new updated 11/9/01
Finally received confirmation from the dealer that one of my cam sprockets is
indeed loose. It is the rear bank intake cam and as with many others we've seen,
can be moved about 1/4" even with the cam tensioner in place.
This was diagnosed at a Ford dealer by an excellent mechanic who is willing to work with me to fix this thing. He is speaking with his Service Manager who will also help me work the case to get Ford to own up to this.
In the meantime, here's our plan... Upon inspection, there is a large amount of carbon deposits on the valves that needs attention. I have mentioned before that my car burns about 1 quart of oil every 1500 miles or so and can probably attribute the carbon deposits to the worn valve guides.
So, we're going to take the heads off, check them out and replace the valve guides. The cams meanwhile will be TIG welded to ensure the Damned Sprockets NEVER come loose. Of course the spark plugs will be replaced as well.
It won't be cheap (especially with the almost $600 Head Gasket set), but once it's done, the car should be better than ever. I also intend to get some assistance from FORD.
Let me know if there's anything else I can do to document my case.
Got a call from the Svc Mgr at the dealer where my SHO
is being worked on and was told that, after hearing of my situation, the
mechanic's input and talking with their Factory rep, they will cover %50 of my
Now I consider that to be a major success because it really acknowledges that they can recognize a faulty component (sometimes), when they see it. It also confirms that our approach is correct, at least on a case by case basis, since I went in there armed with the facts as presented on the V8SHO website (thanks Tim).
Lastly, I'm particularly pleased because we will be getting the heads (valve guides) reworked and new plugs put in, which is something that I would've incurred expenses for anyway.
As always, I'll keep everyone posted.