O.K. this may be a dumb question but it wouldn't be my first (or last!). I just bought a TW timer for my T, and when I took the old timer shield off there was an old felt washer behind it. I bought a modern neoprene seal and if I'm thinking correctly, this new seal has to go behind the timer cover not the shield, correct? I did take the timing cover off and I see where the new seal should go, and it fits nicely so I think this would be correct. If so, when I put the cover back on do I still need to use the old timer shield and/or the felt washer?
If the seal fits well in the block, then that is all you need. Most are a loose fit. Or I should say they are a loose fit in most blocks. Some upset them a little to make them a tighter fit. Others silicone them in place.
The felt and shield have a bad reputation. I've heard it comes from some faulty repro parts. Our '18 Touring came to us with a felt and shield set up that fits and works nicely. I've had no reason to change it. My TT had a badly bent up shield and felt when I got it. I replaced it with the modern seal because I had heard all the bad stuff about the shield. I was new and didn't know any better. If I had it to do over, I would probably at least try a repro shield and see if it would work. Whatever is on the Touring works just fine. Not sure if it is original or just a good repro/aftermarket.
The modern neoprene seal goes where the felt was, not behind the timer cover plate - place your new seal in the groove where the felt was and use a hammer and punch to spread the metal out so that it fits better if it's loose. Then, you use an RTV gasket maker like The Right Stuff or Ultra Black to seal the seal against the front cover plate. Hang out to your timer shield, but don't use it with the TW timer.
Here's a couple pictures with the cover plate with cam seal in the groove where the felt was.
First there are no dumb questions there are only dumb answers..... .
The new modern neoprene seal goes where the old felt washer was. You can put a new brass shield to protect your seal but you don't need to. The shield compresses only the felt washer and make it "oil tied"
Meant to say "Hang ON to your timer shield" as you may one day want to make it original again.
The repro shields are made too small. The originals are the same size as the timer case so the timer case holds it in place. The repro shields can flop around and cause all kinds of trouble. Original shields and felt washers work just fine. What I don't understand is why they don't make the shields correctly. It isn't that hard to do.
O.k. something is clearly not right! There is no grove where the old felt was - it was just loosely on the shaft behind the shield. And as you can see, the modern seal is WAY to big to fit inside the tiny opening between the shaft and the plate. What's up???
Hey Bill, read through this thread:
This fella had the exact same problem. According to John Regan the front plate like you have is for an early T with the 2-piece timer. You will probably either need to get a new (not new just different) cover plate. Just like in this thread, when you place the TW timer against this cover plate, is the outer radius snug with the should, or is it a little small and able to move around some?
I have a '13 and the same problem. I also bought the TW timer and am going to fit it soon.
When I bought the Neoprene cam seal, I could not fit it as the other could.
Looking at the thread that Seth refers too, you and I have the same problem..
I "think" I am going to have to machine the front opening bigger to allow the fitting of the seal. I am having my machinist have a look and see what we can do...
Looks like you have the same kind of timer plate as mine.
Hope this helps,
Unless shipping is really a problem, I highly recommend hanging on to those original parts and buying a different front plate instead of forever modifying these front plates that you and Bill have. I'd bet money somebody is looking for a front plate like what you guys have so that their T is more correct. Lang's is selling a reproduction of the plates that ya'll have for $375. Just my opinion, your mileage may vary.
O.K., thanks to all the advice and the old forum posting I think I've solved my problem! As you can see from the picture, there is indeed a felt seal inside the hole for the shaft - it is dark but clearly it is felt! So if this seal is already in place, do I still need to "dig" it out and replace it? Also, do I still need the old shield and felt washer that was behind it?
Yip Seth, its a good idea.. I don't have a spare though, and many 1000's of miles from you guys.
I'll try get a good seal another way to save the cover, but if I'm out of options, I have to get the old girl running again. Its been too long..
Thanks for the advice
I believe the felt seal weeps... and with the TW timer you have to stop the leak completely, hence the recommended Modern seal.
Email Tony Wiltshire for his advice, but I believe he will tell you the same.
Hope this helps
Bill: if you have felt in the groove, AND there was felt behind the shield, that says to me that the previous owner was having problems with oil getting into the timer. There should only be felt in the groove. If you don't want to get a different plate, I would recommend just digging that old seal out and stuffing some new felt in there and you should be good to go.
Justin: I hear you man!! Anything to get back on the road. I've been waiting 6 weeks on some new Bosch Magneto Drive gears and they are supposed to arrive today or tomorrow, I'm about to bust I want to drive so bad.
For both you: Personally, I'd do some measuring and since you have the neoprene seal already, maybe look at machining the backside of the cover plate (the side towards the cam gear) and putting your cam seal in right there. Since you have the option it'd hide the cam seal better and if you ever decided to "fix" it back to original, having the welding and machining on the backside would be better. But, that's just me. =) Happy T'ing!
I just got off the phone with the good folks at Chaffins and they confirmed what I thought and what Seth recommends - dig the felt out and replace it. I really don't have the ability to have the plate machined, and I don't feel like putting out the money to have it done so I'm just going to replace the old felt inside the groove. Thanks again to everyone for all the great advice!
Hi Bill, Seth
I have a new felt seal here, and it would be an easy solution to getting on the road...
My fear is that "in time" it may weep again and mess up the TW timer.
Seth, I like your idea, and I will check it out. Maybe I find another solution that will work and avoid any machining, in which case I'll let you all know.
Cheers and thanks for the advice
No problem Bill! There are tons of questions that folks on here ask that I have no clue how to answer, but I try to answer the ones I think I know. =)
It's just neat because I remembered being fascinated reading through that other thread.
Hey Justin, just put the new felt seal in and drive it. I haven't read the manufacturer's instructions on the TW timer, but I doubt that oil will do any lasting damage to it. It may just make the car run funny/rough and require cleaning out. If nothing else, I doubt it will leak immediately or any time soon. Drive it a while and see how it goes, if it's leaking after one drive, or after just a few, then look at maybe fitting the newer seal.
As for the machining part, if it were mine I wouldn't take it to a machinist, most of those guys charge what amounts to highway robbery for me. Of course if I had money for that sort of thing I'd probably participate in the OHV threads a lot more! Like I said, if it were mine, I'd break out the Dremel tool and go to town.
Haha, loved that..
I agree.. I'll fit the felt and hope for the best. In time if it does weep, Ill do the machining.
My machinist is actually quite interested in my T and has done lots of odd jobs for free for me, or just let me do it myself. Not many folks will do that these days.
Lets get back on the road!!!
If there's enough space between the cover and the timer brush holder, could you glue a modern seal on the face of the cover? Like some folks do w/the front crankshaft seal.
The timing gear cover was modified sometime in 1915, and the front flange was eliminated. It still has the short oil spout though. In '16-18 the spout is longer allowing you to add oil easier.
Even if there was room to glue the seal on, there is no place for it to seal. The machined surface where the seal would ride does not extend past the cover. I get some oil leaking past the modern seal in mine using a New Day. I just wipe it out every so often. I am running a carbon brush.
I've been using modern seals for years, and they press in nicely.