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Don, Classic Car Mechanic
Category: Classic Car
Satisfied Customers: 1679
Experience:  30 years of experience and we have 4 classic cars our selfs
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1954 chevy: distributor cap, points..rotor..dwell meter

Customer Question

How do you set the timing and dwell on a 1954 chevy 6 cylinder truck engine? I have new distributor cap, points, condenser, and rotor to install and I have bought a timing light and a dwell meter, but I don't now where to start. Thanks
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Classic Car
Expert:  Don replied 7 years ago.
hi there my name is don i will try to help you on this

have you moved the distributor or anything
have you installed the points and condenser yet

you gap for the points is .019 and the dwell varies but usually around 32 degrees \

Dwell is like the opposite of gap
dwell is the angle your points stay closed for. A V8 distributor has 8 lobes in a circle so the most the points can stay closed for is 45 degrees (360 /8) Obviously your motor won't run. When you reduce the points gap you increase the dwell angle. So by changing the gap you change the dwell. Dwell is measured by placing the meter in series between the negative of the coil and the negative battery terminal with the engine running.

Hope this helps.