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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Coles notes: I was on my way home, driving fine. Rad fans not working, car's been clocking around 230-240 degrees. Heard a loud popping noise and had loss of power. Couldn't restart car. Opened hood, PCV hose blew off, valve still in place. Replaced hose, retried starting car. Car would not start. Crank spins fast and sounds free. Car threw code (I think 0340?) check CPS. Went back under hood, could turn synchro assembly freely by hand. Repositioned it at ~30 degrees and retried starting car. Same symptoms.

My first guess is timing chain?

My first reaction is to buy a better car.

Anybody have any insight?
 

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First: Vulcan engine? 97 GS can be both AFAIK...

And what do you mean "turn feely"? On Vulcan it has a clamp-down and a bolt there. Once you clamp it, there is no moving!
 

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Turn freely? Sounds like the oil pump drive gear at the bottom of the CPS is sheared off and something is wrong with the hold down also. Hopefully you don't have any loss of lubrication damage. I would start by pulling the CPS and see what's there on the bottom end.

SoNic: Duratecs don't have that type of CPS, they're more like a little button on the rear head. It's a Vulcan.
 

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That's why I assumed that is a Vulcan, I was just making sure that is the case.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's a vulcan, and the bolt is loose. I thought about that at work today.

I checked the sensor, and the magnet's still in place and the tooth isn't mangled, so that's one plus. I pulled the CPS, and the gear turns fine. A little bit of play in the shaft up and down, but no gear wear or anything. Put it back and torqued the crap out of that retaining bolt. Went to start it back up with the hood open and *POW* my PCV hose (with valve this time) shoots across my yard in a puff of smoke.

I'm convinced an intake valve is stuck open somewhere. So the possibilities are a broken valve spring, or timing chain. I'll be ripping the valve covers off tomorrow evening and going from there.
 

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So it spins faster when you crank... Hmmm, I have that happen on my wife's Sonata, but that was belt driven and that broke, never heard of a chain to break. And PVC was fine, no back pressure in my case (maybe was stopped with intake valves closed?).
True, in order to blew the PVC you would have a intake valve open - it's the only way pressure can get there. Can you rent a pressure gauge to check compression?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think it would be easier to rip the valve covers off & bump the engine to see if the rocker arms are moving, or if there's a spring sheared in half. I have 4 spare valve springs, so I'm hoping that's all it is. Timing chain would be a huge PITA.
 

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Humor

So it spins faster when you crank... Hmmm, I have that happen on my wife Sonata, but that was belt driven and that broke, never heard of a chain to break. And PVC was fine, no back pressure in my case (maybe was stopped with intake valves closed?).
True, in order to blew the PVC you would have a intake valve open - it's the only way pressure can get there. Can you rent a pressure gauge to check compression?
"I have that happen on my wife Sonata"

OK mis read that one::p

Guess that is not her name.

Have a nice day.

-chart-
 

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Well, yes, it might be better your way, sounds like you know how to do it.
A spark plug removal (in front at least) was less complicated in my opinion.

And yes, I eat letters all day long :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I've modded the crap out of this thing. Literally, since I think it just shat its organs out in this last episode. The only problem I've had is a strange bolt that I couldn't figure out the right tool for that holds the timing chain cover on. It was the '97 block that came out after a CPS-to-spun-bearing episode that I just tested stuff out on. I never got it off, and never got access to the timing chain. I scrapped the engine and got $40 for it (cheap #$%@) but wish I still had it to crack that puzzle without being blind. I might just set it on fire.
 

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Before you pull the valve covers, do a compression check. Compression will be zero on a cyl with a hung valve, and compression will be zero on several cyls if the chain is broke. Personally, i have never heard of a chain break on a Vulcan, but I suppose it is possible. Back in the 60s/70s. GM used nylon gear teeth on some engines, and they would shear off, causing similar problems to yours. What a PITA, as the broke teeth ended up in the oil pan, so that had to come off to clean it all up.
 

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So, it sounds like no compression?

Here's a Vulcan trying to start with a broken timing chain:

skip to 3:00


It doesn't sound like a single valve issue to me. You can tell pretty quick when there's a timing issue, generally by the sound of it turning over. I would do a compression check and then tear off the valve covers so you can watch the valve-train for issues. Also, shouldn't the CPS stop spinning once the timing chain breaks? Isn't that driven by the camshaft, which in turn is driven by the chain?
 

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Chain Break

So, it sounds like no compression?

Here's a Vulcan trying to start with a broken timing chain:

skip to 3:00

YouTube - ‪Episode III "THE FINALE" 92 Ford Ranger Upper Engine Rebuild‬‏

It doesn't sound like a single valve issue to me. You can tell pretty quick when there's a timing issue, generally by the sound of it turning over. I would do a compression check and then tear off the valve covers so you can watch the valve-train for issues. Also, shouldn't the CPS stop spinning once the timing chain breaks? Isn't that driven by the camshaft, which in turn is driven by the chain?
Yes chain can break but not common.

If you take of the dist cap, or the sync cover, turn the engine a little with a wrench on the crank, if the dist/sync does not turn, then highly likely chain broke. In the junk yeard I have seen 3.8 with broken cam shaft.

In any event, not likely to fix it in the car. Used engine best bet now.

-chart-
 

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There you go! Nice thinking :D
 

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^^^^^ Agreed..... sounds like a good plan!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Confirmed timing chain. Had someone turn the engine over while I watched the rocker arms; no movement. Can't wait for my V8.
 
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