51 pan shovel distributor

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jay
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 1:48 am

51 pan shovel distributor

#1

Post by jay » Sun May 11, 2008 10:52 pm

Thanks for the help with the distributor clutch issue. I have another question. Where should I set the distributor at tdc. My distibutor (I am not sure of the make) has a large and a smaller rounded end the smaller end has a mark on it that is where I assume I set the distributr I am not sure which direction this goes, I had it running just in front of the cylinder but I could not adjust the idle real well. Could I get some help on the proper location. Buy the way this is my first Harley I just sold my 85 BMW and then I picked up my 51 pan/shovel chopper.



fourthgear
Posts: 1390
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 1:12 pm
Location: north florida

#2

Post by fourthgear » Mon May 12, 2008 2:23 am

Is it a manual advance or an auto advance distributor ? ( do you have an advancing weight system under the point base, or are you retarding the distributor to start and then putting it back to full advance , once its started)The small lobe is for the front and the wider one is for the rear . Points gap and timing are usually set with front lobe . Do you have a manual ? They are a great visual tool to help ya out , it may make sense of some of the stuff we talk about .

To set the timing , remove the spark plugs , set point gap at the top or highest point of small cam lobe, you should remove the push rod hold down clip from the front intake push rod , remove the timing hole plug , rotate motor until you can see the front intake valve start to close ( push rod will come back down )(for the next check I use a straw or some thing that will not screw up the cylinder in case you bring the piston up to fast and wedge it in there ) Hold the straw in the front spark plug hole and continue to rotate motor slowly until you feel the front piston coming to the top , but not all the way , watch the timing hole and continue to rotate motor over until you see the timing mark on the fly wheel ( usually a single slash )start to come into view in the timing hole ,Now if you have a manual advance distributor , that mark should be just past the start of the hole , if you have a auto advance system it should be dead in the middle of the hole ( you may need to do this a couple of times , cause ya always go past , but once you got it where you want it , do not rotate the motor ).

Now this is where you need a static timing light , you need a light fixture that is the same voltage as your battery in the bike ,of course , I use an old indicator fixture from the dash, as long as it has a + & a - wire from the fixture ( a test lamp), the negative I have a clip to clamp it to ground and the + , I clamp to the post on the points where the wire goes to the coil . With the one wire from the fixture attached to the points and the other to ground ( any where on the motor or frame ) turn on your ignition switch . This is where you need to know if you have an auto advance system or not , if you do the advancing mechanism can be rotated as far as you can rotate it by you fingers and if the light lights up at the end of that advancing , you are close enough ( I try to get it to just light at the end of full advance , to adj. if it does not come on or comes on to early , there are two nuts or bolts or you could have a clamp on the distributor base , you loosen what ever is holding the distributor or point base and adj. until you get the light to light when you want it and then tighten all back up and test again to make sure it stayed that way..

Now if you have a manual advance , you will do the same thing ,but you will be moving the point base to full retard , which is to the right and then turn the ign. on and rotate it back forward , which is full adv. and as said , I like it to just start to light the light at the end . If it does not light at full adv. , there should be a screw and nut on the side of the distributor that a cable for manual adv. with a handle bar twist grip would attach to , that screw and nut once loosened will let you adj. the distributor one way or another to get the light to light .

A lot there and it sounds harder than it is . The photo is of the timing mark set for a auto advance system . this should be good to go , this is how I set all of my timing , some like to play with them one way or another .
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jay
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 1:48 am

#3

Post by jay » Mon May 12, 2008 10:28 am

I have a manual advance distributor and I do have a manual coming this week. I will try what you have said thanks for the help.

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