I think your mixed up with a timing belt. Timing chains do go bad, but they last a long time. Timing belts typically are replaced at 60K or 90K miles for example. Depends on the vehicle manufacturer, and a lot of them are going away from belts and back to chains.I have seen more than enough broken timing chains. Is this thing an interference engine?
As well as any other internal engine part failure, and is a sure sign of neglected oil/filter maintenance.Thanks for the replies guys. I am going to recommend a timing chain for this car. There is obviously some wear. Shown by the imprecise alignment of the timing marks. Caused me more trouble than I liked putting it back together when the rocker failed.