Help! I need someone to shed some light on what I'm doing wrong here. This thing is driving me crazy!
My problem is simple... I can't screw the distributor hold-down bolt all the way in. It goes about 3/4 of the way in, stops there, and the distributor is still loose.
First I followed all of the steps you guys listed here in this post. Then I followed this link
. For once my Chilton may have paid off because it has a pretty good description:
INSTALLATION, ENGINE ROTATED
1. If the engine has been rotated while the distributor was out, you;ll have to first put the engine on No.1 cylinder at Top Dead Center firing position. You can either remove the valve cover or No. 1 spark plug to determine engine position. Rotate the engine with a socket wrench on the nut at the center of the front pulley in the normal direction of rotation. Either feel for air being expelled forcefully through the spark plug hole or watch for the engine to rotate up to the Top Center mark without the valves moving (both valves will be closed).
2. Start the distributor into the engine with the matchmarks between the distributor body and the engine lined up. Turn the rotor slightly until the matchmarks on the bottom of the distributor body and the bottom of the distributor shaft near the gear are aligned.
3. Insert the distributor all the way into the engine. If you have trouble getting the distributor and camshaft gears to mesh, turn the rotor back and forth very slightly until the distributor can be inserted easily. If the rotor is not now lined up with the position of No. 1 plug terminal, you'll have to pull the distributor back out slightly, shift the position of the rotor appropriately, and then reinstall it.
4. Align the matchmarks between the distributor and engine. Install the distributor mounting bolt and tighten it finger tight. Reconnect the vacuum advance line and distributor wiring connector, and reinstall the gasket and cap. Reconnect the negative battery cable. Adjust the ignition timing as described in Chapter 2. Then, tighten the distributor mounting bolt.
I have gotten the distributor seated in all the way in with the rotor in various positions. I am at TDC in Cylinder 1 and my timing mark is at 0. I've cranked the engine by hand at length and never got the hole to line up. I'm almost out of ideas on how to get this dang bolt in.
I have the screw in the hole so that when/if it ever lines up I will know it. The only idea I have left is to try to get the camshaft gear inside the shaft to rotate and maybe that will allow the bolt to go deeper? I'm really unclear what specifically moves inside there to even begin to line the bolt hole up. I beginning to second guess myself that I'm even using the right bolt anymore!
Could anyone explain to me what markings on the distributor and the engine I should be using? Does anyone have any idea what I'm doing wrong here? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
Here is a couple photos to show what I'm working with: