Sucking on Distributor...

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Aug 25, 2010
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I read somewhere sucking on the hose to the diaphragm of the distributor (as if I were a carburetor) would work to tell if a)it was an advance or retard dizzy and b)the dizzy's advance/retard worked. I sucked as hard as I could (though I can suck pretty bad sometimes) but saw not the least change in timing according the light&ball. I don't care about the retarded advance question and was really just wondering how my carburetor vacuum was working... But then maybe someone said the vacuum created by an able-bodied though medium-sized American male was not exactly the same as a 6-cylinder internal combustion engine? Any other way to check the distributor's end of the deal?
 

inkpot

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Howdy! Done this many times on many different rigs. Works well. You may have a leak in the advance diaphram, or the mechinizm is stuck. Take off dizzy cap and see if you can move the base plate. It should rotate 3/8 to 1/2"+ if working right. John
 
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Aug 25, 2010
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Okay! Yeah, took off cap and no plate movement at all. Guess there should be? Have electronic ignition in '73 dizzy but quite sure I didn't punch those screws too deep or through the wrong holes. Will commence breakdown!
 
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Many advance plates are rusted stuck over the years - try some WD-40 and a tap with a chisel and hammer to free it up. You can use a Mity-Vac if your lungs aren't strong, but even a light suck will make the plate move. Also, the engine doesn't have to be running for any of these tests - it's a bit more peaceful to do this diagnosis with the engine off and distributor disassembled.
 
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Huntsville, TX
HAHA!! Yeah, I read that on here too... and tried it, and it works. And it don't take much either. I also have the '73 dizzy. Definately vaccuum retard. If it has electronics, then it's been a upgraded most likely with a pertronix.
 
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Aug 25, 2010
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Yes, I put the Pertronix in - sorry didn't mean to imply otherwise - and the idea of doing all this with the engine off was great!!!
 

myquestoyota

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Searching brought me to this thread with a question. The plate in my dizzy moves freely but I get no movement at all when I suck on the vacuum hose. Can I just replace the vacuum pod? Is that my most likely problem?
 

myquestoyota

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Yes, and Ys.

Is this item available from Toyota? Mine has the adjusting screw on the tail end of the vacuum linkage. When I push in on the adjusting screw while sucking on the vacuum hose I lose all resistance on the hose. I am not schooled in these things yet but learning. Also need to get vacuum gauge kit and learn the wily ways of FJ40 vacuum tuning.:beer:
 

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