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Pelican Technical Article:

Porsche Boxster / 996 Engine Teardown & Disassembly
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Difficulty Level: 4
Difficulty scale: Adding air to your tires is level one
Rebuilding a Porsche Motor is level ten

  This article is one in a series that have been released in conjunction with Wayne's new book, 101 Performance Projects for Your Porsche Boxster.  The book contains 312 pages of full color projects detailing everything from performance mods to changing your brake pads.   With more than 950+ full-color glossy photos accompanying extensive step-by-step procedures, this book is required reading in any Boxster owner's collection. The book is currently available and in stock now. See The Official Book Website for more details. 
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Figure 1
Okay, with the bearing puller broken we now started in on the removal of the camshaft towers.  We'll get to the intermediate shaft bearing tomorrow when the bearing puller is shipped next-day air to Callas Rennsport.  Using a set of mini pry-bars, or a set of pliers, carefully remove the spark plug tubes from their bore.  These are plastic, and have a tendency to get old and brittle.  They can also leak - I recommend replacing them if they look really old when you change your spark plugs.
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Figure 2
Remove the rubber cam plugs on the end of the camshafts.  These get damaged when you remove them (poke a hole in the center), so be sure that you have new ones on hand ready to install if you are simply replacing your camshafts.
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Figure 3
Here's a handy-dandy camshaft holding tool that the fellows at Callas Rennsport designed to keep the camshafts in place when removing the side cover.  The camshaft covers contain the "bearing caps" that hold the camshaft to the heads, so when you remove the covers, the cams will pop out if they are not held in place.  I believe this is very similar to the factory tool.
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Figure 4
Here's a side view of the camshaft covers showing all of the little bolts that need to be removed in order to get to the camshafts.
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Figure 5
Here's another shot of that nifty camshaft holding tool.
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Figure 6
Start by removing all of the small bolts that hold the cover on.
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Figure 7
Here's a random shot of the flywheel end of the engine.
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Figure 8
There's a backing plate that fits around the solenoid that controls the camshaft timing advance.  Remove this plate.
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Figure 9
It's always a good idea to mark parts so that you know where they go if you try to put them back together again.  Here we have marked the camshaft oil scavenge pump so that we know exactly how to mount it again in the future. Remove these bolts - two of them are attached to the head, and the other two are attached to the camshaft cover.
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Figure 10
Here we have removed almost all of the small bolts that hold on the camshaft cover.
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Figure 11
One last bolt, and then the cover will be loose.
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Figure 12
The cover should be able to simply be lifted right off.  If you don't have the camshaft holding tool installed, then the cover will be spring-loaded and flip out at you.
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Figure 13
Here comes the cover coming off.  With the holding tool in place, the camshafts shouldn't move.
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Figure 14
Here's the camshaft cover coming off of the engine.
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Figure 15
With the cover removed, simply pull off the scavenge oil pump from the end of the exhaust camshaft.
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Figure 16
   Here's a neat shot of the camshaft cover removed.  The top camshaft is the intake camshaft, the lower one is the exhaust.  They are tied together with a small chain that is attached to a tensioner / advance mechanism that slides back and forth and changes the relationship (in degrees) between both camshafts.  This device is controlled by the solenoid in the center.
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Figure 17
Another shot of the two camshafts.
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Figure 18
Here's a close-up shot of the camshaft timing advance mechanism.  Note that this engine only has camshaft timing advance - later engines have variable camshaft valve lift as well.
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Figure 19
Another shot of the camshafts.
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Figure 20
This photo shows the sprocket that connects to the chain that links to the intermediate shaft.  These engines have five separate chains - one that goes from the crankshaft to the intermediate shaft.  Two that drive each exhaust camshaft from the intermediate shaft, and two that connect each intake camshaft to the exhaust camshaft.  On the new 2009 cars with direct injection, these new engines have had their intermediate shafts completely designed out of the equation (a good thing in my opinion).
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Figure 21
Here's an inside look at the chain tensioner for the chain that connects the intermediate shaft to the exhaust camshaft. You can remove this now from the bottom of the engine case.
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Figure 22
These four bolts hold the lower sprocket onto the exhaust camshaft assembly.
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Figure 23
I forget exactly what this photo is supposed to show, but I might have snapped it show how awful the oil was inside of this engine.  This is what the oil looks like when you have a significant amount of coolant that gets mixed into it.  It becomes very brown and milky, and reminds me of those days when I've accidentally consumed some bad Mexican food!
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Figure 24
This is a special factory tool that the guys at Callas had on the shelf.  It attaches to the end of the camshafts and holds one in place while the other is timed.  It would be very difficult to properly time and adjust the camshafts without this factory tool.
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Figure 25
Also related to the camshaft timing tool, this pin goes in the front pulley to lock the crankshaft into Top Dead Center (TDC).  There is a boss in the case that the pin fits into.
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Figure 26
Here's another shot of the camshaft holding tool installed in place.
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Figure 27
Here's a photo of one of the two scavenge oil pumps on the workbench.  It's quite simple, these oil pumps pickup excess oil from the bottom of the camshaft housings and funnel it to the bottom sump.  Porsche wanted to really get away from the use of a dry sump system (used on all the air cooled 911s) because such a system is complicated and expensive.  These pumps are an attempt to improve the performance of the wet-sump system.  It didn't really work too well, as these engines aren't raced very often. 
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Figure 28
Here's the backside of the camshaft housing cover.  You can see that the cover has the bearing surfaces embedded into itself.  Oil doesn't pass through the metal in this cover, but it's provided to the bearings from the opposite side (note the grooves cut into the bearing surfaces for oil passage).
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Comments and Suggestions:
C4S Comments: Thank you Nick, I thought it might be tight but and there is no requirement to lock camshafts when removing the secondary oil pump, just mark the pump housing/cylinder head and remove and refit in the exact same orientation.
April 14, 2017
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes sir. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
C4S Comments: Hello
On my 996 C4S 2004 I have a very slight weep from the secondary oil pump at the end of Bank 1 Cylinders 1, 2 & 3 Left Hand Bank view from the rear.
Can this oil pump be removed and the seal replaced with the engine in situ? It looks like it may be tight!! Is there any special procedure required to lock the camshafts at all prior to removal? Or is it as simple as mentioned to 'beachman' below. I have access to a workshop lift etc Thank you
April 6, 2017
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You can usually sneak them out with the engine installed. The seal can replaced once removed. Be sure you get the pump back in the engine in the same orientation it was removed. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ryan Comments: I noticed my cam cover was leaking and decided to do this job myself but I did not do any research beforehand. I managed to get the job done without the use of the cam holding tool. The only problem is now one of my cam plugs keeps popping out whenever I run the engine! Any advice?
April 5, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: This means you have sealant in the oil passage that runs through the cam cover. You'll have to remove the cover again and clean the sealant out of the oil channel. Then reseal it, this time being careful not to get sealant into that area. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
beachman Comments: My oil scavenger pump on the right side, has dirt and what looks like oil sweating around it, no leakage of oil just oil sweating. Should I replace the O ring to this before it becomes a problem. The porsche mechanics tell me not to worry until it starts to leak.
January 15, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The procedure to replace the o-ring is very simple - just remove the pump, change out the o-ring and put it back in place. But, if it's not leaking oil, it may just be wise to leave it alone until it actually starts to leak. I'm not a huge fan of messing with things until they are a definite problem. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  

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