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Old 09-15-2013, 10:13 PM   #11
Sparkiewalt
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I wanted to give an update. After replacing the plug wires, plugs and checking timing, I checked the rocker arms, several seemed loose, So I pulled the cam, sure enough I had wear extreme on 6 lobes, 2 were rounded off. Best thing I could figure is that the previous owner did not properly oil the new cam and lifters with a high zinc oil. I got it all back together and it is running great now. thanks for the help and I hope this thread may help someone in the future.
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Old 09-16-2013, 07:59 AM   #12
fastbackford351
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I use to have an old 68 Firebird with a 400 and was running an HEI and had the distributor 180 out. It started and ran around the block but when I laid in to it it all went to hell. It coughed, popped and farted all over itself but I was able to nurse it back home.

I was under the hood and hadn't figured out what the problem was so I was frustrated and did the only logical thing I could think to do in my 20 year old mind and revved the **** out of it. It backfired hard enough so that it blew my mufflers apart and peppered my legs with dirt & gravel hard enough to draw blood.
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Old 09-17-2013, 07:48 AM   #13
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I have heard about the spark skipping around in these dizzy HEI distributors. But I have tried setting the distributor to the 0 TDC mark on the HB and then tried it 180 degrees and it will only back fire. I set it to the #5 with the HB on 0 TDC and it fires right up and runs great. Let me stress, my engine is running perfectly like this. I can smoke the tires down with my posi 9" rear end.
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Old 09-17-2013, 08:42 AM   #14
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Your distributor is a tooth off. Back it up and you'll be good to go.

Turn your engine until it is at TDC on the compression stroke and pull the cap. I'll bet you dimes to doughnuts that it is lined up under #5 on your cap. It needs to be under #1.

Lift the distributor up until it just clears the gears and rotate it back towards the #1 plug wire.
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Old 09-17-2013, 09:27 AM   #15
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It must be revenge for using a brand x dizzy and timing to #5...why?
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Old 09-18-2013, 07:44 AM   #16
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I tried moving the distributor to the number 1, it will only back fire and pop, engine will not start. The only way I get it to start and run is by lining #5 up with TDC on the Harmonic balancer.
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:07 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparkiewalt View Post
I tried moving the distributor to the number 1, it will only back fire and pop, engine will not start. The only way I get it to start and run is by lining #5 up with TDC on the Harmonic balancer.
Did you just 'move' it over to #1 or did you reinstall it making sure you had #1 up at TDC on the compression stroke?
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:14 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fastbackford351 View Post
Your distributor is a tooth off. Back it up and you'll be good to go.

Turn your engine until it is at TDC on the compression stroke and pull the cap. I'll bet you dimes to doughnuts that it is lined up under #5 on your cap. It needs to be under #1.

Lift the distributor up until it just clears the gears and rotate it back towards the #1 plug wire.
Since he has it firing up on #5 by just dropping it back in on #1 won't have it timed up on 1's compression stroke. If it wasn't able to start then I'd say it was simply 180 off.
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:46 AM   #19
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But he is able to start, drive and lay rubber so he is close. Real close.

I went through this myself a couple months ago myself with very similar symptoms. There aren't that many components involved here so the fix is pretty straight forward.

1-5-4-2-6-3-7-8


Pull the #1 plug and put your thumb over the hole.

Rotate the engine with a remote starter until your thumb is absolutely blown off of the spark plug hole and that will be TDC or damn close to it.

Check your harmonic balancer and make sure you are indeed at TDC.

Pop the cap and make sure your rotor is pointing right at the #1 position. I'll bet it's not. I'll bet it's favoring toward #5 position.

Make sure that your wires are lined up accordingly. Most caps have a #1 molded in to them so double check to make sure they are squared away and wired correctly.
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Old 09-19-2013, 07:40 AM   #20
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the timing for my engine is. 1 3 7 2 6 5 4 8 ... so the #5 is no where near the #1 on the distributor cap. No one thinks this could be the wrong harmonic balancer??? I will check #1 for TDC but my money is that TDC on the HB will line up with TDC on the #5.
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Old 09-19-2013, 07:40 AM
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