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I have just fitted a new timing belt kit on a 2 litre automatic. and at 2.6 hours quoted by auto-data it's not a bad job at all to do, every thing is pretty accessible with a fair bit of room to move about in, BUT, be warned, if you normally mark up the position of the sprockets first with tippex then use these markings for re-assembly you will be in for a shock,!
You must use the timing pin set to hold the fly-wheel from turning, being an auto it's the only way to lock it in position because when you start fitting the new belt on around the sprockets you will find the crank-shaft sprocket runs loose as it's not keyed on to the crankshaft.!! It's only held in place by the tightness of the crankshaft pulley, and this is tightened up to 40 n/mtrs first and then a further 53 degrees without turning out of position in the process.
It seems to me to be ludicrous not to key this piece to the crankshaft as it does not need to move to set the timing and the strain on the locking pin which fits into the torque plate when pulling it up tight must be enormous.!
Nerve wracking when you try the start up.
 

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Most modern engines are floating cranks nowadays

You should not use the locking pin to stop the crank turning while retightening it could break as you say.

You think a Peugeot is bad try doing a Renault 1.5 dci belt!!
 

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Reason for doing it like this is that you can skim the head and still be able to get the timing correct.

Alternatively one could use an adjustable cam pulley to achieve the same, but I suppose that's a more expensive solution.
 

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Its not really for head skimming reasons its more to do with tolerances of parts from various manufacturers being different and means the timing can always be set correctly even with mixed parts different gasket thicknesses etc etc.

Its not really a problem as long as you know its a floating crank its when you don't know it becomes a problem :)

You should try fitting a auxiliary belt on a 2004 onwards focus you need to stretch it on it has NO tensioner !!
 
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