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Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer
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Found on old thread:

20S Bosch

0231 170 188 (points)

0237020042 (electronic) << Also 2.2L it would seem.

Initial timing: 5deg/800rpm(no vac)

Mechanical advance: 5-12deg/1500rpm, 14-21/2500rpm, total:22-28/4000rpm

Vacuum advance(only):12-17deg begin 120mbar end 265mbar.

20E Bosch

0231170235 (points)

0237020040 (electronic)

Initial timing: 10deg/850rpm(no vac)

Mechanical advance: 5-13deg/1500rpm, 10-17deg/2000rpm, total:15-21/3000rpm

Vacuum advance(only):12-17deg begin 120mbar end 265mbar


24E (Motronic)

Microprocessor controlled ignition(digital map). Distributor is just a solid shaft that sends HT current to each wire (like the Mercedes M103 engine).
 
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The 22E has no mechanical advance, there is an ECU in its place, but it still has a vacuum advance.
The part numbers I found were 0237507002 and 0237507004(4-speed auto models) JHU 4.
 

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Thanks for adding that info on later CIH distributors, Charles and Commodåren.

I just finished modifying a distributor for Sterling Rempel's upgraded 1.9, which is similar to mine as it has the same Combo cam, except it has 2.0 valves, and a 32/36 DGEV vs my 38 DGAS. I think it also will benefit from more initial timing advance, which isn't feasible without a mechanical advance limit, and it will have the same issue of lower manifold vacuum with that big'ish cam.

I only have older distributors left, so I figured out how to add an advance limit to the mechanical advance mechanism, and how to lock the breaker plate.

An earlier post by Tom (aka "The Cub") had a photo showing showing a nut welded or brazed or somehow attached to the mech advance plate. I had the requisite M4 nut and an M4 set screw, so I disassembled a '71 distributor (a "167 038"), revealing the mechanical advance mechanism in the first photo.

I ground the edge of an M4 nut, so it got closer to the rotor shaft, and lined it up to a spring post. One nice thing is that only one advance limit set screw is needed using this design.

I don't have a TIG welder; I need one, but this unemployment thing is slowing down my pursuit of cool things. I tried gas welding the nut to the plate, but I couldn't get penetration into the plate, which I think might be a stainless alloy. Brazing worked OK, although the vice grip squashed the nut a bit when I was trying to weld it. But it drilled out ok and an M4 tap cleaned the threads.

"While I was at it..." I made two limit adjustable plates. And locked two breaker plates....

Here is the shaft reassembled and installed in the distributor housing, using one of the original springs, and one of my "made" springs. That is shorter than the extended loop spring and has a lower spring rate, which should allow a more gradual build of ignition advance.

To lock the breaker plate, I set it inside the housing, connected the vacuum advance/retard pot, and marked the relative positions of the top and bottom plate. A quick 1/8" drill on my drill press and a corresponding pop rivet, and the plates are locked together. I marked it as such for a reminder and some future owner's benefit.

And lastly, I polished up the distributor housing, so even if it doesn't work well, it looks terrific!

The older distributor housing doesn't have an extra window to be able to access the limit set screw. I tried the guts inside a spare '75 housing I had, but the window is too low to access the set screw. To adjust the advance limit will require the breaker plate be removed, but that is much easier in the older distributor as it doesn't have the indents that hold the breaker plate.

And again, I Lok-Tited the set screw with wicking grade high strength Lok-Tite, at a position that takes a bit less than half the advance out. Hopefully that is in the range of 20 degrees of remaining advance.

I still have shiny aluminum cover plates to make up to replace the vacuum pots.

HTH!
 

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Keith, the only thing stopping me when I was attempting to do this was the removal of the c-clip, on this thread is the information to remove it by pounding it out with a drift. My question is is the original clip usable again and can you provide a small amount of details as to re installing it, how to? I wouldn’t know what size it is or where you’d find a replacement c-clip? I would think the orange flux brazing sick would work best, maybe the 15% silver would be enough? Now that I know how to disassemble, I am going to try this again after I get your reply. I like your idea on the springs I had a similar idea. Please provide a follow up and let us know how it works. On a side note, since I was unable to disassemble the distributor I have I tried a cold weld, sanded, cleaned and prepped the side of the shaft and nut. Just a warning for anyone thinking of skipping this step, DO NOT TRY THIS, the nut broke free and jammed up the distributor. That was my experience trying that method.
 

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Keith, the only thing stopping me when I was attempting to do this was the removal of the c-clip, on this thread is the information to remove it by pounding it out with a drift. My question is is the original clip usable again and can you provide a small amount of details as to re installing it, how to? I wouldn’t know what size it is or where you’d find a replacement c-clip? I would think the orange flux brazing sick would work best, maybe the 15% silver would be enough? Now that I know how to disassemble, I am going to try this again after I get your reply. I like your idea on the springs I had a similar idea. Please provide a follow up and let us know how it works. On a side note, since I was unable to disassemble the distributor I have I tried a cold weld, sanded, cleaned and prepped the side of the shaft and nut. Just a warning for anyone thinking of skipping this step, DO NOT TRY THIS, the nut broke free and jammed up the distributor. That was my experience trying that method.
The c-clip is made of spring wire, that is ALMOST is a complete circle, with just a tiny gap between the halves. Photo attached, but it is difficult to see the gap. I have done four (4) distributors now (two each of the two styles shown), and I was able to pop off the rotor shaft on all four, with the spring clip intact. Two resisted the "drift" technique, but I found if I gently pried the rotor shaft upwards from the mechanical advance plate using a large flat bladed screwdriver, the spring clip popped off. Be careful though to not let the clip and washer underneath go flying away!

Getting them back on is another matter. I used a deep 1/4" drive 6 mm socket on the first one, setting the washer over the inner shaft and then centering the spring clip on the tapered tip. I first made sure that that socket would go over the tapered shaft tip. A gentle tap, and the spring clip popped back in place.

The next two, not so good. I managed to break the spring clip in both cases. The photo shows a full clip, and the half that was left over after one broke. I had a spring that was the correct diameter that "snapped" over the shaft tip, and clipped a couple of loops off. I used the same 6 mm socket technique and the spring loops popped on. I have test pulled both rotor shafts pretty hard and they seem secure. I have not yet been brave enough to try to remove and replace them.

The clip is 5.5 mm ID when relaxed. The washer is 6.25 mm ID, 9.1 mm OD. The shaft tip is 6.1 mm OD, and the recess (where the clip locks in) is 5.6 mm OD

The next one to put back on (the full clip in the photo) will be attempted using RallyBob's technique of pushing down with needle nose plier tips. If that doesn't work, I'll go back to the socket.

As for brazing, yes, I just used standard brazing rod, and my smallest torch tip. I wire-wheeled it all first, applied flux paste, and the braze held very well to both the plate and the nut.
 

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Can Opeler
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I have a video that covers some of this disassembly process on the 1975 distributor including showing where to drill the stops etc. I might help somebody out along with the written how to and pictures Keith is showing!:)

My video is nowhere near as in depth though.
https://youtu.be/CjvfETPLv_E
 

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I have been going through the half dozen Opel distributors that I have, cleaning them up, and un-seizing seized rotor shafts, which rendered the mechanical advance non-functional on two of my distributors. That has been generally related to cooked and/or dried up lubricant between the upper distributor shaft and the rotor shaft. I have not identified that as a problem in the past, but after seeing it twice out of six distributors, it is worth checking. It is as simple as ensuring that the rotor shaft will turn a few degrees clockwise when twisted manually, and spins back when released. One distributor I had wouldn't turn at all, and the other would turn, but wouldn't spin back.

I have also modified several by adding mechanical advance limiting set screws and locking a couple of the breaker plates for engines with "big" cams where the vacuum advance would be problematic.

Doing all this, I have noticed a couple of interesting things.

First, the tables and info I have gleaned indicated that the distributor # for 1970 & 1971 should be 0 231 167 007. But my 1971 GT (built Oct 1970) and Sterling Rempel's 1971 GT (unsure of the build date) both have distributors with the older style mechanical advance, versus the 1972 to 1974 distributors, all numbered 0 231 176 012 with the tabs that are easily tapped for set screws. The distributor #'s for our 1971 Opels are 0 231 167 037 & 038.

Second, I have one distributor that ONLY has a vacuum advance, no retard. I don't recall where I got it from, but the # doesn't show up on the info I had:

0 231-150-015.

It DOES show up on the Bosch product search site:

https://secure.bosch-classic.com/pr...archportlet_javax.portlet.action=searchResult

and shows

OPEL Blitz 1.9 52KW/ 70PS 1.9l 01.1967 - 04.1970
OPEL GT 1900 [A] 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 09.1968 - 05.1970
OPEL Kadett 1.9 S Rallye-Coupe 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 09.1967 - 05.1970
OPEL Rekord 1.7 S [C] 55KW/ 75PS 1.7l 09.1968 - 05.1970
OPEL Rekord 1.9 S [C] 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 09.1968 - 05.1970

I might have retrieved it from a Kadett at the PicknPull 15 years ago, which I think was a 1969.

Using the same Bosch site to search the two 1971 distributors shows:

0 231 167 037:
OPEL Kadett 1.9 S Rallye-Coupe 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 06.1970 - 07.1971

That indicates that Sterling's GT has had a distributor swap from a Kadett sometime in the past

0 231 167 038:
OPEL Ascona 1.9 S [A] 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 03.1971 - 05.1972
OPEL GT 1900 [A] (USA) 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 06.1970 - 05.1972
OPEL Kadett 1.9 S Rallye 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 08.1971 - 05.1972
OPEL Kadett 1.9 S Rallye-Coupe 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 06.1970 - 07.1971
OPEL Manta 1.9 S [A] 66KW/ 90PS 1.9l 09.1970 - 05.1972
 

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The next one to put back on (the full clip in the photo) will be attempted using RallyBob's technique of pushing down with needle nose plier tips. If that doesn't work, I'll go back to the socket.
I tried the needle nose pliers, but mine have tips that are too fat to both go inside the rotor shaft.

So I CAREFULLY put the washer in position, ensuring it was over the inner shaft tip. Then I EVEN MORE CAREFULLY set the c-clip on top of the inner shaft tip, ENSURING that it was nicely centred on the shaft tip. Then I CAREFULLY set the extended 1/4" drive 6 mm socket down into the rotor shaft, and just pressed hard (no hammer this time). The first time, and the socket "popped" the c-clip in place. On the next two distributors, no such luck, so I ground the end of the socket flat (it was concave originally) and then it worked first try, last two distributors.

So that is the way to re-install the rotor shaft c-clip.
 
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I think I do a pretty good job resisting co-opting materials from these forums for use in The Blitz, but Keith posted about this on on Facebook and when I asked about using it he thought that was a good idea. So if all goes well an adaptation of this thread will be in the next issue, unless anyone has any complaints. If so please let me know.

The current draft of the article is here - http://www.kstreetstudio.com/OMC/drafts/Blitz-2019-02-Distributor.pdf

Mike
 

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Alternate method for limiting total advance

I’d like to contribute what I think a good alternate alternative for limiting total advance that I spotted on the internet. Once you make the modification, you can make the changes to your advance and curving with the distributor in the car. To limit the advance, you insert a nylon bushing, which most anyone can do. The modification was easier than I thought, if you happen to have the same type of distributor I have (shown earlier in this thread).
There’s very limited clearance between the post and metal for the rotating plates, making inserting the bushing more difficult. The solution was to use a Dremel carbide tip to cut away metal deep enough to create clearance on both sides of the post. I used a 9/64” drill bit to remove the remaining metal behind the post ... you don’t need to remove much. I was surprised at how soft the metal was, so it’s very easy to do.
Once you get that part done, it’s only needed on one of the sides, you're done! You can now remove and insert any size bushing you need to set your total advance. The spring goes in on top of the bushing so it’s held in place. The post is 4mm and you also want the bushing to be 4mm in height. I purchased an assortment of nylon bushings from Amazon that are typically used as spacers on electronic circuit boards. I like the 3mm ones, so I used a 4mm drill bit to drill the center hole. I could keep the bushing on the drill bit while sandpapering it to get it exact.
The diameter will come out somewhere around 5.5mm, give or take. I’m trying to get as much initial advance as I can without creating hot starting issues. Then I can play around with the springs, curving, etc. Here’s a couple of pics, one is the modified area on the left side of the pic. You can see the difference between it and the other side. The second is the bushing installed. I’ll report back once I’ve swapped distributors with the stock '72 I’m running now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
Are there any aftermarket distributor options available?


Do any other distributors (I.e. VW) cross reference to an opel distributor?

Or are we stuck with having ours rebuilt or heavily modified to fit our cars?
Never seen aftermarket for Opel.

VW, Pinto, etc that are based on Bosch all have aftermarket versions available.

However, the housings are externally different (won’t fit the timing cover) and the main shafts are all stubby little suckers. So you’d have to gut the aftermarket and Opel dizzy’s, and swap the aftermarket guts to the Opel main shaft and housing.

It’s quite honestly far less work to mod the stock stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter · #52 ·
Getting real close to needing ignition for my big valve, high comp 2.0. Do you, or someone you know, have a supply of the lighter springs. Or a part number would suffice. I intend to use the distributor out of my '73 with all the vac delete mods, but it still needs to be recurved and limited for total adv. I would be inclined to ship it to you as a bench job, but I know you are busier than a one armed wallpaper hanger right now. Please advise.
I have springs, but don’t know where they are.

I have a part number jotted down in my parts book...don’t know where the book is.

Can’t work on your distributor because of the lack of spare time, lack of tools, lack of knowledge of where anything is in my life right now!

Being in the middle of sorting my old junk and having a shop built has definitely limited my ability to work on anything.

All that said, does your big valve, high compression 2.0 actually have a high compression ratio? Over 10:1? Stock they are rated at 9.5:1 but they aren’t even a true 8.5:1, which is why I ask.

Also, UNLESS you have a big radical camshaft...the vacuum advance is fine. Stock springs are fine. You might just need to limit total advance, that’s all.
 
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I have springs, but don’t know where they are.

I have a part number jotted down in my parts book...don’t know where the book is.

Can’t work on your distributor because of the lack of spare time, lack of tools, lack of knowledge of where anything is in my life right now!

Being in the middle of sorting my old junk and having a shop built has definitely limited my ability to work on anything.

All that said, does your big valve, high compression 2.0 actually have a high compression ratio? Over 10:1? Stock they are rated at 9.5:1 but they aren’t even a true 8.5:1, which is why I ask.

Also, UNLESS you have a big radical camshaft...the vacuum advance is fine. Stock springs are fine. You might just need to limit total advance, that’s all.
I no longer have access to the pipet graduated cylinder so I did not measure the combustion chambers when I was done. My best guess is that it is right around 10.4:1. Flat tops and 1.5S head. Probably going to require octane boost with each fill up. The cam grind is not super high lift, but the split duration 108 deg. from your recipe. It says it won't run worth a damn without being recurved. Sorry everything is upside down for you right now. Looks like your hard work is paying off with the progress on your shop. They are trying to avoid chit chat in this info thread. Please PM me if you have any advice. Much appreciated.
 

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I’d like to contribute what I think a good alternate alternative for limiting total advance that I spotted on the internet. Once you make the modification, you can make the changes to your advance and curving with the distributor in the car. To limit the advance, you insert a nylon bushing, which most anyone can do. The modification was easier than I thought, if you happen to have the same type of distributor I have (shown earlier in this thread).
There’s very limited clearance between the post and metal for the rotating plates, making inserting the bushing more difficult. The solution was to use a Dremel carbide tip to cut away metal deep enough to create clearance on both sides of the post. I used a 9/64” drill bit to remove the remaining metal behind the post ... you don’t need to remove much. I was surprised at how soft the metal was, so it’s very easy to do.
Once you get that part done, it’s only needed on one of the sides, you're done! You can now remove and insert any size bushing you need to set your total advance. The spring goes in on top of the bushing so it’s held in place. The post is 4mm and you also want the bushing to be 4mm in height. I purchased an assortment of nylon bushings from Amazon that are typically used as spacers on electronic circuit boards. I like the 3mm ones, so I used a 4mm drill bit to drill the center hole. I could keep the bushing on the drill bit while sandpapering it to get it exact.
The diameter will come out somewhere around 5.5mm, give or take. I’m trying to get as much initial advance as I can without creating hot starting issues. Then I can play around with the springs, curving, etc. Here’s a couple of pics, one is the modified area on the left side of the pic. You can see the difference between it and the other side. The second is the bushing installed. I’ll report back once I’ve swapped distributors with the stock '72 I’m running now.

An update to this post. I abandoned the idea of trying to customize my own size using the nylon or ABS plastic bushings. I found too many inconsistencies due to it not being machined round as well as the softness of the material. I found a much better alternative, a ready made aluminum bushing on line 5.56mm OD 3.96mm ID.
https://www.aluminumspacers.com/as22-156-200
I just honed out the center of it as you can see it’s at about the right size to slip on the 4mm post and shaved a little off the top to have plenty of clearance underneath the spring. On my 1970 distributor that originally has 34° of total advance measured all in at 3800 RPMS this bushing gives the distributor 20° of total advance allowing me to set up my mechanical advance at 14° because I prefer to put the total advance at 34°. So with my 72’ dizzy that has 32°total advance it would come in at 16° at idle. This modification seems to work quite well using the stock distributor springs, if you’re looking for the benefits of more initial advance and have this style of distributor this is a safe easy way to get it!

Advance numbers below based on a distributor with 34° of total advancement, estimates are identified as having a question mark after the total advance number. The only two were tried are the 5.5mm O.D. spacer & 6mm O.D. aluminum standoff.
Used 1970 distributor for an automatic transmission being used.

ABS home made spacers:
Too much drift, due to not being machined round do not recommend using.

Aluminum spacers:

5mm OD 4mm ID 25-30° mechanical advance?
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.gobilda.com/amp/4mm-id-x-5mm-od-spacers/

5.56mm OD 3.96mm ID 20° mechanical advance
https://www.aluminumspacers.com/as22-156-200


Aluminum standoffs:
6mm OD threaded for M3 12-13° mechanical advance
Lyn-Tron, Aluminum, Female, Clear... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PKLIBH8?ref=ppx_pop_mob_ap_share

Stainless steel standoffs:
5.4mm OD threaded for M3 20-25° mechanical advance?
https://www.mcmaster.com/93090a647

Added note:
5.5mm OD aluminum bushing
*1970-71 distributor body #167 007
*Lg spring
*028” x .184” x .757”
*Sm spring
*.016” x .177” x .577”
*Initial advance now 14° @ idle 850-900 RPMS
* 19° @ 1,500 RPMS, 23°@ 2,000 RPMS, 27° @ 2,500 RPMS, 32° @ 3,000 RPMS, 34° @ 3,200 RPMS
*20° Total advance measured all in @ 3200 RPMs.
*Vacuum advance, adjustable (ported) 7-8° all in @ 21” total (Hg of Vacuum per degree TBD)
 

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I'd like to ask a favor: List the actual mechanical advance that you figure results from each size. It looks like you are listing the idle advance setting with which the resulting mech. advance results in 34* total. That's confusing and forces everyone to back calculate the numbers each time. (And it's not the way these things are normally discussed.)
I just re edited the post to help clear things up. Please disregard any numbers related to the ABS effort done during the learning process they were not consistent so I deleted them, I learned that unless the OD of bushing is factory machined there will be too much drift. The aluminum bushing is as good as it gets and what I see widely used for this application mostly on sites where advance bushings for other distributors are available. Very consistent so far and very confident with it, the 5.5mm fits so snugly you just know and feel confident it’s not going to offer any movement at all. Thank you BTW for your valuable input along the way. Hopefully things are simpler now with the update, tks.
 

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Thank you very much !!!! I am grateful for the help.

These ignition advance numbers are generally separated into:
- initial advance (idle, no vacuum)
- mechanical advance, either total 'all in' at x RPM, or a curve or set of advances @ RPM's
- maximum vacuum advance at so many inches of vacuum, or a similar curve or set of numbers
- vacuum connection type (ported or manifold)

That convention makes it all easy to move from one system to another and know what is going on.
 

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Any Interest in other types?

Never seen aftermarket for Opel.

VW, Pinto, etc that are based on Bosch all have aftermarket versions available.

However, the housings are externally different (won’t fit the timing cover) and the main shafts are all stubby little suckers. So you’d have to gut the aftermarket and Opel dizzy’s, and swap the aftermarket guts to the Opel main shaft and housing.

It’s quite honestly far less work to mod the stock stuff.
FYI - I just installed a 123ignition in my Porsche 914 and can't believe how easy it is to set up and how much better the performance is. I chose the Bluetooth version that allows me to program my advance curves on my phone and load them into the distributor. During my test drive I noticed that my transition from idle wasn't peppy enough for me so I pulled over, added a touch more advance at 1200 rpm and took off again - wow, worked perfectly. The 123ignition is rather pricey - around $500 but in the case that I was dealing with (modified engine that needed a different curve than stock), it was fantastic. I'm so impressed, I'm considering upgrading some of my other cars with the system.

I contacted 123ignition about the lack of a system for Opel CIH engines and am awaiting a response. I don't think they will do anything without a large enough demand. If you are interested in spending the big bucks (insert standard Opel owners being cheap joke here), contact them (https://123ignitionusa.com/ ) and ask about them. I don't expect much but it can't hurt to try.
 

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I've already received a response from 123ignition and they have told me that if i send them a distributor, they would see if they can do the conversion. I don't know how much it will cost but soon Gene and John will be receiving PM's from me asking for a donor distributor. I'll keep you updated.
 

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I posted pon FaceBook and several Opel experts generously helped out diagnosing my problem. It started with a well running but very low power engine on a '72 GT, and the dizzy 180 degrees off. After significant diagnostic help, I discovered my mechanical advance was frozen and missing springs. It seems that there is information here that is not already in this opelgt.com thread so I am compiling the comments for the benefit of others.

SEAN’S ORIGINAL POST

The distributor on my ‘72 GT appears to be about 180 degrees off from the pic in the OGTS tech document. The car actually runs and drives quite well with new points, but it it low on power. The OGTS doc has directions to pull and rotate the dizzy (remove fuel pump, etc). Will I need a dwell meter or timing light? Am I on the right track for this repair? Any other tips? Will this improve power? Thanks very much!


Ronald A Garchar
The distro will run the engine in any position if it is set up properly. To get it positioned in the best place you have to follow a few steps. Manually hand crank the engine to TDC of #1 on the compression stroke. (remember there are two TDC) next step is to pull up distro and re-insert so that the rotor is pointing towards the rear of the left front fender. this is where #1 will fire at. Most often the distro will not settle where you want it to, so you have to pull it completely out and rotate the oil pump one way or the other with a long blade screwdriver. Once you get it to seat all the way down and pointing correctly, you can now rotate the housing of the distro so the rotor is pointing at a plug wire- this will be your #1. You have 4 choices. the vac. advance should be rearward for best adjustment. finish the plug wires in the firing order and set the timing exactly at TDC with vac. hoses plugged. It may take a few trials-and-errors to get the rotor pointed properly because the oil pump slot will fight you

SEAN DOWNEY
Amazon delivered my new timing light, here are the results: 26° @ 800rpm and also the same 26° @3500rpm (with the vacuum advance unplugged from the dizzy (line plugged). VERY far off it appears. I tested it with the vacuum advanced attached, and I got 36° at both RPMs. These are not what I expected from Kyler Norman and Keith Wilford and the other posts above. I have not adjusted or changed the dizzy yet. Since the readings does not change with the vacuum is attached, I wonder if the manual advance is seized as was suggested in the posts above, but then the timing was adjusted to compensate for a poorly functioning manual advance? If so, what is the procedure for freeing it up?

KEITH WILFORD
yep, likely the mechanical advance is "stuck". A simple test is to remove the distributor cap, and twist the rotor clockwise. If it doesn't rotate a bit (about 10 to 15 degrees) and then spring back, then the upper part of the distributor (that the rotor and points lobes sits on) is seized to the inner shaft.
And yes, that might reduce the power output, although the vacuum advance is helping when at part throttle. But when you open it up, the vacuum advance goes to zero, so the reduced timing is cutting your power.
Repairing that usually requires the distributor be removed and disassembled. You can "try" to simply rotate the upper part clockwise to see if it loosens up, and lubricate it by applying some Liquid Wrench or similar to the felt pad under the rotor in the centre of the shaft. It should be lubricated with engine oil occasionally, but no one knows to do that (in the Factory Service and Owner's Manuals).
Detailed instructions on the distributor disassembly are in the FSM and in the thread.

SEAN DOWNEY
I just tried the ‘simple test’ and there is almost no movement at all, other than maybe a little play in the cap. Looks like you nailed it!

I found several problems with the distributor. 1 - A spring is missing from the mechanical advance; the weights move, but nothing else seems to. 2 - the little copper wire between the breaker plates is unattached (does this matter?). 3 - there appears to be a 3/8” hole bashed through the side of the housing, which was filled with a chunk of wood. The biggest issue still seems to be that the mechanical advance is still frozen, but this is the point in the factory manual where it says ‘do not disassemble the mechanical advance’. This must be where I use a drift to separate the cam from the main shaft. Where should I source new springs? They must be specific to this distributor, but OGTS does not seem to list them anywhere.

Keith Wilford
Sean Downey
, your distributor seems to have lots of issues. Here are some solutions:
1) you will need a suitable replacement mechanical advance spring. And there are different springs for different models of distributors, so make sure you get the correct spring. I have not been able to source new ones, but perhaps if you ask here or on OpelGT.com (under "Parts Wanted") someone might have some spares. Or, of course, either of the Opel parts suppliers (Gil Wesson at Opel GT Source or Todd Martin at Opels Unlimited) should be able to help you out. Or even provide a replacement distributor at a reasonable cost. Which might be the best idea, given the following...
2) the braided copper strip provides a ground to the breaker plate. CRITICAL to have a good ground there, with either points or a Pertronix Ignitor. I have been able to solder the strip back on, or you can simply connect a small thin wire to the bolt that holds the points (or Pertronix) in place, to the distributor housing.
3) the small shaft clip is removed by first prying the felt pad out, then holding the shaft vertically a half inch above a table top, and using a small punch (to fit inside the rotor shaft), give the inside shaft a firm smack. That will drive the inside shaft down, and pop off the clip at the same time. Unfortunately, sometimes the clip breaks. Then you are also asking/buying a replacement clip (also not found new ones, but have made one using a few coils of a suitable spring).
Finally, you need to clean up the inner shaft so the points lobe/rotor shaft can rotate. Reinstalling the clip can be tricky. I found using a small deep socket, with the end ground flat (remove the recess), set the clip in place, and gently tap the clip down with the socket. Ensure it seats.
And finally finally, replacing this distributor with another one might be the end solution. But go ahead and try the above stuff, as you have nothing to lose, and everything to learn.


SEAN’S FOLLOWUP

After all the excellent help from group experts, I was able to free up the mechanical advance on my distributor. The upper cam was indeed rusted solid onto the main distributor shaft. Ultimately, Keith’s advice for removing the clip on the top pf the shaft under the felt pad worked. Though, I needed a lot more than a firm smack – I literally had to go to a bigger hammer and hit it hard, because I was fighting both the clip and rust on the shaft. But, amazingly, a hard hit popped the clip right off intact , my son caught the falling shaft, and it all came apart for cleaning and lubrication quite easily after that. I’ve orders a new/sued breaker plate and will hopefully get new springs off a core I purchased. A bunch of people have had trouble putting the little clip back on the shaft , but it went OK for me. I ended up using two screwdrivers and pressing down and it snapped into place. Took maybe 3 minutes. As I reassembled the dizzy, I used Ron Garcer;s tips above for realigning the shaft and the oli pump slot get the shaft correctly aligned with the normal firing orientation. to Hopefully my new used springs will arrive and that will solve my low power problem! Thanks everyone for all the help, and I hope this post helps out someone else at some point.
 
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