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283 wont fire

1086 Views 14 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  garretthes
I got a 62 impala with a 283 that will not seem to fire on anything. I set the points,cleaned and set plug gaps, distributor wiring. I does backfire some when cranking. The guy I bought it from said it has 10,000 miles on a rebuild, new fuel pump, new carb,and a new distributor cap. Even if I pour gas in the carb it still wont fire (though it does seem to backfire more). It has been ran twice a week for a year and just quit a few weeks ago. Any help would be appreciated.
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Best place for points is in the trash. I`d get a conversion unit to convert it to electronic, not sure if the fire wall will allow the use of a HEI, so the conversion unit is likely the way to go.
did you pull the distributor? it could be a tooth off, 180 off. whatis it timed at?

put a extra spark plug on one of the wires and have a buddy crank.hod the plug next to the block with insulated pliers. did it spark? did you set the points with a matchbook?thats about the only way i know to do it

did you fill the floatbowls with fuel?do it through the vent tube dont flood it. its a new carb what kind ? it the accelerator pump linkage set correctly? how about the secondary throttle plate? what about the idle screws are they 1 - 1.5 turnsout from seated?i have always run manual chokes so im not the best authority on that if its electric. just a few ideas.
But, it should run with the points.

Check your timing, sounds like it is way out. Another possibility is that it is cross firing in the cap causing ignition at the wrong plug at the wrong time.

Have you had it running since you got it?
I would love too but here's the deal. I'm 15 and make 50 bucks a week, so after 1600 dollars worth of broken and slightly rusted metal, I dont have much money to spend currently. Maybe In the future but for now, I hate all things electronic (work on 140,000 mile 98 silvrerado you will too lol.) Thanks though, it is in my plans. Wow, 3 new post in the time it took me to type this. Also, I havent pulled the distributor yey but I will try.

at least not if you didnt in the tune up. recheck the firing order,sound like a plug could be crossed(if you pulled all the plug wires). im used t BBCRYSLER so i think the dizzy rotor spins clockwise.just a warning?

if some thing is messed up and you have to start over. when you cold time you have to be at TDC compression stroke.
I ran It 3 weeks ago when I bought it. I ran it hard to blow the carbon buildup out the motor (which was a hell of a lot). It ran for the next week better than ever till it just quit. I doubt I blew up anything because it Did not turn a ton of rpm just enough to do the job. I found a very old chiltons for all 62 cars in my house when my family moved in, lucky me, and set up the plug wire dividers like it said to prevent crossfire, but it is a possibility. The #1 cylinder plug has a stong spark. I can check the rest after school tomorrow. The carb is a holley remanufactured rochester 2bbl. It hasent been tuned but it ran before with it so it should at least start. I also have redone the plug wiring about 20 times (no I am not joking) so it is almost surely right.
If you do pull the distributer, make sure that your timing mark is on 0 degrees, and take notice where the rotor is pointing. It should be pointed on the terminal on the cap that goes to #1 cylinder. If it is pointing at #6, turn the crank over once until it is at #1. If it is pointing anywhere else, your timing is out, or your timing chain has jumped.

What did the plugs look like when you pulled them?
Complete newb question (go ahead laugh, I dont care) but what do I do to turn the crank to set timing. First time of course. The plugs didnt look bad, but I will replace them anyway.
If there isn't a bug bolt head on the front of the crank (probably isn't), take the plugs out and turn the front pully by hand to line up the timing mark. When turning it clockwise you should be able to feel air coming out of #1 plug hole just before the mark on the harmonic balancer gets to 0 on the timing tab. This is when the rotor should line up with #1 plug on the cap.

Anywhere else and you have a timing problem.
Thanks poncho, I will try that in the afternoon after school and post back. I have to fix my fuel pump first though, I managed to break that too today. Luckily I only had about 3 gallons in the tank wich is now in the back yard lol. Thanks for the help!
poncho62 said:

Check your timing, sounds like it is way out. Another possibility is that it is cross firing in the cap causing ignition at the wrong plug at the wrong time.

Yes it sounds like its way out.. When i first got the engine in my Nova put in and tried to start it it was spitting and sputtering out the carb and i checked and it was 180* out of time. But if he didn't mess with the timing and it is that far out but it did run when he had it doesn't that sound like a badly worn timing chain?
Ok today I bought new plugs and installed them. I also fixed the fuel pump. Something interesting though- The plugs that were in the car were AC r44xls and had a much longer shank than the plugs I replaced them with AC R45S plugs which were recommended in the 61 manual. After I got them installed I looked in the supplementary book for 62 models and it said to use AC 46 plugs. Will they work? I will try to do the timing this weekend but I have a question. Do I change timing using the timing chain or take the distributor out and realign it. Obviously this is my first time doing much engine work so I need some mentoring. But hey it's better than just having another kid in a riced out civic right?
Im not sure about the plugs. So im assuming you haven't tried to start it with the new plugs in it? First you need to get piston #1 at TDC then get the rotor on the distributor pointing at #1 piston (make sure that the oil pump shaft is turned to where it needs to be, use a long flat blade screw driver to turn it.) Put the distributor back in with the hold down clamp tight enough to hold the distributor still but loose enough to turn the dist. by hand. Hook timing light to #1 plug wire and start car, put timing light on the timing tab and see where it reads. it should be at 0 If it is at 0 then turn dist. clockwise to advance your timing to 12*. It should run fairly good there. Im not sure if i explained that right or if you understand but someone else here will help if you don't understand.
If you do decide to change the distributer to HEI you will have to modify the firewall. I did the same thing on my mom's 64 10 years ago. The larger HEI dist hits the firewall solidly. She also had the 283. The main reason for changing was she is not a mechanic. The points system requires more maintenance. She was much happier after the change.
You should learn the points system well. Then maybe change after you have mastered it.
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