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Allis Chalmers Discussion Forum

Allis B distributor timing and engine S/N

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Nick R (Wi)

04-25-2005 05:40:42

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I read the post on engine timing with magneto. I'm redoing an Allis B with a distributor. The engine is out and I'm replacing the clutch. The flywheel has fire and center on it 180 degrees apart. Can someone give me an overview of setting engine timing for engines with a distributor? The engine Serial Number is CE186590PA. Is it a replacement engine and what might is be from?

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Nick R (Wi)

04-26-2005 04:51:30

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 Re: Allis B distributor timing and engine S/N in reply to Nick R (Wi), 04-25-2005 05:40:42  
There are two Fire marks 180 degrees apart and two center marks 180 degrees apart. I guess this gives me a choice of mounting. Thanks a lot guys.

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Rod (NH)

04-25-2005 06:37:45

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 Re: Allis B distributor timing and engine S/N in reply to Nick R (Wi), 04-25-2005 05:40:42  
Hi Nick,

My B has a magneto but I have done enough distributors on cars in the past to believe the B distributor is not significantly different in function. Unlike a magneto, the distributor doesn't have a spring actuated impulse coupling to retard the spark on engine start-up. There are centrifugal weights inside the distributor that serve the purpose of advancing the spark once the engine is started.

As long as the engine is not running, you should always use the CENTER mark on the flywheel, when the #1 piston is TDC on the compression stroke. Once you have the crank in that position, the distributor is meshed to the housing such that the rotor winds up pointing at the #1 piston tower on the distributor cap. You would then use a continuity tester across the points and rotate the distributor body until the points just open and continuity is lost. Then tighten the distributor in that position. You would use the FIRE mark only when using a timing light while the engine is running.

If anyone with a B and distributor ignition knows of something more specific or unique with such timing on a B, I am sure they will advise.

Are you positive on the locations of CENTER and FIRE marks on the flywheeel being 180 deg apart. That sounds questionable to me. The FIRE mark should be located 30 deg before the CENTER mark considering normal rotation of the flywheel unless it has been remarked for some reason. Sometimes a flywheel will be marked by an owner 180 deg from CENTER to assist in valve adjustment, but indicating such a mark as FIRE doesn't make sense to me. I certainly wouldn't expect the flywheels to be marked differently for distributor ignitions than for magneto ignitions.

Since later Bs used a C engine with a CE prefix, your engine serial number is not surprising. I don't know what the PA suffix means though. I would have expected a G, indicating gas, but the C engines might not follow the B precedent in that regard.

third party image Rod

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04-25-2005 20:14:08

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 Re: Allis B distributor timing and engine S/N in reply to Rod (NH), 04-25-2005 06:37:45  
Rod is right. take out the front spark plug. roll the motor over slowly with thumb over the plug hole. when piston is coming up on compression, look in the timing hole on left side of flywheel and continue rolling untill you see TDC. at thsi point, distributor should point at the #1 plug wire. mark 180 degrees off is bogus.-- CE motors normally marked G for gas and K for kero. B and C motors that are CE are the same.

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