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A-team Hei Distributor Install In A '66 Dauntless

Discussion in 'Early CJ5 and CJ6 Tech' started by M38A1 Dauntless, Jul 15, 2021.

  1. Jul 15, 2021
    M38A1 Dauntless

    M38A1 Dauntless New Member

    Minnesota
    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2021
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    8
    Hi! I just got the Distributor in the mail, and am just looking at it. I know I have to grind off stuff, but can anyone suggest a few things to do beforehand? I just got it started and it runs-ish but not smooth and doesn't start worth a damn, so that's why the HEI. I also have the updated 2GC with the electric choke but it isn't hooked up because it seems to snag somewhere in the linkage, so. But anyway, I just had it running with the sparkplug gun thing I got from a buddy, he was like gun it beforehand to see where you are at, and it looked like the mark was at zeroish. I have to put some black on it so it shows up better maybe a sharpie on the indicator. Anyway, so I should pull the plugs and put a hose/rubber glove into the #1 hole and spin it until the glove blows up and the mark is at the zero line to get TDC, then watch where the rotor is pointed and pull it out? then (I don't think I will change out the gear yet) I make sure the rotor on the A-Team is pointing the same and I put in it and mark the intake bolt-head with a sharpie for grinding I already pulled the bolt and cleaned it, and anti-sieze and re-torqued it to 50 (45-55lbs according to the book) incase I have to pull the head someday, I don't want 1/2 a bolt-head to fight with.

    So that is where I am at, just about to jump in. So any tips would be appreciated. Dude said HEI's were like putting on 50 horsepower, I hope so. I have the summit radiator and a spath 12" fan, so there is plenty of forward room. I just want it to run like it used to, and my current cap has the offset window and when I got the f-er I fricken KNEW it was a bad sign because my old one had a centered window.. Never seemed to run good again, but I got the updated carb at the same time so I have been in a pickle for a while now. I never heard of the offset window thing, so I have been trying to tune this carb for a while. - On that. 1 1/4 turn out on the needles as a starting point right? then twist 'em in or out to get smooth idle? Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Jul 15, 2021
    Mr Vaughan

    Mr Vaughan

    if i remember correctly, someone replaced that bolt with a button head one, seemed like a great way to get a bit more clearance
     
    Speedybon likes this.
  3. Jul 15, 2021
    Mr Vaughan

    Mr Vaughan

    and welcome to the forum!
     
  4. Jul 15, 2021
    M38A1 Dauntless

    M38A1 Dauntless New Member

    Minnesota
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    Jul 8, 2021
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  5. Jul 15, 2021
    Warloch

    Warloch Did you say Flattie??? Staff Member

    Falcon, CO
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2003
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    5,469
    Best option is to grind the bolt mount down a bit - make sure to keep it flat. Replace bolt with button head bolt (hex head inset).

    I always fresh stab the distributor by making sure to be TDC on number one cyl - remember, this is an ODD FIRE motor and there is ONLY ONE Number ONE post. Lots of discussion and I've posted pictures of it and how to orient it in other threads.
     
  6. Jul 16, 2021
    SoCalNickG

    SoCalNickG Member 2023 Sponsor 2022 Sponsor

    Whittier, CA.
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    Mar 17, 2017
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    349
    Just a thought; if your timing is set at 0, I would adjust the timing to something around 6 to 9 degrees advance, before swapping the distributors. The engine might be easier to start.
    As far as finding top dead center on #1 cylinder, you can pull a valve cover off & see the intake valve close. Put a small wooden dowel (or screwdriver) in the plug hole, find when the piston tops out with the dowel. I would pull all the plugs, the engine turns over easier.
     
  7. Jul 16, 2021
    jeepdaddy2000

    jeepdaddy2000 Active Member

    Eagle Point oregon
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
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    1,140
    #1 TDC:
    Pull the plugs (you can do just #1, but having all of them out makes spinning the engine easier).
    Put your finger over the #1plug hole.
    Bump the engine till you get compression pressure on your finger.
    Keep bumping or rotate the engine using the fan, till the timing mark hits TDC.
     
  8. Jul 17, 2021
    Brislin06

    Brislin06 Member

    Pennsylvania
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    Oct 23, 2017
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    140
    Can’t you juts line up the notch on the harmonic balance with the zero degree mark on the timing cover? Or is that not for sure tdc on the compression stroke ?
     
  9. Jul 17, 2021
    M38A1 Dauntless

    M38A1 Dauntless New Member

    Minnesota
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    Jul 8, 2021
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    I think this is to avoid being 180 degrees off, there is 2 zeroings when the harmonic balancer spins.
     
  10. Jul 17, 2021
    Warloch

    Warloch Did you say Flattie??? Staff Member

    Falcon, CO
    Joined:
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    That is correct - you will hit TDC on an exhaust and compression stroke. For firing it MUST be on the compression stroke.
     
  11. Jul 17, 2021
    colojeepguy

    colojeepguy Colorado Springs

    At the foot of...
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    Apr 4, 2010
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    This will get the engine at TDC, but on the Dauntless you have to install the distributor with #1 in the correct spot due to the odd fire design.
     
  12. Jul 18, 2021
    Brislin06

    Brislin06 Member

    Pennsylvania
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    Oct 23, 2017
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    140
    It has to point to the #1 plug wire on the cap I think that’s what the instructions said that came with my HEI
     
  13. Jul 19, 2021
    Keys5a

    Keys5a Sponsor

    Florida Keys
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    Even when you find TDC on the compression stroke, you then have to line up the oil pump drive to get the distributor to drop in all the way. Take your time to get it all correct!
    -Donny
     
  14. Jul 22, 2021
    John Gedde

    John Gedde Been around the block once or twice...

    Middle Island, NY
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    Oct 23, 2019
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    Fellas, any truth to this? If so, I might do away with my Prestolite distributor and sacrifice originality. I thought a well tuned points setup can work as well as HEI and going HEI only was done for the reliability improvement.

    John
     
  15. Jul 22, 2021
    chipdom

    chipdom Member

    06811
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    Nov 3, 2013
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    Make sure when you replace the intake manifold hex head inset bolt closest to the distributor where the grinding needs to be done it has a flat bottom.
    I made the mistake of using a tapered bottom bolt and a small part of the manifold cracked off. It does not leak anything there but is really bothers me.
     
  16. Jul 22, 2021
    Keys5a

    Keys5a Sponsor

    Florida Keys
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    My observation is the Dauntless with an HEI will fire up with very little cranking on damp humid days, as opposed to a fair amount of cranking and sputtering with points. Better plug wires on the HEI might are part of the improvement.
    If someone believes stuff like this adds noticable HP, you deserve to have your wallet pilfered. Just a proper tune-up can add HP if the engine is running on 4 cylinders out of six.
    -Donny
     
    Twin2 likes this.
  17. Jul 22, 2021
    John Gedde

    John Gedde Been around the block once or twice...

    Middle Island, NY
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    Oct 23, 2019
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    Sage advice as always Donny. Thanks! Your answer is what I expected. Unless the A-Team distributor is doing something majorly beneficial with vacuum or mechanical advance, I can't see that HEI would offer much benefit power wise over points and condenser (if all is set up right.) My old fall back for any ignition or spark mod is, if what you've got is burning all the available fuel/air mixture completely and timely, there's nothing more to be had by any ignition or spark mod (with equivalent timing.)

    John
     
  18. Jul 23, 2021
    fhoehle

    fhoehle Sponsor

    Harford Township, PA
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    I didn't want to be negative but I tried an A team distributor and It was cheap and I got what I paid for.
     
  19. Jul 23, 2021
    jackdog

    jackdog Member

    Finger Lakes NY
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    Jul 16, 2013
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    I just put a HEI in my Dauntless yesterday. I noticed it starts easier and has a smoother idle but did not notice any HP gain.
     
    Speedybon likes this.
  20. Jul 23, 2021
    jeepdaddy2000

    jeepdaddy2000 Active Member

    Eagle Point oregon
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
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    The HEI eliminates a number of maintenance tasks making tuneups much simpler. You can also open the plugs up a bit and run a tad more advance, which usually helps with economy.
    Now the addition of a mild cam and 4BBL manifold will add some HP.
     
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