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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:14 AM   #2026
unlimitedlj
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Because you will be hard pressed to make it mesh 100% with the cam gear thats why. You start to take stuff on and off just to check you will have problems. If it ain't broke don't fix it. Unless you having problems let it be. It would be like pulling your heart out to see if it was clogged and putting it back in. You run the risk of having problems for sure then. Why create a problem for youself if you may never have one?

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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:19 AM   #2027
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flying_bosun View Post
If your replacing with a new one, there's no need to mark the old. Pull the cover off the old and get the engine to TDC (either by hand turning the crank or by rocking it in gear is easiest). You'll see "top" stamped on the wheel of the OPDA; TDC is achieved when the "top" is aligned with the sensor and the hole on the wheel is aligned with the hole in the crown (so it aligned exactly like the new one with the plastic pin still in.) You can get TDC after pulling the OPDA, but it's more involved.
Do you think TDC method is easier than noting the position of the old, then matching with the new? (also I have an auto, so I would have to hand crank) I'm swapping mine next week (slow shipping...) Also- the oil doesn't need to drained to do this right?
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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:25 AM   #2028
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stock'89YJ View Post
Hey guys,
I'm about to replace my OPDA on my 2005 TJ with 155,000 km on it. I have the loud ticks at startup, coming from the OPDA. I've read up on the installation process, but I need some clarification.
After I pull the old one out (marking it properly), does the new one just drop in? I understand that the new one has an alignment pin, I'm just not sure when to pull that. Do I still need to turn the engine TDC after/before I drop the new one..? Please clarify. I'm mechanically abled, but clearly really confused about this..
Thanks to all for your write-ups and help.
Read the pertinent section on page 1. Besides describing the TDC method (taken from the FSM) Willy describes getting the oil pump slot to align on installation including a video.

As f_b says, you don't need to mark the old one but you do need to turn the engine to line up the small hole in the wheel with the "raised" hole in the housing (TDC) before removing the old one.

Remove the pin after getting the new one in & fully seated in the block & the hold down bracket tightened.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:30 AM   #2029
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainwashed2566

Do you think TDC method is easier than noting the position of the old, then matching with the new? (also I have an auto, so I would have to hand crank) I'm swapping mine next week (slow shipping...) Also- the oil doesn't need to drained to do this right?
It's almost 6 of one, half dozen of the other, technically, but I'm be inclined to prefer TDC. It just seems more straight forward to me. And no need to drain the oil.

Btw, are you FOGmodding the new one or disassembling the old. If I were you, I'd disassemble the old and inspect it. If it looks ok, then do the FOGmod and re-install, then keep the new (FOGmod it, too) as a spare. If it shows any signs of galling, then replace with the new FOGmodded unit. Either way, I recommend FOGmod.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:37 AM   #2030
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Have there been any comparisons of the OPDA to earlier distributor assemblies? The 05-06 ODPA housing looks very close to a old-style distributor, even down to the one round / one square cover indexes that exist on the distributor cap. If the cam's integral gear is the same as previous years, could a drive gear from a distributor work?

The main reason I ask this it my past experience with cast cams vs. billet roller cams and the differences in the distributor drive gear material (bronze vs. steel). Is it possible that the solution drive gear is to use a different material for the gear compatibility?
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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:39 AM   #2031
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainwashed2566 View Post
Do you think TDC method is easier than noting the position of the old, then matching with the new? (also I have an auto, so I would have to hand crank) I'm swapping mine next week (slow shipping...) Also- the oil doesn't need to drained to do this right?
I think the TDC is better for new OPDA because the gear position will be different & the marks on the engine won't necessarily line up. The wheel-to-housing position will be the same if you mark the new wheel exactly where the old wheel mark is. But with the new one pinned it takes the possible mis-marking out of the equation.

It is not hard to turn the engine with a wrench from underneath put it helps if you have someone to spot the OPDA position for you to know when to stop without having to go back & forth.

No oil drain needed.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:44 AM   #2032
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubi4MyMrs

I think the TDC is better for new OPDA because the gear position will be different & the marks on the engine won't necessarily line up. The wheel-to-housing position will be the same if you mark the new wheel exactly where the old wheel mark is. But with the new one pinned it takes the possible mis-marking out of the equation.

It is not hard to turn the engine with a wrench from underneath put it helps if you have someone to spot the OPDA position for you to know when to stop without having to go back & forth.

No oil drain needed.
I agree with this. I neglected to account for the slightly different gear on shaft position that could make proper alignment difficult. The computer can correct for some amount of mis-match, but the closest you get to start with, the better, IMO.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 09:53 AM   #2033
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainwashed2566 View Post
Do you think TDC method is easier than noting the position of the old, then matching with the new? (also I have an auto, so I would have to hand crank) I'm swapping mine next week (slow shipping...) Also- the oil doesn't need to drained to do this right?
Just to be fair, the TDC method isn't 100% necessary for a new OPDA. I replaced mine and did end up with a CEL but after disconnecting the battery and giving the OPDA a counter clockwise tweak the CEL went away and stayed off. 2000+ miles later and I'm still good. Knocking at start up has all but vanished. Maybe I just got lucky but I'm thinking you should consider the sharpie method and even take pictures perhaps.

Even with out the FogMod, this might be the best thing I've done for my Jeep since I bought it. Just the fact that I'm not restarting 4-5 times to rid the knock is a vast improvement in the Jeep experience. The piece of mind knowing that I'm not going to blow up a cam gear or lose oil pressure is SO worth the $140. I swear I'm even getting better gas mileage, not much but an average of 20 miles more per tank. When you drive 75 miles a day round trip to work that means a lot!

The FogMod is in my future, I just have a lot going on right now.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 10:18 AM   #2034
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I've never used TDC. If you are capable of pulling and modded an OPDA, you have plenty of skill and confidence to match marks. I've swapped three using match marks only. The video on the first page shows how to remove it, and even gives you an example of the oil pump causing trouble. I also remember tufmar using TDC and still throwing a code. Have confidence in your ability and do what you think it right. Both methods will work. Marking adds some risk, TDC adds some work.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 10:25 AM   #2035
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Originally Posted by flying_bosun View Post
Btw, are you FOGmodding the new one or disassembling the old. If I were you, I'd disassemble the old and inspect it. If it looks ok, then do the FOGmod and re-install, then keep the new (FOGmod it, too) as a spare. If it shows any signs of galling, then replace with the new FOGmodded unit. Either way, I recommend FOGmod.
Thanks for the info. My Jeep is a DD, so I will be swapping the new one in for now, and will be inspecting the old. If it's good I will FOGmod and replace later ASAP, but if it is bad, I will just practice the FOGmod on it, then attempt it one weekend on the new one. I will post pic's on what happens, no 'symptoms' at 63K but I do have a slight twitch in the idle so we will see what happens.

Either way, I think I am going to buy ANOTHER one as a spare to the spare...need to make her live Forever!
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Unread 09-09-2011, 10:26 AM   #2036
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Originally Posted by willydigger View Post
I've never used TDC. If you are capable of pulling and modded an OPDA, you have plenty of skill and confidence to match marks. I've swapped three using match marks only. The video on the first page shows how to remove it, and even gives you an example of the oil pump causing trouble. I also remember tufmar using TDC and still throwing a code. Have confidence in your ability and do what you think it right. Both methods will work. Marking adds some risk, TDC adds some work.
Thanks again, I would be dead in the water with out JF.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 10:37 AM   #2037
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Originally Posted by willydigger View Post
Have confidence in your ability and do what you think is right.
Willy, that's so inspiring! I'm not being a smart a$$, I really like that!

When you do the TDC method, don't you still have the rotation of the whole unit to be concerned about? Is that just reference from marks on the previous one?
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Unread 09-09-2011, 12:07 PM   #2038
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Originally Posted by ChicagoRod View Post
Willy, that's so inspiring! I'm not being a smart a$$, I really like that!

When you do the TDC method, don't you still have the rotation of the whole unit to be concerned about? Is that just reference from marks on the previous one?
Your only concern is the position of the target wheel and the sensor. The position of the OPDA housing to the block is inconsequential as long as the sensor wire can reach. I believe tkki twisted his around pretty good to mod the 05 unit to match the same as the 04 mods he added.

There is some backlash in the gear as shown on the video. This is relatively eliminated with the white alignment pin (not so with a screwdriver or allen key). TDC should remove a lot of the play that could "potentially" give you trouble with marks.

Some same you need a scan tool and some say it has to be perfect. Well I either have perfect vision and perfect hands or that's BS.
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Unread 09-09-2011, 12:28 PM   #2039
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Hey guys, I know the write-up is on the first page, I saw it, I've read all the instructions. And I really appreciate all the help, but I'm still a little confused. Here's the deal:
I won't have any problems taking out the old OPDA. (I'm even confident about doing a FOGmod).
What I'd like to know is this. Do I adjust the TDC (feeling for pressure in the first cylinder) BEFORE I put in the new one, or after? And once I have TDC in the first cylinder, do I just drop it in (with the housing/cap correctly oriented? And is pulling the alignment pin the very last thing I do before I start it?
I'm a paramedic, not a mechanic and you guys sure know what you're talking about so I appreciate all the help.
BTW, its a daily driver. I don't want to get stuck in the driveway all day.. or worse
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Unread 09-09-2011, 12:36 PM   #2040
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Do I adjust the TDC (feeling for pressure in the first cylinder) BEFORE I put in the new one, or after? And once I have TDC in the first cylinder, do I just drop it in (with the housing/cap correctly oriented? And is pulling the alignment pin the very last thing I do before I start it?
TDC before installing the new one. Also, as previously stated, TDC can also more easily be achieved by turning the engine (socket on the crank bolt or pushing with it in gear if you have manual trans) with the original OPDA still installed, but with the cap removed so you can get "top" to align with the sensor and the pin hole in the target wheel aligned with the pin hole in the bottom of the crown.
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