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loose distributor cap?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by swamp donkey, Aug 28, 2002.

  1. swamp donkey

    swamp donkey 1/2 ton status

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    So i'm trying to clean up my engine compartment last weekend and while putting the airfilter back on I bump the distributor, and it moves. I tried to put it back in place, but who knows how far I moved it.
    Now when the truck is cold it has NO power, and backfires out of the carb. I have had to pull over and let people pass.
    I know diznick about motors, but after reading a bunch of posts it seems like maybe I f'd up my timing. Is this possible? is it that easy to change my timing? How do I fix it? Sucks to pay shop rates if it's easy. I would rather buy a $70 tool and do it my self then pay some one $70 to fix it once.
    So, can some one (in laymans terms) tell me what to buy, and what to do? step by step.
     
  2. Sandman

    Sandman 3/4 ton status Author

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    Ok heres what you do. Get a 9/16 end wrench. This will tighten up your distributer again. Get a timing light from somewhere. The timing light will have three connections coming off of it. Two are battery connections and should be little clamp like things. The red or "+" will be the positive and the other (balck or "-") will be the negative. Connect them up. The last connection will look kind of funny and it goes over the spark plug wire. It is the wire all the way in the front closest to the radiator on the drivers side. Hook it up. It will just clamp over the wire and might be able to slide around. Start the vehicle and let it idle. Grabe the trigger on the gun and see if the light falshes for you. If so great. If not check the connections again. You will be pointing the flashing light at a mark that is on the Damper. this is a large weight looking thing that is just below the water pump. It also has some pullys bolted to the front of it. the Timing gride that you are looking for will be towards the top of the damper on the drivers side. You might even have to look down behind the water pump to see it. Point the light at it and a mark should show up on the damper itself and this shows where your timing is at. If you dont see a mark, stop the engine and look for the mark. The mark should be a groove in the damper. Sometimes you have to take a marker to this groove or clean it or something so that it shows up better. Anyway you want your timing to be a 8 degrees or 10 or so depending on how it runs. Once you figure out the process, you can experiment. If you cant read the markings on the indicator because its too dirty, turn the distributer one way or another untill the mark on the damper shows up about 1/4 of the way into from the passenger side. When you get it where you want it, tighten up the distribut. There should be a bolt that you can srtof get to from the passenger side under the distributer. Good luck and I hope some of this makes sense.
     
  3. swamp donkey

    swamp donkey 1/2 ton status

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    This makes enough sense. When I look at in the morn it may make more sense. The main thing I'm not clear on is where to tighten. But now that I know to look underneath that will make that simplier.
    I set it by ear / feel today and the truck drove WAY better. More pep, and no backfires.
    Any advice on what timing light to buy?
     
  4. trailblazer87

    trailblazer87 1/2 ton status

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    There is a hex bolt underneath the top of the distributor, where it goes into the intake manifold, it holds down a clamp that holds the distributor in place. It is on the passenger side of the truck, just off center.
     

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