Thanks for using Just Answer, my name is Doug.
Let me know if I'm understanding correctly here:
-You were replacing the timing belt and water pump (I'm assuming it ran prior to this)
-Upon reinstallation and initial cranking you think it jumped time
-You can't get the timing to line up? OR is it that you can't rotate the cams anymore?
the car was running. upon trying to start it, the motor kicked once, trying to start, quit and then would only spin as if it had no compression after that. i therefore assumed the timing belt had just broken. now that i am putting it back together, i cannot get the cam sprockets to move in order to line up the timing marks no matter where i set the crank timing mark. the belt had not broken, so i assume that it jumped time. when this happened i cranked the motor to check for spark and it was good. i then squirt gas into the throttle body and again, nothing. during this trouble-shooting the engine continued to spin effortlessly. could i have damaged some valves causing them to hang up by this cranking? at the slow speed of cranking and given how smoothly the engine spun i assumed all was well. the crank turns with a twist of the wrist but neither cam will move.
Good Morning Dave,
From the sounds of things the timing jumped prior to repairs then and you may have had valves damaged then. Any attempt to crank it without knowing the position of the timing marks could have caused more damage but most of us try the same things you did before we tear in to the engine for timing marks.
If you've got everything torn back apart then pull out the plugs on the front bank and rotate the crankshaft until ALL of the pistons are at their lowest point which should be about half way down the cylinder. At this point you will be able to rotate the front bank camshaft without fear of striking the valves against the piston. I'd recomend rotating the cam at this point to see if it feels strange. Keep in mind that the cam will "Kick" over as soon as you cam lobes pass their highest point in the revolution. I recomend using a wrench or a mini-breaker bar with a socket. This will allow you the most control unlike a ratchet which will help you rotate the cam while you have resistance but it will free spin once you get past the lobe.
Check the rotation of the front cam in this manor just to see if you've got a really bent valve. If it just barely touched the pistons and bent the valves then you MAY not feel a difference as you rotate it.
Do the same thing for the rear cam. If you don't notice a problem then you'll have to realign the timing marks and reassemble. Keep in mind that a weak/leaking tensioner will cause it to jump time again at any given time.
With it reassembled, try and crank it again OR if you have a compression tester, check at least the front bank for compression.
Let me know what you find with these tests and I can continue to help you if the answer isn't found right away.