Engine over haul- I need details about the distributor, crank and cam timing.


Asked by Apr 03, 2012 at 10:13 PM about the 1999 Dodge Ram 1500 4 Dr ST 4WD Extended Cab LB

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I need opinions on timing for my sons 1999 ram 1500 4x4. We set the crank and cam a week ago. It
took three trys to get it. We did not check the TDC and the rotor position till it was in the truck and
found that at TDC the rotor is about 5 degrees from cyl #1. The engine rotates freely. Is this going to be
OK with ignition timing or should I disassemble and recheck crank and cam?. I ask because the timing is
not adjustable by turning the distributor and it has a pulse ring that runs about 180 degrees.

8 Answers

Mike Tritle

If you set the cam timing with the marks facing each other, that is the cam gear mark at the bottom and crank mark at the top, you might be timed for spark to occur at cylider #6. To verify this, check the valves on #1 and #6 to see which one has both valves closed. The other will have the intake valve just beginning to open. With the spark plug out of number one, stick something (your finger will work for this) over the hole and bump the engine over until it puffs air out. Then set to the 0 degree timing mark and install the distributor from there. Hope this helps. Good Luck!

Joel Mearns

5" is good. It will be fine.

Mike Tritle

You meat 5 degrees, right Joel? If so, you are correct if the cam timing is to #1. Otherwise its 180 distributor degrees out of phase.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Joel Mearns

Yer mike that I do. The only way to see if 180 out the motor button is at number eight instead.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Thanks Mike and Joel. We will check this out Friday.

Mike Tritle

Nope, number 6 on a Mopar 8. Firing order 1,8,4,3, then 6,5,7,2. Don't forget, 180 Distributor degrees, 360 crank degrees. Distributor turns 1/2 crank speed with camshaft. Don't worry, my auto shop students used to have a hard time with this till I listed them over and under each other to determine firing mates.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
Joel Mearns

Yer mate my heads still on Windsor Cleveland fire order 13726548 or 15426378... thanks for the heads up.

Mike Tritle

Still, firing mate is number 6 in the orders above. In a 8 cylinder engine the fifth hit is mate to #1.

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