Wrench (1k)  Engine Disassembly
This motor came out of my '94 SC2 shortly after it started making some terrible noise (hear it HERE) indicating a bearing problem.  I probably could have rebuilt the motor then, but in the interest of reliability and getting the car back on the road as quickly as possible, I chose to put in a completely different motor and rebuild this one at a later date.  This motor is 7 years old and has 92,000 miles on it.  Oil changes were done religiously, and the oil level was checked quite regularly.  I only regret that I tried some 'snake oils' when I first bought the car and the motor was new (we all need to learn somehow, I guess).  Dura Lube, Slick 50, Restore, etc, will not come anywhere near my motor again.

This engine's disassembly was one of my long-term projects - I worked on it as time was available, and took as much time as was necessary to learn, measure clearances & tolerances, and determine what parts will be useable for a rebuild.

Click on any of the photos below for a larger version (requires a JavaScript enabled browser).

Service manuals

Since I want to do most of my future engine work myself, I invested in a set of factory service manuals before I started taking things apart.  I cannot believe that it took me this long to buy these manuals.  The level of detail is amazing, and I doubt that most other brands of manuals (Haynes, Chilton, etc.) cover procedures in the same level of detail.  They are certainly a worthwhile purchase if you'll be keeping your car for a while, and you can purchase them at your local Saturn retailer's parts desk (or pick them up for a good deal on eBay like I did) .
Engine box   
If you ever need to transport an engine, Saturn has a part # for this box made specifically for that purpose which makes the job easy.
Exhaust side   
An engine stand also makes the job much more enjoyable.  You can pick up a 750 lb unit for around $40 from most auto parts stores.

Here's a view of the intake side of the engine.

Intake side   
Here's a view of the exhaust side.
Oil pan   
A view of the oil pan.  Boy is that sucker dirty.
Oil pan closeup   
A closer view of the oil pan.  The crud in the bottom was non-metallic (the magnet had no effect on it).
Junk in oil pan   
Some slivers of metal that were also found in the bottom of the oil pan (not a good sign), the largest being about 4 inches in length.  It looks like these may have been shaved off the sides a spun bearing.
Oil baffle plate   
After removing the oil pan, the baffle plate and pick-up tube are visible.   With only 30 miles on fresh oil, the smell of this oil was one of the worst burning smells I've ever experienced.

Timing chain cover removed

A view with the timing chain cover removed, with cam sprockets, timing chain, chain tensioner, and guides visible.
Timing chain tensioner   
The tensioner pushes against a guide, which takes up slack in the timing chain.   Both the tensioner's extension and the length of the timing chain still measured within factory specs.
Timing chain guide   
A close-up is shown of the plastic part of a timing chain guide.  Assuming that these come from the factory smooth, this one looks like there is significant wear.  The other 2 guides looked about the same.


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