OK, what am I missing here? I have the first cylinder set and pulley at 7.5*, and the distributor arm pointed toward the rear/rear passenger side (toward the 1st cable on the cap) and the coil reconnected. It’s a Flamethrower distributor with electronic ignition. All new ngk spark plugs gapped to .24. How do I time this thing so I can try to start it up again?


I thought I just turned the distributor until the bulb came on. But it never comes on.

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Last edited by Ryan in NorCal

...just take the cable from cylinder one, put any spark plug in and put is somewhere it gets ground contact.

now turn the ditributor anti clockwise until the spark plug fires.

 

best

Jan Peter Stahl posted:

...just take the cable from cylinder one, put any spark plug in and put is somewhere it gets ground contact.

now turn the ditributor anti clockwise until the spark plug fires.

 

best

Would you need the ignition turned on ?

I recommend removing the distributor with the clamp still attached and tightened to the distributor. This way, the timing stays locked in position, and is not a worry anymore.

Ryan in NorCal posted:

OK, what am I missing here? I have the first cylinder set and pulley at 7.5*, and the distributor arm pointed toward the rear/rear passenger side (toward the 1st cable on the cap) and the coil reconnected. It’s a Flamethrower distributor with electronic ignition. All new ngk spark plugs gapped to .24. How do I time this thing so I can try to start it up again?


I thought I just turned the distributor until the bulb came on. But it never comes o

Call me at the shop and I will walk you thru it.

She’s alive!!

Thank you so much. I took @Jan Peter Stahl's advice before I got call @Anthony.

I threw an old bosche plug in the first cable and turned until fire.

I did notice it would only fire when I turned it clockwise. I would go back the other way and it would never fire turning anti-clockwise. Does this mean I’m timed to the other side of the arm?

It fires right up now and sounds like a real monster compared to the previous plugs and dizzy. But it still dies off at idle. Warm it up more? Carb tuning?


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Last edited by Ryan in NorCal

Warm it up more.

Mine runs poorly for 45 - 60 secs before it settles down to a grumpy idle for another minute or two.  They're cantankerous little engines - just like a lawn mower!

PLUS, you've been messing with the spark advance and have not yet set the timing at 30º at 3000 rpm so your idle may be off until you get the ignition dialed in properly.  If it's dying at idle after a few seconds it may mean that your not advanced enough yet.  

Most of us never static time the spark advance unless you just want to get it running enough to then really set the timing at 30º maximum advance at 3000 engine rpm on a centrifugal advance disti.  Once you've set it for 3000 rpm the idle advance will be what it will be - Whatever it is, just re-set your idle speed to 800-ish rpm.  

Or call Anthony and have him walk you through it.

Last edited by Gordon Nichols

 

Ryan, what Gordon said.

It might be time to invest in a timing light. The cheapest start at around $35 and you probably don't need to spend much more than that for our purposes.

In our fragile air-cooled engines, timing is something you should be checking periodically. Even if the engine sounds like it's running fine, if the maximum advance is much over 30 degrees, the heads can overheat and toast things up in an expensive sort of way.

The distributor gradually increases spark advance from whatever it is at idle up to some maximum amount - usually by the time revs climb to about 2500. That maximum value is what you need to keep track of - much more important than the value at idle.

Sorry if I'm repeating some of what Gordon said, but it's a point worth repeating.

And once you're heavily invested in a timing light, it will help you track other things, too, like whether your distributor is delivering consistent spark up and down the rev range - an all-too-common source of 'rough running' in our cars.

Timing lights are also cool if you throw blacklight parties in your garage. Google '1970s' to read more about this.

 

 

Last edited by Sacto Mitch

anti clickwiesen turning the distributor is definitely correct. if it only fires when you turn it clockwise, I guess you have to turn it more clockwise and than anticlockwise until it fires than.

I think the way you did it now (clockwise until it fires will give you a srong wrong fireing point. So you shouldn't drive it like this!

The argument with the timing light/flash I can 100% agree.

 

Best

Ryan, with all respect and looking at your very early posts, I much recommend you seek professional help to solve the problem.

I applaud your effort to get into this but it can become a very troubling rabbit hole that may be hard to get out of unless you are quite adept at such things. 

Nontheless, you'll get no shortage of advice on how to move forward. Good luck.

 

Last edited by David Stroud IM Roadster D
Sacto Mitch posted:

 It might be time to invest in a timing light. The cheapest start at around $35 and you probably don't need to spend much more than that for our purposes.

Tools.

Tools are what separate us from other primates. That and opposable thumbs

 

... but mostly tools. 

I offer a slight correction to the post above by Professor Galat of Stanistan U.  Since tool usage among chimpanzees of stone and twigs in food-gathering is widely documented, what really separates man from other primates is Snap-On tools.

Jim Kelly posted:

I offer a slight correction to the post above by Professor Galat of Stanistan U.  Since tool usage among chimpanzees of stone and twigs in food-gathering is widely documented, what really separates man from other primates is Snap-On tools.

The great thing about being tenured at Stanistan U is that I get to decide anything I want (even if nobody agrees with me). I can create my own definitions of things, and my students (and the other faculty) can't do anything about it. It's settled science. It's good to be king.

I humbly submit that (while I'm pretty much the only one who feels this way) I don't think that using a rock to smash the thing the food is hiding in, and a twig to pick the food out is really using tools. Mrs. Galat (and most of the scientific community) does not agree with me on this-- but my definition of a "tool" is something manufactured for a specific purpose. By this definition, I'd need to see my orangutan brothers (and dogs, and crows, and a dozen other "tool using" species) shaping rocks with other rocks, or sharpening sticks with stones, then saving them for future use.

Keeping them in roll-around cabinets in special caves with decent light and heated floors would help convince me as well. 

Last edited by Stan Galat

 

Well, now you've got me worried, Stan.

I don't have any roll-around cabinets or heated floors.

I generally end up smashing things and picking at the pieces with implements not intended for the task.

Too often, the thing I smash is an opposable thumb, making it not opposable for days or weeks at a time.

I think you've made me realize that only some members of a species are destined to advance evolution.

 

Last edited by Sacto Mitch

at least we can be sure, monkey don't use timing lights and we can also smash things with high value tools.

as long it can open a bottle of beer, every tool is a good tool!

cheers

my two sense
With today’s fuel in California one needs to drive or run the engine weekly.  Run premium fuel, use a good fuel additive/fuel stabilizer.

Kadrons don’t like more than 1.5# of fuel pressure.

popping, back firing, surging and stalling are both fuel and ignition related. Corrosion in the cap and rotor are common along with fouled plugs.  
swapping distributors with a quality unit is a plus, but to swap one of lesser quality doesn’t cut it. Find the source of the problem first, then move towards better replacements as needed. 
O, don’t forget the tools of trade.....a match book is something some people never came in contact with, but is an old school way gapping points in a pinch! But correct timing requires a timing light......

and to all a good night.........

Based on your counsel, a great timing light is on its way: Snap-On Digital Tach Advance Timing Light. Seems like a good deal at $457, and very accurate.

Thanks for all your help keeping this novice on the road. Once I get it running I'll look to get some local adult supervision to confirm everything is in the right place.

@David Stroud IM Roadster D, your words hit home. I know I'm over my head here. thanks for your help.

Last edited by Ryan in NorCal

wow, that's a professional one.

Here in Germany we have a saying: "it's like shooting cannons at sparrows".

Means: it's a wonderful tool, no doubt, but a 30$ one will also do it's duty, especially when you know that you will only use it once or twice.

 

Last edited by Jan Peter Stahl
Ryan in NorCal posted:

I'm just kidding, @Jan Peter Stahl. I found one on Amazon for $35, next-day delivery. But I bought some SnapOn stickers to cover the generic branding so I'll still look cool when @Jim Kelly and @Stan Galat show up to check my tool credentials.

Now that's funny! The funniest stuff usually has a grain or two of truth.

Ryan in NorCal posted:

I'm just kidding, @Jan Peter Stahl. I found one on Amazon for $35, next-day delivery. But I bought some SnapOn stickers to cover the generic branding so I'll still look cool when @Jim Kelly and @Stan Galat show up to check my tool credentials.

I'm the guy with the $30 timing light. It's a step up from sticks and rocks, but I am a primate after all.

Anthony posted:

my two sense
With today’s fuel in California one needs to drive or run the engine weekly.  Run premium fuel, use a good fuel additive/fuel stabilizer.

Kadrons don’t like more than 1.5# of fuel pressure.

popping, back firing, surging and stalling are both fuel and ignition related. Corrosion in the cap and rotor are common along with fouled plugs.  
swapping distributors with a quality unit is a plus, but to swap one of lesser quality doesn’t cut it. Find the source of the problem first, then move towards better replacements as needed. 
O, don’t forget the tools of trade.....a match book is something some people never came in contact with, but is an old school way gapping points in a pinch! But correct timing requires a timing light......

and to all a good night.........

Great advice, Anthony- and if you don't have a match book (now there's something that not many people carry these days!) a business card can work. I've done it in the middle of the bush. And when it's timed properly, if you take the trouble beforehand to check (and mark if there's no timing numbers) on your pulley where it happens when listening for the points to open you can get it correctly timed as well.

Last edited by ALB
Stan Galat posted:
Jim Kelly posted:

I offer a slight correction to the post above by Professor Galat of Stanistan U.  Since tool usage among chimpanzees of stone and twigs in food-gathering is widely documented, what really separates man from other primates is Snap-On tools.

The great thing about being tenured at Stanistan U is that I get to decide anything I want (even if nobody agrees with me). I can create my own definitions of things, and my students (and the other faculty) can't do anything about it. It's settled science. It's good to be king.

I humbly submit that (while I'm pretty much the only one who feels this way) I don't think that using a rock to smash the thing the food is hiding in, and a twig to pick the food out is really using tools. Mrs. Galat (and most of the scientific community) does not agree with me on this-- but my definition of a "tool" is something manufactured for a specific purpose. By this definition, I'd need to see my orangutan brothers (and dogs, and crows, and a dozen other "tool using" species) shaping rocks with other rocks, or sharpening sticks with stones, then saving them for future use.

Keeping them in roll-around cabinets in special caves with decent light and heated floors would help convince me as well. 

Stan you reminded me of this scene in a old movie..... and start at 1:20 ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jM0hRiX5xc

 

@Stan Galat

 

I don't know, Stan....    Is that a manufactured bone for the specific purpose of whapping the crap out of antelope skulls, (That would be a tool) or simply just another bone Harry picked up because it was handy when he had his mental tirade over yet another evening dinner of nuts and berries?

Somethin' to ponder, fer sure...

Last edited by Gordon Nichols

Also, what's the trick to buying new ignition wires? I picked up a set from O'Reilly and they don't fit the cap or plugs. And the coil wire is too short. The local bug shop recommended an Empi kit where I cut and crimp all the ends myself. Is that what you all do?

For now, I just cleaned the old wires and replugged. What do you recommend?

Here's an Empi set I can source on Amazon. What are the chances this actually fits the cap and plugs?

EMPI 9407 VW BUG BAJA SAND RAIL CAR SILICONE IGNITION PLUG WIRE SET, BLUE

 

Last edited by Ryan in NorCal

I've got my Dad's old Craftsman inductive timing light(REAL POT METAL CASE!) and old 4/6/8 Dwell/tachometer. They reside in his old wooden roller skate box, with rink stickers, and a homemade burlap handle. It makes me smile every time I use it.

Of course, I don't use it on my car, distributorless ignition negates that. But I keep it and bring it with me for all YOUSE guys. Last time I used it on Frazoo's car a couple years ago.

I used the ignition wire set for a type 3 (Bosch part # 09003). Its coil wire is long enough to run from a coil mounted on the driver's side of the engine bay.  The plug sockets are a good length and come with the requisite rubber seals for the engine tin.

 

Last edited by Ted

As far as the ends of the plug wires fitting on the plugs see if the terminal end tip is screwed onto the plugs or if they're off of the plugs. Then look at the wire ends inside the boot that go on the actual plugs. There are plugs with and without terminal ends. The receiver on the boot has to match.

images-10

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