In Reply to: More to it than just the chain... posted by MarkD on April 25, 2002 at 15:12:45:
I don't agree that the e36 tensioner is better it probably hides worn components a bit longer with extra pressure!
Presumably as the S14 engine needs to be driven at 5K+ revs for best performance it causes the extra wear and tear - though this is greatly influenced on how you drive the car - how many of us know how hard the car has been driven by previous owners?
From my experience when my chain got changed both the cam and crank sprocket wheels were getting well worn (at 79K miles) - these should be changed at the same time as the chains and preferably have the head checked over and new valve seals etc fitted.
Fitting an improved part like the E36 tensioner will probably help it to last longer, but in the end you will have to have the engine overhauled eventually. I suppose it depends on how long you want to chance your luck?
The other thing to bear in mind is the bearing shells - I've heard more bad things happen due to these than due to the chain breaking!
P.S. Just because it's basically a racing engine doesn't mean it's any stronger - most race engines have a very short lifespan.