Go Back   The Ford Barn > General Discussion > Model A (1928-31)

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 09-19-2020, 06:42 PM   #1
DBSHELTON
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Kountze,TX
Posts: 273
Default B Distributor Initial Timing

I have read a little about the B distributor and I am using one on my 30 Huckster. What I am not sure of is what initial timing I should set it up on. I have a Nurex Timing timing tab set with the pulley marked on TDC so I can check things with a timing light. Right now I have the initial set at 9.5 degrees but the engine wants to run hotter than it used to. Should I try more initial timing? What is everyone else running who is using the B distributor on their model A?
DBSHELTON is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 08:14 PM   #2
J Franklin
Senior Member
 
J Franklin's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: oregon
Posts: 4,415
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

I time mine by ear since I still have the A gear cover. I will note your answers for reference.
J Franklin is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)
Old 09-19-2020, 08:17 PM   #3
wmws
BANNED
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Coatesville, Pa
Posts: 719
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

What is the timing at 1500-2000 RPM.
wmws is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 08:53 PM   #4
DBSHELTON
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Kountze,TX
Posts: 273
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by wmws View Post
What is the timing at 1500-2000 RPM.

No idea. No tach.
Approx what should the timing be there?
DBSHELTON is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 09:11 PM   #5
Synchro909
Senior Member
 
Synchro909's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 5,290
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by wmws View Post
What is the timing at 1500-2000 RPM.
I would expect that at those speeds without a heavy load like pulling up a steep hill or towing, you would be at maximum advance. (lever all the way down.)
__________________
Accidents hurt. Safety doesn't.
Synchro909 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 09:33 PM   #6
CWPASADENA
Senior Member
 
CWPASADENA's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: PASADENA, CA
Posts: 1,476
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)
Set the initial timing at 17-18 Deg. That will get you in the ball park. The "B" distributor only has about 12-13 Deg. of mechanical advance. The mechanical plus the initial will give you about 30 Deg. total which is where you want to be. This is assuming that your "B" distributor is in good condition.

Chris W.
CWPASADENA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 09:53 PM   #7
DBSHELTON
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Kountze,TX
Posts: 273
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by CWPASADENA View Post
Set the initial timing at 17-18 Deg. That will get you in the ball park. The "B" distributor only has about 12-13 Deg. of mechanical advance. The mechanical plus the initial will give you about 30 Deg. total which is where you want to be. This is assuming that your "B" distributor is in good condition.

Chris W.

I was wondering if 17-18 was too much initial, but now you mention it, I am only getting about 12 or so advance. (I actually have 3 Model B distributors that I have refreshed and they all top out at about 12 degrees advance) Sounds like a plan. Thanks.
DBSHELTON is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 09:59 PM   #8
GRutter
Senior Member
 
GRutter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Mint Hill, North Carolina
Posts: 177
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Don't confuse crankshaft degrees with distributor degrees.
The mechanical advance of the B distributor was 8.5 degrees (17 crankshaft degrees)

If you had a Model B timing cover, the initial timing would be 19 deg BTDC.
The mechanical advance of the distributor would add 17 degreees to that, giving you a maximum of 36 degrees advance.

Set your initial timing at 19 degrees.

Other considerations:
The model A distributor initial timing is at 0 deg BTDC, but the manual advance would allow you to move it to 40 deg. That is why it is always recommended to not advance the spark all the way... it is too advanced for an A engine. But it's lower compression was more tolerant of over advancing.

The Model B engine had a higher compression head and a better cam. It's max advance of 36 deg was perfect for that combination.
GRutter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-19-2020, 10:27 PM   #9
DBSHELTON
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Kountze,TX
Posts: 273
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Thanks. I was thinking the B timing cover was 9.5 crankshaft degrees. That's why I earlier set mine on 9.5 degrees. I will try 19 and see how that works.
DBSHELTON is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 06:17 AM   #10
Patrick L.
Senior Member
 
Patrick L.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Upstate NY and western Florida
Posts: 5,956
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

I would not recommend setting base timing more than 12. Any more than that and the engine could kick back while starting.

A distributor advance putting out 12 equals 24 at the crank. So 36 total is plenty.

So if you have TDC marked on the pulley just raise the engine speed to a good cruise RPM and then guesstimate the amount of timing advance with the timing light. Or add a timing strip and you'll know for sure.
Patrick L. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 08:38 AM   #11
Joe K
Senior Member
 
Joe K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Cow Hampshire
Posts: 3,613
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by GRutter View Post
Don't confuse crankshaft degrees with distributor degrees.
The mechanical advance of the B distributor was 8.5 degrees (17 crankshaft degrees)

If you had a Model B timing cover, the initial timing would be 19 deg BTDC.
The mechanical advance of the distributor would add 17 degreees to that, giving you a maximum of 36 degrees advance.

Set your initial timing at 19 degrees.

Other considerations:
The model A distributor initial timing is at 0 deg BTDC, but the manual advance would allow you to move it to 40 deg. That is why it is always recommended to not advance the spark all the way... it is too advanced for an A engine. But it's lower compression was more tolerant of over advancing.

The Model B engine had a higher compression head and a better cam. It's max advance of 36 deg was perfect for that combination.
This description is closest to Vince Falter's description at http://www.fordgarage.com/pages/bdistributoradvance.htm

Joe K
Who is currently going through converting a Model A block for use as a Gordon-Smith compressor using Model B distributor & timing. (Gordon Smith kind of relies on centrifugal variable timing to compensate for the automatic loading/unloading of the engine.)
__________________
Shudda kept the horse.
Joe K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 09:35 AM   #12
Jack Shaft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Posts: 786
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Model A or model B engine timing..one degree of advance per thousand rpm is what you are shooting for.
diameter of pulley x3.1416 divided by 360 gives you degree spacing.On a model A stock crankshaft pulley 5 degrees is a bit over 1/4 "..or use your nurex timing grid and TDC mark.hook up timing light and cheapie garage sale tach and dwell meter (40 bucks on Amazon) start engine,at 500 rpm either move the breaker plate or turn the distributor cam (pain,you have to shut off the engine and fiddle with it) to be 5 degrees advanced at 500 rpm,10 degrees at 1000,15 degrees at 1500 and so on check up to 2000 rpm.Basically as rpm goes up you can see the mechanical advance rise,basically 'mapping' the advance,this tell you if your advance is working correctly.the b works well,what get confusing is static timing it,so dont,use a timing light.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg thumbnail (64).jpg (38.2 KB, 37 views)

Last edited by Jack Shaft; 09-20-2020 at 11:47 AM.
Jack Shaft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 11:39 AM   #13
Y-Blockhead
Senior Member
 
Y-Blockhead's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
Posts: 4,296
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Shaft View Post
Model A or model B engine timing..one degree of advance per thousand rpm is what you are shooting for.
diameter of pulley x3.1416 divided by 360 gives you degree spacing.On a model A stock crankshaft pulley 5 degrees is a bit over 1/4 "..or use your nurex timing grid and TDC mark.hook up timing light and cheapie garage sale tach and dwell meter (40 bucks on Amazon) start engine, at 500 degrees either move the breaker plate or turn the distributor cam (pain,you have to shut off the engine and fiddle with it) to be 5 degrees advanced at 500 rpm,10 degrees at 1000,15 degrees at 1500 and so on check up to 2000 rpm.Basically as rpm goes up you can see the mechanical advance rise,basically 'mapping' the advance,this tell you if your advance is working correctly.the b works well,what get confusing is static timing it,so dont,use a timing light.
???
__________________
Y-Blockhead
'30 Briggs Town Sedan
'55 Ford Ranchwagon
_________________________________
And once again that is just my 1 worth.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51ufACHJMfU
Y-Blockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 12:04 PM   #14
Jack Shaft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Posts: 786
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Be sure to rill a hole in the cam screw to get oil the upper shaft,thats the weak point on the B distributor

If the engine runs up to 500 degrees toss a steak on the head..
Attached Images
File Type: jpg MODEL B DISTRIBUTOR DRILL THIS HOLE THRU BUSHING.jpg (32.6 KB, 27 views)
Jack Shaft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 02:51 PM   #15
DBSHELTON
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Kountze,TX
Posts: 273
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Was playing around with timing. Not hard to start until almost 30 degrees. I now have the initial set on 19 degrees. No problem starting at all, sounds very good but it is raining so a test drive is out.

Jackshaft, One degree of advance per thousand RPM? Surely that is not right.
DBSHELTON is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 03:01 PM   #16
Jack Shaft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Posts: 786
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by DBSHELTON View Post
Was playing around with timing. Not hard to start until almost 30 degrees. I now have the initial set on 19 degrees. No problem starting at all, sounds very good but it is raining so a test drive is out.

Jackshaft, One degree of advance per thousand RPM? Surely that is not right.
One degree per 100 rpm..24 degrees at 2400 becareful,check full advance make sure you don't exceed
Jack Shaft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 04:28 PM   #17
DBSHELTON
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Kountze,TX
Posts: 273
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

That is what I thought.
Thanks.
DBSHELTON is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 10:27 PM   #18
GRutter
Senior Member
 
GRutter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Mint Hill, North Carolina
Posts: 177
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

If you have initial timing at 19 degrees, you should be spot on.
GRutter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 10:40 PM   #19
CWPASADENA
Senior Member
 
CWPASADENA's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: PASADENA, CA
Posts: 1,476
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick L. View Post
I would not recommend setting base timing more than 12. Any more than that and the engine could kick back while starting.

A distributor advance putting out 12 equals 24 at the crank. So 36 total is plenty.

So if you have TDC marked on the pulley just raise the engine speed to a good cruise RPM and then guesstimate the amount of timing advance with the timing light. Or add a timing strip and you'll know for sure.
The Model "B" distributor has only 12 Deg. mechanical advance as measured at the crank shaft, (or 6 deg. Distributor shaft deg.). You could hand crank Model B's with 18-19 deg. initial without a problem at all. Time it the way Henry said to do it and it will be fine.

If you do not have enough initial timing when using a "B" distributor, the engine will be too retarded and will run hot and be down on power.

If you are running a 6.0 high compression head, it is not a good idea to have more than 28-30 deg. total timing at 2000 rpm.

My opinion,

Chris W.
CWPASADENA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2020, 06:11 AM   #20
Patrick L.
Senior Member
 
Patrick L.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Upstate NY and western Florida
Posts: 5,956
Default Re: B Distributor Initial Timing

OK, I was wrong. I should have looked it up. I thought there was a 9.5 difference between the A and B front covers.

Apparently Model B base timing is 19 with minimal distributor advance totaling 36.

http://www.fordgarage.com/pages/bdistributoradvance.htm


I know in 'more modern' cars I don't want base timing any more than 12 for kick back reasons.

Last edited by Patrick L.; 09-21-2020 at 08:50 AM.
Patrick L. is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:18 AM.