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Unread 06-18-2010, 10:52 PM   #1
98jeepfreak
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HEI upgrade issues

I am trying to help a buddy of mine with his 82 cj7. We are in the process of installing an HEI distributor. I pulled the old distr. at what i am pretty sure is TDC. Installed the HEI and timed it accordingly. Marked #1 plug wire position on the distr. body, lined it up with the rotor and tried to start the engine to no avail. All plug wires are in the right position on the cap. After playing with the distr. I was able to get the engine running but at a very rough idle, and the original mark on the distr. is now almost one plug over counterclockwise. Did we just install the distr. wrong or are there deeper issues like the timing chain? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

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Unread 06-18-2010, 11:25 PM   #2
Trapshooter
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It sounds as though you slipped a tooth when installing the new HEI distributor. I would find TDC again on #1 and see where things line up. Make sure you are truly on TDC and not the exhaust stroke.

Was the engine running fine before the HEI install? If so I have to believe you jumped a tooth when installing the new dizzy, very easy to do.

Good Luck............
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Unread 06-19-2010, 12:27 AM   #3
swatson454
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You may or may not have slipped a tooth. If you're curious, here's what I would do. Find TDC again and remove the rotor. If the trigger doesn't line up lilke this...



You may need to rotate the housing until the trigger lines up right. Once it does, simply reinstall the rotor and make a mark directly under the rotor tip on the housing. This position will be the number one spark plug location once you install the cap.

It sounds like you're close and just need to move the wires one terminal counter clockwise but this is a good way to be sure.

I'm not always the best at transfering advise or possibilities to written word so hopefully that makes sence.

Shawn
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Unread 06-19-2010, 12:43 AM   #4
98jeepfreak
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Thanks guys, will look at both of those solutions in the morning. I'll let you know what happens.
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Unread 06-19-2010, 09:53 AM   #5
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OK,

There are two things you MUST have VERIFIED before you try and put the distributor back in the engine...

1. You MUST MANUALLY Find COMPRESSION STROKE.
This is quite difficult sometimes...

Turn the engine BY HAND until compression stroke starts,
If you have a plug out, and you use the starter, you can VERY easily have the crank 'Coast' past Compression stroke and wind up with TDC of Exhaust instead of TDC COMPRESSION (180 Crankshaft Degrees from where you want to be!)!

Turn the engine BY HAND, with a finger over the plug hole feeling for COMPRESSION.

Once you VERIFY you are on COMPRESSION STROKE...

2. Use a wooden dowel rod, chop stick, something NON-METAL to feel for the top of the piston.
Continue turning the crank BY HAND until you can VERIFY TDC (Top Dead Center) of the Piston In The Cylinder.

When you have the piston at as close to EXACTLY TDC ON COMPRESSION STROKE,
Then and ONLY THEN are you ready to have a look at the balancer 'Hash' mark.

You will COMPLETELY IGNORE the balancer during this operation until this point...
Balancer outer rings are OFTEN WRONG, the outer rings tend to come loose from the hubs and slip around the hub, giving you INACCURATE READINGS...

Once you VERIFY COMPRESSION STROKE,
Once you VERIFY TDC,
Then you can have a look at the balancer.

The 'Hash' mark on the balancer should be very near the 0 (Zero) mark on the timing scale.
None are ever perfect, but it should be within a degree or two.

If the 'Hash' mark IS NOT within a degree or two of Zero, then it's time for a new balancer before you proceed.

---------------------------------



Now,
Once you VERIFY COMPRESSION STROKE,
Once you VERIFY TDC,
Once you VERIFY THE BALANCER MARK,
You are ready to move on to the distributor.

Mark the #1 plug wire terminal on the DISTRIBUTOR HOUSING, ('Blue Circle On Picture)

Notice the picture posted by Swanson454 he has the #1 plug terminal location marked on the distributor base...

Now, when the 'Points' on the trigger (in Red Circle) on the reluctor/trigger ring line up, the ignition fires.

With the rotor ON the distributor, the rotor should be lining up with #1 mark on the housing when these reluctor 'Fingers' or 'Pointers' line up.
This should be 0 Advance when the engine fires...

----------------------------------------------------------------

ROTOR IS MISSING IN THIS PICTURE,
SHOULD BE ON THE DISTRIBUTOR, AND POINTING AT #1 IF DISTRIBUTOR SET WERE CORRECT.





NOW,
There are TWO more things you need to know.

A, The distributor has a spiral cut gear so the rotor will ADVANCE past #1 as the distributor gear engauges the camshaft gear, puting you rotor about 28 crankshaft degrees PAST the #1 mark on your housing.

To compensate for this, you need to turn the ROTOR COUNTER CLOCKWISE about half way back to the preceeding terminal before you catch the distributor gear on the camshaft gear.

By 'Backing' the rotor up, you are compensating for the forward rotation when it engages the camshaft gear.

B. The Oil Pump Drive is on the bottom of the distributor gear.
The oil pump drive RARELY lines up with the distributor gear, so you usually have to ROTATE THE ENGINE to get it to drop in place.

Since you are working on a '4 Cycle' engine, you MUST TURN THE CRANK TWO FULL REVLOUTIONS and bring the balancer hash mark back to ZERO and check to see if the rotor is pointing at #1 or not.

If it IS pointing at #1, then you have a correct insertion of the distributor,
If it IS NOT pointing at number one when the 'Hash' mark lines up with 'Zero', then you didn't get the distributor on the correct camshaft tooth,
You need to lift the distributor and try again...

DON'T GET FRUSTRATED AND CUT CORNERS!

Lift the distributor, make your correction, ALWAYS MAKE TWO REVOLUTIONS of the engine so the distributor drops down completely on the oil pump shaft,
And check for alignment.

This IS NOT rocket science or brain surgery, or even rocket surgery!

But you DO have to do this 'By The Numbers' to make sure you aren't getting the crankshaft 180 out from distributor set,
And you DO have to make sure you start on COMPRESSION stroke without coasting past compression with the spark plug out!
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Unread 06-19-2010, 10:38 AM   #6
swatson454
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepHammer View Post
ROTOR IS MISSING IN THIS PICTURE,
SHOULD BE ON THE DISTRIBUTOR, AND POINTING AT #1 IF DISTRIBUTOR SET WERE CORRECT.
The rotor was intentionally off for that picture so a guy can see the trigger alignment without slipping a disc in his neck.
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Unread 06-19-2010, 11:27 AM   #7
JeepHammer
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I figured that, it's VERY hard to see the reluctor with the rotor on for pictures,

I just wanted to make sure he put HIS reluctor on so he knew where the distributor was indicating before it dropped it in...
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Unread 06-19-2010, 11:35 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepHammer View Post
I figured that, it's VERY hard to see the reluctor with the rotor on for pictures,

I just wanted to make sure he put HIS reluctor on so he knew where the distributor was indicating before it dropped it in...
I absolutely suck at "Paint" and "Photoshop" too so thanks for circling those points on the pic.
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Unread 06-19-2010, 12:56 PM   #9
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After you get good at this procedure, then you might find it easier to turn the oil pump with a large screwdriver to the position it will align, before stabbing the distributor into the hole. It takes a bit of insight, but with practice, it is easy.
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Unread 06-19-2010, 01:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swatson454 View Post
I absolutely suck at "Paint" and "Photoshop" too so thanks for circling those points on the pic.
I had to learn that stuff for work, making instructions that ANYONE with the IQ of Forest Gump can understand is mandatory or you spend the rest of your life on the Tech lines!
----------------------------

Quote:
Originally Posted by BioTex View Post
After you get good at this procedure, then you might find it easier to turn the oil pump with a large screwdriver to the position it will align, before stabbing the distributor into the hole. It takes a bit of insight, but with practice, it is easy.
That Oil Pump engagement is probably what screws as many installs up as using the starter to try and find Compression stroke.
With no compression in #1 cylinder, the crank is free to COAST RIGHT PAST what *SHOULD* be compression on #1, so using the starter is a VERY BAD IDEA for anyone that doesn't do this every day...

I NEVER tell 'Newbies' to turn the pump, You just never know what they *THINK* is the pump!
And having them probing around in there with a screwdriver usually isn't good!

MUCH easier to have them turn the engine TWO full revolutions,
And that CAN NOT be screwed up unless they stop short of two full revolutions!

You usually will see the distributor drop in the first half turn, but you MUST make two FULL revolutions of the engine, bring the balancer hash mark back up to zero, and you are off to the races!
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Unread 06-19-2010, 03:40 PM   #11
98jeepfreak
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Thanks for all the help guys. The jeep is now back up and running. Just need to dial in the carb.
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Unread 06-19-2010, 05:05 PM   #12
JeepHammer
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Glad to hear you are up and running...
What was it that was causing the issues?
----------------------------------

I'd set the timing about 6 to 8 degrees before TDC, (if you want more initial timing, you can bump it up after setting idle mixture)

Make sure you remove the vacuum line from the distributor and plug it before you try and set timing!

I usually take time and check all the vacuum lines for loose fittings, vacuum leaks, split ends on the hoses, ect.
Vacuum leaks, even little ones, will screw you up big time for idle mixture!

6 to 8 degrees advanced is usually a good place to start for good vacuum signal, on NON-computer controlled engines...

And then I'd set the curb idle a little high once the engine warms up...
Not more than about 750 RPM,
Around 800 RPM you will start drawing off the main jets, and you can't tune the idle mixture like that.

For tuning carb, turn the idle mixture screws all the way 'IN' GENTLY,
Those screws are seating on soft aluminum or zinc, and they will wedge in VERY easily,

Count the number of turns you have to turn them each in...
They should be even, if they aren't, someone has been there ahead of you and screwed things up.

If you turn in while the vehicle is running, it should choke down and die,
If it doesn't, then you have fuel being drawn from someplace it shouldn't.

When you get them in, back them out about 4.5 turns or so, EVENLY,
And hook up a vacuum gauge to base plate or manifold vacuum,
turn the screws in EVENTLY until the RPM drops about 500 RPM.

If the idle drops 500 RPM and the screws are even, then set the curb idle and you are done.

---------------------------------

You will need a couple of sets of CLEAN plugs to check the Main Jets.
The only way to set main jets is by driving the vehicle flat out and then checking color on the plugs.

When you get to your 'Test Track',
Put in some clean plugs, then make a full speed pass, as hard as you can get the vehicle to run, and you want at least 1/4 mile, usually a 1/2 mile is better.

Kick the trans into nutral at the end of the run, turn the engine off IMMEDTATLY so you don't foul the plug reading slowing down using the engine as a brake,

And take your plugs out, read them.
You are looking for a light tan color on the insulator, and one side of the insulator is fine.

White means you are too lean for highway driving,
Darker brown means you are too rich for city driving...

Black means you are getting oil in the cylinder!

VERY light tan is what you are looking for... and that's about perfect reading for unleaded fuel in AMC engines.

If you have a computer controlled vehicle, that still has the stepper motor on the carb,
Then you are SCREWED for plug readings!
The O2 sensor MUST be working, the stepper motor MUST be working, and the computer MUST be working,
And you STILL won't get a good reading most times...
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Unread 06-19-2010, 05:36 PM   #13
98jeepfreak
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Well, I just went back and re-installed the distributor step by step, per the instructions from jeephammer, then turned the key and ta-da! She started right up. Gonna play with the carb adjustments next. Will post with results. Thanks again for all the help, you guys are great!
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Unread 06-19-2010, 05:57 PM   #14
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I guess im lost here...lol But if u put in a hei ur dizzy shouldnt look like the one in the pics....the one in the pics is the stock dizz....the hei is like a chevy and has a modual and a doesnt have the holifex ignition system in it....
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Unread 06-19-2010, 06:00 PM   #15
swatson454
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Originally Posted by josh97 View Post
I guess im lost here...lol But if u put in a hei ur dizzy shouldnt look like the one in the pics....the one in the pics is the stock dizz....the hei is like a chevy and has a modual and a doesnt have the holifex ignition system in it....
That is my H.E.I. built by Performance Distributors or D.U.I. installed in a 258.
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