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 Balance shaft pulley to sump pan gap

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
andydeans3Posted - 14 Sep 2017 : 15:03:55
Just finished building the bottom end of my spare engine. Was somewhat disturbed to note that the clearance between the balance shaft pulley is less than a millimetre from the edge of the sump pan.......Not actually touching but very very close. Is this normal?

Another related question, simple curiosity,
The two sump bolts that are at the rear, above the balance shaft bearing, have to have rubber washers fitted, as per the manual. Why exactly is this?


1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
12   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
andydeans3Posted - 09 Oct 2017 : 20:00:40
As a final word on this one, I have had a discussion with Steve Broadhead on this one, and it seems that some of them can be as close as 1 mm gaps between the pulley and the sump.
He suggested making sure that the blanking plug, at the back end of the balance shaft, behind the flywheel was fully home, which I have done, and it is, so I'm not going to worry about it!


1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
James RanaldiPosted - 17 Sep 2017 : 22:40:56

I have just had a look.

If I am measuring in the correct place, the gap between the face of the pulley and the sump is between 2.5 and 3mm which concurs with what Melle and Beta measured.
The pulley also sits "square" on the shaft.

You can have a play when you visit.


1968 V4, LHD
1984 99 GL
1992 C900i Convertible
1993 C900 LPT Convertible
andydeans3Posted - 17 Sep 2017 : 19:04:17
Some photos....
Funny thing is the gap one one side of the pulley, is not the same as the other, as if the pulley is not square on the shaft. However, it's pulled onto the shaft when you tighten the centre bolt, and toque it to 49 N metres, so I can't see how it would not go on square......

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[/url][url=]IMG_0720[/url] by [url=]

[url=[/url][url=]IMG_0719[/url] by [url=]

1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
mellePosted - 16 Sep 2017 : 18:54:19
Credit to Paul (Beta) for thinking of water pump pulley alignment, he's smarter than me.
andydeans3Posted - 16 Sep 2017 : 18:47:05
Good point Melle about the water pump pulley.

My engine does not at this time have a water pump fitted.
I will fit a new pump at some point, and look at the alignment then.

I'll try and get a close up, picture tomorrow, and post it.


1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
mellePosted - 16 Sep 2017 : 16:45:18
Beta and I "measured" (without proper tools) the gap on an engine this afternoon and we guestimate on that particular example it's about 2.5-3mm. Is the balance shaft pulley in line with the water pump pulley? On the engine we looked at they were dead on (measured with a straight edge). Curious now what others find!
andydeans3Posted - 16 Sep 2017 : 11:22:51

Very very slight end play, very small rotational play. Certainly no up and down play, since the bearings are new.

Have been this morning to the Pentland Classic Car Club breakfast meet at Bonnyrig, outside Edinburgh. Afterwards went to John Wyatt's place to look at an engine he has on the bench there, and like mine, the pulley just clears the edge of the sump pan. The gap on mine is around 0.75 mm(typo last time where I wrote 0.3 mm). John's engine is probably nearer 1 mm. Very close though, so I guess they're all like that?
Not going to worry about it!!!


1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
mellePosted - 16 Sep 2017 : 10:02:09
Just another thought: any end play?
andydeans3Posted - 15 Sep 2017 : 21:35:25

The balance shaft bearings were both replaced by a local machine shop. The balance shaft was very free in its' bearings.
Now everything has been assembled,(crank, pistons etc) everything spins freely enough.
The pulley is just very close to the edge of the sump pan. (not the cork gasket). Not touching but very close.

I'm going to see if I can see what gap there is on the engine, currently in my car. Probably not easy though, without removing the front panel.
Anyone got an assembled engine, where it would be easy to measure?


1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
mellePosted - 15 Sep 2017 : 21:12:44
Are you measuring the distance between the pulley and the metal lip of the oil pan, or the pulley and the cork gasket? If you need a washer to make the pulley properly clear the sump there is definitely something wrong I would think. Not sure how much clearance there should be off the top of my head, but definitely more than you measure. Did you take the balance shaft out and replace the bearings? Does it spin freely? I would be tempted to tap it back out.
andydeans3Posted - 14 Sep 2017 : 19:23:22

Thanks for that, now I understand. I'm not sure if those two bolts that I put the two new rubber washers behind are slightly longer than the others, but I can take them out again tomorrow to check.
Could also put Hylomr on the threads of the bolt?

Addendum. Have now checked the bolts, and yes the ones with the rubber seals on, that go above the balance shaft bearing, are 2 mm longer than the rest. 18 mm, vs 16 mm.

For the pulley clearance, yes I could put a slim washer behind the pulley, to bring it out slightly, to increase the clearance.

Might have to fab something with a cut out for the woodruff key.
Having checked diameters, I need a washer 33 to 34 mm OD......Then drill out the centre to an appropriate size, and file a slot for the woodruff key.
I'm wondering if there was a washer in there at the outset, which I have now have now "mislaid", though I was very,very careful with all the bolts, nuts etc.
The current clearance between the edge of the pulley, and the sump edge is actually around 0.3mm. Just checked it with feeler gauges.

Thanks again Woody.


1978 LHD SAAB 96
1978 MGB Roadster
2008 LHD "Classic" Renault Twingo
WoodyPosted - 14 Sep 2017 : 18:20:54
The two rear bolts have thread that open into the area behind the balance shaft journal which has oil supplied to it. The seal washers in the gasket set are to help stop oil leaking. Note that the two screws should be slightly longer than the other sump screws. Will have to look at my standard engine to see what clearance there is. In the meantime might be worth measuring the depth of side of pulley that goes upto crankshaft. If it is a worry you could place a large slim washer to increase the clearance. I haven't come across this in my own engines.

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