[Mgs] MGA 180 out Distributor Mystery

Robert J. Guinness guinness at stclegal.com
Sat Oct 20 19:25:10 MDT 2012

I have an MGA 1600 with an MGB 1800 3 main engine and a DM2 distributor 
from the original 1600 engine.  It was missing badly when I parked it.  
Then I could not start it at all and had mammoth backfires out the 
tailpipe. Two sets of newly installed points would not open when fully 
adjusted out.  A club member suggested that the distributor bearing was 
wearing out. I took the 1800's original 25D distributor and base clamp 
and installed it.  Static timed it with the rotor pointing to the #1 
wire, but same result.  Getting good gas flow to carbs.  Compression all 
between 110 and 120.  Spark plugs had velvety black soot. I got used 
another DM2 with the same result.  I installed a new Lucas 25D, same 
result. Then I switched the wires replacing #1 with #4 and # 2 and # 3 
figuring it was 180 out.  Bingo, it purred like a kitten.  Mystery.  How 
could the distributor drive gear get 180 out when I never touched it?  I 
had replace the points twice before by taking the distributor out and 
static timing it with the rotor at the #1 plug.  I am flummoxed. Any clues?
e-mail signature Robert Guinness
Guinness & Buehler, LLC
2850 West Clay St., Suite 210
St. Charles, MO 63301

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