View Full Version : I finally got my distributor out. All it took was kroil, a welder & a slide hammer.

09-09-2013, 02:40 PM
This is what I was dealing with. 25 years of corrosion. I tried everything (heat, cold sprays, soft blows, hard blows, time) as you can tell, even resorting to an air hammer ("softly") to try to get it to budge even slightly. Nothing worked.


Well, after soaking all last winter in Kroil and investing in a chain wrench, this spring I was finally able to get it to move enough to change the timing slightly.


However, the internals were heavily rusted and I was only getting about 8 degrees of advance out of it so I knew I'd have to replace it. It would not spin freely and I dreaded trying to remove it. This summer I snagged one of those NOS screw down Prestolites from eBay for a song. I just pulled the boat this weekend so it was time to get to work.

There was absolutely no vertical movement in the distributor and so I thought up of a way to combine my slide hammer with my gear puller.

First, I had to adapt my slide hammer to the puller. I welded a nut to fit the slide hammer onto a bolt to fit the gear puller.


It's not pretty, but I'm a hack welder (plus, I only have a flux core machine).


With this arrangement, I could get 2 of the arms onto the bottom side of the distributor housing.


After the first few slams, I could tell that something was happening. It was moving a mm at a time. Sometimes less. Eventually, though, it came out! It never would've come out with a pry bar. I was psyched to see that everything was still attached.



My NOS eBay screw down on the left, and the original clip down on the right.



These are the parts I acquired to convert the prestolite EI in my old clip down distributor to the new screw down distributor. All I needed was a new cap, new rotor and a new magnet sleeve for the Pertronix.


The is the Pertronix part number you need if you have Pertronix in a clip-down and you want to move it to a screw-down.


All-in-all, I've only got about $100 into this brand new distributor (re-using the Pertronix plate)!

Here is everything moved over to the NOS distributor. I hope to slide it in tonight.


I figure that this information might help someone out in the future. Those distributors really weld themselves in there if they haven't moved in a decade or two.

09-09-2013, 02:45 PM
Good for you!!!

Might I suggest a healthy dose of anti seize on the base this time?

09-09-2013, 02:48 PM
Good for you!!!

Might I suggest a healthy dose of anti seize on the base this time?

I was thinking the same thing!