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Dave Freeman

Timing belts - accessability

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It sounds a bit dramatic or dangerous, weakening the structure and all that, however, being able to get at those difficult to reach parts would be good. I am a professional engineer and familiar with stressed structures so cutting a circular hole about 6 to 7 inches in diameter in the bulkhead would not raise the stresses or weaken the structure, a steel plate would replace the removed plywood.

Has anyone thought of this or indeed done it, not having changed the belts my self I was not looking forward to removing the engine or changing them blind, hanging over the engine and all that (due end of year its been 4000 miles and 4 years).

Any comments and or observations would be good

Many thanks

Dave

Edited by Dave Freeman

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Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

Been done before, Lotus apparently state the body is not truly structural so the bulkhead can be cut without impacting the safety of the car.

I've thought about it just not had time.

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Interesting, when I spoke to Sparky at teh weekend he said that the bulkhead was double thickness, but should not be a problem. I may give this a go,

Thanks for the input Andy.

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Cheers bibs, did not thinks to do a search, silly me, sent u a PM on freescan FYI

Regards

Dave

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Dave - my only comment would be that a 6/7 inch hole would still not be enough to do the entire job, and would still entail running around top/bottom to do the belt runs. It's not a great improvement on just doing it from underneath!

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Sparky, hi mate - still no engine check light, hooraaayyy.

Back to the question, i have never done one so my knowledge is based on not even being able to see the cam belt adjuster and that a number of service mechanics opt for taking the engine out. Perhaps a shared session on cam belt changing could be an option. We all have to do it, and regularly. Perhaps something for the end of the year.

Could this be interesting to anyone.

Anyway, how are you feeling, still eating the wet stuff. Hope you are feeling better, there's lots of events happening soon, be good to see you out and about.

Best regards

Dave

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Pleased about the check light, feeling much better but still on baby food (still no lager either), and happy to do a cambelt change with you to demonstrate how easy the 4-pot Stevens adjuster is!

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Glad to hear you are working towards fitness and feeling better. I will put a thread up to see who is interested in the cam belt event / session.

We could do it around September time, I am sure there will be interest.

Cheers Sparky

Dave

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If I cut a hole it will probably either be near the adjuster region or near the water pump region. Althought the manual adjuster is easy enough to access the earlier ones can be a pain (not impossible) and the water pump replacement would be a lot easier with some access parallel to the engine crank rather than just perpendicular.

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Absolutely - the 'semi-automatic' adjusters on the earlier cars are the spawn of Beelzebub, and any improved access to the water pump would be a boon.

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Dave

In reality, the belt is not difficult to change for a diy mechanic (like myself). Certainly no need to remove engine! Once you have the alternator out of the way access is not bad.

maybe allow 1 day for the 1st time. 1/2 day possible after you have done it a couple of times.

cheers Steve

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I'm right in the middle of my first cam belt change. No it's not that simple, especially when the bolts holding the bottom cover plate on are corroded in place. Could be why the previous owner thoughtfully cut two large holes in the cover plate on the left side, But, there's light at the end of the tunnel. At least the thermostat housing came off easily, and the alternator is being (relatively) cooperative. Something is leaking oil down low at the front of the engine. Not badly, but it's there. Front engine oil seal?

I've recently discovered a neat little tool, a socket extension with a little LED light on the end. Shines through the hole in the socket, sure makes finding nuts easier when probing around the nether regions.

Trouble with a hole in the bulkhead is that you'd still have to remove the seats to get to the hole. And that's not necessarily a simple thing to do. Better the devil you know than the devil you don't.

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Now, I'm fascinated. I've heard a lot about removing the thermo housing to replace the cambelt, but I do the job without disturbing it. But then I do have the deck vertical at the time, which makes access much simpler. Is it the deck that causes trouble?

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Dave, I helped Chris(internets) do his and right after that I took mine off and replaced it with not problems

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Thanks Felix, think its the unknown more than anything else. Its the thought of getting the timing wrong. With disasterous results.

Dave

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May take up Sparkys offer and do it as an event, probably need only to do it once to get the hang of it.

Thanks for the info guys/

Dave

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