MSD Distributor Problems - Car Starts but Stalls

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting & Diagnosis' started by 70RSZ28CAMARO, Sep 14, 2017.

  1. 70RSZ28CAMARO

    70RSZ28CAMARO New Member

    22
    0
    Dec 19, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    I have a 1970 Z-28 with a stock 350 LT1 motor. Only upgrades are headers and new exhaust. I recently purchased an MSD Street Fire 8362 HEI distributor. To install it, I got the engine at TDC by removing the plug from cylinder # 1 and placing my finger in the hole. Then, turned the balancer until compressed pushed my finger out of the hole. Then, I turned the balancer until the timing mark aligned with TDC “0”. Then, I removed the distributor cap and made sure that the rotor was pointing to the post that’s connected to cylinder # 1’s spark plug wire. I then attempted to start the engine and it starts but then stalls. I checked all of the wire connections and they are fine. I advanced and retarded the distributer slightly but same results. In the past, when I've done it this way the motor fired right up for initial timing. I'm baffled as to why it's stalling. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks !
     
  2. CorkyE

    CorkyE Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    8,806
    130
    Nov 4, 2004
    Ringgold, GA
    Recheck the spark plug firing order - I'll assume you had to change plug wires to the new distributor cap. If firing order is verified, take a good swing at advancing the timing, starting and quitting sounds like timing is retarded too much. If timing is too far advanced, you would be getting kick back when starting.
     
  3. 70RSZ28CAMARO

    70RSZ28CAMARO New Member

    22
    0
    Dec 19, 2003
    Long Island, NY
     
  4. 70RSZ28CAMARO

    70RSZ28CAMARO New Member

    22
    0
    Dec 19, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    Thanks CorkyE, I'll try that !
     
  5. dave@ztech

    dave@ztech Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    299
    18
    Mar 27, 2016
    NY
    you did change the hot wire going to the new distributor correct? It need 12 volts
     
  6. 70RSZ28CAMARO

    70RSZ28CAMARO New Member

    22
    0
    Dec 19, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    I confirmed 12V on the hot wire to the distributor. And, I was able to get it started by advancing the timing. Then, I set the initial timing @ 8 degrees BTDC. Then, I went on to total timing and here's where I had an issue. My 1st reading was 25 degrees, plus the 8 initial gets me to 33 degrees total timing. I believe the correct total timing in 36 degrees. So, I did the initial timing again and brought to up by 3 degrees. However, when I redid the total timing, it actually dropped to ~30 - 31 degrees. Also, I noticed on my 2nd attempt that the timing mark was jumping all over the place. Any feedback on what I'm experiencing would be greatly appreciated. Thanks !
     
  7. CorkyE

    CorkyE Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    8,806
    130
    Nov 4, 2004
    Ringgold, GA
    Some timing lights don't like to play with multi spark systems, my old chrome Sears is one that will. Do you think you may have the distributor off by one notch?
     
  8. 70RSZ28CAMARO

    70RSZ28CAMARO New Member

    22
    0
    Dec 19, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    I'm not sure. The engine seems to turnover right away, etc. Also, I wanted to mention that this is my 2nd attempt installing this distributor. During the 1st attempt, I followed the MSD instructions. The car ran great in 1st and 2nd gear, but pinged at WOT in 3rd and 4th gear. This is why I went back to basics and reinstalled @ TDC. I haven't taken it out for a test drive this morning, but I expect that I'll have the same problem. Does anyone know why it would not ping @ WOT in 1st and 2nd gear, but ping in 3rd and 4th only ?
     
  9. 70RSZ28CAMARO

    70RSZ28CAMARO New Member

    22
    0
    Dec 19, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    Man I had it all dialed in, 34° of total timing, 8° of initial timing. I took it out and it wasn't pinging in third or fourth gear and was running great. I had it in my driveway for a few hours and when I started it, it began to backfire at idle at least seven or eight within a minute. what the heck could be causing this ???
     
  10. CorkyE

    CorkyE Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    8,806
    130
    Nov 4, 2004
    Ringgold, GA
    Crossed plug wire will cause that kind of backfire.
     

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