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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 07:39:59 PM   #1
sapote
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Default Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

In case you want to save that $140 BMW camshaft timing tool, here is you can do.

Get a $3.50 8” x 12” Steel Carpenter Square from Home Depot (I have HD stock but not BMW) https://www.homedepot.com/p/Johnson-...CS10/204513518


With the crank at TDC combustion cycle, and with the two camshafts turned to their max retard CCW viewed from front (pushing the VANOS pistons to max travel to front), the EX cam timing hole is 92 degrees vertically to the plane formed by the two camshafts (a rod inserted into the EX cam hole will lean 2 degrees over the IN cam), and the measurement for the IN cam timing hole is 89.7 degrees (the vertical rod will lean 0.3 degrees to the EX cam).

So with this information, anyone can set the camshaft timing by placing the carpenter square 8” side on top of the cams with the long 12” side next to the timing hole, then use a drill bit (I forgot to record the drill bit size) that fits snug in the timing hole as the vertical rod.
For EX cam, the rod should be 0.170” to the right of the carpenter square at 4” high level, and this gives the 2 degrees off to the right.
For the IN cam, the rod should be 0.020” to the left of the square at 4” high level – this is practically 90 degree.

I prefer to do this way instead of the 119130 tool which required to rest tool on top of the head with valve cover gasket removed. The cheap carpenter square save you from removing the gasket.

Edit: my square has the scales in millimeter and not inches as I thought, so the above data should be at 65mms or 2.6" high and not 4". This gives the EX angle 93.75 degrees and not 92, and the IN angle is 89.5 and not 89.7 degrees.

Last edited by sapote; Thu, Apr-25-2019 at 04:33:56 AM.
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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 07:44:38 PM   #2
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

Let us know how that works after the works been done.


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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 08:02:40 PM   #3
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 08:12:41 PM   #4
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

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Also.. 60% off
https://www.ecstuning.com/b-schwaben.../020942sch01a/
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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 08:44:31 PM   #5
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

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A lot of people swear that it's OE BMW timing tools or bust. Not sure how accurate that is but $40 isn't bad.
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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 08:57:20 PM   #6
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

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A lot of people swear that it's OE BMW timing tools or bust. Not sure how accurate that is but $40 isn't bad.
I have an OE BMW timing tool... but I'd trust Schwaben over a carpenter square, to put it one way
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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 08:59:40 PM   #7
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

Not where I intend to save money though I am sure it would be ok.


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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 09:30:16 PM   #8
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

There are many ways to skin the cat, and I personally don't like to peel off the good cover gasket to do this.

BTW, many people had wondered why the BMW tool not come with 2 rods (or dowels) for inserting into both cams at the same time. This is very difficult to do considering the bridge holes (and the cams holes) are slightly off from squaring with the bridge.
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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 09:40:21 PM   #9
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

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Originally Posted by sapote View Post
BTW, many people had wondered why the BMW tool not come with 2 rods (or dowels) for inserting into both cams at the same time. This is very difficult to do considering the bridge holes (and the cams holes) are slightly off from squaring with the bridge.
Not to mention that's not how the tool was intended to be used - the spec is how far you have to lift one side of the bridge for the pin to go in, giving you a very precise camshaft angle.

Unfortunately people seem to enjoy ramming the pin into the camshaft to "lock" them, even though all that does is bend the rather expensive pin.
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Old Wed, Apr-24-2019, 09:44:44 PM   #10
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Default Re: Timing VANOS without BMW special tool 119130

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Originally Posted by Drewster View Post
Not to mention that's not how the tool was intended to be used - the spec is how far you have to lift one side of the bridge for the pin to go in, giving you a very precise camshaft angle.



Unfortunately people seem to enjoy ramming the pin into the camshaft to "lock" them, even though all that does is bend the rather expensive pin.


I found that out the hard way!




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Discussing E46 M3 Diff (my journey)... in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)