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Old 10-12-2019, 06:02 PM   #1
forester04xt
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Default Can intake/exhaust cams be flipped?

Hello, I have a 2004 Subaru Forester XT - EJ255

I pulled motor, and rebuilt the heads. After putting the motor back in the car, and failing to get the car to run properly, I did a compression test. Driver's side has 150 psi and passenger side has 0 (tester gauge reads from 30psi-200psi). After pulling the motor again because I thought valves may have been bent, nothing seemed to be wrong.

My question is, when I had the cams off, is it possible I may have switched intake or exhaust cams from driver's side to passenger side or vis versa. Are the pin (or keyway) on the cams that slide into the cam sprockets specific to a side? Because if the keyway is in a different location on the two cams then that's why my timing is off no matter what.

Thank you for any insight
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Old 10-13-2019, 12:17 AM   #2
SlammedSix
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You can switch them, but the passenger side cams stick out further, so the cam gears have a different offset then the drivers side and it should be very apparent when you put the belt on. I dont even think you could bolt the passenger side cam gears on the drivers side cause they will hit the timing cover.

But one thing you could do is install the wrong cams in the wrong head (left cams in right head). I only caught it when installing the cam gears.

Pictures of the timing marks would help. If they dont line up I would not be cranking the motor for compression test or anything
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:51 AM   #3
forester04xt
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So an update for y'all. My buddy noticed that there was multiple key ways on the cam gear. (for intake cam). I was not there when he discovered this but I believe he said it was on the passenger side intake side. We have also had problems timing the motor, the dual marks on the cam gear was always one tooth off. So if the cam was in the wrong keyway on the cam gear that would be the reason for the timing being messed up no matter what.

I am going over tomorrow to look and put the motor back in the car. I will update with the results in case someone else makes this same mistake. Thank you for the input SlammedSix
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Old 10-13-2019, 04:25 AM   #4
stu
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If you put the cam gear on wrong make sure you check the rear of the gear to see if it was damaged by the pin on the cam.
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Old 10-13-2019, 04:30 AM   #5
forester04xt
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Yes, that was the plan. I'm assuming that those other holes are oil passage ways (Maybe for the AVCS system?). If the key was in the wrong hole and I damaged one of the oil passage ways, what would I need to do, get a new cam gear? What would having a damaged passage way cause? (I wouldn't install with it damaged, I'm just curious.)

Thank you!!
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Old 10-13-2019, 04:34 AM   #6
stu
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I would buy a new one if it is messed up. Also after you get it retimed do a leak down to make sure you are sealed up. I had a friend do this years ago it was a pain, hopefully you didn't bend any valves.
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Old 10-13-2019, 04:52 AM   #7
SlammedSix
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There is most definitely NOT multiple key way in the camshaft for the cam gears. I would need to see pictures. I've done literally hundreds of Subaru motors.

The intake camshafts will have 4 holes other than the large pin for the cam gear pin. The exhaust cams will have just the pin and two holes
AVCS Gear
Non AVCS

Last edited by SlammedSix; 10-13-2019 at 05:10 AM.
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:03 PM   #8
forester04xt
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I still have not made it over there but i had him send me a picture. The one I circled in blue is the key way that it is supposed to go into and I think the one circled in red it the one that it was trying to slide onto (This is all an assumption since I am not there). Sorry for the half a** information due to not physically looking at it.

We have done a leak down test and all is well as far as we can tell. No air leaking through the intake or the exhaust.

***EDIT** I'm having troubles getting the picture to post, give me just a bit



https://photos.app.goo.gl/nvC1meFjeiNpTKjTA

Let me know if you are able to view the photo via link

Last edited by forester04xt; 10-13-2019 at 02:23 PM.
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:03 AM   #9
SlammedSix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forester04xt View Post
I still have not made it over there but i had him send me a picture. The one I circled in blue is the key way that it is supposed to go into and I think the one circled in red it the one that it was trying to slide onto (This is all an assumption since I am not there). Sorry for the half a** information due to not physically looking at it.

We have done a leak down test and all is well as far as we can tell. No air leaking through the intake or the exhaust.

***EDIT** I'm having troubles getting the picture to post, give me just a bit



https://photos.app.goo.gl/nvC1meFjeiNpTKjTA

Let me know if you are able to view the photo via link
Wow...yea I can see that picture. I dont even know how that was possible but that pin in the camshaft was jammed into an oil hole.

There is no way that camshaft sat correctly and I'm surprised there was not oil leaking everywhere.

Very unfortunate
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Old 10-14-2019, 03:43 PM   #10
forester04xt
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So, got the motor back in with the cam sprocket in the correct position and the car runs perfectly now. I can't believe I made such a minor/major mistake that was causing all this grief.

Thank you all for the input!!
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