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Hi,

Having seen many other VW / Passat forums before I've only just stumbled on this one, and what a fantastic find!

Your clearly laid out "how tos" have really been helping me out today as I'm doing the timing belt for the first time on this car (although I've done others before) and, as could be predicted, Haynes has been letting me down with unhelpful photos and vague descriptions.

Anyway, I've got almost everything off, just the actual timing belt remaining to come off, and I'm starting to think about how it is all going to go back together.

A couple of things to share that I've encountered so far on this job are:
  1. The bolt and eyelet at the top of the auxiliary belt tensioner had had something nasty happen to it that meant that the tensioner pulley had worn through most of the top of the tensioner eyelet and destroyed the bushing between the bolt and the tensioner eyelet. Thankfully York Motor Factors came to the rescue by having one on the shelf. Just another £122 spent on the car (grrrr).
  2. With the timing belt still on I cannot get both timing marks to line up. If I get the crankshaft sprocket locked off I can't get the pin into the camshaft hole. It's only out by a little bit, barely 2-5deg out, but I'm surprised that it's out as much as it is. I assume the only fix is to lock off the crankshaft, remove the belt and then tweak the camshaft back into alignment so I can get the pin in (which is a VERY tight fit! - I almost failed to get it back out again earlier!).
Anyway, I'd better get back out there and finish the job off eh?

Thanks for all the top info, I look forward to contributing here more as time goes on.

Nick
 

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What year car is this? Europe had Passat years that it wasn't available in North America. Engine code?

1. What do you think was the cause of this? Pics?
2. This is PD engine right? If you have VCDS (vag-com) it's OK. You can tweak the camshaft torsion to fix cam position. The procedure is shown in part 2 of the writuep.

If you don't, it's not OK since you will have no way of finding camshaft position and it'll be way off. A tiny movement = big changes in timing. On the newer PD engines the manual says to use a sprocket counterholder to tension the water pump side of the belt before tensioning. My guess is that this removes any slack and increases the likelihood of the tensioner side of the belt being good.
 

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Hi CCBB,

Thanks for your reply. As it was I managed to fix both problems not long after I posted! Isn't it always the way!

The camshaft / crankshaft misalignment problem was relatively easy to sort. Because the camshaft sprocket moves with respect to the hub I was able to tweak its position once I'd got the old belt off. This fits with how Haynes describe the procedure for ensuring alignment once you've got the new belt on. They say you should crank the engine over (manually) a couple of times and if everything is OK then both timing lock off tools should slot straight back in BUT if they don't then you do as I described above and move the camshaft sprocket with respect to its hub. Anyway, I should find out this morning if it works OK when I get to start the engine for the 1st time. *gulp*

Also, when I looked at the page on tuning camshaft timing they describe symptoms that go with the timing being off which include rough tick-over and poor starting. Both of these were true of my car (although not to an extreme degree). Hopefully the engine will start and idle a bit better now (fingers crossed!).

The other problem was not being able to work out how to setup the tensioner. Yes, well, this was just tiredness on my part. You're supposed to torque up the tensioner using circlip pliers but I was using an 8mm Allen socket on the hub of the tensioner. This doesn't work! Once I'd eventually got the circlip pliers out things started to make sense. Phew!

Cheers,

Nick

UPDATE: Well the car's back in one piece and running well. Initial impressions are that the tweak to the timing has improved things. It seems to start more readily and the car now pulls away at the bottom of its rev range much more confidently and smoother - it has always been a little hesitant moving away from a standing start. I'll update this again once I've put some miles in.
 
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