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Old 03-28-2005, 09:18 PM   #10
shifty's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 13,366
For the final steps, it helps to have another set of hands.

Now, if all goes well, you should be able to fire up the truck. Make sure no wires are near a fan, try to tidy everything up in the engine bay but don't fasten anything down yet.

Have someone (your helper) get in the cab and turn the truck over.

If it fires up, GREAT. You can slowly rotate the distributor back and forth to adjust how smooth it runs. When you think it feels good, if you have a timing light handy, go ahead and set the timing now. Otherwise, you might want to take it to someone who can. After you have the timing set, reattach the vacuum line from the carb to the vacuum advance. Don't forget to bolt down the distributor all the way once you set the timing!!

If it doesn't fire up, read on....

Check for good spark. If you don't have a timing light, you can do this by removing one of the longer spark plug wires. Grab a long screwdriver by its plastic handle and insert the shaft of the screwdriver into the end of the plug wire. Hold the shaft of the screwdriver near a good ground...preferrably not your body. Have someone turn over the engine. If there is no spark, take a multimeter to the pink line you ran for ignition and see if the power is constant while the engine is cranking over.

If you see a spark arc from the driver shaft to the ground source, you know you've got spark. Chances are your timing is either off a little bit (the tower for #1 wasn't on the rotor totally at TDC) or you weren't actually at TDC, you were 180º out from TDC. My suggestion: Have the person in the cab turn the engine over a few seconds at a time. While they're turning it over, slowly spin the distributor in either direction to see if you can find the sweet spot where it will fire.

If it fires, great, set the timing. If not, chances are you're 180º out from TDC. This is the easiest way I can explain how to remedy the situation:

Pop off the distributor cap, coil and all. Turn the cooling fan on the engine until the rotor is pointed at cylinder #1 and the harmonic balancer has its mark pointing at 0º on the timing chain cover. Once you get there, turn the cooling fan until the mark on the harmonic balancer lines up with 0º again. Once there, the rotor should be pointing the opposite direction from the #1 cylinder. Remove the distributor bolt, lift up the distributor and re-seat it so that the rotor is pointing at the #1 cylinder again. All this does is reposition the rotor 180º to try and put you to at 180º from whatever position you were previously.

Put the cap back onto the distributor and loosely attach the housing bolt again. Have the person in the cab give another crank. If you get no fire, try to spin the dizzy slowly while they're cranking again and see what you get.

Basically, it will fire if the rotor is firing to #1 within a couple of degrees of TDC. If you know you're getting spark and you're getting gas, all that's left to go wrong is the timing, really. It's possible the plugs or the plug wires could be bad, but ... play with the timing. It's what kicked my ass when I did my install.

I hope this HOWTO helps you out. If you have problems, you can always post for help in one of the other forums.

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