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Old 02-02-2020, 02:24 AM   #1
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Timing Chain Tensioners

Good morning all,
I am going to be swapping my tensioners out, (hopefully today) and had a couple questions I couldn't find a clear answer to in the previous threads/DIYs.

1. How much oil should I expect to loose during the swap? Is it best to drain the oil prior to pulling them? Of course I just changed my oil last weekend. Haha.

2. This is where I sound dumb(er). Most directions state to lock the crank at TDC, then lock the cams. But isn't there a TDC for both sides? Does it matter which TDC i'm at for the tensioner swap?

Thanks guys!

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Old 02-02-2020, 03:30 AM   #2
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Hey there! Good luck today.
I can't answer #1, but I can answer #2 for you.

When the manual talks about "TDC", it's not talking about tdc for a specific side, it's talking about a very specific position. Think of it as "service-mode". And while one cylinder is indeed at TDC (iirc, it's cylinder #2 for this motor?) that's not really important. What matters is that you're placing the motor into a known, unchanging position, so that if, during the course of a given procedure, things move, they can be easily put back where they belong. This is especially crucial for procedures that affect timing. SO: when you lock the motor at TDC, there's a mechanical lock (pin) that keeps the crank from moving, and then there are additional Porsche tools available (though some of us have made our own) which lock each cam in their correct location relative to the crank.

Did I explain that in a way which makes sense to ya? I can't always tell..... haha
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Old 02-02-2020, 04:37 AM   #3
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Thats make complete sense! Thanks Maytag. I figured I may have been caught up on the wording a bit. I always have a little anxiety doining timing related repairs. Haha.

So to over simplify, line the timing marks up (pulley/case marks), lock crank, lock cams. Swap tensioners one at a time. Turn crank over by hand to make sure I didnt mess anything up. Haha.

I made a couple cam locking tools, crude but will get the job done. Will probably just drain the oil to cut down on any mess.

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Old 02-02-2020, 04:51 AM   #4
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There's a lot of guys that lock it at TDC with a pin or drill bit (5/8?) and proceed without the cams locked changing ONE tensioner at a time.

Doing without the cams locked has the small chance that a bit of tension released when removing the tensioner may slightly adjust the camshaft position in a worst case scenario.

I suspect this would be more of a risk with a high mileage engine where the chain is older and stretched and the guides have wear.

Certainly others will comment and either support a simple TDC lock, or the full-on lockdown recommended by Porsche...get ready lol.

FYI...If anyone tells you timing chains don't stretch, they are full of ****************.

Good luck.
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Old 02-02-2020, 05:22 AM   #5
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Yeah, I have 178k on it. It really needs chain guides too I'm sure. Hoping the tensioners buy me some time before I have to go that far. I'm starting to plan for a replacement engine, or just getting an S at some point. Haha.

I have read both recomendations on locking the cams. I figure its worth the peice of the mind. The tools are easy to make and the cam plugs are cheap, relatively speaking.

I've seen chains stretch first hand. The chain in my Rubicon was stretched a good bit after 200K. Very noticeable side by side with a new one.
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:02 AM   #6
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This will help. If nothing else, you'll be able to visualize what needs to be done. I know being able to actually see it done helps me immensely:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRmB53bALf8

The video goes a little slow, but this guy is pretty good.

Good luck with your project.

Last edited by piper6909; 02-02-2020 at 06:13 AM.
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:14 AM   #7
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I'm starting to plan for a replacement engine, or just getting an S at some point. Haha.
You probably will never do much better than the 'S' that Onewhippedpuppy has for sale in the classifieds right now.

If it's in your future, you'd be money ahead to grab it now.... especially since everyone is blathering about these cars now being "officially recognized by Porsche as a Classic" (as if that means anything, haha. but I DO think they're at the bottom of the depreciation curve. Thank you Charlie Sheen)
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:18 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piper6909 View Post
This will help. If nothing else, you'll be able to visualize what needs to be done. I know being able to actually see it done helps me immensely:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRmB53bALf8

The video goes a little slow, but this guy is pretty good.

Good luck with your project.
Yes, Ben Burnerís videos are well made and have often given me that little boost in confidence to tackle a job. He seems to have stopped making them though, the last one was a couple of years ago.
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:33 AM   #9
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Yes, Ben Burnerís videos are well made and have often given me that little boost in confidence to tackle a job. He seems to have stopped making them though, the last one was a couple of years ago.
I'm glad you still make them!
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:40 AM   #10
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...but I DO think they're at the bottom of the depreciation curve. Thank you Charlie Sheen)
What did he do?
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:56 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by maytag View Post
You probably will never do much better than the 'S' that Onewhippedpuppy has for sale in the classifieds right now.



If it's in your future, you'd be money ahead to grab it now.... especially since everyone is blathering about these cars now being "officially recognized by Porsche as a Classic" (as if that means anything, haha. but I DO think they're at the bottom of the depreciation curve. Thank you Charlie Sheen)
Thats the supercharged lapis blue one right? If so, i have definitely been drooling over it. Timing just isn't quite right yet for me to buy another car, not that it will ever be. Haha. And I'm not sure the supercharger is what I'm looking for. No offense to owner/builder. It looks top notch and I'll probably regret passing on it later. Haha.

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Old 02-02-2020, 07:14 AM   #12
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Supercharging any M96 engine is just stupid expensive temporary fun. Locking the engine @ TDC minimizes the tension on all the chains.
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Old 02-02-2020, 07:38 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piper6909 View Post
This will help. If nothing else, you'll be able to visualize what needs to be done. I know being able to actually see it done helps me immensely:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRmB53bALf8

The video goes a little slow, but this guy is pretty good.

Good luck with your project.
I've watched his videos a few times over the last week in preparation. Between those, Newarts videos, and the help from you guys on the forum, I've had been able to tackle most repairs with confidence.

I have to put off the tensioner swap until next weekend. Just can't seem to find the garage time today.

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Old 02-02-2020, 09:36 AM   #14
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What did he do?
He's the one who (afaik) started the whole "it's the little sister of the sports car you really wanted but couldn't afford".

I keep wanting to tell him to bring it out to the track and we'll see.... except I hear he's a pretty good driver, too. Haha

I think comments like his and Jeremy Clarkson's have served to accelerate the depreciation of the boxster. Ther boxster doesn't suit the poseur scene very well, because they have to deal with comments like that from all their poseur buddies.

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Old 02-02-2020, 05:17 PM   #15
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He's the one who (afaik) started the whole "it's the little sister of the sports car you really wanted but couldn't afford".

I keep wanting to tell him to bring it out to the track and we'll see.... except I hear he's a pretty good driver, too. Haha

I think comments like his and Jeremy Clarkson's have served to accelerate the depreciation of the boxster. Ther boxster doesn't suit the poseur scene very well, because they have to deal with comments like that from all their poseur buddies.

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Ah, thanks.
I, for one, am glad they are undervalued. It made mine easier to buy. I just wish the parts were equally undervalued! Now, my opinion may change if I decide to sell it, but I don't see that happening anytime soon!

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