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Car running a little strange


FunElan

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So we finally made it to Monterey, however my car has been unpleasing so far. Besides the exhaust leak which just came back, it has been running a little warmer than normal, which isn't too high. The car is also idling too high, and it seems that it's not making enough power to accelerate up the slightest of inclines. To me this sounds like the timing is off (which is probably correct since a shop just screwed it up). Is there a simple fix to these problems??

Thanks,

Matt

'68 Caribe 1600-1563167

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So we finally made it to Monterey, however my car has been unpleasing so far. Besides the exhaust leak which just came back, it has been running a little warmer than normal, which isn't too high. The car is also idling too high, and it seems that it's not making enough power to accelerate up the slightest of inclines. To me this sounds like the timing is off (which is probably correct since a shop just screwed it up). Is there a simple fix to these problems??

Thanks,

Matt

These symptoms are indeed consistent with the timing being advanced too far, but you would also likely hear pinging on those inclines. If that is the problem, then the simple fix is to retard the timing by loosening the 10mm bolt at the base of the dizzy and turning the body very slightly in the clockwise direction (this is an 02 motor, right?). I strongly suggest that you mark the position of the dizzy by scribing the base at the mounting point with a screwdriver or similar instrument, so you can return it to the original position if your adjustment does not improve things.

Chris B.

'73 ex-Malaga

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Guest Anonymous

This is a well trod subject. Since you are on the road, and I agree that the timing (too far advanced or retarded) seems like a likely culprit, consider anything that might affect the timing.

First. Changing point gap can affect timing. If set wrong, the points have worn prematurely, OR if the hold down screw has loosened permitting the points to change possession - this may account for a change in timing. If you are running an aftermarket points replacement, the same may apply.

Second. Rotating the distributor is the most direct means of changing timing. Make a reference/scribe mark on the distributor housing and the portion of the head into which the distributor sits. Now, loosen the hold down and see if you can't guestimate a sweeter setting. If you can't reset to the original scribe mark.

Third. Lots of other but less likely possibilities. What do other components look like? Are rotor and cap up to snuff? Got another condenser? Pull plugs. How do they look? Overheated and White? Fouled and Rich? Fuel change? Significant elevation change? Stuck float?

good luck!

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Guest Anonymous

New points? Probably the rubbing block has worn down and the gap is too small. As you are on the road(never fails)take a piece of regular Zerox printer paper and use 4 sheets (fold twice)to set your gap .0016. Then bump your engine over so the middle mark on the front pulley is at the indicator (there should be 3 marks 0 TDC degrees 3 degrees BTDC and 25deg BTDC). At this point I hope you have a volt meter. Loosen the distributor clamp and rotate it until the voltage across the points changes. Clamp it down.

If you don't have a volt meter pull a wire off of the front spark plug. To be sure you never drive without a volt meter again, slip the end of the wire down the front of your pants and rotate the distributor. You will know when it is time to tighten the clamp.

I hope this works. have fun

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I probably should mention that we just recently put a Pertronix in. But I have everything with me to go back to points. Should I go back??

OK, lets have the whole story. What work have you had done on the care recently (last month or so)? When did you first notice the performance problem?

Chris B.

'73 ex-Malaga

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Guest Anonymous
I probably should mention that we just recently put a Pertronix in. But I have everything with me to go back to points. Should I go back??

Not necessarily. Depends on what (if anything) has changed.

You said a shop "screwed up the timing". How do you know this? What did the shop actually do? You apparently drove your car since the shop performed work, if you knew something was wrong, I do not understand why you continued to drive the car until it was corrected. Nevertheless, I would think the first thing to do is double check what you think the shop did.

Frankly, most maintenance can be done on the fly with minimal tools. This includes tuneups, valve adjustment, carb rebuilds etc. You mentioned running hot. Check your fluids. Make sure you have coolant and an operational thermostat. Then go back and play with the timing as noted above. Have you done this already? As far as petronix is concerned, if you are getting a decent blue spark and the unit is even half-way set up, I would leave well enough alone. If you are going to say the shop screwed things up while installing the petronix, then I might recheck the settings or go back to points, but in either case, your timing will likely need to be reset. A timing light is nice, but hardly a necessity.

If worse comes to worse. Make a new post entitled SOS or Mayday and perhaps someone in the area will be able to find you and help out.

Good luck

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Thank you for your reply. Here's the scoop: The shop set the timing to factory settings (in their opinion). I picked it up and it was missing and stumbling and wouldn't make it up a hill at all. I immediately took it back. They put it back to where it was before I brought it to them (again in their opinion). It runs and drives and everything, just doesn't feel exactly the same as it did before. It seems down on power. I know all of the fluids are full because the shop managed to do that correctly.

'68 Caribe 1600-1563167

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Where is the exhaust leak? If its at the manifold to engine pipe flange then thats your problem. An exhaust leak there will cause lack of power and possible backfiring, possibly raised enging temps.

If its further back then re-check timing with a light (was this done AFTER the Pertronix went in?).

HTH Beaner7102

1971 - 2002 RHD VIN 1653940. Agave (stock with Pertronix & 32/36 Weber) - "Cactus"

1972 - 1602 RHD VIN 1554408. Fjord (with 2L motor, 5spd & LSD - Weber 40/40 to come) - "Bluey"

1984 - E30 318i VIN WBAAK320208722176 - stock daily driver

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Where is the exhaust leak? If its at the manifold to engine pipe flange then thats your problem. An exhaust leak there will cause lack of power and possible backfiring, possibly raised enging temps.

If its further back then re-check timing with a light (was this done AFTER the Pertronix went in?).

HTH Beaner7102

The exhaust leak is in the downpipe right before the flange that connects to the centerpipe. And yes, after.

'68 Caribe 1600-1563167

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