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Timing for dummies.

Posted by TheFlyingMG 
AmishIndy Avatar
Seth Jones
Wheaton, IL, USA   usa
1971 MG Midget MkIII "Guenevire"
2007 Mazda 3 "Porco Rosso"

Johnney Jeff at advanced can sell you a timing cover pointer that can help if it something fishy turns up.



Seth Jones

1971 MG Midget

www.SpridgetGuru.com

Skye Avatar
Skye Nott
Vancouver, BC, Canada   can
1964 Vespa VNB 125
1966 MG MGB "The Bomber RIP"
1983 Suzuki MC GS750E "Kate"
1986 Merkur XR4Ti "The Rally Car"
1990 Volkswagen Corrado G60   → more

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littlecars Avatar
David Bassett
Nashville, Tennessee, USA   usa
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "Tamara's Turd... SOLD!!!"
1974 MG Midget MkIII "Lizzy...SOLD!!"
1974 MG Midget MkIII "Robinette"

In reply to # 2037254 by Midget79

That's not humor its spam, you need to lay off the crack right now man.
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ha Im very scared right now I pee's my pants in fear. I've never done drugs by the way, Im loony on my own with the help of a little alcohol devil smiley
[/quote]

John S,

So now you are saying you are AT WORK, you've PEED IN YOUR PANTS, and that is because you have had a little ALCOHOL? I thought I was bad looking at the site during my lunch break with a PBJ and Coke and the monitor on view of my fellow employees! Jes sayin...

P P
O, Ontario, Canada   can
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"

In reply to # 2037329 by TheFlyingMG That's a very nice diagram, so the markings are on the top or the pulley but are seen from under the car? I don't need to remove anything from the car to see it right?

I don't want to remove the valve cover because it has a DIY cork seal with window seal on the valve cover and engine (I now know that's wrong).
And right now my GF is the only one that could help me but if I shock her with a spark she may cut my gentleman's vegetables in the middle of the night hahaha.

AmishIndy: If the car has the wrong timing cover I am screwed anyways am I? Both (or all) methods require this thing?
Or when I see the piston on the sparkplug hole when it's at TDC any point of reference between the pulley and the engine would make it work?

Johny:

The picture may not be correct for your car. The timing pointer might be under the car or visible from the top on the right hand side. That is why I said to crawl around until you find it.You do not have to remove anything to find the timing pointer on the engine. The pulley does have to be rotated until the notch in the pulley lines up wiht the pointer.

You DO have to remove the valve cover to make sure that when the pulley notch and the timing pointer are aligned, you are on the compression stroke. Removing the valve cover is the only way I would trust for knowing that the engine is on the compression stroke.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2012-04-11 04:46 PM by NOHOME.

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Joe Kerr
LAX, Skyloft, USA   usa

Ok so I crawled, I jumped, I rolled, got greasy and scraped my hand but I think I found them!
It was so dark and hard to see that I got my hand in and just touched everywhere around the pulley until I felt those super sharp spikes on the bottom.

The photo you see is level to the ground (and up is up, down is down) so the spikes are below and a little to the right of the pulley.
The red arrow indicates (if I remember correctly) how the pulley rotates when the car is in 4th gear and is pushed backwards, if that's of any help.
Spike 1 felt like the biggest one, I assume this is top dead center (TDC).
Spike 2 felt considerably smaller (and it appears so in the photo) so 5° ?
Spike 3 was medium sized I think so 10°.
4 small again so 15°.
And 5 feltbigger or medium so I suppose 20°.

I hope I don't have them inverted or something.

Now, on the pulley with the same touching method I only found some hollow thing, like a crater, perfectly round and not too deep, its location and size is precisely marked in the photo in green color.
Could that be the other thing I was looking for? Seems a little imprecise to use a circle, I was expecting a line or a cut.
The blue thing is just tape I put in when I found the circle with my hand so I could know when the pulley was going to match the spikes.

Now I know I have to find TDC, then put it at 10° (spike 3), then rotate the distributor just until my testing light turns on (one clamp on the condensor front cable and the other in the car body). So what are those vacuum "advance" degrees and curves and whatnot mean?
Is there something else I need to do after that?


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P P
O, Ontario, Canada   can
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"

You seem to pretty much have the gist of it.

I do have to admit that I have never seen a timing mark that was round. Also, it tends to be about where you have the tape and is just a notch on the edge of the pulley. I use a dap of white paint to make it stand out better.

I dont use the light. I simply ground a spare plug on the head, and rotate the distributor until I see a spark jump the gap. This way I know that the engine is timed correctly and that the spark is actually making it to the plug.

refisk Avatar
Rick Fisk
Frankenmuth, Michigan, USA   usa

Johnny,

The green dot is not the timing mark. What you're looking for is a groove cut into the outer edge of the pulley. It's on the outer circuference of the pulley, not on the face.

Rick

Joe Kerr
LAX, Skyloft, USA   usa

In reply to # 2037723 by NOHOME You seem to pretty much have the gist of it.

I do have to admit that I have never seen a timing mark that was round. Also, it tends to be about where you have the tape and is just a notch on the edge of the pulley. I use a dap of white paint to make it stand out better.

I dont use the light. I simply ground a spare plug on the head, and rotate the distributor until I see a spark jump the gap. This way I know that the engine is timed correctly and that the spark is actually making it to the plug.

I will have a good look on the pulley tomorrow morning to see if I can find another timing mark.

Can you explain the thing with the sparkplug, sounds like it could be very precise if you rotate the distributor slowly, will I see only one spark or a continuous spark?
Can you elaborate on this? What does "ground a spare plug on the head" mean? Explain it to me as if I was a child please haha.

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AmishIndy Avatar
Seth Jones
Wheaton, IL, USA   usa
1971 MG Midget MkIII "Guenevire"
2007 Mazda 3 "Porco Rosso"

In reply to # 2037749 by TheFlyingMG
In reply to # 2037723 by NOHOME You seem to pretty much have the gist of it.

I do have to admit that I have never seen a timing mark that was round. Also, it tends to be about where you have the tape and is just a notch on the edge of the pulley. I use a dap of white paint to make it stand out better.

I dont use the light. I simply ground a spare plug on the head, and rotate the distributor until I see a spark jump the gap. This way I know that the engine is timed correctly and that the spark is actually making it to the plug.

I will have a good look on the pulley tomorrow morning to see if I can find another timing mark.

Can you explain the thing with the sparkplug, sounds like it could be very precise if you rotate the distributor slowly, will I see only one spark or a continuous spark?
Can you elaborate on this? What does "ground a spare plug on the head" mean? Explain it to me as if I was a child please haha.

Because of the way the the coil works you should only see one spark. To make the spark, the coil needs to charge and that happens when some contact points inside the distributor are closed. When they open, the high voltage stored up in the coil is sent to the spark plugs. making the spark discharges the coil. Grounding a spare plug just means sticking a spare spark plug in an ignition wire and holding the electrode against the engine block. Be careful here because you will probably get quite a shock if you grab the wire with your hands. try to find some insulated pliers for this. Ground is an electrical term which in the automotive world is ether the body of the car or anything that is directly electrically connected to the body of the car. It's a way of reducing the number of wires needed to make a complete circuit.



Seth Jones

1971 MG Midget

www.SpridgetGuru.com



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2012-04-12 08:24 AM by AmishIndy.

littlecars Avatar
David Bassett
Nashville, Tennessee, USA   usa
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "Tamara's Turd... SOLD!!!"
1974 MG Midget MkIII "Lizzy...SOLD!!"
1974 MG Midget MkIII "Robinette"

MY THEORY HERE: The reason the mark on the Midget pulley is somewhat "imprecise" is that at the factory the engines were assembled on a line and once TDC was established the person (not a robot in those days) would simply grind a slight mark on the edge of the pulley. In the US, at least on Fords and GM, the pulleys were cast with the line or mark and the factory would use a key to lock the pulley on the crankshaft once TDC was determined.

P P
O, Ontario, Canada   can
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"

Have a look at the pic I posted, the mark is just a thin line in the edge of the pulley. If the pulley has been painted, it will be hard to find.

However, if you use the valve cover off method of setting the piston to top dead center, the pulley notch wil HAVE to be near the pointer and it might be easier to identify it and ark with some white paint.

73midget Avatar
Chris Edwards
Carrollton, Texas, USA   usa

In reply to # 2037734 by refisk Johnny,

The green dot is not the timing mark. What you're looking for is a groove cut into the outer edge of the pulley. It's on the outer circuference of the pulley, not on the face.

Rick

THIS! The round dimple is not the timing mark you are looking for, if you run your finger nail around the outside front edge of the pulley you will find the notch. Most people find it by feel the first time, then once you know what you are looking for, it is much easier to see.

The reason for taking off the valve cover is that during its travel, the first cylinder actually hits TDC twice (and the timing mark will line up both times) once is on the compression stroke when both valves are closed, the other is on the exhaust stroke when the exhaust valve is open. If you set your timing for the exhaust stroke you'll be stuffed.

There is another way to go, but it will only work for sure if your engine runs (even if it runs badly) and that is to take off the distributor cap and make sure the rotor is pointed somewhere to the right (front of the car).

Joe Kerr
LAX, Skyloft, USA   usa

Ok I have now found what appears to be the correct timing mark, the pulley has like 2 parts sandwiching a band that makes it turn, it was on the thin part right next to the engine, not the thick part next to the fan.

I took the distributor cap off and the points do not appear to move when the rotor is turning, also there is a gap between the rotor body and the plastic (red thing in picture) that touches it making the points open and close.



The engine runs despite of this, but I thing I'm going to pull it off to adjust it. Any advise before attempting this? I just have this feeling something is going to go wrong confused smiley

I bought some feeler gauges and a testing light to kinda do it right or have options in case something happens, I didn't quite get the sparkplug thing u_u

P P
O, Ontario, Canada   can
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"

You are over thinking the spark plug thing. Think of the spark plug as the light and it goes on (spark jumps) when the distributor is in the correct spot.


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Joe Kerr
LAX, Skyloft, USA   usa

Ok got the dizzy out, adjusted the points and put it in again.. Now the light won't come off when I rotate the distributor! HELP!

(When getting it out forgot to turn the ignition off.. I had a couple of nice surprises coming my way hahaha)

If I rotate the rotor cam the light either goes off or on and stays that way rotating the distributor doesen0t change anything, the rotor is rotating with the distributor..

I also replaced the grounding cable that gose to the baseplate to the body, it was rotten.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2012-04-12 04:39 PM by TheFlyingMG.

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