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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I didn't want to hijack another timing post so I started a new one. I can't find this answer either so I'm asking.

I finding TDC on my '66 289, the rotor is pointing directly at #1 on the distributor and that looks great. When I look at the TDC marks on the harmonic balancer in relation to the pointer, it's looks bad to me. You have marks for TDC, 3*, 6*, 9* and 12*. Mine if there was a mark for it would be between 15*-18*. So do I paint a mark on the balancer or is there a way to adjust this (without a whole lot of effort) to more reflect the 6* TDC that is recommended in timing?
 

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What you're describing with your rotor pointed at #1 is where the piston is when the plug fires, apparently 15-18 degrees before the piston reaches tdc. To find tdc you need to pull the #1 plug and use a piston stop, coiled up rope, or straw, etc in the spark plug hole to find out just when the piston reaches the top, then you can look at your timing marks on the balancer to confirm that tdc is on the zero degree mark.

That being said, some engines like more initial timing than others. 15-18 degrees initial is quite a bit but not outside what could be considered normal. The best thing would be to check the timing with a light once you confirm that tdc is in the right place on your balancer.
 

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When the timing mark is at TDC, have you verified that the #1 piston is actually at top dead center? Just because the mark indicates that and the rotor is pointing to the #1 wire, does not mean it is. It is very possible your harmonic balancer has slipped and the numbers are now off.
 

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Also, I would not mark the balancer until you have done as New2me suggested.
 

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There are a few different ways to find TDC on any piston engine. I suggest you google "find top dead center ford" or something like that and review the various youtube videos to get a better idea of how to do this.

Harry Z
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Okay I have TDC and it seems to be spot on with the mark after all. Whew, good start. Now I have my vacuum gauge hooked up to the port on the back of the carb. With the engine running, the gauge reads 15 Hg. I loosened the distributor bolt but the distributor won't turn. I scraped around the bottom to loosen any paint but still won't budge and I don't want to force it then break it.

Any suggestions?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, now the car over heated. I cranked it to let it warm up to get good idle readings in the garage. After about 5 minutes, coolant was coming out the over flow. I can't seem to get this right.
 

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What temp did a mechanical thermometer read? Overflowing coolant doesn’t necessarily mean over heating.
 

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Okay I have TDC and it seems to be spot on with the mark after all. Whew, good start. Now I have my vacuum gauge hooked up to the port on the back of the carb. With the engine running, the gauge reads 15 Hg. I loosened the distributor bolt but the distributor won't turn. I scraped around the bottom to loosen any paint but still won't budge and I don't want to force it then break it.

Any suggestions?
You might spray PB Blaster (very popular) around the base, let this work while you work on the coolant puking issue. After some time (overnight?), wrap a piece of cardboard the lowest part of the shaft and grip it with channel locks or Vise Grips and slowly attempt to rotate in each direction. You might squirt more "blaster" around the base, while attempting to rotate. If this does not work, either get a bigger gripping device (plumber's Monkey Wrench) or heat the base (engine) area around the distributor. Follow all safety precautions with a live flame.
Obviously, the idea is to break the corrosion bond. Good Luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well I found a small part of the overheating and timing problem. The brand new plug wires. I needed to get the connector seated correctly into the distributor cap. Now let's start all over.
 

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My distributor is very difficult to turn. I put a dull screwdriver tip covered with a rag where the vacuum advance unit meets the housing and tap it with a hammer and it moves without harm. Not sure how spark plug wires could make a car overheat in 5 minutes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My distributor is very difficult to turn. I put a dull screwdriver tip covered with a rag where the vacuum advance unit meets the housing and tap it with a hammer and it moves without harm. Not sure how spark plug wires could make a car overheat in 5 minutes.
3 Days of PB Blaster each day, I put the vise grips with cardboard and tapped the handle with a hammer and it started to loosen up. Finally got it freed and got the engine real close to good. A little rough when in gear at stoplights.

From what I read, by not having the plugs correctly seated on the distributor it causing a much longer arc that makes the engine work harder at idle which then causes overheating. I fixed the plugs and I don't have overheating issues anymore (insert knock on wood here).

I do think my advance is off according to the shop manual though. But then again I'm new to this so I am not absolutely sure.
 
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