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#822892 09/08/20 10:13 pm
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Bob E Offline OP
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quick question on timing, im installing a pazon ignition on my 1968 Spitfire engine and when I lock the crank in position with the tool that goes in front of crankcase, is that TDC or is that 34 degrees BTDC with tool installed into groove in crank? thanks

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The first thing you want to do is find a copy of the workshop manual it has a drawing showing this and most importantly which way up the pre 69 crank locking tool should fit.

If your tool is marked A50 and A65 then the A50 part wants to be in the readable orientation.

The A65 market is for the 37° position and is too far advanced. The tool sets the pre TDC position. Not TDC.

You want to use the hole on the Pazon which is furthest away from the terminal block. And timing should be verified and adjusted in accordance with a strobe Light. The marker on the Pazon is a starting point. Some are over advanced and some are way retarded of the correct point. This is just a guide so you can start the bike.


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68’ A65 Lightning “clubman”
71’ A65 823 Thunderbolt (undergoing restoration)
67’ D10 sportsman (undergoing restoration)
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The timing slot in the flywheel is at full advance (I thought it was 34 degrees Allan). As Allan said, lining up the hole and the dot on the trigger mech. will only get it close enough to start up and strobe-time.

While you have the crank locked in the fully-advanced position, look at the alternator rotor and see if the timing mark lines up with the needle in the primary cover. It should, but if for some reason it does not, make a timing mark to line up with the needle, and use that mark for dynamic timing.


Mark Z

'65(lower)/'66(upper, wheels, front end, controls)/'67(seat, exhaust, fuel tank, headlamp)/'70(frame) A65 Bitsa.
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Bob E Offline OP
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Thanks Mark, of course this rotor that the builder used has NO marks on it. so I will have to make a line to coincide with the pointer. speaking of pointers I have to have the pointer in the right side hole in the case, correct. my case has 2 holes for the pointer

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The rotor's not back to front is it? Just a thought...

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71 WSM gives 34- 36 degrees BTDC as ignition timing.

If you have the stock ytpe alternator the rotor should have two raised bosses 180 degrees apart, with a clearly scribed line, no 2 is the correct strobe mark. What Koan says ,check its not on back to front.

Last edited by gavin eisler; 09/09/20 12:47 am.

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no don't look like it, Lucas is on the side facing me. if that means anything. how hard is it to break the torque on that nut for the rotor with the engine sitting on the bench? and is it reverse thread? guess I could look this stuff up in my manuals, but im at work now and the books are at home, thanks

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Bob E Offline OP
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thanks Pod

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The thread is regular, a rattle gun will do it.


71 Devimead, John Hill, John Holmes A65 750
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Thanks again Pod

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Don't take it off needlessly, you will be able to feel the raised bosses on the reverse side with your fingers, if they are there.

Or use a dentists mirror and torch.

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If you're making you own timing mark, I don't think it matters which hole the needle is in.

If you loosen the rotor nut, be aware it needs to be re-torqued to 60 ft.-lbs. This is necessary to properly pin the crank and shims to the main bearing.

In lieu of a rattle gun, put the tranny in gear and stand on the brake pedal as you tighten the nut.


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I don't think the rotors say "Lucas" on the back side, so that one is probably on right. If no timing marks, does it at least have the raised areas (two, 180 degrees apart)? If it does, you'll want the timing needle more or less centered in the raised area, so then it will make a difference which hole it's in.


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Bob E Offline OP
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Mark, no lines, no raised areas opposite each other, will try and send picture later

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Originally Posted by Mark Z
The timing slot in the flywheel is at full advance (I thought it was 34 degrees Allan).

Your right Mark for 68... Early A65's and A50 cyclones used 37 degrees BTDC timing, the timing tool came in c1965 and had a marking both sides to highlight which direction the tool should be (some aftermarket tools dont have these stampings)

By about 66/67 all timing called for 34 degrees, the factory probably felt this suited the bikes rolling out of the factory as proven by the numbers on the dyno. It was also about 66 that they started using larger port heads (might have something to do with the port change or could just be coincidence) it was about 67 that the strobe timing inspection window apeared on the primary cover.

I beleive early rotors which wouldn't have had the timing marks were narrower than the later one so it would be interesting to see what you have.


Originally Posted by gavin eisler
71 WSM gives 34- 36 degrees BTDC as ignition timing.


I've seen this... God knows why the change...

Originally Posted by Bob E
Thanks Mark, of course this rotor that the builder used has NO marks on it. so I will have to make a line to coincide with the pointer. speaking of pointers I have to have the pointer in the right side hole in the case, correct. my case has 2 holes for the pointer


As your not using a rotor with marks already showing, it wouldn't matter which hole you picked, as long as your line came inline with one pin...

The best way would be to mark with a ruller across the stator and rotor that way you know that when you have made your mark, you know the refrence for it is correct when strobe timing.


Now let’s all have a beer beerchug

68’ A65 Lightning “clubman”
71’ A65 823 Thunderbolt (undergoing restoration)
67’ D10 sportsman (undergoing restoration)
68’ D14 trials (undergoing transformation)

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Bob E Offline OP
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Thanks Allan, great info and I need all the help I can get.

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No worries Bob.


Now let’s all have a beer beerchug

68’ A65 Lightning “clubman”
71’ A65 823 Thunderbolt (undergoing restoration)
67’ D10 sportsman (undergoing restoration)
68’ D14 trials (undergoing transformation)


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