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Hi All. Mamasis has broken down for the first time in 3 years. I picked my 54 chevy 3100 Mamasis up from the garage on Friday after having new stainless downpipes fabricated. She ran fine getting out through town in rush hour traffic. I booted her a bit on the roundabout ( like you do) but when I got to the end of the road and rolled up to the junction I realised that she wasn't running. She has a 700r4 box so I had to stop and put her in park to be able to turn her over. She fired up and revved but refused to tick over. With a bit of left foot braking I managed to pull away but she seemed to be running on less than the full eight cylinders so I pulled into a farmshop carpark and checked her out. I found the distributor was loosed and could be turned easily by hand. I tried to get her started and she still revved fine but as soon as I lifted my foot she would die before I could run round to get the distributor in the right place. I tried dozens of different positions but couldn't get her ticking over. I called a mate out and with me keeping her running while he turned the distributor until she sounded ok then we pinched up the defunct lock down bracket but she still wont tick over at all. I had to wind up the tick over to keep her running so that I could run the risk of getting her home without having to stop every time I lifted my foot from the accelerator. I managed to drive the five miles home but she had very little power and seemed to still be on less than eight cylinders. I have looked for timing marks but have found that there is no timing tab so any ideas how to get her sorted would be greatly appreciated. I have ordered a new hold down clamp and a set of plugs. She has a HEI distributor with the coil in cap. Cheers
 

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Sounds like you need to work out what timing pointer you need based on the damper diameter. Once fitted I'd find #1 top dead centre using a spark plug hole TDC finder with the valve cover off to ensure you're on the right stroke. Then refit the distributor as if starting from scratch.
 
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