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Re: Hard to hit the mark when you don't know whereitis!

From: Herman Parker
Remote Name:
Date: July 20, 2003


If I read your post correctly, the engine ran fine until you put it in the new car. Assuming you did nothing else other than install it, I'd be suspicious of the timing chain. Of the hundreds I've replaced, in nearly all cases, the customer would always say "that's not possible, it was running fine". What people don't realize, is that a loose (worn out) timing chain jumps when you cut the engine off - sometimes the engine kicks back slightly just before it stops and this is when it jumps cam timing. Before you go any further, I'd pull the timing cover. If the dots on the crank gear and cam gear are lined up when #1 is up you're ok there. If the chain has more than 20k miles on it, replace the chain and gears. Both valves for #1 will be closed when #1 is on compression and the cam timing is correct. Leave it there for the time being. Now look at where the rotor is pointing. If it doesn't point to #1, pull the distributor and look at the drive on the bottom. If it's broken, replace the distributor. If it's ok, rewire the cap (look at the manual for direction of rotation and firing order). You can reinstall the timing cover. Look at the timing mark on the harmonic balancer. If it's not close to the mark, replace the harmonic balance - the rubber between inner ring and the outer enertia ring has gone bad. Note: left uncorrected, the outer ring can fly off, doing unbelievable damage under the hood. With all the marks lined up, rotor pointing to #1, rotate the distributor just until the correctly gapped points are about to open and it should fire. Not knowing what you've already done, I am very suspicious of either the timing chain (won't run) or the harmonic balancer (will run if you time by ear). Hope this helps. Herman


Last changed: July 19, 2018