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How rough should my car idle with cam gears?

547 Views 7 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  TheOtherRobert
Hey guys,

I've had a AEM cam gear installed on my intake cam for a few months now. I've fooled around with the settings, and found that I like -1 degree the best overall.

But at every setting, my car seems to idle really rough. At first I thought it was pretty cool, but now I'm starting to wonder if I might have screwed up a degree or two when installing it, and it might not be at exactly TDC when I installed it.

Just wondering what other guys are experiencing?

Is there a way to correct the timing issue without going through the whole install again?

Thanks for the help in advance...
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Well if you didn't have the problem before the install, then the person who install it lost TDC (assuming nothing else has happened to your car). If its not that bad, you should be able to find it by moving it around a little, but a cam gears purpose is to maximize tuning, not trying to find TDC when you installed it, so I would re-due it.
Go back to whoever installed it and tell them to find TDC for you since they probably lost it. If they won't do it, its fairly easy to fix it yourself. As long as you have the right tools, I would say it would take about 1 hour if you've never done it before. I've done it twice in the past two weeks (besides the other times) and can do it in about 20 minutes.
If you decide to do it yourself, PM me and I'll give you instructions.
Thanks for the info Eggyolk...

I was actually the one who installed it in the first place. I took my time and really paid attention to all the how to's on keeping TDC, I might be a degree or two off, but I thought I'd be able to correct by adjusting the gear accordingly after I installed it...know what I mean?

But it seems that every single setting on the gear seems to idle pretty rough.

Is it supposed idle like stock, but just sound different?
It really shouldn't sound any different, at all (outside of the rough idle in your case). I too had a rough idle, even when TDC was achieved (each motor is a little different). I eventually had the Cam Gears tuned, and looked for a balance between top performance and a good idle. It worked!!
PM me on how you did the install and I might be able to find any mistakes. If you really think you're only a few degrees off, then you should be fine. Just drive around town one day, stop, change the setting, see how it works, drive again until you find the best setting.
I screwed around with the settings one weekend, and came to my conclusion that the best idle and somewhat lower than stock powerband was achieved at -1 or -2 degrees.

But my car idles nothing like stock right now, and makes all kinda noises at idle sometimes. The odd time when I will be coming to a stop, it'll die on me.

Theres no way to check the timing besides pretty much starting the whole install process over again right?
I just don't have the time on my hands right now to look into it, and don't have the cash to pay somebody else, so I'll have to leave it for awhile...hmmm
Maybe you picked the wrong TDC. Make sure your using TDC on the power stroke (all valves closed) not the exhaust stroke. I'm not 100% sure this would matter.
Just a thought.
When i got stage 2 cams, my idle was really rough. It would constantly stall on me.
What helped me was adjusting the stop screw on the FC TB a little to open it up a little more. That smoothed it out a lot. So i dont know it might work for this too. If you want to try it, make sure you disconnect the battery first. I just think it would be safer to reset the ecu before doing things like this.
But anyway, this is what worked for me.
Did you get the gears tuned, or what?
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