why are my marks not lining up?

Asked by Nov 26, 2015 at 02:31 PM about the 1988 Jeep Comanche Laredo 4WD

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My timing chain is stretched. The marks on my
sprockets line up but the mark on my crank wheel
doesn't line up with the marks on the timing cover
when cylinder 1 is at tdc compression stroke. Not
too familiar with timing but so far it's been a pain
in the ass. Couldn't get it running good to save my
life. Every time I time my distributor with cylinder 1
at tdc it's backfiring and studdering if it even runs.

6 Answers


What engine do you have in your Jeep? If your chain is so stretched that you can not line up all the timing marks you need a new chain and if applicable guides and tensioner. You don't want the engine timed at zero degrees before TDC but about ten degrees before TDC.


Your timing marks on the cam gear and the crank shaft gear need to line up as you say when on the compression stroke and TDC. The crank shaft balancer timing mark should line up on TDC mark off of the timing chain cover. Not uncommon if it does not. Just take note of how far it is off since you know that you are on TDC. & compensate. Time the engine to the specification listed under the hood, with a timing light. IF you are trying to set a stretched chain, it is not going to happen. Need new timing chain and gears. A stretch chain, you do not know where your at, and causes backfiring.

It's a 4.0 renix motor. When I am at tdc on compression stroke the timing mark on the crank wheel is around the 11 o clock position when the marks on the cover are at the 1 o clock position. This is what's confusing me. I can't put a timing light on it because they don't line up


Ok got ya, what you describe sounds about right. At this point disregard the mark on the timing cover. Looking at the front of the motor, your camshaft gear (sprocket) is on the upper left side of the crankshaft gear, right? (At a 11 o clock position also so to speak?) So you have # 1 piston at TDC on the compression stroke. The mark on the crankshaft gear will be at around the 11 o clock position. Now there is a mark on the camshaft gear that needs to line up with the crankshaft gear. (That would be around the 5 o clock position) When the timing chain is installed these two marks have to line up! Rotate the camshaft gear as necessary for marks to line up.....Now you are good. Just to check since you are all lined up check and see if the rotor under the cap is pointing at # spark plug wire on the distributor cap. This lets you know the distributor is installed correctly. Put it all together, Now use a timing light to time the engine. Yes that mark before starting the engine will be around the 1 o clock position, it should be by the timing tab or mark on the timing chain cover.


How you doing on this?

I am still waiting for the new timing set in the mail but thanks for the help I will let you know how this turns out

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