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Discussion Starter #1
on a 2001 taurus with the 3.0 vulcan flex fuel engine, how much slack is the timing chain supposed to have? mine has about 1/2 inch of slack in it, and the car has 170,000k miles. and I dont know what is involved with replacing the chain if it comes to that...
 

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By "1/2 in slack" do you mean you can move it about 1/2" perpendicular to the direction of travel right between the crank and cam gears? If so, that isnt bad. Since you have measured it, that means you have it apart. Since its apart, might as well replace it with a QUALITY set of chain / gears. Once you have it apart, its easy. Soak the chain in oil for a few minutes before installing it.
 

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I had one Taurus and one Sable with 240K miles and no timing chain issue. My 2001 with 130k miles had that much slack and I didn't bother changing it based on my other two cars experienced
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
By "1/2 in slack" do you mean you can move it about 1/2" perpendicular to the direction of travel right between the crank and cam gears? If so, that isnt bad. Since you have measured it, that means you have it apart. Since its apart, might as well replace it with a QUALITY set of chain / gears. Once you have it apart, its easy. Soak the chain in oil for a few minutes before installing it.
yeah, its side to side movement. its a little over 1/2 inch, around 5/8 of an inch. And it seems to have all of the slack on the left side, and the right side is tight. Is the duralast brand from auto zone good quality? and what about the napa brand. The ford dealership has the chain for $36, but it would not be in until wednesday...if i ordered it tonight.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
How would I go about replacing this timing chain? there is no tensioner on this one, and i am not sure how the new one would go on if its tighter than the old one.
 

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First of all you want a set of two gears and the chain not just the chain. You have to set up the number one cylinder to TDC. The two gears and chain are sliped on at the same time.
 

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Hi a bit more slack on our '99 sable 165K engine, had to r/r the water pump, it was
only 3 months old before it leaked at both weep holes but was lifetime from autozone.

So was easy to r/r the timing cover as it was leaking from bad head gasket(s) that were replaced short time ago.

The oil pan gasket was also replaced when I did the transaxle when it wore out, that is when I checked the slack in the timing chain and planned to replace it next time I was able to do so.

Once you line up the crank and camshaft to TDC, timing dot on the crankshaft gear 12 o'clock high,
the camshaft TDC dot is 6 o'clock low.

It will be a snug fit but little oil on the shafts and gears, line up the crank keyway and then slide it on a bit, then you can slide the camshaft gear on slowly, you will need to like up the key and keyway.

It will take a short time but it will slide on little at a time.
Be sure to add a drop of RTV to the key on the crankshaft before you slide on the crankshaft pulley.

Engine has nice smooth idle, I can tell the difference compared to the old chain,
I used Cloyes brand made in the USA.
 

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