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Distributor won't seat all the way

Old 04-05-2016, 10:59 AM
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Distributor won't seat all the way

I just got done doing a head gasket job and when I go to put the distributor in it slides in the gear and in place and when I turn the crankshaft it turns with no problems but it has about a quarter of an inch gap between the head and the distributor what do I do?
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Old 04-05-2016, 11:17 AM
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If it's a 3VZ-E you're exactly 180 off. The gear on the distributor shaft won't properly mesh with the gear on the camshaft, and you won't be able to push the distributor until it fully seats. I know you say it is in gear, but it isn't. Spin the crank one more time and try again.

If another engine, then disregard. I wouldn't know. I'd be guessing.

Last edited by MudHippy; 04-05-2016 at 11:21 AM.
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Old 04-05-2016, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by MudHippy View Post
If it's a 3VZ-E you're exactly 180 off. The gear on the distributor shaft won't properly mesh with the gear on the camshaft, and you won't be able to push the distributor until it fully seats. I know you say it is in gear, but it isn't. Spin the crank one more time and try again.

If another engine, then disregard. I wouldn't know. I'd be guessing.
You are correct it is a 3VZE and I put it top dead center when I align the distributor and then when I got your reply just now I turn the crank shaft one more full revolution and still the same thing
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Old 04-05-2016, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by 4runner89wrenchman View Post
You are correct it is a 3VZE and I put it top dead center when I align the distributor and then when I got your reply just now I turn the crank shaft one more full revolution and still the same thing
When I install the distributor it has that gab like I said before about a quarter inch but I can still turn the crank shaft and The distributor will Turn like it is in gear and there's no resistance
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Old 04-05-2016, 12:09 PM
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Then your cam timing could be off. Speaking of which, BTW, why are you not telling me you're sure you're not 180 off, because you have all the timing marks lined up(camshafts, and crank)? Did you accidentally install the timing cover and water outlet first? And now you don't want to take it apart again?

If so...bad news. Your cam timing is probably off. So you'll need to back up a few steps and try again.

Just out of curiousity. Are you able to get the distributor fully seated by rotating it, or just the shaft, to the right or left a bit slightly first? That would eliminate the possibility that one or both of the gears is damaged. As well as verify the cam timing is off.

Last edited by MudHippy; 04-05-2016 at 01:55 PM.
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