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Thread: Timing Question

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    Timing Question

    I have ordered in a few parts and started trying to get the 81 back to life. As mentioned before i have 180 psi on each cylinder

    I have seen some things on the internet that confuse me. I searched and think I see the answers but want to ask in one thread.
    To clarify, when #1 is at top dead center the rotor should be pointing at cylinder #4?
    Firing order is 1-3-4-2. My cap is labeled 1-3-4-2.And I have them in that order.
    I read that the rotor spins clock wise, mine spins counterclockwise. I may have read some answers relating to something else but wanted to clarify.
    When spinning I show the rotor going 1-3-4-2 so it seems CCW is correct.

    I am getting spark and strong backfire from the intake when the car is set up this way when trying to crank.
    I just got the combo relay and am getting the fuel pump to turn on when starting, Did not get it to come on with the Mass airflow open. I am sure there is some wiring to be sorted there but I would like for it to run on starter fluid through the throttle body to make sure the engine is ready to go.

    The car is trying to crank just seems timing is well off so I wanted to see if I am on the right track with distributor set up.

    Thanks
    Phillip

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    Master Lancista Todd D.'s Avatar
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    Re: Timing Question

    Hi Phillip,
    Definitely sounds like a timing problem. First make sure that all the timing marks are aligned correctly. That means that the notch in the crank pulley is lined up with the biggest of the three teeth on the pointer. That being 0 degrees. With that done, check that cam pulley holes are aligned with their corresponding notches on the cam covers. They may be out a little bit but should be close. Also check that the auxiliary shaft pulley is aligned correctly. The hole should be in line with the bolt that holds the tensioner bearing or at roughly the 1 o'clock position. With that done, you need to get cylinder #4 at top dead center on the compression stroke. When you see a fiat twin cam with no head , you will see that cylinders 1 and 4 go up and down together and 2 and 3 go up and down together. To make sure 4 is on the compression stroke you can take the cam covers off and look at the cam lobes. If they are both pointing toward the center of the engine, then both valves are closed and its on the compression stroke. Alternatively, you can have someone put their finger over the #4 spark plug hole , and when air is pushing out, its on the compression stroke. I have a fitting with a hose on it that I screw into the spark plug hole and it whistles when its right.
    So once that is done, make sure the distributor rotor is pointing at #4 lead. That will get you in the ball park. It should run ,but you will want to time it at 10 degrees before top dead center which is the pointer farthest to the left when looking at it.
    Maybe someone can answer this question. Many years ago, I was told that these engines were meant to be timed on #4 cyl and not #1cyl. Why? I have gone through the same process using # 1 with the same outcome...…..just wondering.\
    With the ignition on, and the air flow meter flap held open, you should hear the pump running. Sometimes its very quiet. Have someone listen at the back to be sure. Otherwise , check for voltage to the pump when holding the flap open.
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    Re: Timing Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd D. View Post
    Hi Phillip,
    Definitely sounds like a timing problem. First make sure that all the timing marks are aligned correctly. That means that the notch in the crank pulley is lined up with the biggest of the three teeth on the pointer. That being 0 degrees. With that done, check that cam pulley holes are aligned with their corresponding notches on the cam covers. They may be out a little bit but should be close. Also check that the auxiliary shaft pulley is aligned correctly. The hole should be in line with the bolt that holds the tensioner bearing or at roughly the 1 o'clock position. With that done, you need to get cylinder #4 at top dead center on the compression stroke. When you see a fiat twin cam with no head , you will see that cylinders 1 and 4 go up and down together and 2 and 3 go up and down together. To make sure 4 is on the compression stroke you can take the cam covers off and look at the cam lobes. If they are both pointing toward the center of the engine, then both valves are closed and its on the compression stroke. Alternatively, you can have someone put their finger over the #4 spark plug hole , and when air is pushing out, its on the compression stroke. I have a fitting with a hose on it that I screw into the spark plug hole and it whistles when its right.
    So once that is done, make sure the distributor rotor is pointing at #4 lead. That will get you in the ball park. It should run ,but you will want to time it at 10 degrees before top dead center which is the pointer farthest to the left when looking at it.
    Maybe someone can answer this question. Many years ago, I was told that these engines were meant to be timed on #4 cyl and not #1cyl. Why? I have gone through the same process using # 1 with the same outcome...…..just wondering.\
    With the ignition on, and the air flow meter flap held open, you should hear the pump running. Sometimes its very quiet. Have someone listen at the back to be sure. Otherwise , check for voltage to the pump when holding the flap open.

    Thank you. I will check the setting as you described. I am getting low voltage at the relay, I had the fuel line disconnected so I could see when it was flowing. It flowed when the starter was engaged and I had 12V on the red/black wire. When I tested the FI trigger (88c i think on the relay) I am getting 4.5 volts.

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    Re: Timing Question

    Hi there, yep theses engines are timed on #4 cyld,i have uploaded a brief from the manual,
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails lancia timing.jpg  
    Last edited by flyfisher; 28th November 2018 at 01:10 PM.

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    Re: Timing Question

    People really get hung-up on this. Same thing with the SOHC motors. Simply put, #1 and #4 are at TDC at the EXACT same time. If you put a timing light on your car and look at the marks, it will not make a difference whether you attach the inductive lead to #1 spark plug wire or #4. The confusion comes in in that when all the timing marks are lined-up (cams and crank), the crank is at TDC (#1 and #4) but it is #4 that is on the compression stroke not #1 (which is on the exhaust stroke). To avoid confusion, you can just put the crank at TDC, look at which cylinder is on the compression stroke (#1 or #4) and point the distributor rotor at that tower.
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    Re: Timing Question

    Quote Originally Posted by LanciaPaul View Post
    People really get hung-up on this. Same thing with the SOHC motors. Simply put, #1 and #4 are at TDC at the EXACT same time. If you put a timing light on your car and look at the marks, it will not make a difference whether you attach the inductive lead to #1 spark plug wire or #4. The confusion comes in in that when all the timing marks are lined-up (cams and crank), the crank is at TDC (#1 and #4) but it is #4 that is on the compression stroke not #1 (which is on the exhaust stroke). To avoid confusion, you can just put the crank at TDC, look at which cylinder is on the compression stroke (#1 or #4) and point the distributor rotor at that tower.
    Thanks, That was what I was doing setting up compression stroke then pointing the rotor to the plug. It appears to be right now and will cough a little but not running on starter fluid. I have a new magnetic pickup from Bayless but it is slightly different so I still have the original. I have got much more complicated cars to come to life after sitting so hope to not lose that streak. This one having nearly everything removed and tossed in the trunk has certainly lent the detective skills to another level.
    The car has some electrical gremlins as the voltage is not consistent even from the ignition switch to the combo relays so I need to keep diagnosing. Was pleased to see the fuel pump run when starting so slowly knocking out inop portions.

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    Re: Timing Question

    Quote Originally Posted by PhillipinGa View Post
    Thanks, That was what I was doing setting up compression stroke then pointing the rotor to the plug. It appears to be right now and will cough a little but not running on starter fluid. I have a new magnetic pickup from Bayless but it is slightly different so I still have the original. I have got much more complicated cars to come to life after sitting so hope to not lose that streak. This one having nearly everything removed and tossed in the trunk has certainly lent the detective skills to another level.
    The car has some electrical gremlins as the voltage is not consistent even from the ignition switch to the combo relays so I need to keep diagnosing. Was pleased to see the fuel pump run when starting so slowly knocking out inop portions.
    If it won't run on starter fluid and has 180psi across the board, it can only be spark/timing related, no? Sounds like a fun adventure to put the puzzle back together again. I had an Alfa Milano that I bought half taken apart. When I got it running I discovered all the other things that were wrong with it that weren't apparent in it's non-running state :-)
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    Re: Timing Question

    Quote Originally Posted by LanciaPaul View Post
    If it won't run on starter fluid and has 180psi across the board, it can only be spark/timing related, no? Sounds like a fun adventure to put the puzzle back together again. I had an Alfa Milano that I bought half taken apart. When I got it running I discovered all the other things that were wrong with it that weren't apparent in it's non-running state :-)
    Thats what I thought. I believe it was the magnetic pick up. I finally grabbed my timing light and was getting inconsistent spark. I ordered a new magnetic pick up but it was different than the factory one so I did not swap it.I had to modify it a little as the wires were too long and the ground was at the connector but I got it installed. It now runs for a few seconds on starter fluid at the throttle body.
    Now looking into trouble shooting the Fuel injection system.I certainly prefer carbs at this stage of resurrection of a car.

    Thanks for all the help!

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    Re: Timing Question

    Quote Originally Posted by PhillipinGa View Post
    Thats what I thought. I believe it was the magnetic pick up. I finally grabbed my timing light and was getting inconsistent spark. I ordered a new magnetic pick up but it was different than the factory one so I did not swap it.I had to modify it a little as the wires were too long and the ground was at the connector but I got it installed. It now runs for a few seconds on starter fluid at the throttle body.
    Now looking into trouble shooting the Fuel injection system.I certainly prefer carbs at this stage of resurrection of a car.

    Thanks for all the help!
    The FI cars are so much nicer than the carbed '79s in my opinion. A little work now will pay big rewards later.
    These little gizmos are helpful to determine if your injectors are firing:
    https://www.amazon.com/OTC-6266-Noid.../dp/B0050SGHMW
    1974 Fiat X1/9
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    Re: Timing Question

    Quote Originally Posted by LanciaPaul View Post
    The FI cars are so much nicer than the carbed '79s in my opinion. A little work now will pay big rewards later.
    These little gizmos are helpful to determine if your injectors are firing:
    https://www.amazon.com/OTC-6266-Noid.../dp/B0050SGHMW
    I don't disagree from when they work they are probably awesome just easier to get carbs running. I have had a few porsches and the Fuel Injected ones have always been trouble free. carb'd ones was much cooler but would always want to act certain ways depending on weather. I had an 72 alfa gtv with carbs that was a riot to drive.

    I know they are not firing right now. There must be 12 connectors under the dash disconnected. I honestly wanted to see if I can get it to run before I kept messing with it, I half thought of selling it to someone who is more familiar but will continue to learn and try and get it back on the road.

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