Re-Setting timing without TDC pin. (aftermarket FW)

JimboFresh206

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Ive done it on m20's, 30's m5x's and s5x's without the pin.

Can it be done on the n54 without the TDC pin in place? if so how did you do it :)

Im on borrowed time with my 07' & metal Rectangrings :weary: and this issue keeps me up at night for when the day comes.....
 

JimboFresh206

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Yeah that's where I've been going too when i ponder it, I've seen that done through the plug hole before.

The part that makes me question if it would be precise enough, is from my understanding you can get "X" ammount of flywheel movement before the piston itself moves?

Someone has to have done this before on one of these by now lol
 

Bnks334

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Yeah that's where I've been going too when i ponder it, I've seen that done through the plug hole before.

The part that makes me question if it would be precise enough, is from my understanding you can get "X" ammount of flywheel movement before the piston itself moves?

Someone has to have done this before on one of these by now lol

Yes, I set my timing without pinning the flywheel. There is several degrees of "dwell" time at TDC that you need to find the beginning and end of. Set timing in the middle. It's no different than any other motor. I didn't measure but it's a very small window maybe <5*. Anything in that window is going to be just fine. VANOS apparently isn't all that accurate anyway and you will surely be dialing timing advance in with a custom tune. It's not like a distributor.

I did end up throwing a stock flywheel onto the car to double check my mechanical timing to troubleshoot a cranking issue. I ended up being pretty much dead on ~maybe 2* more advanced. Cranking issue did end up being timing but it was due to the crank sensor wheel slipping when I bolted up the flywheel (no locating pin was in).
 

JimboFresh206

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On my m54 1 degree was enough for vanos errors, so without even having a mark on the balancer on the n54 I was worried.

Good to know the vanos on these can accommodate.

I have ISTA do you guys know any way I could maybe verify TDC with it? I know I can see timming etc while it's running.

But for instance my m30 can do it from the crank and refference sensors in the bellhousing it with the engine off, it would be cool if my n54 could aswell :)
 

Bnks334

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Ive done it on m20's, 30's m5x's and s5x's without the pin.

Can it be done on the n54 without the TDC pin in place? if so how did you do it :)

Im on borrowed time with my 07' & metal Rectangrings :weary: and this issue keeps me up at night for when the day comes.....

If all you are doing is removing the cams you shouldn't need to rotate the crank anyway... you would rotate the crank to TDC using the timing tool (bmw labels facing up on the cams) and then tear down the head. Mark the balancer to the block somehow to know exactly where TDC is in case it does move. Reinstall cams facing up and use the timing tool to get them perfect... You shouldn't really need to re-find TDC unless you're removing the crank hub itself.
 
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JimboFresh206

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It was the dead spot and not having a factory mark on the timing cover that had me ehhh about it, thank you clarifying
 

Bnks334

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On my m54 1 degree was enough for vanos errors, so without even having a mark on the balancer on the n54 I was worried.

Good to know the vanos on these can accommodate.

I have ISTA do you guys know any way I could maybe verify TDC with it? I know I can see timming etc while it's running.

But for instance my m30 can do it from the crank and refference sensors in the bellhousing it with the engine off, it would be cool if my n54 could aswell :)

Hey I could be wrong. Maybe I lucked out and was dead on lol... I am skeptical a 1* margin causes any kind of error though.

Or, maybe it's because I am an N55? My car did not throw a single code when the crank sensor reluctor wheel was off by a quarter of a turn lol... That's a hell of a lot more than 1* out of time. Maybe it was because I reset adaptions? Maybe VANOS only looks for deviations AFTER learning in and that's why I didn't get a code?
 
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JimboFresh206

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lol thats nuts! yeah on the earlier helical gear+sprocket style vanos you had to be really dead nuts, but it wasn't terrible to set because you could still at-least reference the timing cover marks to the balancer, and the cams had flat sections in the rear that pretty much ensured they were set perfect.

I think my current plan would be:

-Set to relative TDC using a wood dowel/screwdriver,extension/etc... down the hole.
-Setup the dial indicator and mark the Harmonic balancer
-Move the crank CCW/CW both ways until the dial begins to move.
-Once the dial starts to run negative (piston moving down) mark that spot in relation to the original mark made on the harmonic balancer.
-Do this for both CCW and CW
-Then center the crank between those two marks, and mark that as TDC/pray?

sound nuts?
 

Bnks334

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-Set to relative TDC using a wood dowel/screwdriver,extension/etc... down the hole.

The car is already in time. You do not need to find TDC. All you need to do is set the special timing tool up on the cams... That will put the rotating assembly to TDC which is where it will stay while you remove the cams lol If the cams are in the timing tool wiht the BMW labels facing up then the crank is at TDC.

https://www.amazon.com/8milelake-BM...id=1544822618&sr=8-4&keywords=n54+timing+tool

Please review newtis.info for detailed instructions.
 

JimboFresh206

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You clarified the cams for me, thank you.

sorry should have been more clear, i want a surefire way to reset timing in the event its gone out.

ie: my hub slips.

on the older motors you have to have both cam and crank position perfect, not a little off or close enough, but exact.
 

JimboFresh206

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lol found a pic of someone at BPC doing exactly what we have been talking about...

ok i will calm down now and start setting aside parts.

Thanks for all of the input guys i really appreciate it :)
 

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Torgus

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lol found a pic of someone at BPC doing exactly what we have been talking about...

ok i will calm down now and start setting aside parts.

Thanks for all of the input guys i really appreciate it :)

Granted that is an N52 not an N54 in the BPC picture fwiw.
 

doublespaces

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Guys, don't forget that since this is the Troubleshooting section you can vote on the best answers. Up or downvote appears on the left on PC and above the post on mobile.

The OP can also choose the best answer.
 
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