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Discussion Starter #1
First time for me doing the timing belt on my 1991 164L.. I have done them before on my GTV6 and 3.0 Milano. What used to be the "new tensioner" spring made in Canada done at 70K when mechanical removed. Service by BMW guys. When I first looked at the tensioner pointer was high by 5mm. Removed the tensioner and checked the spring. Appears to be working. Now that I have reinstalled it I can't get the belt back on. I removed al the slack elsewhere in the belt. All suggestions appreciated as to how to get the belt over the tensioner pulley.
 

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I find it easier if I get the belt over the tighter radius pulleys (crank, tensioner, oil pump) first, then finish with the larger radius cam pulleys.
 

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just did this on a friends 92 12v, i worked counterclockwise starting with the crank. helps to have a helper to put a finger on the bits you have already done so they dont slip
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Counterclockwise was suggested on the Centerline instructions so tried that first. The point being to create slack between auxiliary and crank. Not near enough room. Also worked from bottom to top, but was then unable to get belt over cams.
 

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OK, here is how I do it when using the 60588421mechanical tensioner and 60562106 timing belt (Dayco 94423 or TB120). This belt has semi-flat teeth NOT half round teeth used on later Euro engines. Be sure you have the correct belt that is used on GTV6/Milano/164 12 V6 engines.


Now to get to maximum free play in the timing belt to install it over last over rear cam pulley I had made a small tool from half a wooden clothespin which is about 10mm wide. I use this tool to hold the tensioner spring in tension so the pulley pointer is lined up with reference point on cover where 60588421 is located. See attached pictures.

Off the engine holding the tensioner on the work bench I use needle nose pliers in the two holes in center of tensioner pulley to rotate tensioner pulley CCW to line up pointer with mark and insert clothes pin half on edge to hold tensioner spring pointer on the mark. You can do this on the engine too.


I used needle nose pliers in the two holes in center of tensioner pulley to rotate tensioner pulley CCW to line up pointer with mark and insert clothes pin hold on edge to hold tensioner spring pointer on the mark.


Now here is the important part, with tensioner on the two threaded studs and with correct locking washers and nuts installed slide tensioner body fully rearwards so forward end of slot against lower stud. Tighten lower nut of the two nuts to hold tensioner in that position.

Now with crank pulley at top dead center mark and cams on proper timing marks install the timing belt on lower crankshaft cog gear (behind crank pulley if not removed) and over tensioner pulley and engaged in teeth on aux shaft pulley.
Install front of belt over front cam pulley and get all the slack out between front cm pulley and crank shaft (I use another spring-loaded clothes pin to hold belt teeth tightly on front pulley). Note: You may have to use a wrench on cam pulley nut to move slightly forward and rearward slightly to get belt on cam pulley teeth.


Now you should be able to slip belt over rear cam pulley. Note: You may have to again use a wrench on cam pulley nut to move pulley slightly forward and rearward slightly to get belt on cam pulley teeth.
Now using a 3/8” drive extension and hinge handle in square lifting lug in tensioner body apply CCW motion to lifting lug with your left hand and then loosen lower nut slightly with other hand. This will push tensioner body and pulley against timing belt. Clothes pin should still be holding pointer lined up with mark. Hold lifting lug tool CCW to keep pointer just slightly below mark. NOW tighten 13mm nut to hold pulley against belt. Remove clothes pin is it didn’t fall out.

Now rotate crank pulley clockwise with 41mm (1 5/8”) socket and recheck top dead center mark on crank pulley cam timing marks and belt tensioner pointer.

If pointer is now above timing mark on tensioner body, you will have to lift lug CCW again, loosen nut and apply enough CCW lift to move point to mark or just slightly below mark, retighten nut and recheck by rotating crank clockwise.

I also made a metal tool on the key chain with a notch the width of the 10mm wide clothespin.







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Discussion Starter #6
Alfisto Steve, my appreciation for your willingness to provide your experience and knowledge on this site. I'm reminded of how fortunate I was to learn shortly after buying my first Alfa of the shop of USN retired instructor Willie Schuldt. All of my hands on experience and first belt change was done under his guidance. I'm recalling many of the non model specific items he taught. While in there I've removed the dogbone and doing the large end. I had done the small end before with Perfomatec product. Am I proceeding correctly in removing the factory bushing to get the rubber component out and cutting from the inside thru the first metal ring to get that out before pushing new bushing? What do you use for tensioners these days?
 

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Yes, you have to cut through from inside in rubber area of factory bushing the thin metal wall. If inner spacer bolt goes through in the way you may have to cut rubber around it or melt it out with propane torch.

I currently use the 60588421 mechanical tensioner on the 12v V6 164 engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Alfisto Steve, still working on this. I've rechecked the 60588421 tensioner and when I put the needle nosed pliers in the holes and move CCW I can go way below the pointer, greater than 3/4 in. Defective?! On the original pieces of attaching hardware top stud had a regular washer and bottom stud thin wavy washer. I saw in another post that a member found nylocks. What is correct? First time I've been here in this car and their is an empty attachment point here above the power steering pump. I've not been able to find a picture of this. What goes here? Thanks
 

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If pointer goes way below mark on 60588421 cover turn it over and check to see if thin outer spring is broken. That is attached to the thermal spring under the cover and the pulley pivot. It is what usually breaks on these tensioners.

That threaded 17mm hex head bolt with M6 threaded center hole is it is for rear mid timing belt cover mounting bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Alfisto Steve, picture 1 is the back. I had looked at this before as I had seen the posted picture with the break and thought it was OK. I may have an unjustified concern when I went CCW with pliers and thought it went too far. Thought there might be something inside I missed. picture 2 shows the adjustment slot which has worn metal to the left. The nut and washer had migrated to the right when I removed them causing the pointer to read above the index mark. I have owned the car since new. Most recent belt/ water pump 25K ago, service now triggered by 5yrs. When this was installed I provided the parts. At that time I was surprised to see a hydraulic tensioner as I thought at an earlier recall that had been changed. Maybe only a rework of the original hydraulic tensioner then. I'm concerned that I do not have the right washer to lock on tensioner, but feel better now that my tensioner may still be good. Like the little installation tool. Almost looks like something I've seen before, but maybe only here.What do you think?
 

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Alfisto Steve, picture 1 is the back. I had looked at this before as I had seen the posted picture with the break and thought it was OK. I may have an unjustified concern when I went CCW with pliers and thought it went too far. Thought there might be something inside I missed. picture 2 shows the adjustment slot which has worn metal to the left. The nut and washer had migrated to the right when I removed them causing the pointer to read above the index mark. I have owned the car since new. Most recent belt/ water pump 25K ago, service now triggered by 5yrs. When this was installed I provided the parts. At that time I was surprised to see a hydraulic tensioner as I thought at an earlier recall that had been changed. Maybe only a rework of the original hydraulic tensioner then. I'm concerned that I do not have the right washer to lock on tensioner, but feel better now that my tensioner may still be good. Like the little installation tool. Almost looks like something I've seen before, but maybe only here.What do you think?
Looks like outer spring not broken. Pointer will go below mark maybe 1/2" or more BUT If pointer goes WAY WAY below mark when you go CCW with needle nose and outer spring is not broken in area of your backside picture check that other end of spring is hooked to thermal spring locate under part number cover. If so then it should be OK.
Your should have a flat washer and a lock washer on both studs. Alfa lock washers are thin wavy ones or Bellville conical washers. On long original bottom stud from oil fed tensioner be sure you have enough washer stack thickness nut threads do not end up on a portion of stud that may not have any threads. Looks like tensioner may have had a loose lower nut that allowed tensioner to move and loosen belt over time.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Alfisto Steve, good news/bad news. First the good news. Without you and the bb belt would not be back on and correct hardware not installed and car not started. As I rotated the crank pulley CW, the pointer on the tensioner moved and crank stopped. The cams were in the right spot and did not move. The auxiliary gear likely moved as I had a sense that was ok with 164 different from timing on GTV6/Milano. So I'm paused looking for ideas. Not sure I should back up CCW without expert advice. Bob
 

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If BEFORE you removed old timing belt you had the timing mark on the front crank pulley teeth lined up with the timing mark on the front engine cover and the both timing marks on the crank pulley hubs lined up with the timing template marks you should have had the engine in proper cam timing. Now if you still had not moved crank or cams you should have been still in time after you installed belt. What do you mean you moved the crankshaft clockwise and the cams did not move if belt installed they have to move? As for aux oil pump pulley it does not have to be timed because there isn't a ignition distributor in rear head.

So how far have you rotated crankshaft past timing mark? Where is tensioner pointer now pointing? I usually have the sparkplugs out when I do timing belt change so when turning engine with socket wrench on crankshaft pulley nut engine turns easier without engine compression making it hard to turn.

If you only turn crank slightly you could carefully turn it back to crank pulley timing mark on front cover and recheck cam timing using template to be sure crank pulley on time as well as cam pulleys.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Alfisto Steve, I can see where I was not clear. The cams did not move as I put the belt on. They did move when I turned the crank shaft after the belt was on. .After I got the belt back on I used the large wrench to turn the crank shaft CW. Went maybe 20 degrees and stopped. Did not feel like the belt jumped. I can see the that the distributor rotor turned about 20 also. I'm concerned that I need to take the belt back off and move crank to TDC and cams to template marks. Also I do not know how to get distributor back to the right place. Hoping for an easier way. I do not have a cam turning tool. Thanks Bob
 

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Don't worry about distributor rotor it is hooked to front cam and it moves with cam. I would slowly move crankshaft back CCW with socket wrench until notch between two crank pulley teeth lines up with mark on engine front cover (located about 11 o'clock position on cover) Now see it cam hub scribed timing mark lined up with template. at 1 o'clock rear cam and 11 o'clock front cam. If everything in time see where tensioner pointer is located if close to mark remove spark plug and try to rotate engine clockwise (towards front of car). If timing marks off reset the timing and retension the belt.
 

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Let me know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Alfisto Steve, good to know about distributor linkage to front cam. Found out on bb about cam sensor and computer doing timing. Plugs have been out. Will start back up tomorrow with crank CCW and timing check. Thank you
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Alfisto Steve, back at it this morning. Looking at the cam timing marks the back cam has now moved about 25 degrees CW! I have no idea why. Plan going forward would be: loosen tensioner, remove belt, retime cams, belt back on, retension. What do you think?
 
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