So after the turbo experiment I was left with a paperweight for a motor. Luckily I had a spare motor (imagine that!) kicking around. It was a project Niva I had bought and started to do bodywork on, but it had a blown motor when I bought it thanks to someone never tightening his cam chain adjuster and the timing chain skipping a tooth. Piston/valve interference ensued and the valves were bent up good so it no longer ran. I had planned to fix it, but ended up stealing the gearbox, now the motor, and other parts before I finished the bodywork so it was abandoned.
In any whoodle, I decided to fix the head and build this bad boy. I don't know if I bought new valves or just had some kicking around or what but I took it to a rebuilder and they cleaned her all up, new guides new seals, valves, decked the head, all was golden.
I painted the block and head, accessories, bought a new GM 1-wire alternator (common upgrade for Nivas).
Oh, and yeah, that motor's totally sitting on a stand in my parents' kitchen. Did I mention my mom has infinite patience with my shenanigans?
With a new head gasket and the head back on and torqued up, you can line up your crank and re-install your cam sprocket and chain, making sure to line up your cam timing marks. In order to re-fit the chain you may need to take out the tensioner, loosen the cap, compress it, and tighten the cap again to get enough clearance. Once everything is in, loosen the cap and rotate the motor a couple times by hand, then lock the cap down.
Check to see that the tensioning shoe is sitting nice and the bolt is tight, make sure your cam sprocket bolt is snug, and re-check your timing marks to be sure. In my case, with the head haing been decked, the timing mark won't line up perfectly because the cam is now closer to the crank slightly, so the chain will have some new slack that must be taken up by the adjuster. Make sure your timing mark is off on the tensioner side, not the opposite, or your cam timing will be off by a tooth.
Here we are installing accessory brackets, motor mounts, and setting rocker arm lash.
Turn the crank by hand and adjust each rocker adjuster when the lobe is opposite the rocker arm. Simply loosen the locknut on the bottom of the adjuster, then turn the bolt up or down to take up free play. Now from memory I believe the correct lash is 0.15mm on intake rockers, and 0.20mm on exhaust rockers. If you aren't sure which are intake and which are exhaust, just count down your ports on the right hand side of the motor. It will give you from either end E-I-I-E-E-I-I-E. Make sure you hold the bolt stationary while you lock your adjuster down, and re-check your lash once it is locked as tightening the collar actually closes up the clearance a tiny bit.
Now we can finish installing accessories, including coils and some nice accel wires, manifolds, crank pulley and belts, etc.
I took the opportunity while re-installing the motor to have the flywheel re-faced and put in a new clutch disk, which in this case was a far superior one from a Ford Escort. Now you'll want to double-check but I think it was a '92 Ford Escort 1.9L 4cyl, it was whichever one had 7/8" input shaft with 20T, and 7-7/8" OD. That much I remember. It was the tits.
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