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  #61  
Old 03-13-2013, 11:10 AM
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A rebuilt unit will be far sturdier, more accurate, and better quality than a Skip White or any other $40 dollar distributor. I know, it sounds like a waste of time when you can buy one for $40.
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  #62  
Old 05-29-2013, 07:34 PM
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Default This thread is not dead

So I've put many miles of both city and highway driving on the shimmed up OE dizzy and I can now make some scientific observations:

Compared to the way it was before the distributor rebuild, the "feel" of performance is radically changed. This 229 V6 had previously felt gutted and lifeless. There was very little acceleration authority and basically what felt like a black hole of a dead spot off the line. Post-shimming I felt like I could launch, not like a big block V8 but certainly better than before. I ran many many miles of both city and highway miles to get a good feel for what the rebuilt dizzy with OEM advance springs could do.

Timing had been set to 12 BTDC, which felt best (the emission label says 10 is correct.)

The results (oversized wheels/uncorrected mileage):
Around town driving: roughly 10.5 mph. Dismal. Throttle response is better, but economy is crap.
Highway driving (extended 65~70mph) 17.5~18.0 mpg

I have just put in a Mr. Gasket advance recurve kit. It basically comprises of springs of different tensions which allow the centrifugal advance to operate sooner. The OEM springs are incredibly stiff. Even the strongest spring set (gold) in the kit is remarkably lighter than OEM.

Timing was set to 10 as per the label and idle speed was checked.

The feel with the new gold advance springs (over and above the shimming) is another quantum leap. Lighter pedal pressure for quick launches. Very very nice around town difference. There seems to be what I can only describe as what feels like the difference in hauling a heavy load vs. a light load. I don't think open highway feel/performance will change as by that engine speed advance should be all in. Lighter springs aren't doing anything at that point. It's the city traffic arena that expect to see some economy improvement. My seat-o-the-pants dyno says that there is already a difference.

I will post some hard numbers when I get them.
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  #63  
Old 05-30-2013, 04:43 AM
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Michael,
Give us more information about shimming the distributor. Was this done as a test? Or was there a clearance issue? Was it bottoming out on the oil pump shaft before hitting the intake? Just curious. Thanks,
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  #64  
Old 05-30-2013, 07:43 AM
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Hey man, the answers to your questions are all in this thread. Give it a read.

But to summarize: bone stock 229 V6. Pretty sure nothing was ever done to it internally. The mechanical advance shaft of the stock HEI had a tremendous amount of vertical play... like around .060". This equates to the gears physically pushing the shaft up under load and completely messing with the timing. Take a look at my early photos in this thread. I used to be able to lift the rotor up and actually see timing retard as the helical gears guide the shaft up. The result of this while driving is that your timing is bouncing all over the place severely effecting driveablility/performance/economy.

By placing shims between the distributor body and the gear the vertical free play of the shaft is tightened up to around .015" (to accommodate thermal expansion) and so timing is kept dead on to where it should be.

Again, give the thread a read.

Last edited by michaelj; 05-30-2013 at 07:48 AM.
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  #65  
Old 05-30-2013, 08:37 AM
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Michael,
I was involved with the thread last year, but all you said was "shimmed up dizzy" so I was unsure if you had shimmed it up off the intake, as I have done. I was just confused about which shim you were talking about.
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  #66  
Old 05-30-2013, 10:11 AM
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No worries, man. Things generally sound better in my head, sorry I came off as a bit of a prick. The wear pattern on the gear is picture perfect, so not need to shim up off the intake.
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  #67  
Old 06-03-2013, 12:57 PM
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I'm about 20 miles into this first tank of gas since installing the gold recurve springs, and all I can say is WOW. This does not feel like the engine I've been driving for 5 years. Smooth and more authoritative than this 229 V6 has ever felt.

These first 20 miles have been entirely city driving. Lots of stop and go, little to no sustained 2nd or 3rd gear. The gas needle hasn't even budged yet!

While the new springs feel awesome, I do think that getting the base time correct is also a big part of this. While checking records, I noticed that my highway mileage has suffered down to the 17~18 range from 20~23. I recently did an 900+ mile trip pre-new springs. I checked timing prior to leaving and I was at 12. I was able to cruise for extended periods at 75~80mph when previously I had only cruised at 60~65. Not sure of if the extra speed was to blame or if it was the 2 extra degrees of advance, but those 2 extra degrees would make me over advanced once I'm all in.

I find it remarkable that three small tweaks could have such a radical effect on feel, performance and hopefully economy.

More to come...
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  #68  
Old 06-03-2013, 07:10 PM
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Default No worries

MichaelJ,
Everybody comes across as a prick sometimes. You'd been gone so long from the posts, I thought a refresh on the thread would be a good idea.

I think adding more timing generally helps fuel mileage, but perhaps you have too much under basic cruising conditions. Is it really smooth at cruising speeds or does the engine make a different sound? Just curious! Glad you're enjoying the car. The extra power is worth the sacrifice in fuel mileage, right?
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  #69  
Old 06-05-2013, 06:21 PM
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Hey man,

Previously (when I was running the OEM stiff springs) more timing (12 rather than suggested 10) was used for city driving. It felt better and had a bit more authority/power. My extended 900+ mile trip however showed that I was too advanced for sustained cruise and economy suffered.

I can say that at those elevated cruise speeds pre-new springs the engine didn't feel as great as I had previously thought for my around town driving. It seems the tiny 229 V6 really likes 10 initial timing.

The new GOLD recurve springs are a wonder. With base timing set at the stock recommendation of 10 I feel like i have MORE/BETTER/SMOOTHER city driving throttle response, while maintaining my cruise speed total timing.

I have yet to test on open highway. On Monday a taxi cab opened it's door while I was passing by, mildly crunching my right fender. My only consolation is that I SHREDDED his door, while doing minimal damage to myself. My previously perfect body is no longer. Grrrrrrrr.
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  #70  
Old 06-06-2013, 04:46 AM
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New thread for your bodywork!
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  #71  
Old 06-06-2013, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aeilenstein View Post
New thread for your bodywork!
Okay, sure! It will be my first attempt at body work. Ironically, I had JUST received that little 135amp MIG welder that Eastwood is pushing. Reviews are great and I like that it's small but adequate for the work I foresee I'll be needing it for. But I really didn't want THIS reason to pull it out and try it.
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  #72  
Old 06-24-2013, 05:12 AM
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Hey all. I've had a chance to run some errands and do some longer trips with my OE shimmed and recurved HEI. The what follows is an example of 30/70 mix of city/highway driving:

After 212.4 miles indicated (remember my speedo/odo is off on the low side because of oversized tires) I filled up with 9.77 gallons, which is as full as I could get the tank, similar to the previous fillip.

That gives me an average of 21.74 MPG!!!!!

Not bad! And that is with a non-OD transmission but WITH a locking Torque Converter. When I take into account the oversized tires I get 23.6 mpg corrected.

What have I learned from this? Shimming the distributor gear helps tame overall timing and economy. My engine really really really needs to have that 10 of initial timing dialed in precisely.

The jury is still out on how the recurve gold springs effect economy in the city, which is where they will be evident, but I can say what an incredible difference they've made performance-wise. More numbers will follow which I hope will shed light on their contribution to city economy, but overall I'd say that this thread's work has made the Camino so much easier to drive and live with.
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  #73  
Old 06-24-2013, 05:22 AM
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The difference in fuel mileage at 75 and 65 is quite significant. Someone with a physics/engineering degree can give you actual numbers, probably, but I would expect at least a 10% drop in that number, and maybe more.
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  #74  
Old 06-24-2013, 06:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblanche View Post
The difference in fuel mileage at 75 and 65 is quite significant. Someone with a physics/engineering degree can give you actual numbers, probably, but I would expect at least a 10% drop in that number, and maybe more.
That's a great point. Especially with my square nose (flying brick) 5th gen. Only once have I had an extended highway test with speeds in the 75~80 range. And that is the trip where base timing was set to 12 BTDC where I saw average 17.5~18 MPG. No clue as to whether that difference was because of base timing or speed. I can say that the higher speeds came in only during the later third of first leg (and first third of the second.) I still saw a lower than expected economy where highway speeds were in the 55~65 range. So, I'm thinking base timing definitely had a roll to play in the lower economy.

The speeds for my recent economy tests where is the 55~65 mph range mostly with a few legs of 70 mph. I can't say enough how important it is to remain consistent with EVERYTHING when trying to determine the effects of work done. From how full the gas tank is at the start of each test to being able to compare economy of highway-speed tests. Variations are the confuser.
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  #75  
Old 09-10-2013, 09:05 AM
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Need help or advice I bought a 1981 Elky in Nov 2012 had carb problems when I bought it replaced carb car would still not run it would start and then flood out after being in shop and spending over 900.00 on smog equipment and trying to get car to run mechanic told me to come get it he couldn't fix it towed to specialty shop he found the HEI distributor was bad when he took it out and spun the shaft you could here it rubbing put new one in just to see if car would run it fired right up but ran like map sensor was bad found out CCC had been shorted out I don't think I should have to pay 295.00 for distributor and another 90.00 for CCC and then find out that's not the problem any Ideas I'm lost getting ready to sell for parts 1981 Elky 231 3.8 V6 rebuilt 35,000 ago 900.00 in new smog parts new timing chain etc.
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