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Discussion Starter #1
First post although I use the forum a lot for help . Thanks to all the posters, you've saved me tons of time and frustration.

Now, on to my problem.

While sitting at a light my car died (2000 SE Zetech). I had it towed home and started checking things. I am a backyard mechanics that usually sticks to the easier stuff, water pumps, ac, etc. I tried a new coil, no luck. I looked at the timing belt and noticed a few teeth missing. I was sure this the problem and decided to change it myself. Using the Haynes manual I removed the old belt and found 12 teeth in a row missing. I figured that was it. I installed a new one alond with new plugs and wires and drive belt. The cams appeared to be off so I used the timing pin and 5mm bar to set the timing. Now, correct me if I'm wrong but I set the #1 to TDC and then set the bar in the slots. I had to rotate them a bit but once everything was lined up and the sprockets tightened, all should be set correct? I put it all together and tried to start it and it acts just like it did before. It sputters for a second and then dies. Also it backfires, not the loud kind but the pphhttt sound out of the exhaust. Did I do the timing right? Can you get it 180 deg off if I have the setup above correct?
 

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Hatch Nation #136
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The cam slots are offset to keep you from doing that. If you didn't have the pin in correctly, though it may still be off. You could also check to make sure that the cam bolts didn't come loose on you and throw the timing back off. Also, if your tensioner wasn't set correctly, it might be allowing your belt to jump around.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So if I set the #1 to TDC again with the and the cams still line up then my timing should be correct? If not then something may be off or loose.

The tensioner seemed pretty straightforward, I'll look and see if it looks out of whack.
 

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Token Engin-nerd
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Make sure the tensioner is loosened and then set and tightened again all while the cam gears are LOOSE.
 

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GT40 all the things!
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Also check that you aren't off a tooth on the belt. Just because everything is lined up doesn't mean you pulled all the slack out of the belt before sliding it on the cam gears.
Posted via FF Mobile
 

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Token Engin-nerd
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if the gears are loose like they are supposed to be when you set tension, it doesnt matter, all the slack will come out where it needs to come out.
 

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You can get it 180 off, and it will crank superfast. Stick a long screwdriver in 1 piston, and set it to tdc to make sure it is not 180 off.
 

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FF PHOTOG ENTHUSIAST
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After setting it ... you should also crank it by hand a couple of times and double check that the bar still goes in easy.

Once you have checked all of that ... it may sound like you have lost all compression.

Only way that is true is if you bent your valves ... but your car isn't an interference engine, so that would be pretty rare.

Does it try to crank fast or slow?

-Ray-
 

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Discussion Starter #10
OK, everthing is back together, the timing seems to be on target. Now my car will start for a second then die. I made sure all of the valve cover bolts are tight (book said check for this symtom). Coil is wired up right with new plugs and wires. Is there a backyard way to check fuel without buying another tool? I read one post said just use a rag and push in the pin on the connection on the fuel rail but I'll be damned if I can find that connection.

Anyone live near Charleston that wants to make a few bucks helping me diagnose?

Its been three weeks and I'm cooming to the end of my abilities.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
After looking through the forums I should add a few items. The battery is dead. I have to try to start it while it is being jumped. Second, the gauges do that sweep thing when I turn the key to the on position. Fast all the way and then slowly back to the left.

Can a messed up alternator keep a car from starting if trying to jump it? How can I test it if the car won't run.

But wait there's more. I also had to add a universal positive connection because the connections were brittle and starting to break off.

Would any of these let a car start for a second then die?
 
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