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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All

Just thought I'd share our latest repair experience with you. A bit long I'm afraid.

With 160,000 miles on my 2000 2.0 LPT Auto estate it was time to investigate all the rattling from the engine. With the rocker cover off it was clear that the timing chain was seriously slack and in danger of jumping a tooth on one of the cam sprockets. With the cost of a proper timing and balance chain job more than the car's worth I decided to try a roll in chain to give me some more time in my favourite ever car.

Step 1. Jack up front right hand side, remove wheel, put in axle stand and remove jack.

Step 2. Remove engine lower cover and support engine weight with a piece of wood on the vehicle jack. Remove the righthand engine top mount and yoke.

Step 3. Remove DIC, Camcover and the air pipe at the banjo connector on the intercooler pipe. this just gives you more room to work.

Step 4. Relieve the tension on the serpentine belt by inserting a breaker bar into the square hole on the belt tensioner, pulling it forward and putting an allen key into the hole on the side of the tensioner to lock it in place. Take out the breaker bar.

Step 5. Remove the sparkplugs and cover the holes with a clean rag. Using a 27mm socket on the crank pulley turn the engine to TDC. There are marks on the timing cover, the crank pulley and both camshafts. Make sure all are lined up as shown in the Haynes manual.

Step 6. Stuff all openings into the timing case with clean rags cos if anything drops in its engine out time!

Step 7. Remove the 12mm bolt from the timing chain tensioner and carefully remove and the spring and pushrod. Remove the timing chain tensioner by using a 27mm thin walled socket. On my car I had to partially undo the top idler pully for the serpentine belt as the bolt fouled the socket. Check the tensioner and measure how far it has extended. On mine this was 20mm, way beyond the max allowed showing how far the chain had stretched, or the guides/pulleys had worn. In fact the tensioner was at the end of its travel. Clean up the tensioner and fit a new seal but leave the tensioner out of the engine.

Step 8. Using a dremel or similar tool grind down the heads on one of the chain links on the inlet cam. Using a chain breaker its then easy to push the link out. I cable tied the chain to the pully so it couldn't slip off.

Step 9. I used a master link chain which is similar to a split link except the master link is rivetted in place. You do need a chain rivetter for this type. Connect the new chain to the old using the old link and side plate. This is really important because if you use just the link it can slide out and split the chain in the engine or jam.

Step 10. In theory after cutting the cable ties you hold the chain on the inlet cam and very careflly turn the crank pulley clockwise to wind the new chain in as you pull the old one out. We found the cams jump due to pressure from the valve springs and ended up losing the engine timing. Solution was to take out the cams!. This is dead easy only about 20minutes but you must remove the sprockets or the cams won't come out. By doing this the valves cannot hit the pistons and it is then dead easy to roll the chain in as its only going around the crank sprocket. It is critical to set the crank pulley TDC once the chain is in. Make sure you keep the chain tight.

step 11. Refit the cams making sure they are at TDC. Some of the cam bolts have an oilway in them, make sure they go back in the correct holes. Note that if you have a vacuum pump on the exhaust cam the drive tongue is offset so you need to get it right or the cam will jam. Just ask how we found this out!

Step 12. Refit Sprockets and refit the chain. Using the rivetter fit a new link and rivet the ends over. DO NOT TURN THE ENGINE.

Step 13. Reset the timing chain tensioner to minimum and refit it. Refit the pushrod, spring and hollow bolt to the tensioner.

Step 14. Carefully turn the engine 2 revolutions clockwise using the 27mm socket on the crank pulley. Go slow, if you feel resistance make sure the timing hasn't slipped. On mine, once I'd refitted the tensioner everything was plain sailing. First off we turned the engine without the tensioner in. Big mistake had to reset the timing and could have damaged valves.

Step 15. Put everyting back and then time for a brew.

Last thoughts.

Was it worth it?

For me yes, the engine is quieter and the chain was shot. On an engine this age and at this mileage it was worth having a go.

Have the noises gone ?

No, they are not as bad and the harsh rattle has gone but the balance chain is also rattling but without removing the engine no chance to replace.

Costs ?

£40 chain, £35 rivetter, £10 bits and pieces.

Would I do it again?

Definitly not on a low mileage or more valuable car, too many things to go wrong and easy to mess up.
On a car where the repair is more than its worth, yes but I know how to do it now, yesterday was a real rollercoaster mainly focussed around why did I touch it !

How long to do ?

Took about 7 hours but we were learning as we went. I reckon I could do it in 3 hours now.

Hope you weren't too bored with this very long thread.

Cheers

Tony
 

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Well done Tony :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Chris

Posted is a picture of the new chain. The chain was in a Febi box but was actually of IWIS manufacture which I believe is Saab OES.
 

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Hi All

Just thought I'd share our latest repair experience with you. A bit long I'm afraid.

With 160,000 miles on my 2000 2.0 LPT Auto estate it was time to investigate all the rattling from the engine. With the rocker cover off it was clear that the timing chain was seriously slack and in danger of jumping a tooth on one of the cam sprockets. With the cost of a proper timing and balance chain job more than the car's worth I decided to try a roll in chain to give me some more time in my favourite ever car.

Step 1. Jack up front right hand side, remove wheel, put in axle stand and remove jack.

Step 2. Remove engine lower cover and support engine weight with a piece of wood on the vehicle jack. Remove the righthand engine top mount and yoke.

Step 3. Remove DIC, Camcover and the air pipe at the banjo connector on the intercooler pipe. this just gives you more room to work.

Step 4. Relieve the tension on the serpentine belt by inserting a breaker bar into the square hole on the belt tensioner, pulling it forward and putting an allen key into the hole on the side of the tensioner to lock it in place. Take out the breaker bar.

Step 5. Remove the sparkplugs and cover the holes with a clean rag. Using a 27mm socket on the crank pulley turn the engine to TDC. There are marks on the timing cover, the crank pulley and both camshafts. Make sure all are lined up as shown in the Haynes manual.

Step 6. Stuff all openings into the timing case with clean rags cos if anything drops in its engine out time!

Step 7. Remove the 12mm bolt from the timing chain tensioner and carefully remove and the spring and pushrod. Remove the timing chain tensioner by using a 27mm thin walled socket. On my car I had to partially undo the top idler pully for the serpentine belt as the bolt fouled the socket. Check the tensioner and measure how far it has extended. On mine this was 20mm, way beyond the max allowed showing how far the chain had stretched, or the guides/pulleys had worn. In fact the tensioner was at the end of its travel. Clean up the tensioner and fit a new seal but leave the tensioner out of the engine.

Step 8. Using a dremel or similar tool grind down the heads on one of the chain links on the inlet cam. Using a chain breaker its then easy to push the link out. I cable tied the chain to the pully so it couldn't slip off.

Step 9. I used a master link chain which is similar to a split link except the master link is rivetted in place. You do need a chain rivetter for this type. Connect the new chain to the old using the old link and side plate. This is really important because if you use just the link it can slide out and split the chain in the engine or jam.

Step 10. In theory after cutting the cable ties you hold the chain on the inlet cam and very careflly turn the crank pulley clockwise to wind the new chain in as you pull the old one out. We found the cams jump due to pressure from the valve springs and ended up losing the engine timing. Solution was to take out the cams!. This is dead easy only about 20minutes but you must remove the sprockets or the cams won't come out. By doing this the valves cannot hit the pistons and it is then dead easy to roll the chain in as its only going around the crank sprocket. It is critical to set the crank pulley TDC once the chain is in. Make sure you keep the chain tight.

step 11. Refit the cams making sure they are at TDC. Some of the cam bolts have an oilway in them, make sure they go back in the correct holes. Note that if you have a vacuum pump on the exhaust cam the drive tongue is offset so you need to get it right or the cam will jam. Just ask how we found this out!

Step 12. Refit Sprockets and refit the chain. Using the rivetter fit a new link and rivet the ends over. DO NOT TURN THE ENGINE.

Step 13. Reset the timing chain tensioner to minimum and refit it. Refit the pushrod, spring and hollow bolt to the tensioner.

Step 14. Carefully turn the engine 2 revolutions clockwise using the 27mm socket on the crank pulley. Go slow, if you feel resistance make sure the timing hasn't slipped. On mine, once I'd refitted the tensioner everything was plain sailing. First off we turned the engine without the tensioner in. Big mistake had to reset the timing and could have damaged valves.

Step 15. Put everyting back and then time for a brew.

Last thoughts.

Was it worth it?

For me yes, the engine is quieter and the chain was shot. On an engine this age and at this mileage it was worth having a go.

Have the noises gone ?

No, they are not as bad and the harsh rattle has gone but the balance chain is also rattling but without removing the engine no chance to replace.

Costs ?

£40 chain, £35 rivetter, £10 bits and pieces.

Would I do it again?

Definitly not on a low mileage or more valuable car, too many things to go wrong and easy to mess up.
On a car where the repair is more than its worth, yes but I know how to do it now, yesterday was a real rollercoaster mainly focussed around why did I touch it !

How long to do ?

Took about 7 hours but we were learning as we went. I reckon I could do it in 3 hours now.

Hope you weren't too bored with this very long thread.

Cheers

Tony
was thinking about doing mine but its only done 90,000 miles ,and although it rattles "due to a very long time without a oil change"before i had it :roll:. when i took it to an independent saab repairer, he said he had heard them a lot worse than that ,and when i said about rolling one in ,he sniffed, and said not to bother ,as he had never had one snap ;)!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Glad to hear yours isn't too bad. If that's the case I'd say leave it. Mine had been rattling for about 30,000 miles but had recently got much worse.
An easy check is to remove the tensioner, take out the small bolt in the end first, and measure how far it extends. This indicates the amount of wear/stretch of the chain. Mine was way beyond the design limits so the tensioner basically wasn't doing anything.
One of the problems with rolling in a chain is the old guides are still in there, as is the balance chain. On mine the sprockets weren't badly worn and I didn't think the chain would snap but the chain was so slack I was concerned it could jump a tooth and as the tensioner was at the end of its travel it could only get worse. See the first thumbnail for how bad it was!
The new chain is tight and the tensioner is actually working now. There is a very small hole in the tensioner body so when the engine is running the tensioner is actually pressurised by engine oil. If you do the job make sure this hole is clear.
I've done 200 miles since changing the chain and I have to say it seems to have bedded in. The engine is much quieter now, just whirs a bit with no bad rattles. Still early days yet.

One other thing is the fuel consumption has got better. A mixture of town and open road driving today has returned 34mpg, the best I ever had before was 31mpg. Maybe the cams are now closer to their design positions.

All the best.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Glad it was helpful.

All I've got to worry about now is did I do the rivetting right :confused:

I'll be taking the rocker cover off this weekend just to check all is well.
 

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This is what the whole lot brand spanky new looks like for those who've got lots of rattles and want to get rid of the whole gallery of noises.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
That looks seriously good. Just makes me realise how much I didn't change !

Any idea of cost for a job like that? Cheapest quote I got was £900 ($1200?) plus any other parts needed whatever they might be.
 

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All it's cost so far was my dads sanity and my mechanic buddies patience, I've got a few more bits to do on it the whole kit was good value from genuine saab was great value and has all the bits needed, including a healthy amount of o-rings and seals. I would not have a clue how much it would cost from a dealer to get that work done but it would not be cheap. I'm finding lots of little bits to do that make sense to do whilst the engine is out which is adding up the cost to do the overall job, its better to do now than later.

My chain was stretched, the main tensioner was extended a lot and the hydraulic tensioner seemed a bit weak, the guides etc had a bit of wear on them from the chain being stretched/slack. Mine was in need of the whole lot but I had other work to do in it so it made the job worthwhile to pull the engine and gearbox out.
 

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Taking camshafts out when rolling-in timing chain

Tony-
I know it's been a while since you posted this, but I wanted to say thank you for the excellent write-up! I'm getting ready to do this job myself, so this is very helpful prep. I'm intrigued by one thing you said:

"Step 10. In theory after cutting the cable ties you hold the chain on the inlet cam and very careflly turn the crank pulley clockwise to wind the new chain in as you pull the old one out. We found the cams jump due to pressure from the valve springs and ended up losing the engine timing. Solution was to take out the cams!. This is dead easy only about 20minutes but you must remove the sprockets or the cams won't come out. By doing this the valves cannot hit the pistons and it is then dead easy to roll the chain in as its only going around the crank sprocket. It is critical to set the crank pulley TDC once the chain is in. Make sure you keep the chain tight.

I like the idea of taking-out the camshafts, which is not big deal. But I'm confused how this would avoid having valves and cylinders hit when you turn the crank. How does one know when all valves are in their closed positions? Is that when the engine is at TDC or?

Any wisdom on this by you or anyone else on the forum would be helpful and appreciated! I've googled this topic but without any luck. I just don't want to remove the camshafts and start cranking and hear valves getting crushed!:lol:
 

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that's a very good question...I would imagine once the camshafts are out... the valves would be pushed out by the springs since you have no more cams holding them down.
 

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I would imagine so... its been a while since I've opened the B205R. Some else should chime in and confirm.
 

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at tdc with the chain cut/removed, just rotate the exhaust cam forward 60 degrees and the intake back 60 degrees (you'll feel them come to a natural resting point) and all the valves will be closed. Then just roll the chain in by rotating the crankshaft ONLY. You can also skip steps 1 and 2, no need to remove that mount
 

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at tdc with the chain cut/removed, just rotate the exhaust cam forward 60 degrees and the intake back 60 degrees (you'll feel them come to a natural resting point) and all the valves will be closed. Then just roll the chain in by rotating the crankshaft ONLY. You can also skip steps 1 and 2, no need to remove that mount
I will need to do my chain too as well and don't really want to do what must be done according to the forums, WIS and such. All I want to do is just to roll in the new chain for now, ( not my daily car ) I will overhaul the engine when time and place is right.

N.E. Swede, to my understanding the only thing moving will be the crankshaft, not the camshafts? If yes then i know it will be easy.
 

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^^ Yes, just the crank. When you get the chain rolled in, set the crank to TDC with the marks on the pulley and timing cover and turn the cams back (opposite direction) to TDC. Easiest to do the roll in with an extra set of hands, but 2 bungee cords to keep tension on both ends of the chain works too. I like to remove the cam gears and bring the chain as far towards the front of the car as possible to remove and install the link. Less chance for debris/pieces of the new link/etc. to fall into the timing cover
 

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N.E. Swede-
Thank you very much for that insight. So, roll the cams back/forward as prescribed and then remove the camshafts? I'd also like to get cam sprockets out of the way to have no interference.

Regards
Bjorn
(Also a Swede but living in the US of A since 1989...)
 

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at tdc with the chain cut/removed, just rotate the exhaust cam forward 60 degrees and the intake back 60 degrees (you'll feel them come to a natural resting point) and all the valves will be closed. Then just roll the chain in by rotating the crankshaft ONLY. You can also skip steps 1 and 2, no need to remove that mount
Agree that steps 1 and 2 could be skipped. I have the car down, and actually removed the engine mount (and jacked-up the car) as I was changing the drive belt and alternator. But i can see now that 1 and 2 is not necessary if the only thing was to do the chain.
 
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