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The short link/cam that goes from the motor to the windshield wiper linkage sure seems like a likely candidate. Its initial orientation is critical since it will dictate whether the wipers initially go up or down, etc. Did you happen to mark its orientation before you disassembled things?

Anyway, if I’m reading your post right it seems like you have tried adjusting it. But if you haven’t already tried, is there a way that you can play around to find the orientation of that link for which the wiper linkage switches from driving the wipers down to up? Maybe just loosen the nut on the wiper motor and turn the link manually in the direction that the motor turns it? Haven't played with that myself - I'm just tossing out a suggestion/thought.

Hope things work out soon.

As an aside, here is a cool (simple) animation that shows that small link/cam doing it’s job:

http://auto.howstuffworks.com/wiper1.htm
 
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