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 Posted: 11-06-2019 04:08 am
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flatlanderep
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Another pic of distributor

Attachment: C5722CD4-DCB3-413F-B75A-8E4E01ECE24F.jpeg (Downloaded 98 times)

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 Posted: 11-06-2019 01:46 pm
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flatlanderep
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Here is another pic of the Pertronix install. I am putting an O-ring washer on the end of distributor shaft. What size is required. I have 115, 116 and 210.

Attachment: 685FD780-BF0F-4463-91F8-4CBA8E7BD9A8.jpeg (Downloaded 94 times)

Last edited on 11-06-2019 05:25 pm by flatlanderep

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 Posted: 11-06-2019 09:54 pm
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Tom Bradley
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flatlanderep wrote:
is the magnetic ring down far enough on the shaft? Is does not go down any further and aligns with the amplifier.

It looks good to me. This looks like what I remember from installing my Pertronix. If you are getting sparks at all, then the sensor is detecting the magnetic ring. If in doubt, try rotating the magnetic ring while holding the shaft. You should not be able to turn it without turning the whole shaft.

Also, I don’t see how the clockwise or ccwise position can be changed because the mounting plate fits exactly where the 2 holes are located and it does not slide.

The direction of rotation will not change, but as I recall from installing mine, the timing was quite a bit off from what it was with the previous ignition. I don't recall how much, but I suppose it could have been as much as 180 degrees. So I had to do a bunch of rotating the distributor and checking with the timing light to get the timing right.

Also noticed that it appears that a washer is missing at the end of the distributor shaft. See attached pics.

No, there is not supposed to be a washer at that spot. The one you have installed higher up is the one you need.

What I always had trouble with when installing the distributor was getting two posts in the distributor shaft lined up with the corresponding slots inside the housing. I am not sure if you realize (forgive me if I am explaining something you already know), but when you rotate the distributor shaft you will find a spot where the two line up and the distributor slides in further and the shaft cannot be rotated. At this point you have to keep pushing the distributor in while tightening the clamp. You also will have to hold the distributor in place whenever you loosen the clamp to adjust the timing, otherwise it will pop back out and not work correctly. I always have to use a fairly long lever to hold it in whenever I do any adjusting. Always a difficult operation and the main reason I switched to electronic ignition: so I would not have to do that very often.

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 Posted: 11-07-2019 01:50 pm
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flatlanderep
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Last evening, I re-installed distributor with no O ring on end of shaft and it went smoothly as I had marked location when I removed it. Engine was still at TDC. I finally understand how to loosen distributor screw and rotate the body to line up at the beginning edge of the fixed rotor. Tried to start but still no luck. Very frustrated at this point. A friend suggested that I run a jumper wire from battery to coil to determine if the coil has adequate voltage under load.

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 Posted: 11-08-2019 12:47 am
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Tim Murphy
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Apparently, according to some MG forums, the pertronix one can be static timed. Check with the factory to make sure that is accurate. If so, you can set your ignition timing (the time the spark fires) without the engine running. Turn crank to 10 degrees before TDC. Connect a spare spark plug to the number 1 wire and set on engine (as you did before). Turn ignition key to on (run) position (Not the start position). Rotate the distributor body until the spark plug fires. Tighten distributor down at that position. That sets your idle timing to around 10 degrees before TDC. Car should start OK and run OK.

Last edited on 11-08-2019 12:48 am by Tim Murphy

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 Posted: 11-18-2019 06:47 pm
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flatlanderep
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Finally got it to start. Determined Pertronix unit was working by attaching voltmeter to negative coil and checked that voltage went fro 0 to 12 volts as I manually rotated the crank. Found this is an old post. Then I did as Tom suggested 10 degrees BTDC and then rotated dizzy body until I got spark, tightened pinch bolt. Car started and it was idling high from where I had io set previously. I reduced idle but cannot get it below 1200 rpms. Is there an anything further that I need to do? I am thankful to get to this point and I have enhanced my knowledge. Thank you!
Steve Koska

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 Posted: 11-18-2019 10:27 pm
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Tom Bradley
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Congratulations! This can be a frustrating car to work on but it is very gratifying when you finally get everything right.

High idle speed actually sounds good. It means that things are working better than they were before. Also, the more advanced the timing, the more the idle setting has to be reduced to get the same idle speed.

My guess is that the choke setting may be interfering with reducing the idle speed to what you want. Unfortunately, I am not familiar with Dellortos so cannot help with how to adjust that.

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 Posted: 11-19-2019 06:49 pm
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Frank Schwartz
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Unless I mis-read this posting, and you cannot get lower than 1200 rpm, there is a fine adjustment wheel on the distributor which if working, can be used to raise or lower the rpm a bit, but I usually just rotate the distributor until it reaches about 850 to 900 rpm, then lock it in. One has to be careful, as you know, for when you loosen the pinch clamp, the distributor can pop out and can be a bugger to get back in..

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 Posted: 11-20-2019 03:23 am
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flatlanderep
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I was able to adjust the idle speed to 1000 & if it is lower , the engine stops. So I used my timing light and the crank pulley timing marks are before the fixed 30 degree mark and the cam pulleys are about 6 teeth off. Then I assume, my timing is way off. Since I set it at 10 degrees BTDC & it started, has my distributor moved because I don’t understand how the timing is so far off but it is running. Do I start over again, Ccheck TDC, then set again at 10 degrees BTDC?

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 Posted: 11-20-2019 03:23 am
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flatlanderep
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I was able to adjust the idle speed to 1000 & if it is lower , the engine stops. So I used my timing light and the crank pulley timing marks are before the fixed 30 degree mark and the cam pulleys are about 6 teeth off. Then I assume, my timing is way off. Since I set it at 10 degrees BTDC & it started, has my distributor moved because I don’t understand how the timing is so far off but it is running. Do I start over again, Ccheck TDC, then set again at 10 degrees BTDC?

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 Posted: 11-20-2019 04:08 am
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Tom Bradley
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My guess is that the static timing of the Pertronix 1 is not very accurate. I would trust what you are seeing with the timing light. In my experience, if the engine is in good shape, it will at least run over a wide range of timing settings. So it does not surprise me that yours is running at 30 deg BTDC. Whatever the cause, it is running, so I would go on from here, not start over.

What I would do at this point is make small adjustments to the distributor until you get the timing (according to the timing light method) to the 10 degrees BTDC you were aiming for. I recommend small adjustments because you will probably have to increase the idle speed adjustment on the carbs as you back off on the timing advance to keep the car running. Actually, it might be better to increase the idle speed first so you don't run into the frustration of the engine not running as you adjust the distributor.

Last edited on 11-20-2019 04:09 am by Tom Bradley

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 Posted: 11-21-2019 02:42 am
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flatlanderep
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When I make minor distributor adjustments, do I take the dist. cap off so the dist. does not pop out? What direction clockwise or CCW?

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 Posted: 11-21-2019 02:48 pm
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Tom Bradley
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I always have to keep sideways pressure on the distributor whenever I make timing adjustments to keep it from popping out. In my case I have found a lever arm that works even with the distributor cap on, though I have to take the air cleaner off of the carbs to do it. Before I found that (a long tire iron for bicycle tires) I had to remove the distributor cap. It is always a difficult operation, which is why I went to the trouble of changing to an electronic ignition: so I would not have to do this very often.

I tend to have trouble keeping rotational directions straight. As I recall, in order to retard the timing I rotate the top of the distributor towards me when I am standing on the carb side of the engine. I always start out with a small tweek just in case I get the direction wrong.

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 Posted: 11-22-2019 02:38 am
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flatlanderep
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I started rotating the dist. towards me or rotating towards the oil filter while keeping inward pressure on dist cap. Found this was stalling out although I had increased the idle speed to start this process as you suggested. So I changed direction rotating towards the engine. Seems like I got the best response and I tightened dist. pinch clamp. I checked timing with timing light & it was about 18 degrees with RPM just under 1000. I have attached a photo of where the dist. is located, about 11 o’clock compared to 9:30 with mechanical points. Does this matter? Should I attempt to rotate dist to get closer to 12 degrees?

Attachment: 69D5BADD-7AF2-4FD1-83BC-0D6EFD055E31.jpeg (Downloaded 31 times)

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 Posted: 11-22-2019 05:41 am
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Tom Bradley
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Sorry about getting the direction of rotation wrong. I always seem to get that part backwards. Glad you got it figured out.

When finalizing the timing it is important that you do not set it so far advanced that you get detonation (knocking) under any circumstances. This is not good for long-term engine life. My guess is that 18 deg BTDC is probably going to be too much. What I would do at this point is take it out for a spin and see if there is any knocking under any conditions. My worst case scenario is when accelerating uphill in a high gear. I would back off on the timing until it is reliably knock-free and set it there or a couple of degrees more retarded just in case. One of the things which changes the knocking tendency is the richness of the air/fuel mix. So if you are planning on doing any adjustments to the carbs after this you might want to be more conservative in the timing setting if you do not want to have to go back to fiddling with the distributor again. If you go all the way back to 10 BTDC I think you will be completely safe but will not get quite as much performance out of the engine as you would at a more advanced setting.

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 Posted: 11-22-2019 04:59 pm
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redracer
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Once you get the engine running with Pertronix, use the timing light to determine if you need to advance or retard it. You may have noticed(and it has been posted many times on this site) that the 10mm nut that holds the distributor to the back of the oil pump is "slotted" This can be used for the final adjustment without fear of the dizzy popping out of its hole.(set this nut near the middle of the slot before doing tha main/large adjustment)
Our engines run best at 30 degrees full advance(about 3000rpm) and NOT the 34-37 degrees called for in most American iron. After this setting is obtained, don't worry about the idle advance as it doesn't matter

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 Posted: 11-23-2019 05:34 pm
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Rick in Miami
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I can’t take credit for devising this simple distributor retainer but found it very easy to make and it works like a charm.

Attachment: Distributor Keeper 1.jpg (Downloaded 15 times)

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 Posted: 11-23-2019 06:31 pm
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Tom Bradley
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Very nice, Rick. I will have to make one of these.

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 Posted: 11-23-2019 10:49 pm
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flatlanderep
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Today, increased timing from 10 to 12 degrees with idle at 1000 RPMs and when I increased revs to 3000, put timing light on crank and it was 30 degrees BTDC. Seems to be running well. I think that I am done. Thanks for all the help on this long post. I have finally learned about timing and saved myself a lot of $$ by doing it myself!
Steve

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 Posted: 11-24-2019 12:17 am
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Tom Bradley
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Congratulations! Glad to hear you got it running the way you like. Have fun!

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