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That will work just dandy. I don't believe it will go all the way to 32 degrees on centrifical advance alone tho. At least it won't if you leave the dist. set at the 12 or 14...whatever it currently is....

It will go that far if, in fact, the timing specs listed in the FSM ARE started in cam degrees.

As a good exersize...And to give you a starting point...you can static time the 3.14 with your test lite.

This will work easiest for you if done while all the plugs are out as you change them. The motor will be easier to turn smoothly.

1. Turn the engine by hand in the normal direction of rotation and stop when the timing pointer is at the point you want the timing to be...12-14 degrees...or try it at the FSM specs. your choice, all settings after this will be relative to this initial setting.

2. Loosen the distributer clamp and turn the key on to run.

3. Hook the test lite to ground and hold the probe on the connector of the points....Test lite should be ON.

4. Rotate the distributer clockwise untill the light goes out.

5 Rotate the distributer back (counterclockwise) untill the light just does flicker back on....Double and triple check if you want...LOL...I usually do just cause I like to see the light come on.

6. Tighten the hold down and call it done.
Cool, I'd never even thought about that, good idea man! I've always just pointed the rotor near the plug wire, but its always a pretty good bit off, this would be very close...
 

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Apples and oranges, but I had a crane fireball cam in a 9:1 396 Chevy, it was a hard to start beast...but loved timing. I put a curve kit in it, at idle centrifugal would add near 10 degrees( helped idle plus made hot starts possible) and had a full in of about 40 degrees...if I recall correctly (IIRC you asked about before) the initial was only about 5 to get it it crank.

It was a Chevy, with weights up top, made ****ing with it much easier... But I had doubled weights on one side with ultra light spring for idle, and single weight-heavy spring for higher rpm...had to cut the finger off a spare weight to put on the high speed side to semi balance the rotor without adding to the centrifugal advance, mighta been unnecessary, but it was kinda fun to mess with.

Didn't realize old Ms American had a healthy cam in there...bet she really scoots and makes some beautiful noise :)
Tim
 

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hope everythings OK too...maybe someone can give him a call

BTW, I turn seventy-four years old today! Had I known it life was going to last this long, I'd probably have taken better care of myself!
Happy belated Birthday JC- heres to many more!
Tim
 

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back in highschool, I had put a crane fireball cam in my el camino when i first rebuilt my 396- IIRC that cam was around 300 duration, and 15" might be normal for it?
mine was an auto with a stock converter, so ended up going much milder almost right away- with your manual trans, and lack of subzero winters a old fireball cam is probably fine- but i know mine had to be choked to death till warm, and it loved timing- except it wouldnt crank when hot

As you put that cam in back in the 80's, how smoothly did it run all these years? was it always a little tempermental to start/liked to warm up before stabilizing?

bet a little work in the carb getting it to squirt fuel is gonna fix the startup issue, the super-tuning thing might be a bite at a time kinda thing, I'd go seat of the pants advancing w/o vac attached till it pings at WOT, noting the rpm/degrees a test drive at a time (hope your neighbors are friendly) and then trying to mimic that max timing curve with the weights/springs/static, then a adjustable vac advance to pull in as much as it will tolerate at light/mid throttle- a lot of screwing around, but if you ever need to show up some kids in corvettes like your Mom did, might be worth it :)

will be interesting to hear from folks that know a better way to get a best advance curve- theres got to be a easier way than trial and error :) I only ever mucked around with the 396 and a 350 chevy- with the weights up top, the trial and error was pretty easy compared to a ford with its more buried weights :)

hope the cats settle down soon- one thing ive seen with cats, they really hate change - till it settles in as normal, they get pretty fickle... tim
 

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undoing/redoing can be the most frustrating things ever...I'll never forget the day after bolting the body back on the rebuilt frame for Ben's car, hearing/seeing the crackling rear window, realizing reusing two rubber mounts with all the rest of urethane meant taking all that stuff back apart...the ironic part was the crakling noise coming from the rear glas- it was like 'na-nah,nu-nah-na' thing...it was still making noise hours later as i put tape over it before pushing it out in as much one piece as possible.

its all a test of wills, and I KNOW you got this... just unhook the battery, pop the linkage/4 bolts, get her back off the car and on the bench- you now KNOW its either a check valve function working backwards or plugged outlet port, a little more dirt under the nails and you can test squirt with the top off most carbs... the carb on Ben's 298 has clogged the squirters 3 times over the yrs, I now just pop the choke rod, lid off take the one screw out of the bottom, push a wire thru a few times, always its a gummy-grey little blob that finally comes out by blowing compressed air or wd40 straw thru...I figure its gotta be some kind of ethanol/aluminum muck as its got dual filters and the gas is water-clear in the float bowl. doing it on the car though is very uncomfortable, and asking for trouble if any little thing falls in
of course...safer/easier just not quite as fast to pull the carb, cover the intake(just dont leave that way too long- mice could decide the rags/holes were a mouse condo invite)

gotta run, but just had to say dont get discouraged. today just wasnt the day- testing the carb over a bucket (even with seafoam or whatever for fluid) with the top off is easy way to verify all is working ok- just drop the needle into place without the loose float parts, pour a little something in to cover the accel inlet hole, and push the lever...if it wont go shes still blicked. I had to use a tiny drill bit on Bens one time, just twisted between thumb and finger to 'screw' it into the little tubes, and pulled out flutes full of the goop causing the issues...on Bens old 2 barrel, I could leave the center squirter piece out, pumping accelerator would gush fuel thru the opening, then just cleaning/blowing out the little squirt tubes and it was all good- actually, bet you a buck one is clogged right now- noticed yesterday getting on the highway, it stumbles a bit if accelerator pedal not eased into - i tend to baby it so much it could probably run without a accelerator pump at all :)


to coin a phrase from a Apollo command module guy- you 'made it 99.997% of the way there': but YOU have the ability to get 100% where barring a crash into the lunar surface, he did not :)
Again, please dont get discouraged- you got this JC- show it who's boss- just leave the .357 inside please :)

I got a good feeling that she's gonna be the happiest car on the planet soon- not her fault a little carb goo from likely modern fuel issues has caused her a little need for some very minor(relative to all the other renewal work shes endured) carburetor angioplasty

off to 'relay for life' event tonight- wish us luck, windy/humid/90+ degrees out- severe thunderstorm type of likelihood although its just sunny and hot as hell right now...sister in law is a 10 yr colorectal cancer survivor, my wifes a 16 yr lymphoma survivor...sis has had a relay team for the past decade, its a neat event- lots of uplifting/lots of sad, but all folks that have had/lost/dealing with family/friends and cancer...
 

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now THATS more like it :)

isnt it kinda weird how a clean carb gets that buildup in those tubes? in my thinking its as the fuel in them slowly evaporates it must leave a buildup that reacts with the brass, where gasoline paths in most of the rest of the carb stays 'wet' even in storage...still seemed odd to me in Ben's carb how a otherwise spotlessly clean carb would get that corrosion only in the tubes...

starting daily shouldnt be a issue, but if like Ben's, dont be surprised if occasional removal/cleaning is required...on ours its always first noted as a stumble on taking off that gets much worse within a month or so- every time its got the crud in the tubes.

congrats on yet another battle won- I dont think this one is a 'personality trait' of ol' Ms American though- just a modern gas/old carb issue that will be a fact of life on occasion... gas tank corrosion will be on the list eventually too, sta-bil will likely 'help' both, but cant change the corrosive nature of ethanol... best way to prevent issue is keep it sloshing and freshened up by driving/reflling... I dont drive Bens much at all (4000 miles in 12 years) but generally refill with premium at 3/4 tank- our tank was sealed with POR15, otherwise mighta tried to keep at 3/4 max- seen a lot of old tanks spring leaks around the filler neck coupler, wouldnt want that seeping on the garage floor... outside, a full tank is probably a good thing- temp swings morning/evening/sunny/etc make the tanks 'breathe' a LOT and humid air coming in as temps drop, along with the lost 'good stuff' vented during the day all break down fuel quickly... i figure topping off with premium 93 even, the tank barely has 87 octane mixed just due to the nature of gasoline...sta-bil should help a little, but nothing like a road trip and a good half to 3/4 tank of fresh gas once in a while.
my stored mustng only gets a half gallon of fresh premium at a time a couple times a year, as just doing the warm-up exercises dont burn enough to keep a full tank from going sour... the newer cars are lined tanks, so corrosion not a issue, but we are all stuck with todays blended fuels...

anyways- YAY, you won another battle in that war against effects of time, although none of us will ever be able to win that one, we can put up a valiant effort - and by gosh you should have a collection of medals now :)
now, you have a great day- Tim
 

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JC,
I'm a little surprised, that dist has run over 30 yrs, still works(kinda) just needs a little lube... BTW, i'm almost certain that style originally had a felt 'wick' stuffed atop that little center clip, and at tune up times a wetting of motor oil to the wick would lube the mechanism...
Why not just smooth the bumps a little so the pin cant snag in the slots, lube the thing so it slides/twists full slot smoothly, and try it out? If the springs are in there the little torsional slop should have little effect, as the springs pulling should keep it biased against the weight ears, heck, even if it was loose as a goose, i doubt it would actually jump around once running- easy to see, if the timing light looks stable(which i believe you mentioned it did already) that wear should mean little in operation... If anyone pops the cap and complains about it, fine, but i really dont think otherwise it would have any detrimental effects- but i'm cheep and tend to try and keep things alive more than economically smart sometimes...that said though, i really truly think that could be lightly touched up, freed up, lubed, wick added, and it could outlast us all :) just a opinion.

Best of all, ZERO worries of retiming the gear, having unforseen oilpump driveshaft stick/ fall out, etc...

Seriously, consider taking 20 minutes to dress the slots where any steps are, lube it, twist/ verify full travel( think springs might magically pull properly once full travel capaple) take another 20 minutes to pop it back together, put the light on it, see if stable(read- slop not affecting at all) then do your no vac, rpm/ advanve mapping to see where to go, i' m thinking it will be fine, was just sticking...be sure to eventually put a piece of felt in there - preoil, squish out excess, stuff it in, add a few drops of oil...just not so much it will sling off the rotor onto the cap and collect dust... Add a few drops in 5 yrs or whenever the rotor needs changed again :)

Just a opinion...i think easy enough to try though, vs ordering, buying, shipping, removing w/o dropping the pump driver, reinstalling, possibly still needing to recurve...why not? Even a new one could have issues.
I just really think if freed up, any slop will be pulled out by the normal operation of the mechanism... Unless idled extremely low to where firing pulses might cause acceleration/oscillation, i think the timing will be fine...
Again, "i think" :)
Tim
 

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One more quick comment, twisting the thing might not push the weights full in/out... Depending on angles, backdriving by twisting, vs the centrifugal action might be sticky at best... Try pushing both the pins in the slots outward simultaneously with a couple little screwdrivers, they should move out fairly easily to full travel if that was the case
 

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I agree with galax-z, you can tweak the tension by just bending the tabs... Cool you have spares from lorries old dist, mix/match, tweak, you should be able to get a decent curve.

The setup you have almost reminds me of that setup i described for my 396, had a very light spring, barely touching and heavy weight to pull initial at idle, that way i could back off enough to get it to crank- certainly not right, but it worked... Then the one heavier spring started pulling towards all-in from about 2000-3000. It was my first attempt at messing with advance weights, and only out of necessity as it loved advance, but wouldnt crank with initial more than a few degrees BTDC...hokey, but it seemed to work, maybe someone did similar to your 390 dist.

A little worried as to why pushing the pins out wouldnt go full stroke, betting a little step wear on the weight ears is catching. Once the bits are all out in the daylight, expect a few little wear marks will be found. Also, right or wrong- would actually like to hear others opinions- on stuff like this, i tend to fall back on petroleum jelly as assembly lube, dont seem to dry out like grease, seems to be compatible with oils, etc...i tend to wipe a film all over everything bare metal, it collects dust, and actc like a undercoating too wipes right out 'next time'
 

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Cool, get the timing mapped out, kinda sounds like the lighter spring is too light and allowing a lot of centrifugal advance at idle.

Great that youve got the start issue all taken care of, now youve got a VERY mismatched pair of great running, likely 'last of the breed' vehicles- Thats really cool!

When we get home i'm gonna do some work on Ben's car - it should start like yours too :)

KUTGW :)
Tim
 

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Hi there,



I, for one, am not feeling bad!! I have learned so much. And that is/was the purpose of this and the other threads. :smile2:

Mel
Amen- especially this last little bit about dist curves has been awesome, one of those things i know i have rarely thought about even trying to understand, and a lot of the comments/suggestions have been really enlightening- this is great :)
Davids above post -as usual- makes so much sense it sounds 'easy-peasy' (actually JC, I think DXL coined that phrase in here)

i know i havent even seen the weights in our 65, and honestly dont think ive ever reoiled it since tuning it up in 2002- out of sight/out of mind... :)
 

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Which PerTronix do you have? A couple of things learned from doing Lorrie's BIG3 HEI... It NEEDS a digital Voltage Regulator. Mechanical Voltage Regulators create "spikes" that Control Modules HATE. And the Ignition Coil should be 0.32 Ohms. The PerTronix FlameThrower HV is 0.32 Ohms.

Now if I could just come to a comprehension of the Autolite 4100 Choke Mechanism. :)

Anyway, hope you are well.

JC
I just put the standard ignitor (I) in Ben's car, will probably just get their 3 ohm 40kv coil... surely a lot hotter than the ford coil.

I did put a solid state regulator in a couple months ago- the old one had a bad 'low' charge resistor, once charged the lights always had a constant flicker about 2-3 times a second...wonder if the pulsing mighta acted as a desulfator, as that battery lasted from 2002 till a couple months ago- if this one lasts the typical 3-5 yrs I'll 'blame' the 14 yr one on the pulsing regulator being good for it. think it woulda lasted a lot longer, but i deep cycled it- left the doors open a few hours when cleaning up the interior, it didnt hold a charge afterwards.
 

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Ross/David/all-
Might i ask where is the place to find good base numbers, like the 38 all in at 2800 for a FE, for any other particular engine? I assume a lot of this is from experience with lots of varied builds over the years, but figure there should be a bible of sorts out there somewhere too...

Really curious as to theory/ thinking behind timing/quench area/dome design/overlap and how they intertwine...maybe even things like rod:stroke ratio effects on piston dwell at tdc and how it affects ping resistance/timing... Been a lot of neat stuff in here so far!
 

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youre gonna have to learn to drive her all over again :)

was just thinking, you mentioned a while back about going to change the Frantz filter- in all the various hubub, that didnt get forgotten did it? only bad thing ive ever heard about Frantz was opinion that if neglected the TP could break up/ get out of the canister...

well, congrats on getting her moved- its been a while. maybe she was just happy to get moved, settled into a relaxed idle- till you startled her :)
 

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JC,
just thinking, the hemostats on the vac line could leak ever so slightly and hold the thing off its stop...clamping is fine, but I'd suggest pulling the clamped hose completely off the advance, as long as it cant flop into the fan :)

sounds like you are 'on your way' here pretty good- if she seems to be consuming crazy amounts of gas- did you check float level before putting the lid back on the carb after cleaning the tubes? think a high float level can make it run real rich even at idle...just a thought
 

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Cool JC,
hope everything goes swimmingly today :)

we got another 'test drive' of our own today- leaving Colorado, headed back home 1500 miles...spent a week out here visiting Dad at nursing home a couple times a day, one of those trips where leaving is harder than usual as he has really degraded this past year...might need to do some weekend flights to get back out this year, the road trip is a real time killer...
actually looked at the map yesterday, but found a detour thru onalaska woulda been a bit too far to swing- like another thousand miles- Texas is huge, and didnt realize you were that far south- no wonder the heat/humidity is so high...so guess you wont get any surprise visitors this week... maybe next year if we do Arizona again :)

NOW... About the Vacuum Gauge on the Vacuum Line FROM the 4100 reading 9" at 750 RPM: It is my understanding that we can open the Secondary Throttle Plate Shaft Adjustment Lever Screw to maintain the 750 RPM Idle, while turning the Hot Idle Screw down to lessen the Vacuum to the Vacuum Advance Canister which will put the Damper DOWN from 24 TO 16 at 750 RPM.

Is this correct?
thats exactly as i understand it too- i'd never thought about 'moving' the vacuum port timing in this way, but it makes a lot of good sense- this thread has been a very good read :)



Anyways, hope Ms American is in a good mood today, and the next (and hopefully less intensive labor wise) capers can get started- I remember years ago, you commenting on Greg Donahue (i think) offering to restore her for 30k or something- keep this stuff up and she'll be better than new on your own :)

the results you have achieved so far are really inspiring- a lot of neat commentary/suggestions/educational threads for sure- perhaps someday you can do a road trip to Gary's for a paint job... I can just about picture 'the great Ms American install air conditioning, add trailer hitch for kitty trailer, and 2000 mile road trip caper' wouldnt that be a hoot! heheh :)

hope you have a great day-
tim
 

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NOW... If any of you believe this, Mel has a bridge in Nuevo Yawk he'll sell 'today only' at half price, and I have a collection of DaVinci sketches (the few he did in ball-point) that I'll throw in as a bonus.

Anyway, we DID do a test drive. It went well.

Am going to be doing Friday, Saturday, and Sunday getting everything squared away for Insurance, Alignment, Inspection, and Registration, which will hopefully happen on Monday.

Isn't this FUN you guys?

JC
I saw the pic of that busted shaft and my heart sunk staring at the picture, wondering just what kinda stubshaft hookup that coulda been for a few minutes before scrolling down-

then saw the "If any of you believe this" and was able to breathe again...
yep- you got me :) glad all went well!

will read the follow ups a couple time zones east- time to say bye to Colorado...
 

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Hey Tim,
The intent was a "sight gag"! I mean, a sixty-pound HEAVY-DUTY-POLICE-INTERCEPTOR U-JOINT? That just struck me as being funny! :) That U-Joint is bigger than Ms. American's Differential! And to blame the PerTronix Ignition System for BLOWING that BIG a thing... Don't they WISH?

It was meant to be "outrageous".

Can you find it in your heart to forgive me? :)
In the pics, it didnt look THAT big at first- we used to make the big semi parts at work, kinda sad/funny story, they bet the job on thesebig indexing lathe chucks to turn/bore/ream at one chucking- problem was a chipped tool would bust the indexing chuck, blow the whole thing apart... We lost our ass on that job... End of year, we had a dinner, yr in review type thing, the boss added one comment ' and we finally ran our last (name omitted) yoke, still got the darn thing in my closet...' And one of my more smart alec buddies blurted out, ' you should have it, you paid five million dollars for it' ouch :)

Those u joints were about7" across the trunnion, massive pieces...we had to go back to retooling/ broaching/ milling, cycle times at best were way beyond quoted, we really lost a bunch.
Tim, the test drive was doubly impressive! First was impressed at how nicely the 3.14 is running. Soooo smooth, and soooo responsive. The Brakes have barely a half inch before going TOTALLY solid. The old Gal GOES&STOPS magnificently. All of THAT added up to being VERY impressive. Add THAT to my being used to driving Lorrie, and how soft&gentle she is, the transition to Ms. American's gnarly&snarly get-up-and-go demeanor was heightened. As you mentioned, am going to have to learn how to drive the old Gal all over again.

So are you just driving on&on? Or is this trip also a bit of a leisurely thing. Your visiting your father was certainly the MAIN thing... BUT did you include a bit of a vacation in the mix?
Yeah, vacation...mom and stepdad are out there too, her yorkie had to be put down a few months ago, the wife found her one at a shelter, they drove 200 miles to pick her up, great little dog, and she adopted my mom immediately...no one else could hold her, she was very scared, but sits right in moms lap happy as a lark... That worked out real well. Took three of the boys camping at Deweese reservior, was a really fun night- full moon on the solstice, bright as heck, pretty cool.
Leaving this time sucked, just dunno how much longer dads gonna hang in there, could be years, but hes faded so much this past few months, its just not good...time marches on...
Anyway, we're in the process this morning of going to play with the Secondary Throttle Shaft Adjustment Bolt. Will let you know how THAT goes.

Hope your journey is progressing pleasantly. Drive carefully.

JC
thanks, were splashing around at a water park in kansas city, timed the drive perfectly( picture peewee herman saying ' i meant to do that') in we tried to trust the weather map, timed leaving to follow a split in a big expected storm, drove overnight without a drop of rain - dumb luck likely, but ill take it :)

Dont get too frustrated, jeez, look how far youve come so far... These guys arent steering you astray, just theres a lot of intermingled things going on, that will take a little tail chasing for a bit...know the weather sucks, but keep plugging away, things will taper down.

One comment/ question for everyone- any benefit to closing the primary idle further? Just wondering as JC mentioned adjusting to where vac gage just barely zero, and a while back mentioning the throttle shaft slop... Perhaps a SOLID zero( maybe a half turn past zero) would prevent any possibility of throttle shaft wear affecting idle vac advance? Just a thought.

Yeah- another 'do it again' suggestion- sorry :)
Stay cool if possible- tim
 
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