S/N 9193, engine 351/0725, Distributor P/N D3PE 12127 PA 9J28 (Dual points & dual vacuum advance diaphragms). There are no engine spec data plates. Only fluid service in Itallian.
I am trying to prep the engine for a Calif. smog test and visual inspection at the DMV. So I just want everything original and working to pass.
Too little and too much info out there to figure out where to set the engine for the distributor installation. Pantera manual says TDC. My old brain is thinking 6-8 BTDC.
Then where should it be set with a timing light say at 1,000 RPM, vac hoses connected or disconnected ?
Also to clarify vacuum source terminology, "Ported or carbureted" vacuum is taken befor the throttle valve plates ? Manifold is after, correct ?
Again, right now I don't care about performance. I just want to pass the smog tests.
Accessing the distributor while installed is hard to do so if possible I want to get this right the first time.
I can go at the dwell angle stuff later. Now I need the bare bone simple basics of distributor installation.
Thanks guys.
Original Post
To pass smog here in NV I had to retard the crap out of my ignition, so much so it was overheating by the time we were done. I ended up purchasing an old tailpipe sniffer to get it about right myself before heading to the smog station.

Helps if you know someone at a local shop who can get a ballpark before you go.
This is unfortunate. I remember the days when the Bora used to have to pass bi-annual smog. The car was jetted so lean that it would barely accelerate. So glad those days are over.

My advice. Register it in another state that does not require bi-annual smog.
Originally posted by Punkdog:
Where should I position the crank to install the distributors ?

Find TDC on #1 cylinder and then drop the distributor in with the rotor pointing just before #1 position on the cap. The drive is a bevel gear so it will twist a little as you insert so you need a little offset initially.
… In California, NO Smog Check if You Register Your Vehicle as a 'Historic Vehicle', 25 Years or Older! But!! Your Driving is Limited, to a Degree. At the first, it cost Me $40 (2001). My 2019 Tags were $108.


P.S. What You can also do, is: Take off the Big Carb and Aftermarket Manifold, put the Stock Manifold and Carb (or a 600 cfm Vac. Sec. Holley or a Stock Motorcraft Carb) Back On...Re-Tune to Pass the Smog Inspection; when passed, put All the HP Parts Back On and Re-Tune!
Marlin, I believe he just acquired the car. If so he will have to smog it the first time. Then he may not have to bi-annual maybe. I saw a notification letter written by California DMV a couple of years ago saying that they were going to close that loop hole. I don't know if that is closed yet or not.
TDC it is. Thanks.
Makes no sense to me but that is also what the manual calls for.
I would think with a lean mixture you would advance timing to give it time to completely burn.
Go figure on this. On the dual diaphragm vacuum advance modual the retard diaphragm is vented to the distributor body. All the vacuum in the world is not going to move the diaphragm so how is that gonna work or, is the diaphragm punctured ?
It's operated by manifold vacuum and the advance is connected to "carb" vacuum.
Any thoughts ?
You got that right.
Lucky for me my smog guy is about a mile away and will help. Then it's 3 blocks to the DMV for the visual insp.
I have never touched a Ford engine and know zip about smog stuff.
This is a bit of a different beast than the Ford Panteras.
Never the less if I can continue using this brain trust it'll work out.
Does it make any sense to you having the retard diaphragm ported to the distributor point cavity / under the cap ? I can't figure it. Seems like an induction leak to me but it would lean the mixture. Should I buy another advance / retard modual ?
Also, how the flip does retarding the timing help with emissions ?
Emission theory seems counter logical but I'm not the sharpest tack in the board with a Ford.
But I can tune your aircraft engine.
I thank the car Gods that I have a 72 pre-L that has always been in CA and is exempt from the smog monster. However, back in the days when I did have to smog it there were other issues besides tailpipe emissions. In fact, I was able to pass smog easily without any tricky settings. Where I got in trouble was that the smog station noted that the law requires the stock air cleaner with all it's emission-related flaps, etc be installed. Mine was after market .. no stock one available. A friendly smog station would occasionally overlook that but as the smog police tightened the noose, I eventually parked it until the exempt time arrived.

Good luck.
I've never used the funky dual-diaphragm on a distributor; think it was only used in '74. I suggest replacing it with a stock single-hose vac adv. can from a '72 (or from a Ford 460 which interchanges too). Ford distributors are essentially the same back to '57 and all/most parts interchange. The single vacuum advance can works exceptionally well and is adjustable for the amount of advance it can provide, by sticking the proper sized allen wrench in the hose bib and turning it 'in'. This changes the vac. advance amount by about 5 degrees per turn. Centrifugal advance is stock-adjustable, too.

As for alky improving your smog test results, that's mostly true. 10% rubbing (or other) alcohol thoroughly mixed in a tank of hi-test, plus having the engine almost incandescently hot cleans up emissions, but will send your Co2 reading to the moon. More than about 15% alky can cause running problems unless you tune for it. More is NOT better!

Back when this ploy was being used, Co2 was not considered a pollutant by CA; dunno about now. I'm expecting any day to read that water is a hazardous, banned fluid in CA because you can drown in it. Good luck- J DeRyke, CA refugee from State insanity

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