[Vwdiesel] destructive testing

Shalyn Shourds sshourds at flash.net
Sun Dec 12 23:45:42 EST 2004

I finally got brave and took off down the highway in the TDI after all 
those repairs.  I got as far as Garland on I-635 near Dallas and it quit 
on me.  Once on the side of the road, I opened the hood and there was 
smoke where there shouldn't be: from under the timing belt cover.  Sure 
enough, there was little left of the belt but some shredded Kevlar and 
some melted/burned rubber.  It was melted onto the tensioner and upper 
roller.  After an expensive tow across Dallas and almost to Ft. Worth, I 
pulled the head.  Again, the pistons look OK, but the head isn't.  If I 
am really lucky, it just ate three lifters.  I don't have a lucky track 
record, though.  Sorry Bart, looks like you got nothing on me. 

The upper roller is not seized, but it is harder to turn than it should 
be.  My current theory is that the increased drag caused the belt to 
begin slipping creating a friction situation at extended road speed.  
The heat from this friction caused the belt to soften and eventually 
fail.  This roller was, of course, allegedly replaced by the shop that 
did the timing belt repair that began this whole oddesey. 

That's the theory anyways.  I'll happily entertain a better one.  I have 
to figure out what's going on with this thing.  I can't afford to do 
this again. 

I'm hoping that this repair won't be as expensive as the last one, but 
still,  aiyeeee.  One of the few limited good parts of the exercise is 
that with all the practice, I can now remove a TDI head in under four 
hours with no air/power tools.  So, while I wouldn't hire me to put it 
back together necessarily, I can get that head off for you in a hurry. 

Needless to say, I'm going to replace all the rollers, tensioner, belt, 
etc., but has anyone ever heard of anything like that happening?  The 
belt had all of 30 miles on it. 

I'm also wondering what I could get for a bunch of TDI parts or a 
project car or a car with a recently rebuilt head.  I'm starting to 
think the devil I know isn't such a good choice.  I've had a lot of 
really bad things happen in that car, both mechanical and personal, and 
I'm starting to think that our mojo's aren't compatible.  I'm not 
Catholic, so I can't even exorcise it.  All Presbyterians can do is 
nominate a special committee to look into the matter. 

I appreciate any technical advice.


- 1994 Murray ten-speed

And here's a lump of coal for you, little boy. 

More information about the Vwdiesel mailing list