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Classic Mustangs Tech Forum

Technical discussions specific to 1964-1967, 1968-1970, and 1971-1973 Classic Mustang. Discuss all tech related to in-line six cylinder and V8 powered Vintage Mustangs here.

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Unread 03-23-2006   #1 (permalink)
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Default 302 timing problems 1967 Mustang

hi
I have a 1967 mustang coupe with a later 302 with a mild cam, i had it running ok but it missed at the higher rpm, so i broke out the timing light and went at it, and no matter what i did it just got worse, anyhelp? what btdc? and where exactly is the timing mark mounted on the timing chain housing, i pointed part of it but there a bolt hole right next to it where it looks like a pointer should be attached, the 289 i pulled out did have anything mounted there but should there be a timing pointer there? or is it just the corner of the timing chain cover?
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Unread 03-24-2006   #2 (permalink)
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Hello.On the later timing chain covers the pointer is bolted to the front of the cover.There should be two bolt holes.The earlier ones had this little nub about 3/8 in diameter amd about an inch and a half long with a little flat spot on the end cast in as part of the timing chain cover.To be perfectly honest, your original problem doesn't really sound like a base timing problem.If it ran smoothly at idle and had a miss at higher rpms my first guess would be point float or possibly insufficient dwell angle if the car has points.Folks frequently set the point gap at factory spec without bearing in mind that this is no longer a new car.The distributor cam lobes have worn down slightly and that cuts down on the dwell angle if you keep the same point gap.This doesn't mean much at low rpms but in the higher range the coil doesn't have enough time to build an adequate charge.You have to fudge a little on the point gap.Also. a ported vacuum leak can cause a miss at higher rpms.The most common culprit for that is the vacuum advance diaphragm being ruptered.If the car has vacuum advance.
In the absence of a pointer your best bet would be to locate TDC manually and make a mark of some sort on the cover that corresponds to the TDC mark on the balancer.Hope that helps.
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Unread 03-24-2006   #3 (permalink)
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thanks for the input, yes the car has the older style timing cover and i see what you talking about, it also has a newer electronic distributer with a vacumm advance, i can get it to run smooth at idle but as soon as i put the engine under any load (drive) it just boggs down and shakes the entire car like crazy, i have used a timing light and that mark but it still produces the same results, i am having a local classic car shop look at it tomarrow and hopfully theyll discover what i cant, thanks for the help
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Unread 10-26-2006   #4 (permalink)
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Default Timing

Hey...I have a 67 stang with a 88 5.0......
Bump the motor until the timing marks are facing down towards the ground. Crawl underneath with some parts cleaner and wipe down the harmonic balancer real good. Then use some white out and mark 10 degrees BTC. The pointer is a 2 bolt arrow bracket bolted on the right side of the timing cover. If it runs ok on idle, then it sounds like it's not advancing correctly. Make sure to disconnect and plug the vacuum line when you time it. good luck
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Unread 10-26-2006   #5 (permalink)
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Take out the #1 plug, and crank the engine over till it blows your thumb off the hole. Take a pencil and stick it in the hole and turn the crank by hand till it comes up to TDC. Check your dist to make sure the rotor is pointing towards #1 on the cap.
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Unread 11-01-2006   #6 (permalink)
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Set your timing at full advance, should be about 34 to 36 degree's. You will need to unplug the vacuum advance then run the idle up while watching the timing. Set it at full advance then check it at idle. Should run real good right there.
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Unread 12-05-2006   #7 (permalink)
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Ok, i am a new member, but in process of restoring my second pony. my latest project came to me as a birthday present. In need of some tlc, but #'s matching.. it is a blessing and a nightmare at the same time.

U may have found your answer, but.. it took me 2 weeks of an hour here an hour there to get thru mine, and I am hoping this info will save someone some time for someone out there

I had very similar issues. and with no history on the vehicle i was forced to troubleshoot this one from the ground up. my symptoms where multi pointed making this one fun to work my way thru
1) step on brake, car bogs
2) step on gas car bogs
3) step on gas hard and car really hates me
4) timing unstable from rev to rev

the brake apply/vacuum leak part was a sure sign that power boost was gone (as verified with a vacuum gage when 19lbs was normal idle (i shoulda seen it here as 20lbs is my target (at my elevation), and 10lbs was when brakes where applied. so i replaced that. stabilized at 19lbs the 1lb will come in handy later). Always check the check valve as this can also be a simple problem.

symptom 1 went away.
but 2 and 3 still remained. I could not get the timing to stabilize. timing would fluctuate from 10 to 6 and all around between there (after each rev). so i replaced the distributer... (it was cracked at the stem anyhow, and ...at 70$ y not.) points, wires, plugs, coil... basic tuneup (as i said this was a car that someone literally handed me the keys and said have a ball).

no help! since i had no way to test vacuum while in gear and under load.. the guy holding the guage just could not keep up with me while i was accelerating ;-) (some of you swifter folks out there,don't try this one gets messy real quick!). vacuum good at idle (- 1lb!), no bumping or swaying of the needle in the pressure guage under gas, entire ignition system replaced ran fine while revving in park.. i even did the poor mans vacuum test (ether/starter fluid (gumout works too) sprayed around the intake and base of carb !!lightly!! while listening for increase or drop in rpm). low rpm fine, would bog/miss, and rattle at about 2000-2500rpm only while driving.

long story short....... i found my problem of all places when i was restoring behind my dash... it turns out the previous owner installed an aftermarket cruise control unit. this unit used a vacuum hose from the manifold run thru the firewall, and you guessed it, now connected to nowhere. I had a small vacuum leak (-1lb doh!)which for some reason only would cause a drop in pressure when the vacuum secondary for the 4bbl tried to open. a little hose and a small screw, and she now run's like a kitten. timing is perfect. and smooth all around. Bottom line there is no 1 test to find your acceleration problem. you need to troubleshoot logically eliminating the cheapest possibilities 1st, and pay attention to the details.
1) i advise to get a vacuum guage, they are about 15$ and the easiest way in my opinion to troubleshoot timing, ignition, and overall health of the engine for a daily driver/garage mechanic.
2) try a bunch of different tests, to get a baseline of where the engine sits. believe it or not, you can identify sticky valves, worn guides, weak springs, worn seats, vacuum leaks, timing trouble, and several other problems with this simple tool and a little patience. It is almost idiot proof. Just google vacuum guage/tester
3) test frequently during your troubleshooting.
4) warm the car up before taking readings.
6) shoot yourself for not noticing 1lb differential! i'm kidding of course.

hope this helps someone out there. my 1st time through was eye opening.
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Unread 01-27-2011   #8 (permalink)
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hey while you guys are on timing might as well throw my problem in here but i have ford 289 or 302 and im new to ford so bare with me but i converted my rangers 3.0 to a 5.0 carb and my not so smart but smart self now forgot to mark the cap before taking out and screwed the timing up and been trying to tdc and point it to one and back firing crazy and tried 1-20 degrees btdc and it would do the same but then it would sound like a shotgun coming out my exhaust........so any help please tell me thank you.........CHAD
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Unread 01-27-2011   #9 (permalink)
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Start by getting the engine to TDC on the compression stroke. Then line up your distributor rotor so that it will point at the #1 plug wire terminal when the gear rotates one tooth (it will when you slide it in). Once the distributor is engaging the cam gear you may have to turn the engine to get it lined up with the pump drive shaft and get it to go all the way down. Once you have the distributor in then you place the plug wires counter-clockwise starting at #1. The engine is numbered passenger side 1 to 4 (front to back) and driver side 5 to 8 (front to back).
Once the wires are connected you can time the engine and it should run fine.
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Unread 01-27-2011   #10 (permalink)
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check that you are on #1 (pass side front)
Check the firing order. where did the motor come from the firing order on a latemodel is not the same as in the 60s.
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Unread 01-27-2011   #11 (permalink)
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Hey Mustord87,

Just one extra hint to help save time. Take the passenger side valve cover off and watch the #1 cylinder rockers. The piston will be coming up to top dead center on the compression stroke when both intake and exhaust valves are closed. Both rockers will be in the slack or loose position as the cam lobe will be on the base circle with no compression on the valve springs. If you set the #1 plug wire with the #1 cylinder at TDC on the exhaust stroke (exhaust valve open) you're going get a really rough idle and it most likely won't start. Big backfires, too. Many people forget that it takes two crankshaft rotations to make it through the 4 stroke process (intake-compression-power-exhaust).
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Unread 01-28-2011   #12 (permalink)
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hey kb my intake says 289 and the harmonic has a number on it lik e7te i believe and that says what i came up with is around and 84. and when i set the tdc and going to redoe the dist and lift the cap the rotar is 180degrees off when i set the tdc and put the dist at one
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Unread 01-28-2011   #13 (permalink)
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i mean i tried to set the timeing before at tdc and pointed at one but then when it wouldnt work i would try it again and lift the cap and it would be off 180 degrees
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Unread 01-30-2011   #14 (permalink)
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hello, e7 would be an 87 balancer where is the lower rad hose is it on the pass side (early to 69 or on the drivers side 70 and up). If it is on the drivers side ck the block casting number above the starter.
An 87 motor would not be the same firing order as a earley motor.
If you had a late 87 balancer on an early motor you may never get it right. let me know what you find

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