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'86 4kq timing belt done and tips
Well, after all the setbacks I finally did it. Thanks go out to Jeff
Lewis for making an idler pulley puller for me and to Steve Buchholz for
loaning me his harmonic balancer tools.
I'm glad I waited and did this job myself rather than paying a
mechanic to do it. I was able to pay attention to details that were
obviously missed last time. For example, I undid the harmonic balancer
bolt with one hand. Can anyone else do this with a 2 foot breaker bar?
Obviously it was not torqued properly by the last mechanic. I found that
the alternator belt is the wrong size (too narrow). No wonder it squeeks
even though the tension is good. The idler pulley had some freeplay and
so I changed it. The mechanic I almost went to told me he has never had
to change one of those, so I'm sure he wouldn't have. (In fact he didn't
on the 20v I took there.) There are smaller items as well: the bumper is
centered now. I found that the lower fan shroud was missing the main
securing nut and was sagging so I fixed it.
A few tips for the driveway mechanic like me:
Get a small step stool (1 foot high) to sit on while working on the
front of the car. Makes it more comfortable to work on the medium low
Remove the 2 sheetmetal screws in the middle support which hold the
side fan shroud. They are sharp and will bite if not removed. (Put them
back before you replace the grille.)
Per Jeff Lewis: place a jack stand under the pivot point of your
breaker bar. Made it very stable for me.
The fingers of 2084 tool do not have to engage around the front motor
mount. Place the swinging end of it on top of the motor mount when
removing the balancer nut, and underneath when tightening.
There are two observation holes in the transmission. You cannot find
the 0 mark in the lower one (especially on a rusty flywheel when the
motor is at TDC ). Look under the bundle of wires that a previous
mechanic has zip tied in such a way to completely cover the "real"
observation hole. :) (I never claimed to be a rocket scientist)
You can insert a 1/2 by 3/4 by 1 foot piece of hardwood through the
bodywork to tap the center of the idler pulley home. It will try to go
in diagonally, just tap a little off center to straighten.