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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The problem I have is my exhaust camshaft is off 1 tooth when both the crank and intake cam timing marks line up on the block. Is there a certain/easy way of adjusting just the one cam without having to pull the whole engine apart?
Car is a 1999 9-3 3 Door. The WIS makes no mention of adjusting the timing chain short of tearing the timing cover.

However, from what I've been able to gather up I should be able to just unbolt the timing chain tensioner from the back of the head and that should slacken the chain enough so I can pop off the exhaust cam gear, turn the camshaft a tooth's worth back into time, and making sure both cams and crank are on their timing marks, put the exhaust cam on and reinstall the tensioner.

Does this sound like its going to work or am I going to end up getting that far and then having to tear half the engine apart anyways?
 

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no that method should work fine, just to make it easier zip tie the other cam gear to the chain so it does not move.
The real question tho is why is it off one tooth? check how far the tensioner is out, i know there is a spec somewhere. It might be time for a new chain, in that case the "best" way is to get a endless chain which involves taking the timing cover off.
 

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You can almost never expect to have all 3 marks align perfectly on these engines. Unless you've had this engine apart recently don't sweat it. If that timing was off a tooth it would most likely idle poorly. I generally set the intake and crank marks and leave the exhaust more on the advanced side. If you have adjustable cam gears you can make all 3 line up deadly
 

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You can almost never expect to have all 3 marks align perfectly on these engines. Unless you've had this engine apart recently don't sweat it. If that timing was off a tooth it would most likely idle poorly. I generally set the intake and crank marks and leave the exhaust more on the advanced side. If you have adjustable cam gears you can make all 3 line up deadly
Yeah they are normally off a bit, but a tooth off is a big timing diff. If it runs fine i would just leave it
 

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It was the engine I put back together and couldn't figure out why it wouldn't idle, but pulled great.

Turns out exhaust cam is/was off. So its off because I screwed up. But then again if I didn't screw up I might have kept the car and sold the volvo....


Anyway. Pull the timing cover, pop the tensioner out. Un-bolt the exhaust cam, pop over one link and assemble.

I would like to think I could do this in under 1.5 hours.
 

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just keep tension on the tensioner so it cant push out farther, leave it in place while you make your adjustment. Makes that job much faster. It doesn't take much tension to hold that spring in the tensioner back
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Job completed a couple of days ago, and the timing appears to be spot on. The car now runs smoothly and has a solid 19in of vac at 1100rpm. Still won't idle on its own, with the IAC plugged in, the idle drops to 400rpm or so and then dies a short while later if any load is put on the engine. Same happens with my spare. I do have codes set but cannot check them. Unplugging the IAC allows the car to fast idle and I can actually drive it. Has 200 miles since then (saturday) and all is holding.
 
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