Early engine questions

I have completely disassembled the engine and found what I think are quirks of a fairly early (W-1785-8) engine. First, the timing chain adjusting plate is of the early large-tooth style with two buttons as seen in this post. It only has one hole in the face of the plate, so the conventional adjusting tool won’t work. A previous owner had apparently used a hammer and a drift to make adjustments, so the plate is pretty well buggered up. Unfortunately, I can’t find this early type plate anywhere. Does anyone know of a source?

Also, once I get a new plate, what is the correct way to adjust it? I can’t really fault the PO since no other adjustment mechanism is obvious to me.

Second, There are no upper chain dampers. There are what appear to be factory spacer pieces that go where the dampers should go, but no dampers. Is this correct? Should I retrofit dampers?

I apologize if these are common-knowledge question. I couldn’t find any useful info elsewhere and I’m still learning.


If it was mine I would file off the gouge marks and put 1 or 2 new holes in it for using the usual adjuster tool.

The dampers are probably also a good idea to add.
Try Jaguar Heaven in Stockton Calif or Welsh Enterprises or perhaps you have another favorite.

Hi Tim
There were no dampers in the very early plate. Get good later plates and fit top chain dampers. You won’t get early adjusting plate or locking plunger. No locking plungers are still available new in the UK! So make sure you get a good one second hand .
Don’t think you can buy the plates new. Most of the rest are still available but not cheap.

Well worth going the hydraulic bottom tensioner conversion too.

Best regards

Nigel Boycott