[T3] 73 T-3 timing?

William Jahn willjahn975 at gmail.com
Wed Oct 6 01:05:27 PDT 2021

When I installed points and removed the pertronix I had a bit of trouble
setting the timing. Before I had a timing light and used points  I used to
time it statically and then at work borrowed a snap on timing light with
the advance knob and the timing was dead on . I only got my own timing
light because of the pertronix.

 I just bought the cheap one at an Actron auto zone. It has no dial, just
the button.

 Since it has a metal inductor and it gets hot , the longer I played with
the timing the more the light acted up . It flashed yet each time I checked
the timing to see it it would ping it would read different . It was set at
7,5 BTDC so I backed it off and drove it and it was below 5 BTDC then read
differently each time.

 I spoke to Actron and was told if the metal inductor gets too hot it will
alter the reading. Before I just plugged the AAR hose and didn't warm the
engine up and it worked fine. I don't know why the engine needs to be
warmed up to 120F anyway.

 I bought a harbor freight timing light. I haven't used it yet. It has the
knob for advance.

 Is there anything wrong with just doing the timing static? I know it does
not over advance.

 All the timing lights now seem to be made in China , all brands seem to
have as many good as bad reviews.I got the harbor freight simply because
the Actron  has the trigger button on the back and the HF has a normal
trigger .

 As a test I tried setting it static CCW the CW till the bulb just comes on
just like I used to and I made sure the rotor was pointing at #1 and the
pulley was on the 5 DBTC . Then I thought why not try to see once the
distributor was not able to be moved easy and I set the timing static i
should get the same result if I turned the engine say retarded more than 10
degress then rotate it to the 5 BTDC the light bulb should just come on yet
it didn't . I never tried that before , I can;t recall how far it was off
and just maybe it does not work that way. I checked to see if the dist
rotated to check for the backlash in the drive gear to crank gear and it
moved right away so no notable backlash. This does not mean there is none
,I just couldn't see it.

As many know when you time it static you have the crank pulley on the mark
and then rotate the distributor and then do  it again just to know the
light comes on since it's not easy to tell the second the light comes on.

 When I use a timing light I always place the inductor close to the spark
plug end since the pickup might read one of the other wires. It would be
nice if it didn't because it gets real hot near the plug end and not at the
cap. It's also a concern at the plug end that the fuel injector plug is
close and might also interfere with the inductor.

 Any pointers on how others do it . I don't have a dwell tach. I did have a
nice one yet it stopped working long ago.I just replaced the points when
they act up which was usually around 3,000 miles and they would have a pit
and cone .  I then set points with an .018" gap. As the gap closes the
timing advances which is usually the rubbing block wear yet I do use Bosch
grease on the cam , a thin layer on the entire cam, not just a bit at the
rubbing block., that never seemed to work very well. I also remove the
trigger points and coat the cam with the same grease so the trigger points
don't wear. I read some do this each time they change the points and drag a
dollar bill to clean the trigger points . It doesn't hurt to check them yet
maybe not every point change.

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