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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old May 8th, 01, 07:15 AM Thread Starter
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ok i posted in the engine and drivetrain section and got a goood response on how to put my distributer in but it still wont go in so i came here. i have a 350 and a stock hei dist. out of a nova (71 i think). when i put in into the block i can feel the gears mesh together but i cant tell if it is all the way on the oil pump driveshaft. the part of the dist. that you clamp down is about an inch from the intake. are there distributers with different lengths of shafts or could i have the wrong oil pump driveshaft???? i need help on this one quick, im so close to getting this engine done and in my car.

nate

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old May 8th, 01, 07:29 AM
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I think the slot for the oil pump is not lined up. I just swapped dist's in my '69 last week and on both the old dist and new, the gear was in a different position. You need a long screw driver and a little finessing to turn the slot in the pump to line up with your dist when the rotor is pointing to the correct position.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old May 8th, 01, 05:33 PM
 
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DjD is correct, when u do this u may have to try several times so u mesh the gears on the correct tooth or so your rotor is pointing to number 1 wire terminal on cap when engine is at top dead center! you may have to wiggle rotor back and forth a little till you get it to drop that last inch! this can be agrivating but just be calm and should have no prob`s good luck let me know if u still have problems? leave another message here, fellow gearhead Tony
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old May 8th, 01, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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hey tony,
where in illinois are you?? mabey you can run down here and get it for me! i had a friend that was a mechanic and he would have helped me but he has dissapered. i went to where he works and he is not there anymore and his parents i called and they dont know where he went??? so im s.o.l. there :P

nate
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old May 9th, 01, 03:59 AM
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Take the dist out, point your rotor at #7. Look down your manifold at your oil pump use a LONG flathead screwdriver (so as to not have to fish it out...) and turn it to where it's pointing the same way the bottom of your dist is (not an exact science). Now slide the dist in gently, it should catch the cam gear and turn itself over to #1 as it begins to mesh, and is finally seated. You may have to try that a couple times to get it where you want it, but this works for me pretty well!
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old May 9th, 01, 10:38 AM
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The distributor should go within a half inch of it's seat if the oil pump drive is holding it up.
Either turn the oil pump shaft like suggested above, or press down on the distributor and turn the engine over until it drops in the slot.
Be careful of moving fan and pulleys when doing this.
It would be really really good to get some help with this if you don't have the experience.
David

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old May 9th, 01, 11:06 AM
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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by 79Z:
Take the dist out, point your rotor at #7. Look down your manifold at your oil pump use a LONG flathead screwdriver (so as to not have to fish it out...) and turn it to where it's pointing the same way the bottom of your dist is (not an exact science). Now slide the dist in gently, it should catch the cam gear and turn itself over to #1 as it begins to mesh, and is finally seated. You may have to try that a couple times to get it where you want it, but this works for me pretty well!<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I don't mean this in a critical way. If he pulled the dist out with the rotor pointing at #5 I don't think putting it back in pointing at a different plug wire is gonna help things.

Are you assuming he has the #1 cyl at tdc? Does the rotor actually turn 2 positions from #7 past #2 to find itself seated on #1? Nate has already had problems and I would hate to see it get more complicated for him. Thanks for any clairfication you may provide.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old May 9th, 01, 11:31 AM
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You need the oil pump shaft slot rotated a little PAST where you start out with the rotor, or it will hit. About 1/2 way between where the rotor should start out, and where it should end up (or half of the 45 degree total travel). For example, if you're starting out at about 10 o'clock (#7), you're going to end up at 12 o'clock (straight ahead), and the slot should be located about halfway between there at 11 o'clock (a little ways forward of # 7, toward #5 or #3). This presumes you're at TDC on compression on #1.

If you pulled it out in a different position, rotate the distr. about 45 degrees back from where it was located before pulling (or at the same angle it ended up at when you pulled it out), and line up the slot about 1 hr (using the clock analogy) ahead of where you're putting it in.

One inch out sounds like a lot. If it's just not hitting the slot, but o.k. otherwise, it should only be out by about 3/8 to a 1/4 of an inch. That's all the farther it engages the oil pump shaft. I just went through this a couple weeks ago. Built an engine with a Chevy II pump for a front sump, and used the longer shaft, not realizing they're not all the same.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old May 9th, 01, 07:30 PM Thread Starter
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ok i think you all are thinking that i just changed the dist. but i didnt i have had this engine on a stand for about 6 months now and i have been rebuilding it so i have the engine out and there are no markings for me to have made so i am starting from scratch here.

nate
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old May 9th, 01, 07:46 PM
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I usually put the dist. in and point it just before #1 or (whatever # you are bye). After this is where it to be. Just turn the motor over "clockwise". Works everytime if you've got the correct gear and dist.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old May 10th, 01, 06:46 AM
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Nate,

First, you need the #1 cylinder near Top Dead Center on the compression stroke (both valves fully seated after intake has just closed a half rev or so ago; if the exhaust is just closing and the intake is just opening, you're 360 degrees off - at the crank - 180 degrees for the distributor - turn the crank around once more to TDC). Turn it just a few degrees so the timing marks indicate about 12 degrees before TDC. This is where the number one cylinder should be firing.

Orient the distributor body so the vaccuum can is pointing toward the #8 or #6 cylinders, and the connectors are pointed off toward or slightly behind the #7 cylinder. Locate it so there is a plug wire tower just about at 12 o'clock (dead center front of engine). This is going to be your #1 plug tower. Now rotate the rotor back about 45 degrees (about 10 o'clock, or just past it). This is the position you want the distributor body and rotor in when you stab it in. Make sure the oil pump shaft is lined up in about the 11 o'clock position, as the rotor will be rotating as it engages the distributor drive gear before the drive tang drops into the slot in the oil pump shaft.

Once the distributor is in place properly with the rotor pointing toward 12 o'clock, adjust the distributor just enough so the leading edge of the rotor contact is just reaching the contact in the cap for the # 1 plug - this is when it's going to fire, so if you're engine's at 12 degrees BTDC, it should be timed just about right to get you fired up o.k.

A picture says a thousand words. SA Books has a book on rebuilding small block chevy's that is pretty comprehensive, and for $10-20 at Borders or Barnes and Noble it could save you a lot of headache. But ignore the instruction to line up the oil pump shaft slot at 10 o'clock, and adjust it as needed. It needs to be rotated further to about 11 o'clock - start there and you shouldn't have to fiddle with it over and over.

Again, though...I don't think your distributor should be sitting up an inch. If it's sitting that high, and the rotor has turned from engagement with the cam gear, something's not right (beyond just the oil pump shaft alignment - this should only hold it out about 1/4 to 3/8 of an inch). If it's sitting this high and the rotors not turning (engaging) then something else isn't fitting right, or dropping in quite right.

Are you sure what distributor you've got? All GM HEI's are not the same. The top end's basically the same, and they basically look the same, but the shaft length, boss diameters, etc., could be different. Your distributor is not out of a '71 Nova - not a stock one anyway. HEI's didn't come out 'til '74. If you know for a fact that it came out of a Chevy V-8 you should be o.k., though.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old May 10th, 01, 08:26 AM
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You may have two problems. One inch is a long way out. Is the oil pump shaft pushed all the way on? To check out everything set the dist in {don't worry about correct timing yet} if it doesn't go rotate the rotor and try again until it drops in farther than it did. Now you can see what is going on.

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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old May 10th, 01, 07:41 PM
 
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why not run a peice of coathanger to bottom of oil pump shaft slot,measure then compare to dist.measurment?,might let you know real quick whats up.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old May 10th, 01, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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ill be damned ill do just that

nate
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