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Ive built a d15b7 with P2p0 rods and vitara pistons, I’ve got a z6 head and an adjustable vms timing gear and I’m aware of the 1/2 tooth error but I’ve looked at tons of posts and haven’t got a definitive answer, do I need to retard or advance the gear to make up for the half tooth error and how many degrees? I’ve heard there’s a 4.5 degree difference to make up for the half tooth error but nobody specified if I need to go 4.5 retard or 4.5 advance.
 

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Who knows if you installed it retarded or advanced. You either rolled the cam ahead or back to get the belt to line up and slide on.

You can use a Y cam gear to fix this, or now i know this sounds crazy as it gets, but you can use an adjustable cam gear and actually degree your cam into its proper location and even account for head milling, decking and different head gasket thickness.
 

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What engine was the adjustable timing gear made for? That will indicate what it really is timing at when zero'd out.

Plenty of resources regarding timing, I prefer finding big pictures I can print out and have near me when I tinker on my cars for easy reference.

Since your cam gear is adjustable, I would find and print out a large cam gear timing dial, and use a spare bolt and some welding wire, and make an indicator stick, and then dig into matching Top Dead Center on the block with TDC of CYL #1.

Once zero'd out, you can start slightly advancing the camshaft until power feels even and strong without hurting low end rpm power.
 
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