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Old 10-27-2013, 01:51 PM
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strad strad is offline
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Join Date: May 2010
Boat: 1984 Stars and Stripes Powerslot
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 453
need a little help pinpointing a dist problem 351 PCM

84 351 PCM with a stock prestolite distributor, that has been gutted to install a crane cams electronic conversion. This is a weird one. Most of the time, this engine will fire right up just like it's supposed to. Every once in a while, it'll crank crank crank no fire, or it'll backfire through the arrestor immediately after I let off the starter. One of those times, I popped the dist cap off, grabbed the rotor and rotated it back and forth through the mechanical advance a few times and back to base timing, then popped the cap back on. After that exercise, it fired right up like it is supposed to. I revved a few times, then turned it off, and restarted, and it fired up again just fine.

What I suspect is going on is the springs that spring the dist back to base timing are weak. I've not played with distributors before, so academically I know that the springs are there but I haven't seen them.

There is no side to side play in the distributor shaft, so I think the bearings are fine. Looking on skidim, I cannot find many internal parts for this distributor -- so if it is the springs, how do I get to them, and where do I get new ones? Or is this possibly not a mechanical timing problem but a problem with the electronic module?
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1984 Stars and Stripes Powerslot
White with blue stripes. purchased 9/2012
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