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Discussion Starter #1
Quick question for those using a kaizen speed tensioner and no balance belt, do i need to put back on balance shaft pulley that slides onto the bolt going through the timing belt tensioner assembly? I have everything lined up and ready to be put back together(besides the nightmare alternator adjustment bolts), just wanted to make sure I can leave the balance belt pulley off since it doesnt seem like it affects the timing belt assembly in any way.

I plan on doing a full post with pics in a few days, I owned a 01 prelude, 00 civic si and 00 s2k in high school. Im now 34 and recently purchased a cheap 01 prelude to restore as a hobby (and that nostalgic feeling!), phase one (full suspension rebuild and belts/mounts) is nearing completion!
 

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As you can tell, these Prelude Forums are dying pretty quickly, unfortunately. :(

I may not be much help for you, orrrrr, I may be a great deal of help. :)

I don't have, nor would I ever install a manual tensioner in my 2001 Prelude.

I have to ask, what are you trying to achieve? Removing that stuff will gain negligible power and only hurt harmonics and reduce your engine's life.

The auto tensioners that Honda had problems with have long since been revamped and no longer have issues, so not sure why anyone goes to the manual tensioners.

So, there you have what little help I can provide on this topic.

Sorry I couldn't help more.

Buck Yerselve
 

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If you do not put that pulley back on, you'll have to put something else in its place (some people have put washers, others have found larger, thicker washers (like a bushing) on the end of the shaft to keep it snug against the timing belt cog.

I disagree with the guy above that this will ruin your motor. Plenty of people have installed this kit with no serious side effects. People usually install these manual tensioners if they're adding 30+hp on their motors, because the auto tensioners may have been revised since their earlier failings (although there is no proof that the OEM auto tensioner has ever been revised according to Honda) but they still aren't widely respected to hold for higher power applications. At least the manual tensioners are proven to hold the kind of HP that the big number builds have laid down.
 

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I suspect Bucyou is not going to show up again, but whatever.

"ruin" is an interesting word and certainly not the one I used. If you think for a second that Honda went to the trouble and expense to engineer and install all that balance stuff for fun, you could be mistaken.

As far as " Plenty of people have installed this kit with no serious side effects" I would only counter that with..... the vast majority of the guys I've read about doing this never kept their cars for any length of time after the mod, so in such small numbers, really not a conclusive observation.

I read about so many guys who forced a timing belt onto the pulley to make the mechanical adjuster work, I just hung my head. Installing a belt like that is comical. Even if you somehow managed to install it without damaging it, the bearings were not designed to take that kind of tension. I would wager that most if not all would have encountered issues later.

That written, perhaps there was another installation that didn't require forcing the belt on, in which case, sure no problem.

I would agree that I've not seen any evidence that Honda changed the Auto Adjuster, however, I've never heard of anyone ever having any issues with the newer ones. Certainly not definitive, as again, these cars have unfortunately lost much of their following. I've only got about 80000 kms on my newer Auto Adjuster so can't say at all that it's better or even different. At 110000 kms there was nothing wrong with my original one, so I have no conclusive evidence.

The biggest point I'll go back to and my first question... is..... what are you trying to achieve? If it's a 1 HP gain by eliminating the balance shafts then it is a silly thing to do. If you are building an engine with significantly more power, then I might just agree that a manual tensioner is a good idea if installed properly.

Good luck with it.

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I got it back together and everything went pretty well. To address some things I noticed and to answer some of the above questions; on the choice of manual or hydraulic, I will always choose manual from an engineering perspective. The manual tensioner is simple, and built very well, I had no issue installing it or tensioning the belt(honda belt and gates bearing/roller), when i got to the correct deflection, a small turn made a decent impact on tension. To the poster who said I needed to put a washer on the tensioner bearing, I did not see a need to, the belt is not going to walk itself off, plus the balance shaft gear on the crank pulley performs the same task.

On the balance shafts, HP had no impact on my decision, I've researched the duties of the shaft system, and understand harmonics and larger displacement 4 cylinders, and just didn't feel the need to put it back on. I haven't had a chance to drive the car yet as its still on floorjacks as I finish the last suspension parts, but I did idle it to operating temp and play with the revs for a little while, it was probably running for 40 minutes. I did not notice any additional vibrations from the lack of the shaft belt, but that might coming with driving it.
 

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I guess Honda (among a number of others) wasted a lot of money then. :)

I do think you are correct about harmonics rather than dramatically observable vibration, and for the sake of a tiny bit of HP, I'd not take them out, but I'm happy it worked out for you.

These companies look for longevity and in the grand scheme of things, that may not be a factor in your case, so that's great.

Excellent that it worked out for you. I look forward to seeing more on what you're doing; sounds good.

All the best with it.

S
 

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You do not have to force the timing belt on when using a manual tensioner, and in fact it is much harder to get the timing belt over the gears when using the honda auto tensioner. My auto tensioner failed on my lude and even though I have another auto tensioner sitting in the workshop, I still went with the manual tensioner from preventing my timing belt being destroyed again and having the possibility of toasting a new engine. I would have been extremely upset if the H22A euro r motor I swapped into my car was killed by something as stupid as a timing belt tensioner after only having it in for a couple months.
 

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Worth mentioning....balance shafts are deleted to increase throttle response by removing rotating mass. They do nothing for horsepower.

I deleted mine primary just to get rid of one potential failure point of the engine. Removing them shouldn't harm engine longevity in any way, most 2.2 liter engines don't even have them in the first place. Removing them just adds a small amount of additional vibration to the drive line that is barely noticeable unless you are running really stiff mounts.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Had to take a week off due to the kids and wife wanting a disney vacation. Im hoping to finish the stereo wiring this weekend, along with doing a final "double check" of all the suspension components, I pretty much replaced everything except for the bushings on the lower control arms, since they looked okay. I used mostly OEM parts, except for moog UCA's, swaybar links, and inner/outer tierods. I was really trying to finish a decent black leather interior, but the quality of locally sourced seats are subpar, plus the cloth interior I have now is pristine, no tears, rips, and the cloth actually looks new, no fading.


I'm gonna grab some pics this weekend, because everyone loves pics! I just wish I took some "before" pics to show how trashed the car was.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
A late update but I decided to stick with what honda intended and went to a new oem tensioner. I have about 3k miles on the suspension and every time I drive it, it puts a smile on my face.

I'll update with the promised pictures soon, its currently in the paint shop getting redone in "brilliant speedy blue metallic"
 
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