Timing off after timing chain replacement - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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#1 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 11:51 AM
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Timing off after timing chain replacement

I just replaced my chain and guides (thanks to this forum--couldn't have done it without!) but the car won't start now. It's sputtering and sounds like it's backfiring.
I lined everything up: at TDC the balancer is at 0, both cam marks line up, chain tight, new tensioner, and distributor pointing to the #1 cylinder.
I even adjusted the distributor-you can pivot it a little before you tighten it down-and used a timing light while someone cranked. The light is hitting the 0 mark every time. It seems like it's the common 180 degrees off problem, but the timing light ruled that out.
I unplugged the coil and cranked it while listening--it had a regular and steady sound, so it seems electrical...

Is there anything I'm missing? I'm stumped!

Last edited by T Ratzlaff; 08-19-2013 at 01:06 PM. Reason: Forgot some information
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#2 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 12:08 PM
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wish I could help, curious to see responses. Hope you get what you need quick. My Indy shop did mine and my engine performance showed a marked improvement.


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#3 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by T Ratzlaff View Post
I just replaced my chain and guides (thanks to this forum--couldn't have done it without!) but the car won't start now. It's sputtering and sounds like it's backfiring.
I lined everything up: at TDC the balancer is at 0, both cam marks line up, chain tight, new tensioner, and distributor pointing to the #1 cylinder.
I even adjusted the distributor-you can pivot it a little before you tighten it down-and used a timing light while someone cranked. The light is hitting the 0 mark every time. It seems like it's the common 180 degrees off problem, but the timing light ruled that out.
I unplugged the coil and cranked it while listening--it had a regular and steady sound, so it seems electrical...

Is there anything I'm missing? I'm stumped!
I just changed my entire camshaft, sprocket and had to take the chain off while doing so and i didnt run into the issue.


did you refer to the manual on how to line up the cam markings and the sprocket markings? i have a m103 engine, so it will be different for me. you might want to look at that. there is no adjustment needed for m103, the EZL makes up for minor adjustments based on what i read...
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#4 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 01:38 PM
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This is for my m103 engine that i used...

http://w124-zone.com/downloads/MB%20...03/05-2230.pdf
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#5 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 02:12 PM
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The only thing I could find was in the chain replacement section. It showed the cam mark and I lined it up the same way.
I did come across a section on the "TDC transmitter"...wonder if anyone has experience with that?
Thanks for the link though!
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#6 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 02:27 PM
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The engine will do this if the distributor is 180 degrees off. Make sure you are at the lines AND that the distributor is at the mark correctly.

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#7 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 04:05 PM
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OK, here's where I'm at:
Timing off after timing chain replacement-wp_000542.jpg
Here's the rotor pointing to the notch / #1 cylinder,

Timing off after timing chain replacement-wp_000543.jpg
Balancer at 0,

Timing off after timing chain replacement-wp_000547.jpg
and cam mark (I didn't pull the driver side cover to take a picture, but made sure it was in place before putting everything together)
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#8 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 06:12 PM
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Timing looks ok... You didn't cross wire it did you? Because I have

I would verify spark plug wiring on the cap.

TDC transmitter on front cover just sends its signal to the X11(?) test port on the drivers fender.
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#9 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 07:14 PM
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The plug wires are a good suspect, I've mixed them up too...also, it's been my experience that after a few years, NO amount of care, proper boot pulling tools, and so on will prevent at least ONE wire from going bad when going through a removal/reinstallation cycle. They just get brittle. In the old days, it was a copper wire with a lot of insulation, what can go wrong? Now, it is a complex woven resistance element surrounded with even MORE insulation, and the underhood temperatures, once high, are now brutal.

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#10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2013, 07:37 PM
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The wires are definitely in the right sequence. That's a good point though--I'm going to check each one for spark. I just assumed that if they worked before, they'd work after. If anything, that'll be another part of the equation to rule out.
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