Replacing Timing Chain/Gears Questions - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 12-07-2011, 02:35 PM   #1
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Question Replacing Timing Chain/Gears Questions

Since I need to pull the crank pulley for the Code 18 problem, I am going to go ahead and replace the timing chain and gears in my 1993 Buick LeSabre 3800 since it has 323,000+ miles on it (these 3800s were great engines, it is a shame that GM discontinued them). The last major work I did was on Mum'* 1983 Buick; replacing the timing gears and chain and the crank bearings; the engine would lose pressure at idle and Dad told me that was a sign of wore main bearings.

I have the GM service manual as a guide but know that those who have done the work before can give me good advice on the procedure for the '93 3800. I have just read that there is no need to remove the water pump. What other things do I need to know that may not be in the service manual?

I have yet to order the parts for this job. Would it be advisable to go ahead and replace the chain tensioner considering the mileage on the engine? Should I go ahead and order a new cam interrupter magnet? The magnet is expensive considering what it is, a magnet in a plastic holder; however, I am concerned that trying to remove it may damage the holder allowing the magnet to fall out later; so it is advisable to go ahead and order a new one? If I order before 1-24 I get a 20% discount on the parts.

Thanks everyone for this forum, it truly is a big help.
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Old 12-07-2011, 05:08 PM   #2
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It'* not to hard to do. Yes, get a new tensioner and new cam and crank bolts. You will need a timing cover gasket, as well as intake gaskets.
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Old 12-07-2011, 09:35 PM   #3
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I replaced my timing chain and dampener at 170,000 miles, just because I was in there. I was told that I didn't need to bother, and sure enough, the old chain looked just like the new one (but dirtier).
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Old 12-07-2011, 11:12 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danthurs View Post
IYou will need ..., as well as intake gaskets.
Why do I need the intake gaskets? Are you telling me that I have to pull the intake in order to remove the timing cover?
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Old 12-07-2011, 11:24 PM   #5
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You know, I don't think you need to. I always change the chain when I do cam jobs. In that case, you only need the timing cover gasket. You can reuse the crank and cam bolt, I have. But it is a torque to yield and shouldn't be reused. Just make sure you line up the timing dots. I use a camera and take a close up picture just to make sure.
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:47 AM   #6
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Expect the fight the alternator bracket. In your year it extends down the side of the motor and may be in the way IIRC.

On the S2, which is very similar to yours, it'* pull 5 oil pan bolts (they go into the timing cover), pull the balancer 24mm?, pull all the 13mm bolts on teh timing cover (leave the wp bolted on with the 4 10mm bolts) and unhook the lower radiator hose as it is on the timing cover.

Then the cover slides off (it has two alignment pins that sometimes have rust, but a little wiggling and it'* off.

Cam bolt is ~1 1/16" and the dampener bolt is 8mm. Like up your dots and it all goes back together.

The FSM suggests putting rtv on both sides of the gasket at the bottom inch of the cover as well as a smear across the oil pan to timing cover gasket area. the oil pump needs to line up with the crank gear taht drives it. I find having a pocket small screwdriver on hand when putting the cover on, works well to help align the pump if needed.
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:12 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone for the advice. What about the cam interrupter magnet? Should I get a new one or try to reuse the old one?
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:22 PM   #8
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I've only ever broke one when I hit it with a wrench. Unless it'* broke, reuse it.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:00 PM   #9
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I am just now starting the job. I got all the parts except the damper; I was told there was two different dampers used on this engine. Is that true?

Decided to replace the cam magnet as it was not that expensive with the discount; I don't want to have to worry about the old one falling off if reused.

Do I need to pack the oil pump with petroleum jelly like Dad taught me (or is there something different now) to get it to start pumping?

Does the front engine mount need to come off?
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Old 12-23-2011, 07:32 PM   #10
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I believe there is a couple of bolts that come out of the water pump, and I believe the torque axis mount does need to be unbolted to get the timing cover off.
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