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Old 04-12-2007, 08:08 PM
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Cam Timing?

Serious problem yesterday. Truck suddenly started sounding like every lifter was clattering. Scope showed timing was off. Mechanic pulled a valve cover and found the cam gear had turned on the cam shaft. He does not have the Ford cam timing tool set and says he can get the timing right by counting timing chain plaited links. Is that possible? He says both cams have to come out but only the drivers side is bad. Is he right? This is beyond my "shade tree" experience so any insight would be appreciated.
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Old 04-12-2007, 09:51 PM
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Is this a press fit cam and gear? if it is , get another cam and swap it in and pray the valves didn't meet with mr. piston! you dont have to take the other cam out. you need to manually spin the engine to find the timing marks on BOTH chains and mark them with white or yellow ink. keep rotating(make take a couple dozen times) and check to see that the timing marks on the cam line up and the damper mark lines up. if it is a two piece cam and gear, get a new gear and line it right up! pretty easy to do , just looks way scary!
Hope this helps
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Old 04-12-2007, 10:22 PM
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Thanks s1037s,
How can I tell if the press on gear is in the correct position on the camshaft? This is not a pretty sight.
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Old 04-12-2007, 10:55 PM
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the press on gear has NO bolts through the front side, its literally heated and pressed onto the cam.
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Old 04-12-2007, 11:23 PM
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Hello Klitch,
Yes, pressed on and the cam gear has a timing mark on it but if the gear has moved on the camshaft how can I tell? That's what I'm trying to understand.......is there a way to know if the gear has moved on the camshaft?
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Old 04-12-2007, 11:41 PM
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to my knowledge. no. i have no index mark on my pressfit cam or cam gear... well the index mark for the cam gear is for the chain not the position to cam.


sorry bud.
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Old 04-13-2007, 12:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasterhorses
Hello Klitch,
Yes, pressed on and the cam gear has a timing mark on it but if the gear has moved on the camshaft how can I tell? That's what I'm trying to understand.......is there a way to know if the gear has moved on the camshaft?
Try this link. You will need to degree the cam to see if it has moved on the gear. You will need to find the correct intake opening for your engine.
I would think that a mechanic would know this.

http://www.compcams.com/Technical/In.../COMP4-102.pdf
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Old 04-13-2007, 12:32 AM
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Hello ONELOWF,
Thanks for the link. I was on their site but missed the links to instructions. Great info.
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Old 04-15-2007, 01:29 PM
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Well the pressed on cam gear appears to be another money saving stupid idea by Ford. Spent hours at a wrecking yard looking at 5.4 heads and measuring cam lobes (97's are 2.04") and found several cams that had movement in the gears, the yard guy was amazed. Is that maybe why the engines were junked in the first place? Every cam lobe back to 98 (they had no 97's) was 2.18" so I am SOL so far on a used cam. Another disturbing fact has come to light and that is the camshaft bearings are just aluminum and part of the head casting and not fixable. All of the bearings and shafts that I saw were quite scored and mine were the worst probably because mine was older. Spark plugs that blowout...cam gears that turn because of no key...cam bearings shot because of cheap metal...all within 10 years...looks like these are truly THROW AWAY motors designed for 100,000 miles I'm at 107,850.
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Old 04-15-2007, 07:40 PM
JMC JMC is offline
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Get a camshaft from a Romeo build engine. They are bolted on. You will need to remove the front cover to properly install the cam so you should also look at the tensioner and chain guides. 97-98 Cams share the same specs regardless of the build plant. 99-04 heritage share the same specs.

JMC
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Old 04-15-2007, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasterhorses
Well the pressed on cam gear appears to be another money saving stupid idea by Ford. Spent hours at a wrecking yard looking at 5.4 heads and measuring cam lobes (97's are 2.04") and found several cams that had movement in the gears, the yard guy was amazed. Is that maybe why the engines were junked in the first place? Every cam lobe back to 98 (they had no 97's) was 2.18" so I am SOL so far on a used cam. Another disturbing fact has come to light and that is the camshaft bearings are just aluminum and part of the head casting and not fixable. All of the bearings and shafts that I saw were quite scored and mine were the worst probably because mine was older. Spark plugs that blowout...cam gears that turn because of no key...cam bearings shot because of cheap metal...all within 10 years...looks like these are truly THROW AWAY motors designed for 100,000 miles I'm at 107,850.
i can help you out i think... i have used press fit cams from a 02 5.4L i would have to mic them out and see how much wear they really have.
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Old 04-15-2007, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasterhorses
Well the pressed on cam gear appears to be another money saving stupid idea by Ford. Spent hours at a wrecking yard looking at 5.4 heads and measuring cam lobes (97's are 2.04") and found several cams that had movement in the gears, the yard guy was amazed. Is that maybe why the engines were junked in the first place? Every cam lobe back to 98 (they had no 97's) was 2.18" so I am SOL so far on a used cam. Another disturbing fact has come to light and that is the camshaft bearings are just aluminum and part of the head casting and not fixable. All of the bearings and shafts that I saw were quite scored and mine were the worst probably because mine was older. Spark plugs that blowout...cam gears that turn because of no key...cam bearings shot because of cheap metal...all within 10 years...looks like these are truly THROW AWAY motors designed for 100,000 miles I'm at 107,850.
i want to touch on the cam journals a little bit.

yes its a poor design, no there isnt really any bearings, so yes its soft metal wearing on a hard metal. the good news is most machine shops can acquire you some bearings and machine the cam journals to receive the bearings.

so if your cam journals show a lot of wear, you still have an option. it cost me $40 each cam journal.
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Old 04-15-2007, 10:26 PM
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Just like whats in my dragbike, aluminum head with cast iron camshaft's but in my case my cams are turning over 6,000 rpms Whichs leads me back to oil pressure, if you have no oil pressure or low oil pressure what's going to feel the effect first......... the cam journals

Lack of oil will cause the soft metal to bond to the harder metal causing scoring due to the friction. That's a tell tell sign of a oil problem at some time, like incorrect oil weight, low oil, incorrect filter, bad pump, etc.
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Old 04-16-2007, 01:48 AM
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Klitch, thanks for the bearing info but I am not going to remove the heads to repair the cam journals because of cost and the fact that who knows what other piece of cheap metal or plastic is gonna fail and muck up the rebuild.

JMC, thanks for the tip on Romeo build having bolt on cam gears and I also heard that the 4.6 Mustang cams should work. So it's back to the junk yards next week. For some reason the 20+ Ford modular heads I saw here in San Diego had all pressed on cam gears, aren't we special!

RacingJake, you might be right about the low oil pressure thing but I saw a lot of 5.4 heads with scored cam journals all 2000-2002 PI heads so maybe it's just normal like piston slap and torque converter shudder?

Here is a little food for thought....I wonder if the reason some 5.4's get great gas mileage is because they are Romeo build and the bolt on keyed timing gears do not turn just a little and screw up the performance just a little??????

How about a gas mileage poll based on engine build and tell us how to determine the build?
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Old 04-16-2007, 02:14 AM
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i believe the 5.4 is windsor built.

i heard 99+ 4.6 mustang cams were that way?

btw, you'd have to pull the engine apart to see what else could be bad yes. but as for the heads, its pretty straight forward man. not much else is prone to failure other than valve seats, and valve train.
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