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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all. Have had a very bad year. My 166 is sick since December with bent valves and 164 went out in sympathy with leaking headgasket early January. I aquired donor 166 for spare heads, but I need to practise on the 164 by replacing headgaskets before commencing 166 project.

I have a spare low km 164 engine which I have been practising on. I removed the timing belt and for the life of me, I can't get it back on? The belt has shrunk overnight? I have relaxed the hydraulic tensioner as far as it will bend and there is no way the belt is going back on unless I use screw drivers to lever it over tensioner pulley. A definite no-no.

So what is the exact proceedure to get belt back on. I know all about TDC alignment etc, but can't get enough freedom from the hydraulic tensioner? Help! Also once I have fitted my new belt to the afflicted engine, how do I set the tension with the hydraulic tensioner?

Cheers :confused:
 

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... once I have fitted my new belt to the afflicted engine, how do I set the tension with the hydraulic tensioner?

Cheers :confused:
There's a tool that fixes to the front of the tensioner which shows the correct alignment to set it to.

Can't for the life of me remember what it's called.....


Also, are you absolutely certain the belt path is correct? There should be a diagram somewhere in the inter-web thingy... At work ATM, so difficult to find.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Ronald, but I have another engine to refer to and it's pretty obvious where belt has to travel.
I have been using a 13mm spanner on the tensioner to get rotation but not getting enough clearance to slip belt back on?
It would be good to find out about that alignment tool you are refering to.
 

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Sounds like youll be bending a few more valve after youve fitted the timing belt :p

Get someone else to do that part if you have not done this job before!! Its not really something you wanna get wrong after all the expense of doing so!

Head gasket change isnt too bad JUST LABEL and organise all the bolts and youll be find, and put them back with a manual so you have correct Nm and bolt patterns etc........also make sure you use cam locks.
 

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You don't say which 164 engine it is? is it a 12V or a 24V V6 or is it a 4 cylinder? Come to think fo it, did they ever make a 4 cylinder 164 that had a timing belt?!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sorry guys I have a 3.0 litre 12V V6 with hydraulic tensioner.
a17esh, just joking about bending things, I am an experienced mechanic but have not worked on 164 engine to this extent before. I know about alignment aspect, just need to know how to refit timing belt as there doesn't seem to be enough movement scope in the tensioner. I am obviously doing something wrong?
 

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It's not that bad a job. The timing marks are on the cams themselves though! You have to take off the plenum and the cam covers. You'll see the scribe lines on the shafts themselves and they match up with scribe lines on two of the bearing saddles. If you're sure the timing is ok, just lock the two wheels together. Neither locking the wheels nor using the scribe marks is very accurate though. Have a search on here, but I think someone posted a brilliant printable timing template that you can just print out, cut out and stick on!

Regarding the tightness of the belt, you're probably not doing anything wrong. They are quite tight. The trick, I find, is to make sure the bottom of the belt is pulled into its grooves on the bottom pulley, then don't push the rest of the belt properly on to the cam pulleys and tensioner. Just get the edge of the belt on each wheel, then try to wriggle it back on, parallel, rather than putting it most of the way on to one of the pulleys first.

I think there's a hole in the block where you can stick a dowel to hold the tensioner arm while you do all this. The last bit of travel on the tensioner arm makes all the difference!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks Avocet, some sense at last. I am used there being more freeplay in belts once tensioner has been 'detensioned' so to speak. So I will persist with trying to get belt back on. Mind you this is the old belt on my spare engine - for practise.
For the real thing - The removal of the power steering belt looks to be a real problem as well. Seems to require two almost inaccessible bolts to be loosened. Special tools required here or what?
By the way I have fashioned head removal tools, (ie) drilled plate and modified plugs with length of threaded rod attached & tubes with washers attached to keep liners in situ. All prepared for head removal except for access past these damn belts.
 

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With the steering pump belt, I usually just take the three small bolts out of the pulley and pop the pulley off with it's belt. I appreciate that this may not be possible on some cars, depending on the amount of tension in the belt, but it usually works for me - it's fairly easy to put the pulley back on slightly crooked and then screw the bolts in evenly, a bit at a time, to pull the belt back to tension.

(Yes, I'm a bodging git, but it saves ages)!
 

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:lol: :thumbs:
 

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As Avocet says, there are also external cam timing marks on the hubs of the cams themselves - no need to take the tops off. Personally, I much prefer using them as they are more accurate than the hand applied marks on the cam caps. Just need to track down the timing template and awya you go.

You'll find a fine scribed line on the machined steel, usually pretty shiny, section of the hub.

I had an engine once where the mark on the cap itself was a tooth out. I guess they timed them up at the factory using the external marks, then applied the internal mark, or perhaps some sort of locking fixture...but either way, the mark on the cam bearing cap can't really be relied upon IMO.

As said, loosen the two tensioner fix/adjust nuts, swing it all the way to the right, then nip up the nut over the slot, then compress the psiton into the cylinder and pop a suitably sized allen key through the steel plate andinto the hole in the tensioner base. Ideally, it want's to be the stepped special tool, but a plain key works well enough, you just lose the very last bit of slack.
 

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...forgot to add, the 164 won't be that great a practice for the 166 :( Many of the details are quite different and you'll be needing some special tools for the 166 like cam locks etc (unless it happens to be a 2l V6 turbo, in which case, really remarkably similar!)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks Avocet and ChrisS. I have to repair leaking headgasket(s) on my 164. Then with this experience I will then tackle my 166 which has bent valves. I actually have a spare 164 engine and a spare 166 engine. My 164 has travelled 442k and 166 travelled 297k. I am tempted to swap both engines but I really want to see how many Ks I can get out of my engines. Unfortunately both vehicles have been stationary for last 11 months as only now have I found the time to put into them. You guys have been catching up and I don't like that. Also my wife has bought a new Toyota Corolla and won't be racking up the Ks as she had done in the Alfas. She wants me to get rid of the old things, but then I ask her how old she is.....
Will try the 3 bolts in pulley removal trick, a bit like cheating though?
 

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Well of course it's cheating!!!! (wouldn't be any fun otherwise)!

No chance of me catching you up in the mileage stakes now, I'm afraid. I broke my last 164 with 248,000 miles on it. Would have been nice to get it up to the quarter million, but I had oil leaking into the coolant at an ever increasing rate, and I came across another 164 in much better condition, so I just swapped. The "new" 164 has barely just passed the 100,000 mile mark (scarecely run-in)! It only really comes out on dry days, as I'm trying to make it last. Rust gets all UK 164s in the end...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
164 Timing belt change (revisited )

Hello all, sorry I haven't added to my thread re-'headgasket change' for some time.
We have had a family tragedy with my 31yo son dying. This has slowed every project.

I have installed gaskets and engine is mostly reassembled. I haven't connected all water pipes to filler tank as I want to change the gearbox Accumulator springs and Govenor rings while I have the chance. I can't really start the engine while I have all this area 'open'.

The problem that I am experiencing is that the notes I have say place auto gear lever into 1st gear. But the lever is apparently 'jammed' in Drive and I am not sure how to get it moving.
The vehicle is sitting on chassis stands with wheels removed, does sitting at an angle cause gearbox to 'jam' or some other thing that I may have done?

Do I have to get engine running to get gearbox to 'respond' ?

Help:confused:
 

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Really sorry to hear of your recent bereavement. Hope things get somewhere near back to normal for you. I don't have any experience with 164 autos I'm afraid, but if it has been stood for a while, I wonder whether something's just a bit seized? Is it worth getting someone to try and turn one or both front hubs while you wiggle the gear level backwards and forwards a bit? Could you disconnect the lever and try to move the selector shaft on the box? At least that would rule out some sort of interlock on the lever itself that needs the engine running or ignition on to allow you to move it.
 
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