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Pontiac Forum: Issue with HEI Distributor
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  #1  
Old June 30th, 2018, 12:25 PM
Nexia86 Nexia86 is offline
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Issue with HEI Distributor

Hello,

I had bad starting behavior and the idle was not really good so I decided to check and adjust timing. I have a HEI electronic distributor. When I checked in idle it had around 14 degrees advanced timing do I thought it's a bit high. So I changed to 9-10 degrees and it idled smoother. When I opened the throttle at 1/4 the timing went up to 30-40 degrees and stuck at 14 degrees when the engine went back in idle. This happened all the time. I just noticed that I forgot to unplug the distributor while doing this and used manifold vacuum, dont know if this could be the issue or if the springs or whatever in the distributor are not correct.

Happy to hear back from you guys.

Manuel
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Old June 30th, 2018, 05:27 PM
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melsg5 melsg5 is offline
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you never set initial timing with the line to the vacuum advance connected.
you should remove the cap and rotor and make sure the weights move freely.
try setting the initial timing to 9 degrees.
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Old July 1st, 2018, 08:25 AM
Nexia86 Nexia86 is offline
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So I tried another time today. As it was hard to get the line off the vacuum advance, I took away the line off the manifold und plugged the line towards the advance and plugged the line towards the manifold. I did set 9 degrees in idle. When I reved up the engine above 3000rpm, timing went back to the initial setting when it went back in idle. Having the vacuum advance hooked up, timing did not go below 14 degrees when I had it to around 3000 rpm and let it back in idle. Thatīs why idle is higher after that than initially.

I opened the distributor and I discovered itīs a Delco Remy distributor... Itīs my first US car so I couldnt tell from the look. Please see pictures ahead, the weights and springs look rusted and it was not really easy moving so I put some WD40 on it and it moved much easier. The last bit until intial position did not go by itself, maybe this is the issue that the springs canīt get it back and thatīs why it is always 5 degrees above initial timing...

Maybe Delco Remy is sh** and you recommend to use something different, even I prefer to use the exisiting set up.


Thanks,
Manuel
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Last edited by Nexia86; July 1st, 2018 at 08:37 AM.
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Old July 1st, 2018, 01:40 PM
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the pivot points and the rubbing area for the weights should have a drop of 20 weight oil. Delco Remy is a factory distributor cap but that does not mean the distributor is a Delco Remy. I do not recognzie those weights as being the correct type for an HEI distributor, they look like weights used with points. See the images below.
At idle speed with the vacuum connected does the advance go above 9 degrees?

https://www.google.com/search?q=imag...w=1600&bih=767
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Old July 1st, 2018, 01:50 PM
Nexia86 Nexia86 is offline
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What do you mean should drop by 20 weight oil?

With the vacuum connected it went to approx. 11 degrees.

What I forgot to mention, when I move the last bit to end manually (as it does not go by itself), it sounds like the vacuum advance membrane works because of some air flow...

Last edited by Nexia86; July 1st, 2018 at 01:59 PM.
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Old July 1st, 2018, 04:10 PM
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lubricate the weights and the stud they pivot on with viscosity 20 oil.
I mentioned above that the weights do not look like the correct pieces for an HEI and the springs maybe wrong also.
Can you buy a junk HEI distributor and use the weights and springs and vacuum advance from it?
moving the weights should not effect the vacuum membrane unless there is rust on that also.
It should move more than 2 degrees when you connect the vacuum advance unless it also is stuck due to rust or the membrane has a hole.
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Old July 2nd, 2018, 04:26 PM
Nexia86 Nexia86 is offline
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Okay so I cleaned everything and all goes smooth except the vacuum advance whose lever does not move at all. So that means there is simply no vacuum advance setting the timing right in higher rpms right? I will now try to get a new vacuum advance and see what impact it has to my timing.
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Old July 2nd, 2018, 05:42 PM
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vacuum advance is generated when there is a load on the engine but not at wide open throttle. So at wide open throttle, 4,000 rpm for example, 0 vacuum advance. You need vacuum advance while cruising at a constant speed to improve gas mileage on a street driven car.
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Old July 3rd, 2018, 07:44 AM
Nexia86 Nexia86 is offline
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That explains why it was so thirsty and smelled badly like gas inside and outside the car when cruising or accelerating...
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