distributor problem

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jay

distributor problem

#1

Post by jay » Wed May 07, 2008 1:43 am

I have a 51 pan/shovel, I am having trouble getting it to fire. It fired several times a couple of weeks ago. I started watching what was going on when I kicked it over and I noticed that the distributor was not rotating everytime it would sort of rock back and forth then after several strokes it would rotate. We pulled the distributor and inspected it all the gears are in good shape, we pulled the cam cover and inspected the gears everything is lined up and appears to be stoking fine, the gears that mesh with the distributor also look fine. We put it back together and it is still happening. I am pretty sure that it is staying in place with tdc. My dad was wondering if there should be a thicker gasket at the mounting plate he thought it looked low. It was mounted with a paper gasket.



fourthgear
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#2

Post by fourthgear » Wed May 07, 2008 2:16 am

Its possible the pin holding the distributor drive gear on is sheared and just catching some times .

jay/guest

#3

Post by jay/guest » Wed May 07, 2008 2:29 am

is that the pin below the gear.

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#4

Post by Panacea » Wed May 07, 2008 4:02 am

The pin goes thru the gear, then the shaft connected to the lobes. There should be no more then .010 play between the gear and the shaft housing, or the spark timing will bounce around, Different shims are available. YEE HAH! this is the kind of weather I've been lookin' for! Mike

VT

#5

Post by VT » Wed May 07, 2008 4:11 am

Vol. 2 shows you how to replace the pin. It's not hard. You'll have to remove a '51-57 cylinder head. Or, grind a fin down so the timer will lift out after you remove the timer top.
If you get the timer out, put it in a vise and use a pin dial on a fixed stand to measure radial movement of the timer shaft. The shaft bushings can also get worn (after about a jillion miles on them) and when it's shaft-sloppy, the points will mis-fire in timing procedures due to the pressure of the points ribbon spring on the radial free-play of the shaft.

Pan-shovel..oops....I'm out of my era. I stopped at 1959. (1960 for timers).

fourthgear
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#6

Post by fourthgear » Wed May 07, 2008 4:13 pm

This pin , it may be helpful to grind off or drill out ,the top portion of the pin ,because it may be mushroomed out and if replacing it do the same and use loc tight ( remove-able ).
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FlatHeadSix
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#7

Post by FlatHeadSix » Wed May 07, 2008 4:47 pm

Jay, (and everyone else that's trying to help him fix a timer that isn't broken)

There is probably nothing wrong with the timer, its shaft, pin, drive gear or any other part of it. Your problem is a very common one and is often very commonly overlooked: YOUR CLUTCH IS SLIPPING.

make sure the clutch is clean, dry, and adjusted correctly and try it again. If the clutch slips when you kick the starter you get exactly what you are describing, the point cam will rotate through a partial revolution and then bounce back when the compression in a cylinder pushes the piston backwards instead of kicking it all the way through a compression stroke.

try it

mike

fourthgear
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#8

Post by fourthgear » Wed May 07, 2008 10:30 pm

Wouldn't you feel the clutch slipping ? Kicking her over would be easy , would it not . They did say they looked at the gears moving in the timing chest. At least that's what I perceived from it .

john HD
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#9

Post by john HD » Wed May 07, 2008 11:27 pm

i have to go with mike.

chalk the clutch assembly with two marks inner and outer.

kick it a few times and see if the marks still line up. it is not as odd as it sounds, i had a clutch problem that did exactly as described.

if everything is ok then tear into the timer.

john

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#10

Post by FlatHeadSix » Wed May 07, 2008 11:39 pm

Fourthgear, if the clutch is slipping a LOT, you can feel it and will notice it immediately. If the clutch is slipping just a little, just enough to keep the piston from going over top dead center, you get what Jay is describing above. Remember that compression force is exponential as you approach top dead center, the last bit of compression requires the most force.

John, I forgot to mention the chalk trick, it will tell you instantly if you have clutch issues.

mike

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#11

Post by Panacea » Thu May 08, 2008 3:59 am

good call Mike, you da man!

jay guest

#12

Post by jay guest » Thu May 08, 2008 10:49 am

Sorry I did not get back sooner, I disconnected the clutch and it is harder to kick over now and and making full rotations. Now I need to get the distributor set back about 2 teeth and think it will go. I'm not sure what changed from when it fired several weeks ago. I just picked the bike up about 5 weeks ago and just got plates on it. I really appreciate the help, I am sure you guys will here from me again soon. This is a great site.

fourthgear
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#13

Post by fourthgear » Thu May 08, 2008 12:58 pm

Good to here it was just the clutch, Jay, the timer pin is a hassle .

I misinterpreted what he described , I read , the gears in the timing chest were not going back wards as was the distributor, that's why I thought a look at that pin would be in order , they do shear ,as we know , I had one do that once .

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