88 civic LX D15B3 timing marks

I am looking for someone to verify the timing marks on my old civic's D15B3 engine before I put it back together. my manuals list many engines, but not this one specifically. the pointer on the crank
shaft; no problem. I am wondering about the cam marks though. level marks horizontal seems to no want to line up when the belts on. I could be wrong though and just need to look at it again. I want to make sure this isn't one of those motors that use the mark on the bottom pointing down at an angle.
Anyone had experience with this motor???
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On 05/27/2011 01:06 AM, Bryan Williams wrote:

sounds like the belt's off a tooth. when set right, everything is exactly on.

not the d15. if you want, you can use a mark against that pointer, but you'll have to scribe your own. it's 5.5° off the "d16" mark - approx the edge of one tooth. but even that's not a great indicator because in some cases, the plastic cover has gotten hot and distorts slightly so what you're pointing at won't line up exactly. that's not the case with the d15 - the metal head edges don't go anywhere!

make sure you have the right marks on the crank - sometimes, because of rust or bad light under the hood, it's possible to mistake the crank tdc for the ignition timing marks.
one more thing - don't over-tighten that belt. the cam bearing is just the soft aluminum of the head. over-tightening munches that cam through the head and tears will flow. follow the tensioning procedure in the manual to the letter. [if you're using a haynes "manual", advise you take it out to the back yard, pour gasoline over it and ignite. worse than useless.] make sure the tensioning pulley is free to slide - make sure it's clean and the bolt is not so loose it doesn't sit square. yes, that weak little spring is all the tension you need.
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You should have an "UP" mark on the cam pulley. The horizontal lines should line up with the head surface, not with the horizon.
And when you line up the crank pulley, you sight the TDC mark from directly overhead. There are pins on the front of the timing cover that are used as "sights".
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On 05/27/2011 09:41 AM, Tegger wrote:

if you have the covers and the main crank pulley off, there's also a pointer on the oil pump housing that lines up with a mark on the crank's tooth belt pulley. probably have to wipe crud off it, but it's there and quite handy.
tdc on the crank pulley is the single mark, not the triple.
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It does make things simpler, that's for sure.

In my area, the pulley rusts and the paint comes off. That can make it hard to find all the marks, and a surprising number of people miss the single mark that's off by itself. All the more reason to use the oil-pump mark as a startinmg point.
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You guys really came through, thanks! This is what I needed.
I have it torn all the way down because I replaced the water pump and thus the belt too. The mark on the crank gear was not what I expected! Small and subtle, especially when dirty. I wasn't sure what I was looking at so I took it off and cleaned it, I kind of expected something more or bigger. Thats when I went back to the oil pump and uncovered the arrow that was also non existent due to black crud. The cam gear line up seems real straight forward.
I think I had everything right, but I think I fell apart when it cam to putting the belt on. I think I was leaving some slack on the front/ radiator side, and was introducing that tooth off problem but not seeing it until I tensioned it. Its all about the details... And then I started to second guess the relevant reference marks because of something I saw in the Haynes book. I have my Honda Service Manual for my 95 civic that I have used most of the time actually because it just seems to cross over because the engines really aren't all that different. However, it is specific for that 1995 generation and doesn't reference this 1988 motor directly. Thats where I got weird about it.
So should I expect much of a difference when it comes to shining a timing light on that crank pulley? Should I expect the need for fine adjusting on the distributor, or maybe not out at all? I have never timed these Honda's. All the years I have owned many it has not come up until now. Looks like I have to jumper or short a connector at a module under the hood?
You guys gave me great details. Especially on the tensioning part. I am a second guesser when it comes to tensioning belts. I just am.
So it sounds like in my case: I line the gears up, put the timing belt on, seat it, tension it, rotate it, check tension, then, everything should still line up as original. When the crank pulley is on, the white stand alone mark should line up with the "gun" sights. With that lined up, it is TDC. In a perfect world the cam will lined up level with the top of the head at the same time. I'm pretty sure this is right but any feed back is more than welcome...
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On 05/27/2011 04:16 PM, Bryan Williams wrote:

same engine family, same procedures.

you should re-time it. when set correctly, the distributor should be pretty much dead center of its slots. start there and adjust accordingly. do when the motor is at normal operating temp.

for the 88, yes, under the hood. it's near the driver side motor mount. use a paper clip. it's particularly important on the 88 for some reason.

no. you line it up, put the belt on, rotate it three times, /then/ set the tension when the cam is in the position it states in the book. and the tension is done by the pulley spring, not you. only rotate the engine counter-clockwise from the pulley end.
the tension pulley bolt can be finicky. unless you've already put it all back together, take the pulley off and wipe down the sliding surface of the block, and the back of the pulley. apply a little engine oil to make sure it slides right, then put back into position with the tension spring in place. tighten the bolt by hand so it keeps the face of the sliding surfaces square with each other without tilting, but is still free to slide. finger tight basically.
then, when you've got the belt on, timed, and ready to tension, tighten the bolt with a ratchet and socket [preferably torque wrench!] and rock backwards and forwards on it slightly as you tighten. this is crucial because if the bolt is too loose, the pulley tilts and digs in at a position so that when as it tightens, it puts excess tension on the belt. and if you don't believe that excess belt tension can cause misery, go to a junkyard and look at some of the honda cylinder heads you'll find there. lots of tears.

yup.
correct.
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