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Hot Rods Small block chevy woes

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Christopher26, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Hello, everyone. Hitting a wall and probably over thinking this but hopefully a new set of eyes could possibly help. Have a Chevy 283, starting for the first time since rebuild, just double checked tdc again with the spark plug out and a small pick in the cylinder till I can feel the piston come up to tdc. with a inline spark tester it is firing right after the intake valve is closing, so i feel pretty confident that I am relatively close to correct timing.

    If I was 180 off wouldn't it pop and back fire thought the carb? Now I seem to have nothing at all but when I crank and check for spark it is coming right after the intake valve closes. I ran out of light/patience and the neighbors came over in the middle of it and stole some time so I'll have to get back to it tomorrow.

    I am going to attempt to switch it 180 in the morning but the other problem I am facing is that the motor had the timing marks riveted to the old timing chain cover, my buddy gave me a cover in better shape with the timing tab that bolts to the two screws in the top right, and after looking I am not sure that I have the correct timing tab, I think it is for a newer block, The older blocks that had the marks riveted on where in a different place it looks like to me, maybe someone else would know better ?

    1958 283, stock rebuild with RV cam ( northern auto parts) points, stainless block hugger headers, eldelbrock dual plenum intake, holley 500cfm 2 barrel. 1961 GMC 1/2 ton pick up.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. I am heading out for a burger and beers, so forgive me if my response time is a little delayed for the next hour or two haha
     
  2. greybeard360
    Joined: Feb 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,042

    greybeard360
    Member

    It shouldn't be firing just after the intake closes so you are 180 out.
     
  3. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Thanks greybeard, I am leaning towards that but wanted to rule out anything that I might have missed in my haste. Ill flip it 180 in the am and see what happens
     
  4. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 8,837

    RichFox
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Exactly. After the intake closes you get the compression stroke. Then it fires. Piston should be coming up on compression when the intake valve closes. Just before TDC it should fire. Sounds like your 90 off. Unless you are seeing the exhaust valve closing when it fires. That would be 180 out. You also realize that you don't actually need to pull the distributor and rotate it 180 degrees, right? You only need to pull the plug wires and relocate them correctly.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
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  5. buffaloracer
    Joined: Aug 22, 2004
    Posts: 621

    buffaloracer
    Member
    from kansas

    What's an intake valve doing closing at near tdc?
    Pete
     
    BJR and Atwater Mike like this.
  6. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 7,971

    Atwater Mike
    Member

    Sounds like the distributor got dropped in 90 degrees early. (if cam timing is correct at chain!)
     
  7. BJR
    Joined: Mar 11, 2005
    Posts: 3,884

    BJR
    Member
    from Minnesota

    Exactly, sounds like an exhaust valve. Unless the cam timing is wrong, sprockets not in correct place when chain was put on.
     
  8. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    OK thanks guys, have the timing chain marks lined up, Cloyes timing chain, I left it at 0 degrees mark lined up with the 0 mark on cam and crank. I might have been thinking about it wrong and not on the exhaust side and could be 90 out not 180. I'll try it in the am and see what happens. thanks for the help everyone
     
  9. You need to figure out where you're at and get your bearings.
    Piston Coming up on compression stroke, stop at TDC.

    The intake closes at Bdc then begins the compression stroke
     
  10. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 3,104

    Bandit Billy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Pull plug #1, stick your thumb in the hole, bump it around till the compression pops your thumb out, pull the distributor out and put it back in with the rotor pointing at #1 on the cap, it will fire.
     
    Terrible80, wheeldog57 and ottoman like this.
  11. F-ONE
    Joined: Mar 27, 2008
    Posts: 1,056

    F-ONE
    Member
    from Alabama

    Yes sir!
    Christopher,
    You do not have to have a mark. This can be done by ear. It may not be the best way but it can be done. If you are unsure of the marks....You may have to do it by ear and then make a new timing pointer.

    Find #1 per Billy's advice. Make sure you have the correct firing order and numbering. Fords and Chevys are different not in just order but the numbering as well.
    You can make any of the 8 positions on the distributor #1 but I feel it's better to put #1 at the factory position.

    Most of the time time the rotor will physically point to the number 1 cylinder if the distributor is in the right position.

    You will have to pull the distributor and place into position if you choose factory #1. That is unless it's there right now.

    Most of the time you will wind up a tooth off.
    You have where you want #1 but the distributor falls either too far or too short. What's going on here is the oil pickup and cam gear teeth are not lining up right . This keeps you from the right position. It may run but not well. It will require either extreme advance or retard by manually turning the distributor.
    Solution....
    With a friend.....hold the distributor in position but not totally meshed or ........hold in the desired position where the weight of the distributor is on the off tooth or oil pick up but not meshed. (it takes a feel for it)
    Then have your friend bump the starter. By bump I mean turn the key to start but immediately back off.....A short burst of the starter.
    The gears and oil pickup will mesh and the distributor will fall into the right position.
    In the right position you should have plenty of advance and retard. It may take a few tries to get it.
     
    klleetrucking likes this.
  12. Steve77T
    Joined: Jul 9, 2015
    Posts: 11

    Steve77T

    When the cam marks line up with the crank marks,it is tdc on the end of exhaust stroke, intake valve will be orstart to be opening at this time. When the cam gear mark is at 12:00 and crank gearmark is at 12:00 it is then tdc compression. Good luck.
     
  13. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Thanks for all the help guys, going to go out and work on it in a little bit, unfortunately it's 6:45 am and the neighbors don't appreciate open headers this early haha, I will have to pace the floor for a little while till I can wake them
     
  14. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Can’t thank you guys enough!!! I was 90 off, got to tdc per Billy’s method, put the dist in and fires right up!!

    Off topic but anyone know how I could go about adding a oil pressure fitting for the sending unit? The old motor (305 V6) had it on the oil filter housing, I have an older small block that originally had it on the intake but I have a edelbrock on it now and don’t see any provisions for it. Thanks again everyone for your help!!
     
  15. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 8,837

    RichFox
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Never had a SBC to fool with. But I seriously doubt the oil pressure sender was in the intake manifold. Maybe, but I have never seen oil in the intake. Look around for a pipe plug somewhere that oil would likely be. Or look at some other similar sbc. Or someone here will give you a proper answer.
     
  16. pitman
    Joined: May 14, 2006
    Posts: 4,228

    pitman
    Member
    from Hampsha

    Usually found it on the upper rear block surface, pipe tap thrd, near dist.
     
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  17. olscrounger
    Joined: Feb 23, 2008
    Posts: 2,837

    olscrounger
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  18. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Cool, thanks Pitman, I'll check it when I head out in a min
     
  19. wheeldog57
    Joined: Dec 6, 2013
    Posts: 1,200

    wheeldog57
    Member

    Just above where the oil filter screws on should be one or two threaded ports for oil gauge and/or idiot light.

    Sent from my E6810 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  20. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 3,104

    Bandit Billy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  21. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Thanks Guys, found it!
     
  22. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 8,368

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    You'll need to protect the line from vibration if copper and if plastic from hot or sharp objects.
     
    Bandit Billy likes this.
  23. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    OK Thanks Denny, I have a copper line, what is the best way to protect it usually? I have not done that before
     
  24. Hollywood-East
    Joined: Mar 13, 2008
    Posts: 616

    Hollywood-East
    Member

    I put three"coils" 2"s above fitting in block, use a Phillips screwdriver or pen something round, Obviously be careful not to Kink!
     
  25. pitman
    Joined: May 14, 2006
    Posts: 4,228

    pitman
    Member
    from Hampsha

    Early engine primer, or how to discover Oil!
     
  26. I made up this tree for my oil light and gauge, a little busy and it pissed here and there. The clear plastic line works pretty well, I know copper is better. Now I use a galvanized pipe nipple (1/8") and a matching tee. Lots less joints to go bad, the line goes out the top and the idiot light out the side.
    3-4-10.JPG
     
  27. Christopher26
    Joined: Feb 15, 2009
    Posts: 234

    Christopher26
    Member

    Great thanks guys. Hey Bob, this is Chris, met you at the tattoo studio last week!
     
  28. I thought so, how is the tat doing? You have an awesome artist there. Mine is at the flaky-leprosy stage. I mean the tattoo... not the artist...
     
  29. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 8,368

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon


    Here's the main reason for my comment.
    I've always had reservations about using the plastic tubing for oil gauge lines, the stuff just looked vulnerable, o
    nly ever used it one time in all my years and that's when I put a set of S/W's in my 67 Nova in the early eighties when I swapped the 250 6 cyl for a 327.
    I had just rebuilt the six and put about 100 miles on it when my brothers 73 Chevy pickups' 250 started getting tired so I sold it to him.
    I never really liked the skinny little factory copper oil lines much more than the plastic line and never had any real reason until about a year after I sold the engine.
    My brother had just loaned his truck to another family member, he gets a call that the truck engine seized up on the freeway. Gets it towed home and I take a look and engine is covered in oil, come to find out the factory copper line had vibrated until it broke off near the fitting and pumped all the oil out through that little line.
    I know braided stainless steel lines don't have a following with the purists among us, I get it, but I tend to spend a lot of money on my engines and I'm not going to chance it on that little line, the SS line gives me peace of mind.
     
    Engine man and lippy like this.
  30. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 2,109

    Blues4U
    Member
    from So Cal

    I know youi changed it from this, but you got a lot of weight hanging there off that brass fitting, I wouldn't do that. Engine vibrations are likely top lead to a cracked fitting with all the weight on there.
     

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