So, I'm at 15.3k miles, and I'm pushing the need for a valve adjustment, I really don't want to pay 500 bucks to get it done, but I have no idea how to do it myself, what do I need at the least, and how do I do it?
Foremost, the service manual.
Then a good quality calibrated torque wrench.
A set of feeler gauges. The short ones are easier to get into tight spaces.
A set of metric sockets.
A shim kit, or you can obtain shims from the dealer.
Clean shop rags.
A flashlight would be good too.
It's not too difficult with the tools.
Start with the front cylinder. Once done, it's only a 270 deg rotation to align the rear cylinder.
Make sure the bike is clean and dry around the areas.
Since you'll have the valve covers off, it's not to difficult for dirt or foreign objects to fall into the valve area with dire results.
Lay your parts out as you remove them. Two of the three cam journal caps are marked for intake or exhaust. Don't confuse them.
So, I was talking to a service manager at a shop and I asked him why a valve job was so expensive, and he mentioned something about having to remove one of the radiators, but the service manual mentions nothing about that
A valve job is totally different than valve adjustment.
A valve job is basically due to wear on the valve seats over time.
The valves wear into the valve seat and begin to not properly seal well.
The valve seat is reamed to regain a 45 degree angle seat angle to mate with the valve head.
This requires cylinder head removal.
If worn too badly, the valve seat is removed and replaced, then reamed to properly mate with the valve head, which may also be replaced if needed.