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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I made the mistake of removing the distributor during a timing belt replacement on my '93 Pathfinder - VG30E engine. I'm getting the vehicle back on the road after someone else took it apart so I wanted to make sure it was installed correctly.

I didn't foresee how difficult it would be to get it back in correctly. If I had known in advance what a pain in the rear it is to put it back in I never would have removed it.

I'm using the Chilton manual - ambiguous as usual.

The drawing in the manual instructs me to line up the mark on the distributor drive gear shaft with the protruding mark on the housing, which I did.

I followed the rest of the directions to the letter. If the manual is correct,
the distributor rotor position is supposed to be at the 11:00 position (looking at the engine from the left side of the vehicle) with the #1 piston at TDC, but the closest I can get it is 12:00 - see video posted on YouTube.

YouTube - Distributor alignment on 1993 Pathfinder

In the video you'll see two dots on the intake collector that represent the position of the number 1 spark plug wire when the distributor cap is on. The two parallel lines on the distibutor represent where the rotor was when I removed the distributor from the engine.

I used a dial indicator to determine TDC on the number 1 piston, which is why the 0 degree timing mark is slightlly off in the video.

Can anyone tell me if the distributor is installed correctly? If it isn't, can anyone give me any guidance on this matter as I'm stumped.

Thank you



Wayne
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
 

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If you flip the dizzy cap over you can find the #1 terminal inside...the rotor should point to that at #1 TDC...
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
If you flip the dizzy cap over you can find the #1 terminal inside...the rotor should point to that at #1 TDC...
Ouch!!

I'm coming to the forum because I need help understanding where this needs to be. I apologize if the answer to this question seems obvious to the rest of you.

I don't have a problem identifying which terminal is #1 on the distributor cap. The terminals are all numbered on the top of the cap, the plug wires are still in place on the cap (each with the terminal number on it), and I carefully noted the position of the cap before I ever started this project - I took video and pictures of the entire engine compartment to boot.

The drawing in the Chilton manual for the 6 cylinder distributor cap shows the terminals pointing horozontally with 2 mounting screws. The distributor cap in my Pathfinder has vertical terminals in a circular pattern with 3 mounting screws so obviously there is more than one type of cap. It's also clear it can only go on one way (ie. I'm not putting it back on in the wrong position).

Based on the position the rotor is now in, the center of the rotor is approximately half-way between the 2nd and 1st terminals.

Given that information, how do I go about correcting this problem?

Please help.


Wayne
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
 

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Is this the picture you have from the FSM?


Sorry for not getting back to you earlier, I've been working out of town for the last two months, no internet!

No idea on the different cap setup with three screws, sorry. The rotor should still point the same direction, unless the distributor you have is completely different. Perhaps someone swapped the engine a while back before you got it? No clue.

When I pulled and reinstalled mine, I set the engine to #1 TDC, then rotated the dizzy back one or two teeth to allow for the gears to mesh when you drop it in. I didn't put much effort into matching the marks on the bottom. When you drop it in, the rotor will spin back a couple of teeth counterclockwise (IIRC) and if you get it right it will end up looking very similar to the picture above. If it's one tooth off one way or the other the rotor will be off from what the pic shows and you'd need to pull it back up and try again. Adjustment to the base timing is made by turning the whole distributor. Remember to put the adjuster bolt back in and tighten it before starting and checking base timing!

Hope that helps a little... -88
 
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