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Old 03-28-2016, 01:56 PM   #1
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Something wrong

Ok finally finished the rebuild on my 89, phone broke during the process so haven't been able to post pics but engine is finally together, only leak seems to come from thermostat housing so we tried to start the car at least once to see if it would start and it seemed like it just wouldn't catch the spark. Gave it a bit of gas and it sounded like a very loud backfire. Stopped immediately and hoping for some ideas on what's wrong. I checked the firing order and it seems correct...would post video but I don't know how.


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Old 03-28-2016, 02:31 PM   #2
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Part of me is saying the timing is off, maybe I don't have the dizzy lined up correctly.


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Old 03-29-2016, 04:34 PM   #3
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On the valve timing,you did install the timing chain with the cam gear at
6 o'clock & the crank gear at
12 o'clock??
If yes,the valve timing is right.
Now on to the ignition timing.I would start over just to be sure.
1)Rotate the crank so you can get to the balancer.Use Witeout & draw a line on the balancer at the 10° btdc mark.Its the 10° mark on the right side of the 0° mark,when viewing the balancer from the front of the car,looking down at the balancer.
2)Pull the #1 spark plug & stuff a piece of tissue paper into the hole slightly
3)Use a torque wrench/breaker bar & a socket & rotate the crank clockwise til you see the paper blow out of the hole.You will also hear a rush of air too.When the paper blows out,keep turning the crank until the 0° mark lines up with the timing pointer then stop.
4)Now you're gonna drop the distributer into the block.The rotor is gonna turn in a clockwise direction as the distributer is falling into place,so you wanna start out with the rotor pointing slightly to the passenger side of the upper/lower intake flange,that way when the rotor starts turning (as the distributer is going down into the block)it will end up facing the right direction,when the distributer bottoms out on the block.The first 3 pictures shown below detail where the rotor needs to point when youre at the beginning,halfway & ending point,of dropping it in.
5)When the distributer bottoms out on the block,the rotor should be facing the same direction that's shown in picture #3(which means it will be pointing to the #1 spark plug post on the distributer cap)If not,pull it back out & try again.When its lined up correctly,tighten the bolt snug but not tight.Reinstall the spark plug & plug wire.
6)Hook a timing light up then start the engine & let it warm up for a few minutes
7)Pull the spout plug,aim the timing light & rotate the distributer til the 10° btdc mark(white line you made)is lined up with the timing pointer,tighten the bolt.Recheck it with the timing light to make sure it didn't move while you were tightening the bolt,plug the spout plug back in,youre finished.
*The 4th picture below shows score marks on the block & distributer that were put there by the Ford engine builder(if you've still got the OEM block & distributer the car came with)
If your block & distributer still has these marks,they represent the 10° initial timing setting you should set the timing to.In otherwords(if you've got these marks) drop the distributer in the block,make sure the rotor is pointing towards the #1 spark plug post on the distributer cap,snug the bolt down then rotate the distributer so its score mark lines up with the block score mark & you'll be sitting at the correct 10° btdc position, instead of having to use a timing light to set it.I would however use the timing light to confirm its at 10°,just for peace of mind.*
BTW-if it won't start,its backfiring & its due to a timing issue,that usually means you've got the distributer installed 180° out or the #1 piston was on the exhaust stroke when you dropped the distributer in,instead of it being on the compression stroke.
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Old 03-29-2016, 05:32 PM   #4
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You got it from wbrockstar and I would bet it is the timing that is off.
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Old 04-01-2016, 10:16 PM   #5
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Sry for delayed response. No I didn't actually I will try that first thing in the morning I really need to get this car sold


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---------- Post added at 10:16 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:15 PM ----------

Thanks for the play by play also it'll make it a lot easier this is my first time rebuilding an engine...


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Old 04-02-2016, 06:26 PM   #6
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And then it rains all day I love it 😡


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Old 04-04-2016, 01:17 PM   #7
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I'm not seeing the factory mark on the block for the 10 degree


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Old 04-04-2016, 01:20 PM   #8
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This is where im at with the dizzy fully seated in the block


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And I see the factory marks but there's two and now I'm totally confused sry


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Old 04-04-2016, 01:21 PM   #9
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I'm going to rotate the crank and pull #1 plug and see if I can get air compressed out


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Old 04-04-2016, 01:32 PM   #10
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Definitely have compression so I'm at top dead center right now


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Old 04-04-2016, 01:42 PM   #11
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Sry for so many post trying to keep u guys updated I've never done timing before and don't wanna mess it up lol. So I installed my balancer in wrong, the marking is a bit off to the side (toward the passenger side) not paying attention and i see where it got me. Would I need to reinstall the balancer the correct way?


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Old 04-04-2016, 11:18 PM   #12
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If you didn't do it to begin with,you have to pull the #1 spark plug first,stuff paper into the plug hole then rotate the crank clockwise until the toilet paper blows out of the spark plug hole.(This is the only way to know whether the #1 piston is at tdc on the compression stroke instead of the exhaust stroke.If #1 is on the exhaust stroke,the piece of paper won't blow out.The crank makes two full revolutions to complete a cycle so you've gotta make sure you're on the compression stroke when dropping the distributer in,otherwise the engine wont start & it'll backfire) When the tp blows out,turn the crank a tiny bit more til the 0° mark lines up with the timing pointer then stop turning it.Now you've gotta drop the distributer in until its fully seated & make sure the rotor is pointed just like shown in the picture below & the score mark(out of the two youve got)on the left hand side of your distributer housing is lined up with the block score mark.Once those two things are lined up,tighten the holddown bolt loosely then turn the distributer clockwise until the right hand score mark is lined up with the block score mark.

You should now be sitting at the correct 10° setting.
Out of those two marks you've got on the distributer, the left one should be the 0° spot & the right one should be the 10° spot.
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XE276HR .544" .544"
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:37 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbody91 View Post
I'm not seeing the factory mark on the block for the 10 degree
Use the picture below as a visual reference then use a file or a screwdriver & hammer & cut this mark into your block,at the same spot.
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TFS track heat
XE276HR .544" .544"
Flowtech 1 3/4"
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Old 04-05-2016, 12:59 PM   #14
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Thanks will get back on it once I get off work


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Old 04-05-2016, 06:25 PM   #15
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I would use a timing light to verify timing is set to 10°,once you get finished putting everything back together & you get the engine to start & run.
1)Use Witeout & draw a line across the balancer at the 10° btdc spot,just like its shown in the first picture below.
2)Attach the timing light clamps to the battery posts & attach the timing light clip on wire to the #1 spark plug wire.
3)Locate the spout plug(shown in the second picture below)thats wired into the ignition module harness, & remove the plug from the harness(just like its shown removed in the second picture)
4)Start the engine,aim the timing light at the balancer & pull the trigger on the timing light.The white line,you drew,should be lined up with the timing pointer.If its lined up,you've done everything correctly.
BTW-the timing pointer is the part shown in the first picture that's painted blue & its lined up with the white line(10° mark)
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Old 04-06-2016, 05:22 AM   #16
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Quick question I'm also hearing something about a fuel switch I have to reset anytime the motor is pulled from the car? A switch located somewhere in the trunk?


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Old 04-06-2016, 08:23 AM   #17
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It is a red button in the truck.
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Old 04-06-2016, 08:39 AM   #18
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You're talking about the fuel pump inertia switch.I've never heard of needing to reset it when pulling a motor though.It will trip,like a circuit breaker does,if you hit a large pothole or the car gets jarred because of an accident.It trips and cuts power to the fuel pump.If you wanna check it though,open the hatch & look to your left.If you don't see it,its hid under the plastic trim that covers the driver side taillight assembly.Make sure the red button is pushed down,its the reset button.The picture below shows the inertia switch.It will have a wiring harness plugged into it.
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91 LX 342ci(10.5:1)
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TFS track heat
XE276HR .544" .544"
Flowtech 1 3/4"
Prochamber w FM
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Old 04-07-2016, 07:58 PM   #19
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It was the timing. Got it started. Timing cover and oil pan bolts I don't think I tightened properly my oil looks like choco milk. I know it's not the head gasket that's brand new..


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Old 04-08-2016, 07:04 AM   #20
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If those bolts were loose,coolant could have leaked down into the oil pan behind the timing cover.It usually takes the engine running for awhile before a intake or head gasket would show those signs.Its also possible the intake could be warped a little,allowing coolant to mix with the oil.You could check for wet spark plugs to indicate a head gasket problem. I had a intake gasket leak once & it took a few days of running,after a rebuild,before seeing signs of coolant leakage. Oil will look like a milkshake with white residue in it.Did you rebuild the engine just because of age & mileage or did something occur to warrant a rebuild??
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:40 AM   #21
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It had a cracked block, originally i had an exhaust leak, as i was working my way down i could see how bad this car was. Bolts rusted and threads eaten away, gaskets completely melted, I bought the car for my gf it was her first fox she wanted it because guy was selling said it had a 331 stroker. Basically we got *****ted on this car, sat for two years outside, guy said it was kept in storage that was a lie. Said he had just changed the oil, we checked oil before buying, but did an oil change once we got it home, looked like tar coming out of there. The new block we got from a jy out of a 2000 explorer. Our first rebuild her and i wanted to do it together I can't tell u how many times we messed up on the way


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Old 04-08-2016, 12:55 PM   #22
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That sucks. I always tell people when buying a car and they tell them it has this or that or whatever....show me receipts. Show me something cause if not then it ain't got it.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:24 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smurf stang View Post
That sucks. I always tell people when buying a car and they tell them it has this or that or whatever....show me receipts. Show me something cause if not then it ain't got it.
I agree 100%
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:25 PM   #24
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Did you disassemble the Explorer engine & have the block & heads cleaned,magnufluxed,etc & have the other parts cleaned too or did you leave the short block as is & install new gaskets from the heads up??You mentioned having new head gaskets & a rebuild,but I wasn't sure exactly how far you went.
It wouldn't cause coolant to leak internally unless you overheated the engine & blew the new head gasket,but did you install the head gaskets with their correct orientation??The "Front" stamp should be to the front of the block.This means you will have to flip one of the gaskets over.If installed incorrectly,coolant won't circulate to the rear of the engine & it will cause overheating,which could blow the new head gasket.Just look at your block & make sure you see the head gasket tab sticking out at the lower front head bolt on each head.If you see those tabs,the gaskets are installed correctly.The pictures shown below detail how they should look.
Hopefully you just got a little coolant mixed in with the oil due to the loose timing cover gasket.
Did you use a torque wrench to tighten the head & intake bolts??Its imperative to use one on those bolts & to do it in the correct sequence.
Its normal for the intake bolts to loosen a little during the first heat cycle,so make sure you remove the upper intake & retorque the lower intake bolts.The head bolts usually hold their torque pretty well,but it wouldnt hurt to check them.
Youre supposed to use sealant on the lower head bolts too,since they pass through water jackets.
You could do a compression test on the cylinders,to make sure the head gaskets are still good.If one cylinder or two adjacent cylinders are low,youve got a head gasket issue.
Its much more likely to be a leaking intake gasket though compared to a head gasket.Sometimes the intake gasket wont seal properly if the bolts werent torqued correctly or the bolts lost their clamping force.The only symptoms I had,when my intake gasket was leaking,were constant loss of coolant in the radiator & oil with a milkshake consistency.I would do a compression test,retorque intake bolts,change oil & filter & keep an eye on coolant level,oil consistency & any signs of overheating.

1st picture=driver side
2nd picture=pass side
Look for head gasket tab sticking out at the lower front head bolt.If you don't see this tab,your gasket is installed backwards
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Flowtech 1 3/4"
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Old 04-13-2016, 02:19 PM   #25
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Sry for the delay again. Yes explorer engine was disassembled had it honed also. I dove back into the engine, the gasket had entire piece missing I have NO idea how that happened, I replaced with a new one, oil pan bolts were loose i tightened those. And timing cover had a couple bolts loose. Started the car back up it ran for about 30 secs then shut off by itself. I changed the oil figuring because i ran it with the milky oil even for 30 secs maybe that was the cause. Oil is changed but I'm running water through my cooling system for now because the thermostat housing is now leaking badly I've checked and rechecked can't figure out what the issue is


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Old 04-13-2016, 08:59 PM   #26
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Ive had to use 1 gasket & no rtv,1 gasket+ rtv or 2 gaskets with no rtv before on the thermostat housing.Make sure the intake,where the tstat housing bolts up,doesn't have any gouges in it from improperly scraping the old gasket off & do the same to the tstat housing itself.If the bolts are tightening up good & it won't seal, regardless of gasket & rtv use,you might have to buy another tstat housing.Have you tried using the housing from your old stock intake,if youve still got it??It should be identical to the Explorer housing,in bolt pattern & design.
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91 LX 342ci(10.5:1)
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TFS track heat
XE276HR .544" .544"
Flowtech 1 3/4"
Prochamber w FM
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Old 04-13-2016, 10:58 PM   #27
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No haven't thought about using my old one actually. I'll try that if it doesn't work I'll try to double gasket it. And if that doesn't work I'll go for a new housing.


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Old 04-14-2016, 04:21 PM   #28
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I have tried many combinations on those necks like just rtv, gasket & rtv, rtv/gasket/rtv, just a gasket (very frustrating). #1 thing is make sure the surfaces are super clean and very flat.
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Old 04-20-2016, 05:37 AM   #29
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I love how the weather permits me to wait before I can get under the hood when im this close to being done. I double gasket the housing, so far so good, it's running good, clutch is still a little loose I may have to reroute it thru the engine a bit better, and gonna get a new set of tires will post pic once I'm done with all


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Old 04-20-2016, 07:26 PM   #30
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If youve still got the stock clutch pedal quadrant in place,it may need adjustment.Just put the car in neutral, grab the clutch pedal with your hand(or you can put your foot under it)& lift upwards on it as far as it will go then push it back down slowly.You will hear it make a clicking noise,if it was out of adjustment.The quadrant has teeth on it which the pawl locks into.This adjustment process should be done every 5000 miles.
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TFS track heat
XE276HR .544" .544"
Flowtech 1 3/4"
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:22 PM   #31
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Yup I pulled and it clicked. Still seems a bit loose but the clutch engages without a problem.


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Old 04-20-2016, 11:29 PM   #32
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It's the all white one. The other is my daily, and the gf has a 94' outside of the pics. After taking it apart and pulling the engine, replacing gaskets/hoses/bolts etc and its running I think we did pretty good for our first time and it's finally done. Been a long 4 months.


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Old 04-21-2016, 10:13 PM   #33
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Congrats broski.

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Old 04-22-2016, 06:10 AM   #34
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Awesome job dude.

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Old 04-22-2016, 08:38 AM   #35
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A lot of hard work - great job!
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