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Hi All,

I'm currently having to pick up the pieces of a friend's 1914 build that has never been right. The original engine builder has gone out of business and the car has sat for ages.

It's a 1914 with an Engle 120 cam, 1.25 rockers, a 009 distributor, and 44 IDFs with 30 chokes (yeah, I know, what's the point?)

I can't for the life of me get the thing timed. It seems to be the "happiest" idling at around 30deg ATDC although it is still popping and farting through every orifice. Anything closer to TDC and it just dies.

It got to the point where I cracked the case to make sure the cam was on the timing wheel correctly. (It was). I also got to verify the cam size and deck height so not completely a waste of time.

I have tried multiple distributors (albeit old), coils, and leads. One thing that is a bit odd is that the timing light is very intermittent leading me to believe I'm not always getting a spark.

Next on the list is a different set of known working carbs and a brand new distributor just to eliminate variables.

Any ideas?

Thanks in advance

Bevan.
 

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I'd fit a new distributor with points. Do a static time of say 10 before TDC and see what happens. Spitting out the carbs is a weak mixture. Pull a plug lead off the dizzy while it's running, see if the idle is any different. You want each plug lead that's taken off to produce a noticeable drop in rpm.
 

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Have you checked that the timing marks on the pulley are accurate?

This video explains how to make a tdc finding tool for basically free. It might be worth it, even if it's just to rule it out.

 

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The cam timing of cam to crank is also unknown but first you need to find true TDC as above. Once you have this you can check the dizzy gear has been installed properly and then set the dizzy in the correct orientation.
Always work from the basics up and take nothing for granted as you can easily chase your tail trying to fault find from the top down.
 

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As above, start with the basics, a few days ago rushing to fit an old school scat distributor (instead of waiting till I had more time) I put the timing light on number 2 lead it gave similar readings to the ones your getting, also the drive dog on the distributor was 180 degrees out , took a few minutes to diagnose. As I needed to leaving urgently, I just timed it as is. Number one is at the back currently ( the engine doesn’t know or care) just my teeth are itching slightly with ocd due to the tangled wires , but the motor runs that sweetly now that I’m in no hurry to disturb things
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