots of entries under "Yamaha Tick", and the notorious "Honda Tick", etc. etc. etc. You can even find listings under "Harley Tick" and "Victory Motorcycle Tick".

Even before I debaffled my pipes, it came nowhere near wiping the grin off of my face as I rode, though. Check your fluids weekly, change your oil regularly, relax, and focus on the ride just a little more...
 

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Don't get me wrong I love the bike for everything else. I have been riding all kinds of bikes for about 35 years now and rebuilt many car engines and have never heard an engine this bad. Imagine someone with a ballpoint pen clicking it on your helmet while you are riding. It is just one of those noises that gets in your head and drives you crazy. i think i can get used to all the other noises, and believe me there are many.
 

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Don't get me wrong I love the bike for everything else. I have been riding all kinds of bikes for about 35 years now and rebuilt many car engines and have never heard an engine this bad. Imagine someone with a ballpoint pen clicking it on your helmet while you are riding. It is just one of those noises that gets in your head and drives you crazy. i think i can get used to all the other noises, and believe me there are many.
I hear the tick, but only when I'm riding closely next to the wall of a building or bridge, etc....where the sound is being emphasized and bounced back. Otherwise, I never hear it. If it's that loud on your bike and you have wide open space around you while hearing it, perhaps you do have a mechanical problem.
 

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If you are running a windshield and like mine with the lower wind deflectors you will hear it tick. Normal and not a problem.
 

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I hear the tick, but only when I'm riding closely next to the wall of a building or bridge, etc....where the sound is being emphasized and bounced back. Otherwise, I never hear it. If it's that loud on your bike and you have wide open space around you while hearing it, perhaps you do have a mechanical problem.
Same with my custom, but I hear it when stopped as well. His (csmithrc) is the LT, though, so I'm sure that windshield is bouncing/reflecting the tick back to him quite a bit.
 

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Tonight Park your bike where it is real dark. Cover and black out all of your lights on your bike. Put it in netral. Crank it and let it idle. If you hear it ticking? Get down on your knees on one side and then the other and look real hard and see if you see a spark jumping from a plug wire. I had this happen on my 1600 one time. Good luck. mojo
 

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Thanks All. Sorry for sounding like a you know what for my first post but had been up for about 20 hours and had worked all night. Been lurking a while here just reading up on past post. I did call Kawasaki today and they told me that ALL the 900's tick so if somebody's doesn't then I guess something is wrong with yours. lol Anyway, I am already half way to crazy so I guess the sound will just help me get there quicker. Thanks again for any suggestions.....
 
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