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Old 12-29-2017, 11:28 AM   #57
FIA World Rally Car Champion
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Drives: 2011 GTI / K04 / 6MT
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Maryland
Posts: 635
Big maintenance update. I completed the timing system replacement.
New chains/guides/tensioners for the camshaft timing system and the balancer shaft timing system. Wasn't too bad since I did my research, had all of the correct tools, and followed the service manual. Took me about a day and a half taking my time and taking lots of breaks. Also upgraded my diverter valve to a Rev. D since the old one (Rev. C) was whistling under boost. The chains/guides/tensioners were actually in great shape but I'll rest easier knowing the old-style tensioner has been replaced. When I had everything back together I had a weird misfire issue that took me a long time to diagnose but I believe it was a stuck N205 valve or camshaft adjuster magnet, or some other issue in the camshaft timing system. Either way, it went away after I disassembled, cleaned, and reassembled the cam bridge, N205 valve, and camshaft adjustment magnet.

Here's some info that I think will help people in the future doing this job:
  1. You will need a short m12 triple square bit to get 2 of 3 bolts out of the the engine mount bracket (connects engine mount to the block). I bought a cheap set of triple square bits and cut them down then used a 1/2" wrench on the end.
  2. I bought the Schwaben timing service tool kit for the job. It was pricey but goes on sale for 25% off pretty often. Well worth it for the correct tools.
  3. The timing system will not all line up when you line up the crank pulley notch with the 4 o'clock mark on the lower timing cover. Apparently it can take up to 160 rotations of the crank pulley to get everything lined up perfectly (all camshaft and balancer shaft marks). Instead, I turned the system a dozen or so times by hand (spark plugs out) until I had the balancer shaft system lined up and the camshaft system off by a single link so I could verify I had not skipped a tooth.
  4. My new, OEM balance shaft chain had extra marked links. I counted the links between marks to verify which marks to use and ignored the others.
  5. Check your cam bridge for screen blowout. Mine was fully intact so I left it as-is. If it's blown out then check the immediate area to see if there are any debris you can fish out. EDIT 12/26/18: 1 year and 26k miles after writing this timing chain post my cam bridge screen blew out. Check post #166 of my build thread for more info and pictures. Due to this I recommend everyone remove the screen if possible. It pulls off easily using a small pair or needle nose pliers. The cam bridge can be removed without removing the motor mount.
  6. Taking off the turbo outlet elbow and N75 valve was a huge pain because of the limited access and vacuum lines in the way. It has to be done for access to the lower timing cover.
  7. To remove/reinstall one of the lower timing cover bolts you must get behind the accessory belt tensioner. Instead of removing the entire accessory belt tensioner assembly I removed the pulley only and held the spring loaded arm up when necessary.
  8. If you plan on replacing the balancer shaft tensioner you need a standard depth 27mm socket. A deep socket wouldn't have fit.
  9. When reinstalling the cam bridge it may not go on easily. Take a large flat head or pry bar and gently pry the cams apart every so slightly while wiggling the cam bridge onto the cams. I used a soft-face mallet to gently tap the cam bridge into place.
References that helped me:
EDIT: In an effort to keep this post relevant I'll try to add resources and information as it becomes available.
Here's the Flickr album with all of my pictures and below are a few embedded pictures for your enjoyment (click for full size).

Last edited by Tony48; 01-08-2019 at 04:10 PM.
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