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My question concerns the timing marks on the cam pulleys.
I just installed new belts and for the life of me, I can't get the left pulley(facing engine) to line exactly up.
After rotating the engine by hand several times, the mark is a half-tooth off. The mark on the right side lines right up. I have approx 1/2" slack in the long run of each belt and the engine turns free by hand.
Is this a problem?
 

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Monkey with a Football
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No. It isn't. It's very common to have one side be a half tooth off.

Just check the slack and hand rotate slowly and make sure everything lines up correctly and you should be fine.
 

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There should be very littleslack on the top(long) portion ofeach belt.

As for the half tooth being normal I disagree -- with a little patience and manipulation you can get the marks"dead on" with all the slack at the bottom of the belts 99.9% of the time --then let the tensioners do their job
 

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I don't know how normal it is. Due to the cam wanting to spin under valve tension, I've had the same result on the left side.(facing pullys). But with some perseverance I got the marks to line-up... :gunhead:
 

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Monkey with a Football
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oinoyou wrote:
There should be very littleslack on the top(long) portion ofeach belt.

As for the half tooth being normal I disagree -- with a little patience and manipulation you can get the marks"dead on" with all the slack at the bottom of the belts 99.9% of the time --then let the tensioners do their job
I'd agree with you if it were a whole tooth off but half tooth only has two places it can be. Half off one way or half off the other.

Freeplay on the long side of the belt should be .4" . "very little" is a bit vague.
 

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I just replaced the timing belt on my 1500. i followed Rudy's guide and the honda manual,it was a half tooth off and tension is just as described in the guide. i have around 600 miles since then no problems. Runs beter than it ever did, since i changed to a 4 deg trigger wheel also.
 

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WhenI changedmy timing belts, a while ago now, I had the top run tightwith thetiming mark aligned, while holding the cam pulley in position with a wrenchadjusted and tightened the idler, a bit of help from a friend makes it easier but I did manage to do it myself and had the timing perfectly set after a couple of attempts.

The P.O. had not bothered, before removal of the old belts, the timing was 1 1/2 teeth out, after completeion, the engine ran (and still does) a lot smoother.
 

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I also changed the belts recently, followed the guide in the FAQ forum and also finished with one mark a little bitoff (about half tooth). And believe me, I was patient! Maybe it could be exactlyaligned bymessingwith the belt's tension, but if you let the spring to do the tension - then that's it (at least in my case). Anyway, when you (or theautomatic adjuster)re-adjust the valve clearances after the job, that should arrange the things. Of course, I'm talking just about the small (half-tooth or less)disalignes, which are due to the belt's tension.
 

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Thanks for the replies!
I didn't finish putting the bike together as my old legs gave out on me getting up and down but I will finish it up this morning when it warms up a little more.

What I found when I removed the timing belt cover:
Engine has approx 43,000 miles and the belts were originals.
The right belt, facing engine, had what seemed to me a lot of slack on both long run and tensioner side.
Left belt felt tighter.
Belts should have same tension no matter what position crank/valve train are in......right??
I had one bolt on cover, on bottom, break on me. It was the last one I removed of course....Murphy's Law. I did manage to drill it out and remove what was left.

Amazingly, the cooling system was clean and the antifreeze was clear when I drained it. It was changed before I got the bike although.

I tried several times to get that mark lined exactly up and when I thought I had it, just a little tension, by hand, on the belt caused it to go half a tooth off.

Thanks again guys! Best forum on the web!
 

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When you ask a question on a forum you are bound to get different opinions and methods of doing the same task.
This by no means indicates one way is better or worse than the other.In most cases either way will work just fine.
I have been a member of this forum for a few years now and have seen some really far fetched solutions to problems --some work--some don't-some help-some don't and some are down right dangerous to even try.
When you reply to a post you open yourself up to the opinions of others-which is what a "forum" is about-"opinions" to which you can agree or not and offer a different view to consider.
People interpet manuals,instructions,and books differently-even the bible.
Being somewhat of a perfectionist myself I don't mind spending the extra time and effort to get things "on the money" in everyting I do_Others differ-which is fine.
I really enjoy this forum and take no offense from anyone's opinion
Your bike will run just fine being a tooth off either way-
any more than a tooth and you may have big problems.
In my opinion there is no"half teeth" on a timing belt-its only has "whole teeth"to go in "whole slots" on the pulley.
 

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I had similar problems. 1/2 tooth or so off with slack on top for the left side only(the right side was right on the mark and jsut the right tension).

I finally got it by putting the belt on, but not on tensioner, I did this by trail and error. Turning the cam pulley to a spot not quite on the mark putting the belt on and then turn the cam so it was on the mark with good tension on the top. Then putting the tensioner on. The hardest part was keeping the belt from slipping around the crank sprocket, another pair of hands helps..or a "C" clamp on the belt at the crank sprocket.
 

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oinoyou wrote:
In my opinion there is no"half teeth" on a timing belt-its only has "whole teeth"to go in "whole slots" on the pulley.
Half a tooth off in reference to timing mark my friend!:)
But I guess you know that!
I am also somewhat of a perfectionist when it comes to setting engine valves, timing etc...but sometimes you have to compromise. I have fiddled with setting the points and timing on my 75 Honda CB 500 Twin and that bike will run like crap if the ignition timing is dead on! Go figure!

I swear that when I removed the covers and aligned the crank timing mark, the right side cam pulley was showing just a half tooth off from the timing mark on the outside of the head.
Like I said, I'll go at it here in a bit and see what I can do.

Update: Timing was closer than I thought and I fired her up after closing up the covers and adding new coolant. Engine sounds better to me also. Thanks for all the help and info guys!
 
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