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Mmm, I think I'm with Tomvw on this one. It looks as though you're short one roller link.
And yes, being one link off will allow strong acceleration but when under a load the engine will seem to stumble just a bit until it gets above 3500 rpm or so.

Are you just mashing the gas with car sitting still and in park?
 

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Discussion Starter · #122 · (Edited)
Mmm, I think I'm with Tomvw on this one. It looks as though you're short one roller link.
And yes, being one link off will allow strong acceleration but when under a load the engine will seem to stumble just a bit until it gets above 3500 rpm or so.

Are you just mashing the gas with car sitting still and in park?
Not standing still. That's highway driving with east coast hills and valleys for over 2 hours so far. The links 1 & 16 are outside of the the timing marks on the bearing caps - just like in this picture:
103085
As I've pointed out the image in my previous post - the yellow lines show where the 1 & 16 links fall in relation to the timing marks on the bearing and the holes on the cam just in front of the gear/sprocket. The picture angle screws it up.

I can accelerate slowly, gradually coming up to speed, or slam the pedal to the metal; the engine responds in kind. Any driving done is smooth. I'll go try it now!

Update - even a slow approach up a steep hill is smooth and gentle - no flutter, jitters, coughs or sputters. I still have to change the transmission fluid, so those sounds are still there. And at least now, even after sitting for a whole day after a reasonably hard drive; not a single drop (of any sort) on the parking lot spot when I came out this evening to move the vehicle.
 
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Ok, if it's just like the diagram above you're good. The picture you posted has distorted the view so it's hard to tell.
If there is no hesitation under any circumstance at any RPM and no error codes pop up, you should be golden.
Next case...
 
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