Timing light troubles.

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  1. Cope

    Cope Fusing with fire

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    Hi folks, Im not shure where this shoul go so Ill post it here.

    My old 1960s Sears timimg light seems to be on the fritz.
    Im not getting.any flashing at low RPM, only when I goose the throttle do I get light..

    Im thinking of buying a fancy fangled new light and want to know your thought on them VS the old standard lights.

    Heres the light im considering.
    http://www.oreillyauto.com/site/c/d..._3506&keyword=timing+light&pt=N0665&ppt=C0103

    Are these fancy lights worth paying 3 times the cost of a standard light?

    I like the fact that it reads RPM and can set total timing, is this considered a "dial back" type light? This will set total advance correct?

    Any thoughts/ opinions would be great.

    Thanks again.
     
  2. redfastback

    redfastback Don't ask me... my garage is empty

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    Well worth the money...

    Being able to set initial and total is super easy. It also gives RPM readout, and you can set dwell on points too. It also give you voltage to show your charging while running.

    I have almost the same light, different model, but Matco brand(Innova makes it for them)
     
  3. 67Dart273

    67Dart273 Well-Known Member

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    I tend to do the opposite, shy away from fancy lights. There are posts all over the internet about triggering problems with MSD products

    When "dial up" lights became popular, we ran into several that simply were not accurate. That is the last thing you want.

    I always just mark the balancer. You only have to do it once, it doesn't take all that long, and you know it's right
     
  4. Cope

    Cope Fusing with fire

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    Can you explain how to mark the ballancer?

    I did just order the light from Jegs, 102.00 no tax and free shipping. Orileys 149.00 +tax, Summit 139.00
    Guess I see how their shippig stacks up to summits..

    For a hunderd bucks Its gotta be better than my old light.

    Thanks for all the help and advice.
     
  5. RedFish

    RedFish Well-Known Member

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    The light operates on 12 volts.
    My guess is you don't have 12 volts at the battery connections at idle rpm.
     
  6. Cope

    Cope Fusing with fire

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    Good point Redfish. My battery is quite suspect and needs replacing. Alt is new and shows 14V at idle. (On gauge in dash)

    Once all this snow melts off ill put the multi meeter on and see what Im getting at Idle.

    Thanks again.
     
  7. redfastback

    redfastback Don't ask me... my garage is empty

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    Dial back technology has advanced since their introduction.
    I use them on Pertonix, MSD, & points sytems conistently..

    My old Mac digital light I bought back in 02-03 did have some of the troubles mentioned here. Even a SnapOn had trouble.
    The one your getting should work just fine.
     
  8. toolmanmike

    toolmanmike FABO Staff Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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    The Innova lights are the ones I sell (although not many any more). They are good ones and I have had no warranty issues with them. They are handy with all the features. tmm
     
  9. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod 30 Degrees Outta Whack FABO Gold Member

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    Buy a pos if you want to. It's your money. Here's the one I have.

    [ame="http://www.ebay.com/itm/USA-Vintage-Balkamp-Timing-Light-Sturdy-Chrome-6-12-Volts-/371169088059?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item566b66d23b"]USA Vintage Balkamp Timing Light Sturdy Chrome 6 12 Volts | eBay[/ame]

    Was given to me by my auto shop instructor in 1983. He owned it since the 60s. It's hands down one of the best I have ever used.

    Two things about timing lights. 1) Do NOT get a dial back piece of crappola. I don't care who makes it. Too much room for error.

    2) Do NOT get a timing light that the wiring harness unplugs from the gun. They always work loose and fail to make good contact.

    Don't waste your money. Get a good old, heavy METAL RELIABLE non dial back light. You'll be glad you did.
     
  10. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod 30 Degrees Outta Whack FABO Gold Member

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    Is this a joke question? For real? The balancer is pretty much already marked. Honestly. Use your head for something besides a hat rack.

    Bring the mark on the balancer up to the zero on the timing gauge on the timing cover. The cover should have 10* after TDC, zero and 10* before TDC. Simply transfer the 10* before TDC marks from the timing gauge on the cover to the balancer with the balancer mark lined up on zero. Turn the engine so the zero mark on the balancer is lined up with the 10* after TDC and mark the balancer again lined up with the 10* before mark. Keep doing this until you can read 60* BTDC worth of marks on the balancer.

    Just because something costs 100 bucks, doesn't mean it's good. I would send that junk ass light right on back.
     
  11. Cope

    Cope Fusing with fire

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    I dont wear hats...

    So with the new marks on the ballancer and the engine @ 2500 RPM I should see one one the new marks aligning with the zero mark on the cover?
    The new mark being my total advance?
    Is it that easy?

    On my 318 I normaly run @12 BTDC and unknow total advance.
    Anyone care to chime in with their baseline numbers?

    Thanks again.
     
  12. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod 30 Degrees Outta Whack FABO Gold Member

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    Yeah, I think you see the light. Pun intended. That's why a dial back light is the most unnecessary thing in the world, because the engine will do the work for you and be much more accurate. Just make SURE you mark the balancer going the right way. Standing in front of the engine, your marks will be to the RIGHT of the zero mark on the balancer. Make sense?
     
  13. Cope

    Cope Fusing with fire

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    Yeah, Ill post back in a few days when the snow melts.

    Thanks fellas
     
  14. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod 30 Degrees Outta Whack FABO Gold Member

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    Go find you a stylish hat in the meantime.
     
  15. redfastback

    redfastback Don't ask me... my garage is empty

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    Initial/ total are based on many factors. First find out what your initial/total is. Then subract them and you have your centrifugal advance. The higher performance an engine, the tighter it needs to be. SBM's like about 34* total.
     
  16. toolmanmike

    toolmanmike FABO Staff Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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    (end of quote)

    Just your opinion.
     
  17. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod 30 Degrees Outta Whack FABO Gold Member

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    Exactly. Based on my experience since 1974 and I'm stickin to it.
     
  18. AJ/FormS

    AJ/FormS The end is near FABO Gold Member

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    I would just like to add to the OP sometimes those old lights are actually telling the truth when they fail to illuminate, on a particular plugwire.Sometimes if a plug or wire is failing it might do that.The proof comes when you move the trigger around to different wires and then the problem is not there. Im not saying this is Your problem, just that I have experienced it.Usually your ear will tell you when a cylinder goes down at idle.
    -Rustys method of balancer marking works. I have used it during tune-ups on stock type engines.It is, however, heavily dependent on the person doing the marking, and the tools being used. Its easily possible to be out some, to a few, even to several degrees.
    -Another alternative is to purchase a Timing Tape, that you stick on the balancer. It comes pre- marked for timing and valve adjustments. Its best to prove true TDC with a piston stop before sticking it on. Theyre usually black with white marks and lettering. A cheap low-powered lite sometimes has trouble illuminating it, esp. in daylight. A good lite has no problem.And the dial-back is no longer a must-have.
    -Enjoy your new tool.
     
  19. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod 30 Degrees Outta Whack FABO Gold Member

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    Rob (crackedback) was kind enough to PM me and let me know I had told you to mark the balancer going the wrong direction and he is right of course. My apologies. I'm an idiot. Go the other way.






     
  20. mderoy340

    mderoy340 Well-Known Member

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    I prefer the old caveman light. Bought a MP timing tape years ago and use it to mark every motor I've messed with using masking tape for temp install to mark the balancer with a sharpie.
     
  21. straightlinespeed

    straightlinespeed Sometimes I pretend to be normal Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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    I have the basic Innova timing light. I had to warranty my first one. Lasted 1 week. Something inside came loose and it would flash randomly or not at all. Replaced the broken one with a identical one. It seemed a lot better and sturdier. Not sure if the other was a return or what..

    Works great for basic timing needs. I didnt want all that fancy stuff. I can do it with a basic light.
     
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