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Cutting a Timing Belt?

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by TooMuchToDo, Sep 20, 2016.

  1. Sep 20, 2016 at 8:12 AM
    #1
    TooMuchToDo

    TooMuchToDo [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ...we'll get there.
    Here's the situation:

    I'm in the middle of my timing belt job, the last thing standing between pulling the old belt off and then starting to put humpty-dumpty back together again is the AC belt tensioner bracket (the one that comes off after you remove the AC compressor, that allows you to get to the timing belt tensioner). Two of the 4 bolts on that bracket came off with good ol' fashioned elbow grease and time. 2 of them are completely seized. pb blasted for 2 days, multiple people trying to break them free.

    I am ok with keeping that tensioner in there, and I've ordered the tensioner spreader tool (two cupped ends with the spreader bolt in the middle) so that i can pin the old one for new belt install. that tool only works with the belt off though (or that's my understanding).

    can't really take the belt off with the tensioner still engaged. SO.

    if i cut my old belt with a tin-snips, is the tension going to send the camshaft timing pulleys spinning. my guess is yes, so i can put a breaker on each nut to (hopefully) prevent that.

    is this a terrible idea? worst case is i'm about where i'd be if the belt broke while driving, only i have more control over the situation at the moment. are there other options? i could remove the idler between the camshaft timing pulleys, but with tension on the belt i could see that popping out with force when it gets to the end of the threads.
     
  2. Sep 20, 2016 at 11:03 AM
    #2
    skeezix

    skeezix Well-Known Member

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    I would spend my immediate effort on getting the AC compressor bracket off of the engine. Then I would remove the timing belt.

    If your camshafts "spin" (and they won't), you can always position them back, one at a time, until the dots on the camshafts line up with the dots on the block, and then rotate the crank shaft until its dot aligns with the mark on the block.
     
    TooMuchToDo [OP] likes this.
  3. Sep 20, 2016 at 11:42 AM
    #3
    TooMuchToDo

    TooMuchToDo [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ...we'll get there.
    I'd definitely be happiest with getting the bracket off. If for no other reason than to make sure everything is anti-seized and put back together correctly for the 300k timing belt job down the road. Those 2 bolts though... i worked on the bolts alone from about 1-3pm on Sunday, hit it with more pb blaster every quarter of the packers game, and then went back at it last night after letting it sit and soak over night and all day. still not a budge on either one.

    I'll give it one more go before i resort to the plan above, but eventually the thing needs to get put back together I need it Friday evening, and I'm running out of evenings to tinker. Knowing those two are still stuck (if they are tonight) will be something to address the next time it gets pulled apart.

    thanks for your input skeezix

    anyone else?
     
  4. Sep 20, 2016 at 12:23 PM
    #4
    vasinvictor

    vasinvictor Junkie

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    This is easy. Just cut that sucker off. When you want to install the new belt, you just line up the arrows on the cam pulleys to the marks on the rear timing cover. Put the crank at 0* TDC and install the new belt (with the tensioner pin installed) Besides even if you tried to reinstall a belt without moving anything it'd knock it out of whack anyway. You always put the cams and crank on their marks, install belt, and spin the crank a couple time to make sure the marks still match up after a couple revolutions.

    See here: http://www.toyoheadquarters.com/threads/toyota-5vz-fe-timing-belt-marks-3-4l.338/
     
  5. Sep 20, 2016 at 12:29 PM
    #5
    bmgreene

    bmgreene Well-Known Member

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    I'm not familiar with the arrangement of things in there, but it seems like anything that'd make it impossible to get the old belt off intact might also cause problems with getting the new belt in since it has to go in intact, and if it's possible to get the new belt on then it should be possible to reverse that sequence of manipulation to get the old one off. that's just thinking in generic mechanical terms, though so take it for what it's worth.
     
  6. Sep 20, 2016 at 12:34 PM
    #6
    vasinvictor

    vasinvictor Junkie

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    The AC bracket just has to come off to get to the tensioner for replacement. The belt rides on the inside of the tensioner roller. You'll have no problems cutting the belt, pressing in the old tensioner pin (be careful not to bend it!!) and reinstalling the belt.
     
  7. Sep 20, 2016 at 12:41 PM
    #7
    vasinvictor

    vasinvictor Junkie

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    What is the point of the video? He stated he can't get the AC bracket off, therefore can't get to the tensioner in order to remove it. Just cut the belt and line your marks and reinstall. Yall making this too hard lol.
     
  8. Sep 20, 2016 at 1:46 PM
    #8
    TooMuchToDo

    TooMuchToDo [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ...we'll get there.
    thanks all. bolts are getting one more try when i get home, if it doesn't work it's getting cut.

    bmgreene - there's a tool that allows you to reset the tensioner, but the way it's designed you can't use it with a belt on. so, destroying the belt would allow that tool to be used and the new belt to be placed.

    everyone else's comments have confirmed what i thought - i appreciate the feedback everyone. i assumed that even if things go terribly wrong, i just back it all up to the TDC positions and i'd be ok.
     
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  9. Sep 20, 2016 at 1:48 PM
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    TooMuchToDo

    TooMuchToDo [OP] Well-Known Member

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  10. Sep 20, 2016 at 3:26 PM
    #10
    kylehirsch87

    kylehirsch87 Member

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    If you have the tensioner spreader, youre gonna have to put a clip in the tensioner to put a new belt on. Once the tensioner has a pin in it, you should be able to remove the spreader and then remove the old belt. Then put the new belt on. Just make sure youre at TDC before doing all this.

    And I would def try and replace the tensioner. They don't last forever
     
  11. Sep 20, 2016 at 3:33 PM
    #11
    Clearwater Bill

    Clearwater Bill Sometimes when I close my eyes, I can't see.

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    The cams will always move, due to spring tension, when the belt is removed. Doesn't matter how it's removed, and they aren't going to move alot. But enough to need aligning.

    Some marquees I've done have flats on the cams that are machined to accept open ended wrenches. This allows easy realignment against the spring tension. Do your cams have that 'feature'?

    Also, I've been successful in using these flats to cross two wrenches, clamped with vice grips, that prevented cam movement when the belt was released.

    As far as your argumentative bolts, have you tried an impact gun?
     
  12. Sep 20, 2016 at 9:09 PM
    #12
    TooMuchToDo

    TooMuchToDo [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ...we'll get there.
    Update

    Thanks again to everyone for their input. Sometimes it's nice to go into something at least double checking with other knowledgeable folks. Tried the bolts once more and with no luck cut my losses...and my belt. The location of the 2 bolts made normal approaches difficult. The ac compressor get unbolted but still sits in the way. That means impact gun won't fit, and I couldn't drill the bolts out.

    I ended up cutting the old timing belt so I could use the spreader which all worked very well. Upper pulleys didn't move much if at all, everything is still lined up. I made my way through the rest of the teardown including removing the water pump. It's all getting put back together Thursday when I have the day off.

    All in all, timing belt was a very easy job made more difficult only by the stuck bolts I ran into. Others should not be worried that it's beyond their ability.
     
  13. Sep 20, 2016 at 9:30 PM
    #13
    Breezy

    Breezy vaping in my subaru

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    0:30-1:20 shows how to get the tensioner out without removing the bracket.

    I know you already ordered the tensioner tool and finished this up but if anyone else is replacing the timing belt tensioner and your bolts are seized on the AC tensioner bracket this is the way to do it IMO. Even if you're not replacing the tensioner it still might be easier to get the tensioner out. 2 bolts vs the 6 bolts holding the ac bracket on.

     
  14. Sep 21, 2016 at 5:16 AM
    #14
    TooMuchToDo

    TooMuchToDo [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ...we'll get there.
    Good to know for the 300k job!

    I found on my truck I was able to do the timing belt without taking out the radiator, without taking off the skids, and with the tip above you could likely do it without removing the ac compressor. First time I'd say do it by the books, or close to it, but second+ time around there are definitely some shortcuts.
     
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  15. Sep 21, 2016 at 6:22 AM
    #15
    cruiserguy

    cruiserguy Well-Known Member

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    That's great to know, thanks for sharing this.
     
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