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Thread: Timing guides dillema

  1. #1
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    Timing guides dillema

    well Im doing my chain guides, all is going relatively smooth. just doing a little everyday.
    Just got to pulling the front case cover off... was about to put the cam locks on... Hmmm, cams on #1 are NOT pointing towards each other. AWWWWWWHHHH!
    So im guessing it's 180, out, even though the crank was set on TDC. So I suppose I have to turn the crank over.... OR DO I??

    I read this thread (mostly) https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/s...N-VANOS-engine

    Though mine is a vanos.

    so can I put the cam locks in and swap the guides?


    heres where im at and the order I did it in:

    turned to TDC mark (obviously the wrong TDC)
    Put fly wheel pin lock in

    Took covers off.






    Now I guess I could put the lower cover on, put the tensioner back in, and turn the crank 180, but I'd rather not if I don't have to.


    what would Jesus do?
    Last edited by MD540iT; 12-10-2019 at 04:11 AM.

  2. #2
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    Jesus would do it the right way. Don't try and time it 180 degrees out.
    ASE and BMW Master Certified Technician

  3. #3
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    If you have not broke the camshaft free then just remove the cam and crank locks and then rotate the motor to propper tdc. Remove the plug from cylinder 1 and this time make sure the piston is at the top of its stroke then reinstall the crank and cam locks.

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  4. #4
    JimLev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by White94RX View Post
    Jesus would do it the right way. Don't try and time it 180 degrees out.
    Jesus would do it this way too......
    https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/s...a-540tu-engine

  5. #5
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    One things for sure, Jesus wouldn’t have had a wife, or girlfriend constantly nagging him to get rid of his E39....
    Set the controls for the heart of the sun

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BimmrMeUpSnotty View Post
    One things for sure, Jesus wouldn’t have had a wife, or girlfriend constantly nagging him to get rid of his E39....
    LOL, wonder what he would have said trying to crack the crank (Jesus) bolt?

  7. #7
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    Speaking of Jesus, has anyone heard from JC? Been a while since I’ve heard from him, hope all is good.
    Set the controls for the heart of the sun

  8. #8
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    I've been in touch with him, he's fine and really busy.

  9. #9
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    Well, more trouble, I think, Went to work on it again tonight:

    I put the cover back on to put the tensioner in (though in hind sight I could have used the tool in the toolkit to hold the tension)
    put the pulled and crank bolt back in, pulled the pin out and went to turn the crank (pulled the plugs) used a 3/8, 12" long ratchet

    As im turning it, the chain slips at the crank. couldn't tell if it was 1 or 2 teeth, so I slipped it back a couple teeth, keep turning, at some point the chain slips again, I put it back. slips a couple more times and I try to put it back, but I could be off 1 or 2 links/teeth.
    Keep turning, but now im putting extra pressure on the tension arm with my hand to keep it from slipping.

    But Now it doesn't seem to line up at all. when the crank is at OT. I turn the crank over about 10 times, when ever the lobes on #1 are pointing towards each other the OT mark isn't even close.

    NOW I'm starting to worry I could have bent some valves! One thing I did was put some ratchet extension in the spark plug holes, So I could follow the piston clearance, and watched it in the cam lobes/valves that were opening. Right now it seems like the cam lobe is about 10-15deg off when the piston is at top and starting to move down.

    I can't tell if the resistance is cam lobes or valve bending.

    Oi.... this is really starting to stress me out (I just spent the last almost 3 months reassembling my 944, so I could get it out of my garage JUST so I could get the 540 in, to fix it)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by MD540iT View Post
    But Now it doesn't seem to line up at all. when the crank is at OT. I turn the crank over about 10 times, when ever the lobes on #1 are pointing towards each other the OT mark isn't even close.

    Right now it seems like the cam lobe is about 10-15deg off when the piston is at top and starting to move down.
    The only way to tell if everything aligns is to lock the crank at OT and put the cam lock blocks on. You will need to turn the bank 1 intake cam to get the block on. Bank 2 should drop on without having to turn that cam if everything is correct.

    Did you do that?

  11. #11
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    Your stressing to much. Your not going to bent valves from hand cranking.

    BUT, you need to start following the propper instructions. Go to GAS (German Auto Solutions) website and follow their timing instructions to the T, JimLev's instructional is great as well but again, you need to start following the correct procedure.

    Propper chain tension is important for perfect timing when the engine builds oil pressure. Like Jim said, your bank 1 intake cam (A 1-4) will roll/advance even when the job is done right. Reason behind this is because there is no chain tension because the tensioner is not pumped with oil pressure when not running, that's what the chain tension tool is mimicking, a pumped up tensioner. If not enough chain tension is added during the timing process and you set the cams, bank 1 cam timing will be retarded when running. If you set to much chain tension then the cams will be advanced when running (this is if you really cranked on the tensioning tool).



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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimLev View Post
    The only way to tell if everything aligns is to lock the crank at OT and put the cam lock blocks on. You will need to turn the bank 1 intake cam to get the block on. Bank 2 should drop on without having to turn that cam if everything is correct.

    Did you do that?
    I don't think I'm to that point yet, I haven't put the new guides on yet. Right now im trying to set the OT/cams, so that I can lock everything; but they seem way off in relation. Im afraid the chain has slipped too much, while hand cranking.

    Im thinking I might have to pull the cam caps off so that all the valves are closed, then set crank OT and manually align the cams, Or is that going to be more trouble than nessecary?

  13. #13
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    How much is way off?
    If you pull the cam caps off loosen all of the nuts a turn or two.
    Keep doing it until they are all off so you don't put side stress on the cams.

  14. #14
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    ill have to check, I figured I should stop turning to not risk valve bending, but I want to say 45*?? what ever it was it was more than 10-15* enough where I was really stressing about valve bending

    but I wouldn't think slipping 1 or 2 teeth would cause that much change.
    Last edited by MD540iT; 12-10-2019 at 06:28 PM.

  15. #15
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    yes, will do.

    Im thinking the missing V guide introduced too much slack into the system

  16. #16
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    which is more important, locking the cams or crank first?

  17. #17
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    With the plugs out you can slowly turn the crank to get it to OT. If you get any resistance stop, the piston and valves have probably met. In which case you could remove the long chain, then find out which piston(s) are at TDC, then rotate that cam so you can continue turning the crank to get to OT.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimLev View Post
    With the plugs out you can slowly turn the crank to get it to OT. If you get any resistance stop, the piston and valves have probably met. In which case you could remove the long chain, then find out which piston(s) are at TDC, then rotate that cam so you can continue turning the crank to get to OT.
    that's pretty much what I did yesterday, but when I felt some resistance I kept turning, trying to get the cams to line up. I figured the resistance was the camlobes

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by MD540iT View Post
    that's pretty much what I did yesterday, but when I felt some resistance I kept turning, trying to get the cams to line up. I figured the resistance was the camlobes
    How much force did you use? Alot? A little? Braker bar and vains popping from your forehead or ratchet and wrist?

    If you went big I would pull the cams and do a pressure leak down test just for your sanity and it would be easier to pull the heads now rather then later.

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  20. #20
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    I used a 12" long 3/8" ratchet. I didn't use a ton a force, I used what I thought was enough for overcoming valve spring pressure.
    (for reference, I recently had to hand crank my 944 and it was obvious when the camlobes were pushing the valve open, this seemed similar)
    also I never heard any metal to metal contact (but I don't know that sound would be clear or not)

    I have a headache now.
    Last edited by MD540iT; 12-11-2019 at 02:16 AM.

  21. #21
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    I just did my timing job this year and had a screw up with the timing too. Long story short, I left a cam lock on and turned the crank. I was also super stressed and thought I broke something or bent a valve or whatever.

    For my own peace of mind, rather than try to back peddle, what I did was just remove all 4 camshafts and chains, set them aside, put the crank TDC and then reinstalled the camshafts with the lettering facing up. Then I locked the cams and proceeded with the GAS instructions.

    Only took about an hour to remove the camshafts, and get everything back on track.

    You'll need to remove the vanos housing thingy (Probably not the technical term) from the intake camshaft which has metal gaskets, I didn't have the gaskets on hand so reused the old ones which left a real sour taste in my mouth and I kinda wish I just ordered em and delayed the job but it seems to be fine.

    Also a good idea to check out your lifters while the cam shafts are off.

    Try not to stress like I did, I lost a lot of sleep between my weekends that I could work on the car. I'm sure your car is fine.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deadwake View Post
    I just did my timing job this year and had a screw up with the timing too. Long story short, I left a cam lock on and turned the crank. I was also super stressed and thought I broke something or bent a valve or whatever.

    For my own peace of mind, rather than try to back peddle, what I did was just remove all 4 camshafts and chains, set them aside, put the crank TDC and then reinstalled the camshafts with the lettering facing up. Then I locked the cams and proceeded with the GAS instructions.

    Only took about an hour to remove the camshafts, and get everything back on track.

    You'll need to remove the vanos housing thingy (Probably not the technical term) from the intake camshaft which has metal gaskets, I didn't have the gaskets on hand so reused the old ones which left a real sour taste in my mouth and I kinda wish I just ordered em and delayed the job but it seems to be fine.

    Also a good idea to check out your lifters while the cam shafts are off.

    Try not to stress like I did, I lost a lot of sleep between my weekends that I could work on the car. I'm sure your car is fine.
    Thanks, I appreciate that.

    yes, this is exactly what I will do.
    However what is the best way to tell if I have a bent valve or not?
    I certainly don't want this:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6cbCJZ7NJiM

  23. #23
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    ok well checking now, with the cams facing each other (+/- 10deg) the OT mark is about 160-170deg from the mark on the case: about the 4 o'clock position.

  24. #24
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    well, I went to pull the cam caps, starting with removing the front cam bolts with the T-55..... it wasn't breaking loose, go to a breaker bar Holding the cam with the wrench. And the Torx bit snaps! Can I just use the cam blocks to hold the cam?

  25. #25
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    That T-55 cam bolt is reverse or left-hand threaded. You unscrew it by rotating the breaker bar from left to right.

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