Screwed up timing, help! - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 15, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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Screwed up timing, help!

Alright fellas this engine is really screwing with me. It is a 73 vett sbc. Had a quadrajet jet but always felt like it fell on its face. Just picked up a used but good Holley 750 vac sec. Give it gas and it bogs and coughed otherwise good at idle and light throttle. Made sure air mix screws were dialed in with a vac gauge. Went on to check the timing and it is so far advanced it's off my pointer and when I adjusted my light it was up over 25 degrees at 850 rpm but idle smooth as silk. I adjusted the hei by vacuum gauge and got 15. I checked my camaro plug wires bc something looked off on the vett engine. All the wires were clockwise one point. So I labeled all the wires and reconnected them just like the camaros and the diagram below. Engine wouldn't crank just kicked back on the starter. .... Still scratching my head. I lined up the timing mark on 0 and opened the distributor cap.... It's pointing almost to #4! Sorry bad pic below but you can see the vac advance canister under it for reference. What the heck is going on with this set up. It's a 48 Chevy truck with this engine. I'm at a loss on what to do?? Should I point it to #1 then scribe a line on the balencer as a new reference??

Last edited by Nhurt; Jul 13th, 15 at 08:15 PM.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 15, 08:39 PM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

If it's almost to 4 the you're 180 off and at TDC on exhaust stoke instead of compression stroke

Bring it up to #TDC. PUT YOU FINGER IN #qp1 plug hole to make sure it's on comp stroke See where rotor is and adjust plug wires so #1 is in place then install the rest of the wires in firing order.

When timing is your VA disconnected and plugged?

Set initial advance to approx 12*

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 15, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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Yes I had the vacuum advance off and plugged when checking fh timing. Just to make sure I'm following you... I'll check to see if I have compression at the "#4" spot where my balencer is at 0. If it does arrange plugs in that order staring with #1. That would make the initial wiring order different as well. Out of curiosity How does that go about happening being 180 off? I didn't build this engine, I picked up the truck and engine a few months ago. It started up fine, idled good but you couldn't throttle down hard or it would fall on its face, but gradual throttle and it was solid.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 15, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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Just finished doing the above. Got her running again after much adjustments on the distributor, started off as a couple random combustion, sounded like a diesel chugging along then gave her more advance until she fired right up. But the little tach and battery box on the side of the distributor hits the firewall and I can't advance anymore and the vacuum advance can is hitting the intake vacuum fitting. The distributor is turned that much to have the #1 plug firing on the #1 cap spot with the balencer mark lined up. Seems way out of wack to me visually but she runs smooth at idle at least. I will tinker some more tomorrow and report back.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 15, 02:15 AM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

you may have to restab the distributor to turn it to align it correctly so you can make the necessary adjustments.

The important thing here is that you ask me what kind of car I've got. "I've got a BITCHIN' CAMARO"
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 15, 06:07 AM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

Just move all the plug wires over one spot so you'll enough room to rotate the dizzy

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 15, 06:17 AM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

It's altogether possible that the outer ring on your damper has rotated on the hub due to deterioration of the rubber insulator that separates the two components. If that's the case, the TDC mark is in the wrong place and gives a false timing reading.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 15, 06:57 PM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

It sounds to me that you have the wrong dampner. I've seen that before. The dampners are interchangeable in theory, but the timing marks don't line up by 40 degrees or more. just a thought......
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 15, 12:52 PM Thread Starter
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The engine fought me yesterday... Pulled of the valve cover went through a couple rotations made sure #1 intake valve closed and timing mark was a 0. Looked at my rotor and lined up #1 plug to the distributor. Went to adjust timing and barely put my fingers on the distributor hold down clamp and the hole was stripped! Pulled the distributor did a helicoil insert put every thing back together got the truck to idle and my timing is still at 30 degrees!!!! But you said my balencer could be different and off 40 degrees as marked... That would Make perfect sense. If it were 40 and I timed it by vacuum gauge where my light reads 30 that would realistically put me at 10 degrees... Right where I should be. I can't even get the timing Mark with the timing gun to show up on my pointer. But I'm guessing since I have 15hg of vacuum and it idles like I champ I must be in the ball park. I haven't too it out for a drive yet, it got late last night.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 15, 05:53 PM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nhurt View Post
Yes I had the vacuum advance off and plugged when checking fh timing. Just to make sure I'm following you... I'll check to see if I have compression at the "#4" spot where my balencer is at 0. If it does arrange plugs in that order staring with #1. That would make the initial wiring order different as well. Out of curiosity How does that go about happening being 180 off? I didn't build this engine, I picked up the truck and engine a few months ago. It started up fine, idled good but you couldn't throttle down hard or it would fall on its face, but gradual throttle and it was solid.
Its common to be 180 degrees off but not a big deal. Could have been when the guy put the cam and crank sprockets on, he only turned the camshaft one rotation instead of two.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 15, 06:52 PM
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Re: Screwed up timing, help!

When this happened to me, my balancer slipped by 40 degrees, put on an ATI and all was good.

Unless your plug wires are extra long, changing the location on the cap is not the answer, restab it with the vacuum advance nipple pointing just behind the passenger headlight

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