The connection between the camshaft and crankshaft is the Mitsubishi timing belt. This is the engine component that keeps both parts in sync with each other so the engine can operate as expected.
The timing belt is located behind the water pump under a cover so it cannot be visually seen by just looking at your Mitsubishi engine. If the timing belt is worn out it can be slapping the side of the cover. If it is in this bad of condition, it could very easily jump a tooth on either the cam or crank gears; causing severe damage to the inner components of your engine.
It is recommended that the Mitsubishi timing belt be replaced about every 100,000 miles. This will prevent any damage from occurring of the internal components of the engine from coming in contact with each other. The best example of this is if the timing is off by one tooth, a valve will be opening when the piston is rising in the cylinder and they will make contact with each other and damage both components.
The changing of the timing belt on the Mitsubishi engine can be accomplished in an afternoon. The most critical portion of this procedure is the aligning of the crank and cam gears at top dead center or TDC. This can be accomplished by lining up the marks on both of the shafts as indicated in the service manual.
Once the new timing belt is in place the correct amount of tension has to be applied to it so it will be held firmly in place. On some Mitsubishi engines, there is no tension adjustment so placing the belt in position without stretching it is critical to its longevity.