New 360 & a couple of questions

Small Block Mopar Engine

  1. dart_68

    dart_68 Well-Known Member

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    FINALLY got my 360 a hair's breath away from starting it. I have 2 questions, though.

    1) The car still has 87 octane gas in it from last year. The gas still smells ok but my comp ratio went from 7.8:1 to 9.2:1. Previous cranking pressure was 135 and new is 150. Will it run ok on the lower octane gas for start up and initial break in or should I figure out a way to get it out of the tank and put premium in it? I intend to drive it with premium.

    2) Where to set the initial static timing? I was thinking 18*. What info do you need to posit a guess?
     
  2. FlDart360

    FlDart360 Well-Known Member

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    For what it’s worth my 360 runs fine on 87 and my CR is just a tad bit higher between 155- 160.
     
  3. TT5.9mag

    TT5.9mag Two atmospheres are better than one

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    For break in you will have better luck with more timing than less. Set your balancer mark to 15 degrees BTDC. Point the rotor to #1 firing. It will start fine right there. As soon as it fires, get it up to 2500 rpm and with a timing light pull it up to 35-40 degrees. Continue break in. After break in is complete, set the timing where the engine runs best. It will run fine on 87 with no load for break in as long as the gas is fresh.
     
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    • dart_68

      dart_68 Well-Known Member

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      Thanks for the reply. Unfortunately, the gas is about a year old...maybe a little less. It still smells ok.
       
    • TT5.9mag

      TT5.9mag Two atmospheres are better than one

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      With our shitty gas here in SoCal I wouldn’t attempt a break in on year old gas. You’re results may vary.
       
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      • dart_68

        dart_68 Well-Known Member

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        Yeah, I don't know if the gas here in Colorado is any better.
         
      • flyfish

        flyfish C8H18+N2O = :-D

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        At your altitude, your fine (octane wise).
         
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        • Demonracer

          Demonracer 71 Demon 00 Ram 16 Chrysler 300S 05 Caravan FABO Gold Member

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          Pour 5 gallons of fresh gas in it & some 104 octane booster, you'll be fine adhering to correct break in instructions.
           
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          • moper

            moper FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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            Yeah I'd top it off with high test fresh and go for it. Most important is you don't keep turning it with the starter before it fires. Prefill the carb by hand. Make sure the cooling system has enough coolant or water, and verify spark by hand without turning it over. Then pre-oil it with a shaft, re-install the distributor and fire it off.
             
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            • abodyjoe

              abodyjoe Well-Known Member

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              I think fresh gas would be a good idea. I like my small blocks at 17 initial timing.
               
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              • AJ/FormS

                AJ/FormS 68 B'cuda fb, Form S clone ... 367/A833/3.55s

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                Old gas that has been in an unsealed container, just gets harder and harder to fire up, as all the Volatile elements have evaporated. But once running it makes no nevermind at no load.
                If it was kept in a sealed container out of the sun, then it will be fine.
                But for cam break-in, you cannot afford to be cranking and hoping for the best; the engine needs to fire up right away, and immediately be brought up to break-in rpm. So, at the least, the gas in the bowls needs to be fresh from the pump. The engine will start on that, and run on that for at least 20 to 30 seconds while it is being polluted with the gas from the tank. By that time, the engine has long been up to speed, and you have checked for fuel leaks, and even pulled in the timing.
                Best of luck to you.
                 
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                • mopardude318

                  mopardude318 Well-Known Member

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                  I’m doing the same thing in about a week. Isn’t there a way to verify your timing is right on with a test light? I don’t know how to do it.
                   
                • dart_68

                  dart_68 Well-Known Member

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                  You could do it with a points type distributor and a test light, though I forget exactly how. I have electronic ignition and plan to set the static timing at about 18* on the balancer and line up the pickup with the reluctor point for the for the #1 cylinder.
                   
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                  • TT5.9mag

                    TT5.9mag Two atmospheres are better than one

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                    I really don’t understand why guys have a problem getting new engines to fire right away. Maybe it’s because so much emphasis is on TDC and that’s not where you want the timing. Or maybe they don’t prime the oiling system with hydraulic lifters. Or maybe they don’t use a known good carb with the bowls full. Whatever it is I’ll never get it. If you set it up like I said in the previous post, balancer at 15 deg, point the rotor at number 1, and you’ve done the other things I mentioned here, it will kick right off. Here’s the first fire of my BBC in my boat. This is how they should fire.

                    This is a hydraulic roller so no reason to bring the rpm up.
                     
                  • aaronk785

                    aaronk785 Well-Known Member

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                    My vp guy says pump gas is good for about a month. Of course he’s trying to sell me fuel. LOL
                     
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                    • AJ/FormS

                      AJ/FormS 68 B'cuda fb, Form S clone ... 367/A833/3.55s

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                      What type of ignition system do you have?
                       
                    • mopardude318

                      mopardude318 Well-Known Member

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                      Stock electronic ignition. May go with FBO ignition box after a bit.
                       
                    • pittsburghracer

                      pittsburghracer Well-Known Member

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                      Electric fuel pump??? If so pump it out and use it in your everyday vehicles or lawnmower. Fresh premium fuel is your friend and may save a cam if it starts up quickly. Just my thinking.
                       
                    • AJ/FormS

                      AJ/FormS 68 B'cuda fb, Form S clone ... 367/A833/3.55s

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                      For @mopardude318

                      Go back to post #3 :

                      @TT5.9mag
                      ;Please forgive me for editing for the newbe.

                      Edits by AJ;
                      #1; On the Compression stroke of Cylinder #1.
                      #2; Push the Vcan towards the firewall as far as it will go, then pull it forward until the nearest reluctor vane aligns with the pole piece of the magnetic pick-up. Now; with a shapie, mark the body of the D where the rotor is pointing, then install the cap. Install the #1 plug wire into the tower above the sharpie mark, then in CW fashion, install the rest of the wires in the correct firing order.
                      >If the mark you made is NOT under any tower, STOP! Make sure it is within about 1/4 of a tower's separation distance, then proceed. If it gets to a half a tower, the spark may jump to the wrong tower; so we gotta fix that BEFORE ever cranking the engine!

                      Exact timing for break-in is not important. After it fires up and the rpm is set to at least 2200 rpm, I just pull on the Vcan, to advance the timing until the rpm plateaus (stops increasing) then retard it a smidgen. Finally, I reset the rpm closer to 2500.

                      I hope that clarifies things for you.
                       
                      Last edited: Mar 23, 2021
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                      • Rapid Robert

                        Rapid Robert Well-Known Member

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                        turn the crank to 20 ATDC #6 compression & preoil the drivers side head then turn the crank to 90 BTDC #1 compression to preoil the pass head (then come on around to 15 BTDC initial). drill a 1/32 hole in the stat so there ain't no air pocket behind the stat when filling it up. As said you want it to fire immediately. No opinion on the fuel but be sure to have it right. EDIT on second thought no need to drill the stat, the bypass takes care of that. Been on big blocks too long!
                         
                        Last edited: Mar 23, 2021
                      • TT5.9mag

                        TT5.9mag Two atmospheres are better than one

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                        @AJ/FormS absolutely no problem. You always add good information.
                         
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                        • mopardude318

                          mopardude318 Well-Known Member

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                          I’d like to post what I got going on with some pictures if the OP is okay with it... @dart_68
                           
                        • dart_68

                          dart_68 Well-Known Member

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                          Any info is good info!
                           
                        • mopardude318

                          mopardude318 Well-Known Member

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                          @AJ/FormS
                          Would like you to check my work.
                          #1 TDC compression.
                          Balancer is at 15* on the 0 mark on timing cover
                          E3D0FB1B-408F-487E-B89D-DE1D9796CB94.jpeg
                          The distributor body rotated until Vcan touches firewall.

                          41AD6744-0070-4A39-BE87-34762D459CE7.jpeg
                          turn distributor until reluctor tooth lines up with pickup.

                          6DEE8416-34AA-4835-B6C6-C4174E4F815C.jpeg 2E58E979-7A88-4A9C-B714-D42ED07EA9C7.jpeg
                          Of course this is what the pickup and reluctor tooth looks like with the Vcan all the way back
                          735D060A-20B2-454F-8D04-CCC592A22645.jpeg
                          nevermind the pink mark, I have to jump my wires over one terminal. the orange mark is where the rotor is pointing, which would be #1 terminal now?
                          It looks to be past the number 1...
                          am I all chewed up??


                          83921931-0D20-40E3-A14E-58BAD61E64E1.jpeg
                           
                          Last edited: Mar 25, 2021
                        • TT5.9mag

                          TT5.9mag Two atmospheres are better than one

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                          @mopardude318 you look to be on the right track. I’ll add 3 things and AJ can chime in on anything else.
                          1. Make sure you are at #1 TDC on the compression stroke.
                          2. Moving the vcan all the way to the firewall and backing it up to the closest reluctor is just so you physically have room later to advance the timing if needed. When you start at 15 degrees you likely are only going to move it’s position one or two degrees for idle timing. So a big swing isn’t necessary, but a little swing might be.
                          3. With the reluctor centered on the pickup, and the balancer at 15 degrees, point the rotor right at the number 1 terminal in the cap. If you have to fudge one way or the other, fudge to the leading edge of the terminal.
                           
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