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I started my timing belt project. Not clear on one part though.... When I rotate the engine to TDC, I'm not supposed to use the timing marks on the crank cover am I ? Am I looking for a mark on the crank itself ? And if so, where is the other mark that I'm lining up with as well ? The pictures in the manual are not real clear. Also, I loosened the PS pump and alternator and removed the belts. No need to remove them right ?

thanks,

Bob

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-Bob

To set the engine to TDC you line up the dot on the flange behind the crank pulley with the "nub" (don't know what else to call it) behind the flange at about the 11 o'clock position as your looking at it.

I tried attaching a picture with blue arrows at the line up point. They are not lined up in the picture.

Then you line up the two camshaft pully marks to the (very small) marks on the #3 (back) timing belt cover.

As long as both camshaft pulley marks are lined up, and the crankshaft pulley, then it should be perfectly aligned for the timing belt installation.

Jeff Hauck

Gresham, OR.

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Ok, that helps. So when people refer to marking everything beforehand I assume that's just to get you back to square one in case you get everything out of synch.

So, I need to get the crank pulley off first before I can set it to TDC. I read about the camshaft reference in the manual. How do you line up BOTH though to the back cover ? The belt still has to be on in order to do that right ? If that's the case, then the engine should be (assuming it was done right before) at TDC when I take off the crank pulley shouldn't it ? I can tell this will be one of those "oh I get it" moments when I figure out the sequence. Here's what I've removed so far:

1) overflow tank

2) dogbone and engine mount

3) front TB cover

4) wheel

5) crank pulley access cover (wheel well)

6) alt bracket/alt belt

7) PS pump loose/belt off

Should I take off the crank and cam pulleys next ? Thanks for your continued help. I got my Lisle cam tool today...

Bob

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You really only need to mark the belt if your going to reuse it.

The new belt should have 3 lines across it for alignment.

One lines up with the forward cam pulley mark, one with the rear cam pulley mark, and one lines up with a mark on the crank pulley shaft outside teeth (not to be confused with the mark on the flanged gear behind the crank pulley shaft that was used to line up TDC). If correct, the line on the timing belt at the crank pulley shaft will actually be about (I think) two teeth off of the inboard mark that was used for TDC (but will line up with the dot on the outboard part of the crank pulley shaft (once you get the pulley off you should see what I mean).

If the lines don't seem to properly line up, you might have the belt on backwards like I originally did. Won't hurt anything, it just won't appear to line up so you won't feel comfortable with it until it's flipped around (mine had arrows on the belt designating "point away from engine").

Line up everything to the TDC position with the belt off. The camshaft line up marks on the rear timing belt cover aren't very obvious. Look real close near the upper portion and you should see a raised portion of the cover with a small notch. That's your line up mark.

When your ready to slide the new belt on, ensure both cams and crank pulley marks are in alignment, then slide the belt on.

To back up a little bit, you should first also have removed the tensioner before removing the old belt, and don't install the tensioner until the new belt is in place.

I have the service manual for the '97 ES300 and just followed it step by step.

I'll occassionally check and see if you run into any questions/problems.

I've got a lot of help from a lot of people on the website, so am glad to be able to give something back, especially since I just did my belt last week so my memory is fresh.

P.S. Your last "big" hurdle is getting your crank pulley off. Good luck, mine was on pretty tight. I had to use a couple pry bars behind it to work it off, but I also chipped a part of the ridge off that the alternator belt rides on. A gear puller would be a whole lot safer. I was not able to get my cam pulleys off, so good luck there also. I had to blow off changing my water pump even though I had a new one waiting to install.

Jeff Hauck

Gresham, OR.

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Yep, I'm stuck on the crank bolt. I'm going to try the starter method. Just to confirm, where and which direction did you wedge the bar ? I know that the engine turns clockwise when you're facing it from the pass side. Should my breaker bar be facing forward (toward the front of the car) on the ground ? Just want to be sure so before I try it...

Bob

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Live update !! Ok, I got the crank bolt loose and trying to take the cams pulleys off. They are REALLY tight and the Lisle cam locking tool is starting to bend. Two questions:

1) Is there any reason to take off the front cam pulley ? I'm not replacing cam seals.

2) I know that back one needs to come off to do the water pump.. I'm tempted by the dremel method too.

thanks,

Bob

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Jeff, I used your Dremel method (actually cutoff wheel) on the TB cover. I couldn't get the Cam pulleys off and realized that the only reason to remove them was to get the rear timing belt cover off so the water pump could be removed. I started looking at the new pump and you only need to cutoff about 1/4" of inch across the top. Once you do that, the pump will come out. I have the new one installed and will start putting everthing back together tomorrow. This a HUGE timesaver and I don't see any downside to it. I'll probably leave it as is but you could always fill the void with some Goop/silicone if you thought it would be better. Couple of (I think) final questions:

1) why do they want you to remove the crank gear ? Unless you're replacing the crank seal, I don't see why you would need to do it ?

2) My rear cam gear moved (not sure how).. I just moved it back to the mark and assume that's fine

3) My crank pulley was set to TDC (0 degrees) before I pulled off the crank. If I'm just putting the pulley back on (see #1) I don't need to worry about the flange marks right ? If it hasn't moved, I should be right where I started...

4) There's no hidden "gotcha" with the timing marks are there ? If the cams match the timing cover mark and the crank is TDC (0 degrees), I'm good right ?

I took some pics and will be happy to post... I'm not done yet but I think cutting the TB cover is a big breakthrough - thanks !!

Bob

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Good to hear you got everything off.

I had the same conclusion on the timing belt cover "modification" with a dremel.

I stared at it for awhile and could come up with no reason why it would hurt anything, the only difference was I didn't actually do it. Mainly I was worn out by then and just wanted to finish. I figure the next timing belt change I'll go ahead and do what you did.

1)As far as removing the crank gear, your right, there's no reason if your not replacing the seal.

2) No problem if you turned the cam gears, as long as they were in the correct positions for the belt installation.

3) Once the belts on, you no longer need to worry about position. The pulley is keyed so will only go on one way.

4) No hidden "gotcha's". As long as the belt was slipped on with both cams and the crank gears properly lined up, you'll be fine. Just remember that there are actually two marks on the crank gear. For TDC you want to line the inner mark (actually on the flanged tooth part behind the gear) with the position cast into the block just shy of straight up). Don't use the mark on the outer part of the crank gear for TDC alignment (that mark should line up with one of the 3 lines on the new belt if your using those for reference). I did rotate mine a couple revolutions after the new belt was on and the tensioner was in place just for a "feel good" reason to ensure all 3 marks still lined up after a couple rotations. They did, and when complete the car started right up, no problem.

The reassembly goes much easier than the disassembly.

For torquing of the crank pulley bolt, I stuck a screwdriver in the flywheel gears (actually this is what the Haynes manual recommends). Just to the right (if facing forward) of the transaxle pan cover should be a small plate held on by two bolts and one bracket going to the exhaust pipe. If you pop the plate off, you can wedge a screwdriver in place that will lock the crank. The service manual calls for a special tool to hold it in place.

You might have a much better way, that's just the way I did it. Torque is specified at 159 ft lbs (or just damn tight).

Jeff Hauck

Gresham, OR.

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i just did the crankshaft seal on a 3vzfe motor (I think thats right, its a 95 Aussie model).

I had the hayes manual and was stuck for quite a while with the screwdriver in the ring gear explanation. I have an auto so dont know if it is different to a manual. But I couldnt find a ring gear or converter bolt anywhere near where the photo was indicating.

anyway I ended up pulling off a cover plate that covered part of the sump area. I couldnt remove it completely because of hte exhaust (it just dropped down on to the exhaust) but it was enough to locate a ring gear tooth with a screwdriver. after that it all went sort of smoothly. the crankshaft nut was dammmmmm tight though.

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i locked the cam pully with the special tool, attached a long handle socket and struck it with a sledge hammer. That took it right off. For the crank pully, I used a bar puller from snap on. Works great! Right tool for the right job.

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Well, some quick comments for you guys while they're on my mind. I have some pics and will go into more detail later:

1) I used a cutoff wheel on the back off the timing belt cover so I could get the

water pump off. That eliminates having to take the cam pulleys off.

2) I was able to get the crank bolt off with my 1/2" impact gun. I have a 6HP, 60 gallon tank. I wasted about an hour trying to get it off until I realized that I had the pressure turned down at the regulator - stupid !!

3) No need to take off the crank gear unless your replacing the crank seal

4) I used a harmonic balancer to remove the crank pulley and it came right off. It's only about $20 for the set

5) I used a chain wrench to hold the crank pulley in place when I torqued it back on. This is much easier than removing the starter or access plate to the flywheel.

6) This is the second time I've gotten screwed by the TB marks (on the belt itself). I spent hours trying to get the cams and crank in the right spot AND put the new belt on so the marks line up. I finally used another person to hold the back cam and a wrench held in place with a wood clamp on the front cam. Then I took the tensioner (the one between the two cams) and pressed down on the belt and bolted it in. According to every manual, the rear cam should be the last thing you put the belt on... I'm stumped.

7) I then rotated the engine a few times to try and check my marks but wasn't able to get them where they're supposed to be. I was absolutely positive that the cam and crank were in the right position when I put the belt on that I decided to start the engine (nothing put back together yet) and it sounded fine. I figured it would either run rough or I would get a CEL if I was way off. I've driven it about ten miles now and it's running great. I have to figure if there was a problem it would have shown itself my now... again stumped on why I couldn't get things to line up according to the book.

8) Wierd coolant noise in the dash which I think might be an airlock. I'm gonna post that in a minute.

Bob

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