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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi. I was having some weird timing issues with my 351w with a b303 cam in it. I pulled the cap off the distributor and there was a big chunk of magnet flying around, the rotor wiggles, and the vacuum advance doesn't do anything.

The trouble is as it is a roller cam it needs a steel gear (I think .531?), however off the shelf distributors for 351s use cast-iron gears.

The question is, what distributor would yall recommend? Or should I find a used one / get a rebuild kit and just fix the broken parts leaving my working steel gear and shaft intact?

Thank you!
 

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I'm not a 351 distributor expert, but can't you just drive out the pin and press the gear off of your existing distributor and then press it on to a new one?
 

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You can use a Melonized gear. Check MSD. I bought a MSD Melonized gear from AutoZone a few years back for my GT40P swap. It was $29. I upgraded to a Duraspark system and bought a brand new distributor for around $70. While you can just replace the broken parts in the long run it may be more cost effective to buy a brand new one from Rockauto or local AP store
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm not a 351 distributor expert, but can't you just drive out the pin and press the gear off of your existing distributor and then press it on to a new one?
You can use a Melonized gear. Check MSD. I bought a MSD Melonized gear from AutoZone a few years back for my GT40P swap. It was $29. I upgraded to a Duraspark system and bought a brand new distributor for around $70. While you can just replace the broken parts in the long run it may be more cost effective to buy a brand new one from Rockauto or local AP store
You can always swap to a '93 5.8 distributor with a steel gear and run a remote TFI module.....
I think I could just swap my steel gear onto a new distributor? I found these two, they are available locally but I can't tell the difference. I think they'll connect to my duraspark system as a drop in replacement. I'd rather not mess around with an entirely new brand of distributor unless there's really a benefit.


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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
The first distributor you reference is for a 351M/400. Bear in mind that you can simply pop off the old gear and stick on a new one. The new gear needs to be precisely placed with the hole in the gear offset 90* to the original, a new hole drilled in the shaft and new roll pin inserted.

https://performanceparts.ford.com/download/pdfs/DistributorGearInstallation.pdf
The ones I mentioned also have different plug connectors. I think this one looks perfect:
CARQUEST Ignition Distributor with Cap and Rotor - New

Thank you for that PDF. Should/could I just use the original shaft, swap the rest of the parts and not even have to pull it out of the motor?
 

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Should/could I just use the original shaft, swap the rest of the parts and not even have to pull it out of the motor?
Why not simply get a new pick-up module and rotor (and figure out if your vacuum advance diaphragm is holed or just disconnected)?

772391
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Why not simply get a new pick-up module and rotor (and figure out if your vacuum advance diaphragm is holed or just disconnected)?

View attachment 772391
I'm not sure what is broken about my distributor or what that metal piece fell off of. The vacuum canister holds a vacuum but it doesn't seem to do anything when I put a few lbs of vacuum on it. I guess id rather replace the entire housing and everything inside if I could. The rotor has a ton of play in it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you. I ended up just buying a new pickup and cleaning up the inside of the distributor. Instead of falling of at 4k, the engine revs up to 6,000 now. Appreciate your time!
 
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