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How to Degree a Cam: Step 3: Fit Dial Gauge

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Step 3: Fit Dial Gauge

04.35

00:00 - The next step of our process is to fit our dial indicator so that we can actually measure our cam or valve opening and closing events.
00:09 In this case, because our cam degree spec sheet has been done in metric units, we are going to be using a Mitutoyo metric dial indicator just for simplicity so that all of our units match.
00:22 Now of course when it comes to fitting our dial indicator we are using a magnetic base.
00:28 With the SR20 being a predominantly aluminium cylinder head, this does add a little bit of complexity because there's nowhere for our magnetic base to actually fix to.
00:37 In this case we are using our steel plate and we've just drilled a couple of holes in this steel plate that match the bolt pattern for the cam caps in the SR20 cylinder head.
00:50 This gives us a nice rigid location to fit our magnetic base and somewhere that we can work from there.
00:57 While it's not much of an issue on the SR20 VVL cylinder head, we do want to make sure wherever we locate that steel plate, that it's not going to interfere with any of the rotating components in the cam train.
01:10 So let's go ahead and we'll fit that plate now.
01:27 Alright we've got our plate fitted there, now we can actually go ahead and fit our magnetic base and dial indicator.
01:33 Now it's important to note here, while we are fitting our dial indicator, we want to be careful to make sure that we've got the extension for the dial indicator operating in the same plane or on the same angle that the valve is going to open and close.
01:48 We don't want to be coming in onto the edge of the retainer on an angle that's going to affect the accuracy of our results.
01:54 At the same time, just to add some complexity there, we also need to make sure that wherever we locate that extension that it's not going to interfere or be hit by the cam lobes as we rotate the engine through a full cycle.
02:08 So let's go ahead and fit our dial indicator and we'll rotate the engine through, once we're happy with that and just make sure that there is no chance of interference.
02:49 Once we've got the dial indicator fitted in a location on the retainer where it's not going to be interfered with by the cam lobe, and we know that we've got enough travel in our dial indicator so that we're not going to end up falling off the retainer at maximum lift.
03:03 We can go ahead and zero out our dial indicator.
03:07 When we've done this, I also like to rotate the engine through another full cycle and just make sure that we are repeatedly coming back on the same zero point for consistency.
03:47 At this point we've got our dial indicator fitted.
03:49 We know that it's running in line with the valve, we also know that it's clearing our cam lobe and we know that we've got it correctly zeroed and we're consistently coming back to the same zero point when the valve closes.
04:00 At this point we're ready to move on and we can actually start taking some measurements of our valve opening and closing positions so that we can correctly degree our cam.
04:10 Of course in this particular step we've only looked at locating and zeroing our dial indicator on our exhaust valves.
04:18 The process however is exactly the same for doing this on our intake valves.