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Re: Distributor in wrong, can't retard timing: 77B

To: MG list <>
Subject: Re: Distributor in wrong, can't retard timing: 77B
From: Tom McLaughlin <>
Date: Tue, 4 May 1999 08:34:26 -0700 (PDT)
Max, your suggestion seems to be the consensus so I'll try it tonight. 
Thanks much.

Another lister replied privately and was asking about my idle speed.  I
do have it a little fast, 1500RPM. (okay maybe way too fast, but when
it wasn't running too great, I had to do this)  Forgive me as I have
not read the manual yet, but I don't know if this is fast enough for
the mechanical advance to start to advance.  Here's my rookie opinion. 
When I took the dizzy apart to put on the Pertronix, it was dirty as
hell and I think the mechanical advance may have been stuck so that it
wasn't operating properly.  Well, I cleaned everything and could have
unstuck it.  Perhaps now that it is unstuck and maybe the spring is a
little worn and the fact that my idle is a little high is causing
mechanical advance at too low engine speeds???  Maybe I really am
reaching and should go back to lurk mode...any thoughts.

77B (learning about this timing thing)

--- Max Heim <> wrote:
> Hmmm, I *think* the only way your distributor can be
> in wrong is if the 
> drive gear is backwards (180 degrees off), which
> generally means you 
> aren't running. It seems more likely you've got the
> plug leads rotated 
> around the cap. Pull each lead and move it to the
> next socket, moving in 
> a "retarding" direction (without it in front of me I
> forget which way 
> that is). That will retard things 90 degrees, then
> you rotate the whole 
> distributor back in the advancing direction as much
> as necessary (try 
> 60-70 degrees to start). The idea is to get the
> "sweet spot" into the 
> middle of the adjustable area.

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