Degreeing the cams

Jul 16, 2009 update on ae86andkp61's Toyota Corolla GT-S

I got the new camshaft oil seals installed, as well as the back timing belt cover. The new Toyota timing belt tensioner is installed as well. Per a trusted friend’s recommendation, I am running the timing belt tenioner without the spring to minimize the chance it will vibrate, break, and cause damage…we just tensioned the belt by hand. Adjustable AEM cam gears installed and torqued, and a new Toda timing belt installed. At this point the timing is in the ballpark, but nothing has been dialed in yet.

In the picture you can see the cam timing setup in action. The wheel mounted on the end of the crank is used with the pointer visible inside the timing belt just to the right of the tensioner. The dial indicator is sitting right on top of the valve shim/bucket. After finding TDC and adjusting the wheel to indicate TDC at TDC, we could turn the engine and measure valve opening and valve lift and note the corresponding timing of the crank. With a cam card, we were able to get the cams to what should be an good ballpark setting, with future dyno tuning in mind to optimize the last bit of adjustment as needed. Then onto the exhaust side of things to repeat the process. No point in having different cams and adjustable cam gears if you can’t use them to gain the maximum benefit!


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