97 chevy 5.7 cam crank relearn

50

Asked by Jan 09, 2015 at 09:47 PM about the 1997 Chevrolet C/K 1500 Silverado Standard Cab LB

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

When replacing the distributor on the 5.7 Chevy Vortec enginen, the instruction that came
with the Distributor said that a code P1345 would be set, and that a Cam Crank relearn
must be performed. Using a bidirectional scan tool. To set the retard with the scan tool,
the section you do that in is under EGR EVAP ACC. But Cam Crank Relearn is not in this  
section. Does anyone know in what section it would be?

45 Answers

8,030

relearn for a computer can be as simple as disconnecting the battery and waiting, then reconnecting. during a restart, it can seek to relearn as they always have .I am not reading a book but responding from experience. If your system requires some other operation with a scan tool it may just be saving you from resetting every function with presets. I would try a call to the GM garage for verification, and if this was all that was required, I would use the opportunity to clean and protect the connections at the battery and anywhere else maintenance was needed.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
17,945

You need to have a scan tool that can read the camshaft retard degrees. You set it with that.

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.
8,030

every cam sensor insert I have had the pleasure to deal with in the absence of specialized tools, was logically located by witness marks and looking at the degrees in a circle, and setting it in the appropriate spot from the service manual picture. even the haynes has pics and drawings about it since the early 90's. for vehicles where DIS ignition was used.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
17,945

The cam sensor is the "pick up coil" inside the distributor on a 350 vortec 96+ years. The only way to relearn or for better terms, set ignition timing, is using a scanner that reads camshaft retard degrees. You must then set that to 0

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.
8,030

and you turn the distributor body to arrange the best reading for this. and that started when, in 96 ? Then theres no purple wire connection over by the evaporator case on those ? and a 97 has coil on plug? or what ?

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.
8,030

I just checked and as usual with GM it is just slight of hand and terminology, as well as dont look there, look here ! Then I googled 97chev 5.7L vortec timing adjustment. Then I viewed the list and clicked on 97 5.7L vortec, timing advance connector- car forums. GUESS WHAT ? it is a cam insert just like a DIS has used for several years and it is under the cap. you line it up with where it was and the pics you can see online show you. you cannot get it off very far unless you arent paying attention. Read the thread. The snap on scan tool can fine tune it but you do not have to worry about it. witness marks tell the whole story just like they always have. But if you have that scanner available? have fun boys. And get it as right as you can. The thread also says the connector is not available when the parts changed and went out of use. so dont look for it.

9 out of 9 people think this is helpful.
8,030

Retard offset, what an appropriate waste of time and resources, but hey, that tool is needed for other things. But does anyone want to buy a Snap-On feedback carburetor scanner "necessary tool" ? used once, BABY ! Comes with a few adapters and connectors and a little instruction book.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
50

Your answer has nothing to do with the question, of under what heading is the cam/crank relearn in the bi-directional scanner.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
8,030

Right, that was the point, you are wasting your time and money just like I once did. The guys at the shop thought it was funny that the snap on man took advantage of a kid who just graduated tedh school and was an apprentice who believed he needed to spend that money to be accurate. After study and thought, being those were not needing it, I figured out what everyone was already aware of. It is getting you to notice the simplicity of the GM design. I learned better to understand the removal and installation, the witness marks, and they will sell expensive stuff I did not need.. It is called "eye wash for the customer" in many cases.

8,030

tech school, excuse the typo

8,030

97 5.7L vortec, timing advance connector-forums, read that thread and see the issue, the explanation, the dealership advice, and the drawings are there to ponder. You do not need to buy expensive tools unless you use them constantly or want them for your individual pleasure.

14 out of 14 people think this is helpful.
50

Thank-you for your answer. I will try and fine and follow your suggested thread. Although it is no the answer to the question at hand. Under what heading is the crank cam correlation a tech two bi- directional scan tool. I have removed and re installed and set a number of distributors, in all makes and model of engines. But the spark control is not controlled only by the position of the rotor in relationship to the number 1 spark plug and top dead center of the compression stroke. A timing light is useless in setting the spark advance/retard. Yet the engine is still a basic Gen1 Chevy 350.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
8,030

The answer to correcting your installation is there in the thread from the forum if you count 7 ballons up on this page, everything I googled is there. The guy calls the dealer and they simplify for him. But he cannot believe it can be that simple. And yet it is. The drawings at the beginnings of the sites i wrote down for you depict the install. the rotor points, the lower piece turns, you clock it, then pull it, then copy it. If you had the part and the engine was bare and you had to install without having clocked it, you center it. a degree in either direction or even up to six still has the basic area for the location. then rather than turning left or right, you center it. the plug wires line up and fit relaxed when you have it right. This thing is a cam sensor,. not for spark, it gives current cam position to the computer which also knows crank position. Then the computer references it to injector pulse and deposits fuel behind the intake valve. Finding that page,reference in the book would be difficult. Simplifying understanding without it is a technician's sanity. When the use of this began, they would have released a smaller manual about it at new model training. I would expect, like if you had to go to GM court or something. At the shops I worked at, they just wanted it back out being driven by the customer as quickly and correctly as possible. This is why we simplify. Having that understood, you can free your mind to function again. In my humble opinion.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
8,030

If you need someone to find that page in the book for you, call your dealer just like the guy in the thread did, and ask someone to set the service manual out for you to inspect. Put a card in it at that page. Tough one. Under what heading? Try cam sensor or distributor in the last pages for a reference. Their books are not that helpful when compared to their people.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
50

If you are not going to read the question do not give me an a sarcastic reply. thanks for nothing!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
8,030

Mapped out the path to low cost success, mapped out the path to read the established path on the internet. Explained why its a waste of time and money. 3 way answer. thats not nothing. Do you think they create these terminology deboccles and then hand out technical manuals to everyone ? that's not the way of GM

8,030

Your next step is to carry the steps out as i outlined to read and do what you need. The dealer has the book. The truck is designed to be assembled and sold in mass quantity. The dealer attempts to repair it using many forms of available data. They can call the engineering dept. If the explanation is beyond your technology, you must seek advice at the dealer. Service bulletins , recalls, engineer messaging and phone calls are all used when correcting their literature, parts, and people. The people are always what has saved their method. I suggest you embrace that reality, but not lash out at your help. The thread I read already has a dealer phone call response. I hope that is good enough for you. My chevy runs great, hope you like yours.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
80

with scanner connected. look at camshaft reading.HERE IS THE TRICK. Ecm does not look at (reading on scanner will not change) unless engine is above 1000 rpm, Then you can adjust, either by rotating distributor while running (be careful), or move, then run engine, etc.setting has to be "0" +- 2 deg. or code will set.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
8,030

By then, the witness marks oughta be lined up.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
80

Marks may not line up on distributor housing and intake because it is a different distributor.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
8,030

Since he is looking to be told what section in the book to look at for his answer, it obviously would be leading him by the code number through the tests and their specifics, but he finds his data in EGR EVAP ACC the way it is written, but no test. so he wants the service manual revision. Because there is a mistake. He has been told what the dealer response is in a thread to read. You would think he could call his favorite dealer and get their revision or tech bulletin since it did not make it into the one he is reading. Manufacturing tolerance would not be off in a new part that far. 4deg. range. Every car I ever was called over to sort this question out on it was obvious. The tech was "over-teching" it. If we had the service tool, great. But everytime we proved we did not (need) one. Those who thought they did, kept the tool in their area. Invested their time in overdoing everything but were still paid the same. If I were the asker, I would ask those guys at his dealer where the instructions can be found

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
20

I have a 96 chevy silverado 5.7 vortec 350 z71 we used the scan tool set it like the Internet said and still shows I'm off

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
20

What can we do we lined everything up from the pulley to distributor

17,945

If you set it with the tool to the camshaft retard degrees then how is it off? What is telling you its off? Is it setting a cam/crank correlation code? If the crank is at TDC and the distributor is on cylinder 1 then it's there. You could be 180 off with the dist but then you just take it back out and put if back in the other way

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
130

Im sure the original user that posted this question has their problem fixed by now but I felt it would be a good idea to share some knowledge I have from these processes for anyone that finds this from search. This is not me telling you that "this is the way it needs to be done" or "my way is better!", instead its just another way that may be simpler for someone that may not have the appropriate tools to do a crank/re- learn procedure. This will however require about $200-$400 in tools depending on quality and features but you are much more likely to find freinds/people willing to help that already have these tools rather than finding someone that has a tool with a bidi (Bi-Directional Control) willing to help or paying for the tool yourself that is upwards of $1000 and more! This is what you will need.... 1 - A scanner that can show timing degrees (Most mid-end scanners from NAPA/AutoZone/O'Reilly will now do this) (check with the manufacturer website before making your purchase if you do not already have one as most stores will not allow you to make a return after it has been opened) 2 - A timing-light with an advance setting. (For those of you that have not heard of this tool, its from the carb days but can still be very useful for finding issues with pre-coil-on- plug computer managed timing ignitions however it must have the advance timing feature for it to work for this application) 3 - A balancer/dampner that has a TDC mark on it that can be matched to a accurate TDC point on the engine from the factory. (Most Vortec engines have this from the factory and the TDC engine mark is usually on the timing chain cover) Procedure..... 1 - You must make sure your distributor is set properly. (Pointed to #1 when #1 is at TDC on the firing stroke) (Dont worry about being dead on but it does need to be within 1 tooth out of phase) 2 - Start your engine and observe the timing the computer is commanding. (Should be somewhere around -12 to -25 degrees but could be close to that) 3 - Hook up your timing light and set the advance on the light to match that of the scanner is showing that the computer is commanding. 4 - Observe with the timing light where your TDC mark on the dampner corresponds to the DTC mark on the engine. (It is very helpful to color-in the scribed mark on the dampner with a fine white paint pen) 5 - You now will need to rotate the distributor in the direction needed to line up the TDC mark on the balancer/dampner to the TDC mark on the engine. 6 - Once this done your distribor is now set to what the computer says it should be. If you find that your TDC marks already line up then congratulations as you should be playing the lottery since you somehow dropped in your distributor within a degree or so of what the computer sees or your computer did a self-re-learn procedure on the first key cycle of battery connection. If you run out of left or right movement when turning the distributor then you are more than 1 tooth off and will need to repeat these procedures after re-phasing the disteibutor. Hope this helps someone Thanks

11 out of 11 people think this is helpful.
Best Answer
8,030

Thanks dalton, you could write for chilton, except within1 degree "out of phase" cannot mean what you said, you must mean your result is still "out of range" meaning you can turn to get it within range. Still, it's a technical overwork deboccle designed to sell test equipment that you are battling. Witness marks and code reading telling about baseline setting of the part is where the homeowner is struggling, it is just unfamiliarity. Andrew has many kudos for fast simple approach. (that's just my opinion from seeing cars fixed fast and thrifty) And with the hundreds spent ? You can see that studying the drawing before disassembly in the websites that depict it, is all your technician needs to set you straight if you have trouble. Thats less than 100 if even that, If you already have the equipment and enjoy using it? That's great, and I hope you get many years of trouble free operation from your method. The asker wants to correct the book, and the dealer can set him straight over the phone. I enjoyed reading your approach , and thanks.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
130

No problem Dannyl. I guess the term "phase" comes from my knowledge of AC current. Lol! Thanks for the compliments. Yeah, I am very very well equipped as far as special tools go however I do not have a tech2 and can not really justify the $800 being that they are barely used anymore. I run EFI Live for programming all my OBD2 GM vehicles and can also use my OTC Pegysis for reading any vehicle in the world. That $5000 for that tool ended up being well worth it for the yearsi have got out of it. Think im going to upgrade though in the next 3 years to one of the newer models. Well, I was glad someone felt my opinion would be helpful for someone. Take care

8,030

I did have a vehicle out of phase once, no matter what they did, or who they went to, the thing would not start and run. The parts were assembled out of phase, making the ignition fire incorrectly. The guy's wife made him give the rig away rather than investing further since it needed other repairs. I pulled the distributor out and noticed the gear dimple was not pointing the same as the rotor. No matter how they tried restabbing and rewiring, a no start. Then we put the engine in a car that ran for years after.

8,030

Out of phase is also like a ranger driveshaft, you can almost get it 180 out, but not quite, if you tighten the yoke onto this two stage shaft out of phase and assemble ? The driveshaft can react violent especially on takeoff and the first section is out of phase with the second. If you had two 110 volt sources out of phase to your dryer? That's 220, right ? the line has to travel above and below 0 in a signwave, up to 110, back down across 0 and continue to 110 below and so on across the viewer.

8,030

For this GM truck, tho, the body of the cam sensor has to be in range to adjust, we would turn the sensor placing the parts in the sweet spot of a few degrees available

435

Danny: that mstly works on non-Cal engines. Cal engines use a distibutor hold down that allows only one position, no matter what the offset is, it's not adjustable. I've had CalEPA cert'd 4.3s and 5.7s and just used a grinder to notch out the hold down so the distributor could be twisted. Gas mileage went up 9mpg too. I like to set them at zero to +2.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
8,030

You had the fuel mileage increase on those by 9 mpg? that's awesome. Neaat trick. and if we have any of those visit us, I will look at what you mean about that hold-down.

60

Thanks for all of the great info. If you don't want to buy the $1000 2-way scanner, or don't want to pay a mechanic $250 to do this adjustment, here is what I did. Old school. You will need a scanner that can at least clear codes. Get the blue-tooth scanner/adapter (amazon) and pay the $2.99 for the "torque" app (the free one is lame) and you can get some basic real time info and reset codes etc. all for way under $25. First of all, if your distributor is 180 out, or a tooth or 2 off it won't run for shit or at all, and is another whole post. So let's focus on this specific situation: Reasonably installed distributor, running well, still throwing the 1645 code. Clear the code. Start the truck. Start a timer to see how long before the code is thrown. 4-6 seconds equals too far advanced. Loosen the hold down. Back it off 2-4 degrees at a time, repeating the code clearing/restart procedure. You will quickly find that there is a correlation between the quickness the code is thrown and how far advanced it is. As you back off and restart, it will take longer to throw the code (ie 8-12, 12-16 seconds) then voila, you will find the sweet spot. If I had the $1000 snapon scanner, I would be able to rotate the distributor in real time @ 1000 RPM and get it into spec (within -2 to 0 degrees I think). The above took me 15 minutes and now the 1645 code is gone forever. On down the road!

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
60

I mean P1345

325

Whatever happened to feeler gauges, points and tach and dwell meters, Lord Mr. Ford !, all this electronic gobbledeegook, just to pinch pennies and clean up our dirty air? My '66 Chevy ran like a top and without cat converter barely showed anything for hydrocarbons on the fancy EPA regulated comptater, back then we knew how to do a tune up! LOL!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
60

Yes, I am really missing my '68 Mustang 200 Straight Six right now. I could pull the distributor blindfolded from the front of the engine where you could actually service it without "climbing aboard" like the ridiculous Chevy vortec design. If we could pull together all of the tools in the US that fell back there into the "tool shelf" over the vortec's 30 year run, we would have quite a yard sale . . . As an update to my ridiculous approach of backing it off and guessing/praying, just find someone with the Snapon 2-way scanner and get it over with. Once I found the honest mechanic who knew what I was trying to do, he hooked it up, we brought it to 1000 RPM's, brought it to zero degrees, No light, off to AAA for the sticker. All good. $40.

325

Well, that beats the aggravation of cussing and fussing while you try to set it by ear, like my nephew is doing right now, bought engine that was tampered with & just been a big pain trying to get it running, but I can only give him advice, too hard to climb up under the hood anymore.

20

To Gumb63, if your nephew is simply trying to get his vehicle running, here is what I did. I verified that #1 was exactly at TDC then ensured that the metal end of the rotor was pointing exactly at the embossed 8 on my distributor. Immediate start and no codes. I haven't found anyone with a scanner to set mine exactly yet but I have put 10K on the Vortec 5.7 since rebuilding with no issues.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
60

Yes Gumbo63! You lined it up and got lucky/nailed it. If you are more than 2 degrees out it will throw the code. Spec is 0 +/- 2 degrees. Mine was 12 degrees advanced and ran like a champ. Not because my spark was actually advanced, (like the good old days) but because the computer controls this no matter where it is (within reason ie 25+ degrees out is probably a no go). I miss my 200 inline six. Remember the little screw inside of the vacuum input that you could adjust for the spark advance. ;-0

60

Actually that was directed to intensefocus. So to make a long story short, the "relearn the crank position" myth is simply that. Nothing gets relearned. When you clear the codes, the computer simply checks to see if position is within spec (0 +/- 2 degrees). If not, the infamous P1345 code. To check this, you need the 2 way scanner, and my guy had trouble finding it because it is in the evap section. Revv it to 1000 RPMS and twist til you nail it. Clear the codes and drive to the DMV for your sticker. Good Times

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
325

I am so old ,that I remember using a tach & dwell meter, when available, otherwise, using my ears and feeler gauge to set time and points, these computer controls don't make anything work better, just complicate a simple machine. If it weren't for EPA & oil lobbyists interests, we'd all have less headaches. No codes, no relearn, no reset, just, clean & adjust. And yes I remember that 200 straight 6, and the vac advance screw, had one in my Maverick. Was a decent car if kept up.

325

By the way, these vehicles made in the past twenty odd years, won't make it to antique status, there is too much cheapening of manufacturing these days , they use inferior materials and cheap foreign labor, yet charge highest prices of all time. Welcome to Windows Car 3.1 shutdown , restart, reset, repeat!

30

You do not have to have scan tool. A code reader to clear codes would be helpful and make it a lot quicker than having to unhook the batt but isn't even absolutely necessary. You guys have said multiple times that THE LIGHT SETS IF ITS NOT PERFECT so you need a scan tool. If you don't have one its really simple guys. #1 top dead center, stab to at aimed to #1. As long as you are not a tooth out start it... If its a hair off guess what guys?? Check engine light comes on with a cam/crank correlation. Turn dist a hair, clear the code, start the truck. If its off... You got it! Check engine light comes on. Notice when you start if it seemed better or worst than first start. Better? Keep going a hair further and repeat until light don't set on startup. Worse? Wrong way ,start the other direction & repeat until light don't set on startup. Tighten down distributor & start one last time and make sure light don't come on. Done. Set many of the 350 vortecs this way. The one I did this morning took about 10 minutes & maybe 6 starts. And if a person couldn't afford even a code scanner, granted it could be time consuming , they would just need to clear the code by unhooking batt and resetting by one of many common methods every time. Oh, & not spend a dime if they so choose to invest their time instead. Hope this helps someone who's broke & trying to figure out a way to set their timing.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

I know this is an old thread but I hope this helps someone in the future. As the distributor gear wears the computer adjusts to keep the engine running properly. Ford calls it adaptive strategy. When the new distributor is installed this strategy is trying to run the engine with the old distributor. There is no need to waste money on scan tools or shop labor costs. Just drive the vehicle as is and it will "learn" the new strategy. You will have to stop the engine and restart several times also as startup is part of the strategy. It only took a half day in my work truck. It may throw a rich code during this learning process but will clear up.. do not readjust the distributor during this process is it will have to start over. I hope this helps.

Why would my truck feel stronger at -13 degrees cam retard at 1200rpm (snap on mt2500) and at 0 degrees feels like a dog? I know spark advance or retard are not controlled this way but definitely pulls better on acceleration. No code sets until I get over -15 away from 0. I can't go + any since the cap hits the plenum. It's a brand new factory 7.4 vortec. I've yet to try to stab the distributor in one more tooth over for more + adjustment. The last time I had it out seemed like it needs to be where it is or its limited in the other direction by the sensor plug hitting the pressure regulator. Main thing is when set at 0 it is just a dog but at -13 it comes to life. Weird. And another issue its having with the old engine and this new engine is when it warms up on a hot day it stumbles under very light and hold acceleration from a stop. Everything seems to check out and no misfires detected. Tps reads ok maf reads ok cts reads ok map reads ok fuel injectors individually cleaned and checked. If a coil the coil or ign module is failing when heat soaked shouldn't I see misfires? I'm almost thinking a wire grounded somewhere in the loom but don't know where to start looking. Short of replacing the harness... Any insight of ideas?

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