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Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

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94f150rules
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Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #1 by 94f150rules » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:42 am

I finally got my truck running last night. It's a 94 F150 with a rebuilt 300, and rebuilt mazda 5 speed, I put in new timing gears and a crane 503901 cam during the rebuild, I wasn't able to get roller rockers to work so I'm running the stock rockers for now. I removed the spout connector and set my timing to 10 degrees just like they said online, but I noticed the truck doesn't pull well until I'm revving around 2000 rpm. But from 2000 rpm to red line it pulls pretty nice. Before the rebuild the truck pulled hard up to about 3000 rpm and then did nothing. I know with other engines I built a bigger cam needed more initial timing. What are you guys setting yours at?

pmuller9
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #2 by pmuller9 » Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:46 am

If you advance the initial timing then the total timing will be too high.

You can temporarily try the initial timing at 15 degrees just to see if the low rpm response improves but you shouldn't leave it there.

The other question is when you installed the cam, where was the intake lobe center at?
Crane specifies the intake lobe center to be at 108 degrees ATDC.

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MechRick
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #3 by MechRick » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:15 am

I would try 12 BTDC and see how it runs. Listen carefully for ping.

Are you running the stock speed density PCM?

One of the advantages of Duraspark with a carb is the distributor can be recurved with springs and total advance can be limited by using a different advance plate, or restricting the tang on the advance plate with plastic shrink wrap tubing. Vacuum advance can be limited by using an adjustable vacuum advance unit.

With TFI-IV there is no way to do this short of aftermarket fuel injection.

The Crane 503901 is fairly mild in it's specs. It *should* pull hard once over 1000 rpm.
1994 F150, 4.9L/ZF 5 speed, C-Vic police driveshaft
EFI head w/mild port work, 3 angle valve job
1996 long block, stock pistons, ARP rod bolts
Stock cam, aluminum cam gear
Hedman header, full mandrel bent duals, crossover, super turbos
http://fordsix.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=73244
Bronco II with a 2.3L swap http://fordsix.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=72863
1988 F250 2x4, 460 ZF 5 speed.

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xctasy
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #4 by xctasy » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:45 am

Mega Jolt Lite, or an Aussie 250 Port EFi computer and ignition upgrade. TI Australia allow you to fiddle with the MAP Speed Density 4.0 systems like you can a mapped A9L V8 5.0 EFi with cam changes.

But you are right, ignition curve changing is harder when the TFi interfaces with the EFI.
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94f150rules
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #5 by 94f150rules » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:04 pm

When I installed the can I installed it straight up. I just lined the dots up. I'll try going to 12 degrees tonight. I don't mind putting super in it, to stop the pinging.

pmuller9
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #6 by pmuller9 » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:40 pm

94f150rules wrote:When I installed the can I installed it straight up. I just lined the dots up. I'll try going to 12 degrees tonight. I don't mind putting super in it, to stop the pinging.


Lining up the dots usually puts the cam 4 degrees retarded. Others and myself included have had to either use the Cloyes gears or the Mr Gasket off set cam gear key to advance the cam close to where it needs to be.

It is possible to be as much as 8 degrees retarded with just lining up the dots.
Do you a dial indicator with a magnetic base?

94f150rules
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #7 by 94f150rules » Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:29 pm

I don't have a dial indicator, the timing set I put in I think was cloyes. I'm not positive I have to go through my receipts.

pmuller9
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #8 by pmuller9 » Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:02 pm

It would have been the Cloyes 8-1014 gear set if it has the 3 way crank gear.

The way to check you cam timing now is the following:
Remove the rocker arm for #1 intake valve.
Turn the crank clockwise till #1 lifter is down.
Put the Dial Indiacator on the end of the pushrod and zero the dial.

Turn the crank clockwise till the pushrod just begins to lift then slowly turn the crank till the dial reads .050" and stop.
At this point the timing mark on the crank balancer should be at 6 degrees ATDC if the cam is set correctly.

94f150rules
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #9 by 94f150rules » Sat Feb 09, 2019 8:31 am

Ok, I looked it up I bought the Melling timing set part number 2750AS. According to Crane cams the cam is ground with 4 degrees of advance. Would that be enough to compensate for a poorly made timing set?

PMULLER I really don't want to take the engine apart right now, can I just remove the side cover get the engine to TDC and then try setting the point of the dial indicator onto the lifter body and measure it like that? Or would it be inaccurate?

pmuller9
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #10 by pmuller9 » Sat Feb 09, 2019 9:20 am

You really need to know where the cam timing. On a few occasions I have had some very bad cam timing issues.

The dial indicator needs to be parallel to the pushrod and I believe that when the lifter is all the way down the top of the lifter is below the top of the lifter bore in the block making it hard to get to with the pushrod in the way.

You will need something that contacts the lifter body and not the plunger that the pushrod sits on because the valve spring will push the lifter plunger down as the cam lobe pushes the lifter body upward.

The #1 intake lifter starts to move up just after 45* BTDC so you should bring the crank to around 90* BTDC when you zero the indicator dial.
Then slowly turn the crank clockwise till the dial reads .050" which should happen just after TDC.
When the dial reads .050" stop and see where the timing mark on the harmonic balancer is.

The timing tabs ends at 6* ATDC so you may have to estimate if the timing mark is past the end.
Last edited by pmuller9 on Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Max_Effort
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #11 by Max_Effort » Sat Feb 09, 2019 9:56 am

pmuller9 wrote:The dial indicator needs to be parallel to the pushrod and I believe that when the lifter is all the way down the top of the lifter is below the top of the lifter bore in the block making it hard to get to with the pushrod in the way.

You could get creative and make something that clamps to the pushrod that extends out from the lifter gallery and rest the end of the dial indicator it.

The #1 intake lifter starts to move up just after 45* BTDC so you should bring the crank to around 90* BTDC when you zero the indicator dial.
Then slowly turn the crank clockwise till the dial reads .050" which should happen just after TDC.
When the dial reads .050" stop and see where the timing mark on the harmonic balancer is.

The timing tabs ends at 6* ATDC so you may have to estimate if the timing mark is past the end.



You can make an right angle extension to the dial indicator from a bit of metal. Drill a hole in each end, fasten to the dial indicator with the existing contact point, then use a machine screw at the other end for the new contact point. It can’t be too long or it will cause deflection of the rig, but it works in a pinch.

94f150rules
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #12 by 94f150rules » Sat Feb 09, 2019 2:24 pm

I think I may know what's going on, as far as my lack of performance. I stumbled onto something by accident.

I was getting a intermittent check engine light, which turned out to be from my EGR valve I had the hoses reversed on the vacuum canister. I still had my Rotunda Star II scanner hooked up and i wanted to clear all the codes and retest everything. The truck passed the KOEO test. So Then I did the engine running test and when i was prompted to do the dynamic response test and I got a code for my spout not being connected. The Sprout is connected and I have continuity across the two terminals. I checked and when I plug the spout in timing only advances 2° at idle how much is it supposed to advance? I brought my timing up to 12 degrees of initial and now the truck has a dramatic difference in power, but I'm wondering if it's advancing while I'm driving.

When I had the engine out I looked at the the distributor and I saw that it had corrosion inside and mud, I cleaned it out the best I could and put it back together. Does anything move in that distributor I'm used to vacuum advance obviously I don't have that, is it only Advanced digitally? The reason I ask is considering the way the distributor looked inside maybe that's the culprit.

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MechRick
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #13 by MechRick » Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:17 pm

If you disconnect the spout connector while the engine is running, RPM should drop. Plugging it back in will have the opposite affect.

Nothing moves in a TFI-IV distributor. You'll notice a short rod with a 90 degree bend where the vacuum advance would normally go (Ford calls it an octane rod, on engines that had preignition problems, rods with different lengths were issued with TSB's to 'adjust' ignition timing. Weird, right?).

Timing should advance up into the 30's BTDC when running above 3500 RPM if the PCM is doing it's job.

Make sure you are actually on the spout connector. Trucks with remote ignition modules mounted over by the brake booster have two of those connectors underhood...

The PCM adjusts timing by modifying the square wave signal coming from the pickup. IF you have access to a scope, 'spout' (for spark out) looks like a square wave pattern with a notch cut out of one end of it.
1994 F150, 4.9L/ZF 5 speed, C-Vic police driveshaft
EFI head w/mild port work, 3 angle valve job
1996 long block, stock pistons, ARP rod bolts
Stock cam, aluminum cam gear
Hedman header, full mandrel bent duals, crossover, super turbos
http://fordsix.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=73244
Bronco II with a 2.3L swap http://fordsix.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=72863
1988 F250 2x4, 460 ZF 5 speed.

94f150rules
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Re: Need help with ignition timing crane 503901 cam

Post #14 by 94f150rules » Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:10 pm

When I had the spout unplugged and I was setting the timing, I noticed every once in a while the timing would move and come back by its self.
So then I set the timing to 10 degrees and plugged in my spout plug and the timing went to 12 degrees. I'm curious if anyone has checked their timing at idle both with the spout plugged in disconnected. I will check my timing at 3500 rpm tomorrow. I also will check my modules. I was reading in the Ford Shop manual that stick shift cars had push to start modules. I think mine had a gray module so im not sure if it'd right.

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