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Old 07-18-2004, 10:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How to: tighten the timing belt?

I don't have one of those fancy manuals-on-CD yet, and I was wondering what the proper procedure was to tighten the timing belt on the 3.0L DOHC engine. I already did a search for back posts, but couldn't find what I needed. My timing belt is so slack, it smacks the block and makes a ton of noise.

thanks in advance.
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Old 07-18-2004, 10:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

No way to make belt tighter without replacing parts. I was looking over for my 120K service instructions and someone mentioned that if your belt is loose you should replace the belt and while you are there do all stuff required for 60K or 120K service.
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Old 07-19-2004, 07:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gavricand
while you are there do all stuff required for 60K or 120K service.
Heh. Looks like I'm at the 232K service

Alright. I finally found a post that correlates to what I need:

http://www.3si.org/forum/showthread....g+belt+tension

It turns out that you CAN set the tension how you want it, but you need a special tool from mitsubishi. And yes, I know I *should* replace the parts, but I'm strapped for cash. I'm going to hell, I know I know.

Here are some more questions:

1. Do you need to pull the engine to replace the timing belt and pulleys?
2. How much is the timing belt tensioner tool from mitsubishi?
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Old 07-19-2004, 11:57 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

Timing belt is a ROYAL pain in the arse. Just did it on my VR-4. It's probably worse on that car than an NA because you have to pull off a bunch of the turbo piping etc. In hindsight, I almost wouldn't recommend doing it yourself unless you've got a lift and air tools. It took forever, and was a huge headache.
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Old 07-20-2004, 09:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

Do you have to pull the engine to replace the belt and pulleys?
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Old 07-20-2004, 04:49 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

If you have to ask these questions you probably shouldnt be trying to do all of this and you probably dont have all of the tools required to do it. Sorry but it sounds like you dont know a lot about fixing cars and you wouldnt want to mess this up since it would mean the end of your engine.

And yes you would have to pull the engine.
http://www.3sxperformance.com/tools.asp the pulley tensioner can be bought from 3sx for $20
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Old 07-20-2004, 09:42 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisstealthes
If you have to ask these questions you probably shouldnt be trying to do all of this and you probably dont have all of the tools required to do it.
No offense, but I think that this is exactly the wrong attitude to have when working on cars. The only reason why I'm asking questions is because I want to learn what I need to know to get the job done. I've been working on cars for 3 years as a "home mechanic" and I've saved hundreds and hundreds of dollars by doing so. What I'm saying is that I don't give up eaisly. I'm very stubborn and extremely driven to learn and get the job done. However, I appreciate your concern and I do realize that we must know our limits. I know mine, I just choose to ignore them.

I spoke with the local dealer, and I have arranged to photocopy sections of the factory manual so I can use the factory torque specifications when I install the new timing items. I always make sure that the work gets done properly. Always. And if that means buying specialized tools for the job, so be it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisstealthes
And yes you would have to pull the engine.
After a substantial amount of digging, I finally found a website that describes how to do it. And you don't have to pull the engine. Only the driver's side motor mount.

http://www.vr4stealth.com/60k-tune.htm

This one picture answered all of my questions, and I'm posting it up to help out those in the future who are in the same position as I am:



You can see that the hydraulic tensioner exerts a force on a rotating bracket that holds the timing belt tensioner. Since the force applied by the hydraulic tensioner is SET by the factory (at x newtons), the goal is to use that 2-pronged tool to essentially rotate the tensioner pulley (which rotates about a non-centerline axis), which thus pushes on the hydraulic tensioner. In order to determine if the tension is correct, you are supposed to be able to remove a pin from the hydraulic tensioner which becomes "unsnagged" when the factory force of x newtons is applied.

This is all explained in instruction step 26 on the webpage.

I hope this helps somebody out in the future.
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Old 07-21-2004, 07:35 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

the most important part in doing your 60k is getting the tension right on the timing belt. i messed up when i did it this spring and now i'm getting my heads rebuilt with new intake valves becuase the belt slipped and they hit the pistons. i was lucky though, could've been worse.
in other words, THE TENSION IS VERY IMPORTANT!!!!!!!11!!1!


but, if you trust your mechanical abilities you should do ok. a few things to keep in mind:

-two sites to review: the one you put above and www.us3s.com. both have sections on the 60k service.
-buy a damn manual. you'll wonder afterwards why you hadn't bought it sooner. seriously, for $15 you can get it on cd.
-buy the damn special tensionor tool. some people manage without but it'll save you headaches later.
-the cam sprocket holders rock. for a half hours worth of your time before doing the service and a trip to the hardware store they will be a huge help. (i'm talking about the wooden wedges with the bolt through it to keep the cam sprockets in place at TDC.)

lastly, QUADRUPLEDUPLEDOUBLEDUPLE CHECK EVERYTHING! no no. no questions there, just do it

good luck!
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Old 07-21-2004, 05:14 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

you do not have to pull the motor.. i did my complete 60k in 8 hours. the tensioner tool can be bougt from 3sx i beleive. there are several 60k guides around and if you take your time and follow the instructions you will be fine. tension is basically governed by the tensioner. are you referring to it being slack with the car off?? if so it is supposed to have some freeplay in that condition. why i forget but it is
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Old 07-21-2004, 08:14 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to: tighten the timing belt?

I've gone over the whole 60K tuneup procedure, and I understand all parts of it thoroughly, except for one:

- what is the "correct" procedure for removing the crank pulley center bolt?

On the 60K tune I read, the guy loosens it by bracing the 1/2" socket wrench against the ground or something, then cranking the engine over. Which is pretty funny how ghetto that is. Anyway, that's all fine and dandy for getting the bolt off, but then how does he put it back on?

Also, when you put it on, how to you keep the crankshaft rigid (make it so the force of you screwing the bolt in doesn't turn the engine over)? I was thinking about putting the engine in gear, but then the torque of the crankshaft would turn the driver's side wheel (the one that you have to take off to gain access to the crankshaft bolt anyways).



Quote:
Originally Posted by LUSTFUL
are you referring to it being slack with the car off?? if so it is supposed to have some freeplay in that condition. why i forget but it is
I'm saying that it is slack with the car running. It's so slack, it hits the waterpump pulley very hard. Hard enough to make a very loud and rhythmic noise which eventually goes away at 2000rpm when the belt is going so quickly that it can't vibrate anymore. The belt is so loose, I can move the teeth of the belt foward or backward a notch on the cam gears with my hands without much difficulty. It's amazingly dangerous. I bought it off a guy in maryland who was convinced it was the lifters, and he had been driving it like this for several thousand miles. I can't believe it hadn't slipped off. It scares the hell out of me to even start the engine up.

Anyway, the reason why the timing belt is slack in some parts and tight in others when the engine is off is because the camshafts have "at rest" positions. When they're inbetween positions (when they're pushing down valves), they exert a torque on the cam pulleys, therefore artifically tensioning the belt.
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