All in all, there're many ways to skin a cat. We've done if for many years with the tight second gap and it has worked fine. Yet, as I've said before, the OE has a lot more money for research than we do. That said, they wouldn't have switched and stuck with it if it wasn't in their best interest.
Getting WiredQI want to replace my points-style distributor with an HEI Distributor. Do I line up the new distributor where the books show for a points distributor, or do I line it up like they show for a '75-or-later HEI? Thanks.John EsonVia e-mail
A.John, your engine won't care if you line it up like the early-model or '75-and-later location. It fits a little better if you install it like the '75-and-later engines and the plug wires route from the distributor better.
One other thing we want to remind you of is that your 12-volt power feed wire to the pre-'75 point-style distributor is a resistance wire to step down the voltage to work with the points. You must replace this wire in the harness to feed the HEI with a full 12 volts. Our pal Mark Hamilton at M.A.D. Enterprises offers a really trick kit for doing just this. It's sold under PN HEI-1 and gives you the proper factory connectors for both the power and tach leads and a length of his Tuff-wire for the 12-volt lead. Also, it comes with complete installation instructions on how to replace this wire in the harness. Some of the early cars' ignition switches don't feed the distributor with 12 volts during cranking! Only the bypass circuit from the starter feeds the coil with power. In the installation instructions, Mark explains how to get the proper 12 volts for safe operation. Go on M.A.D.'s Web site and check out all the wiring accessories offered. My son Daniel and I are using a ton of his trick components to upgrade his '65 Chevelle into the 21st century. You can reach M.A.D. at (559) 539-7128, and online at www.madelectrical.com.
Tuning ChoreQI have a '95 Z28 LT1 with a 10.5:1-compression 383ci, AFR heads with stage-3 porting, a COMP Cams hydraulic roller with 0.510/0.520 inch max lift and 230/236 degrees duration at 0.050 inch lift, and is ground on 114 centers. I'm also using 1.6 rockers, an ACCEL 300+ ignition, and the rest of the goodies.
My problem is that the car does not put out near the power it should. The car sounds good, but doesn't perform. I think I may have ignition problems. When I look under the hood at night, I can see arcing from the end of the spark-plug boot to the spark-plug shell (nut part of the spark plug) on all eight spark plugs like I have flash-over or a cracked insulator. I have changed the plugs and wires about four or five times with different brands and played with the spark-plug gap. I've also changed the cap and rotor and everything to do with the ignition. I have been stuck on this for a few years now!
Could my problem be in the computer? I sent it in to a professional, but I don't know how you can tune a car if you haven't even seen the car, so I purchased a program called LT1 Editor, which allows me to change the timing, fuel, and everything else known to man. I have played with the fuel and timing at WOT, but it does not seem to help. I hope you can shine some light on this. Everybody I have talked to has sent me in the wrong direction. Last and not least, CHP has been in my home for years and is by far the best magazine in the house. Thanks in advance.Dustin HardingOrem, UT
A.Dustin, is it ever hard to breathe where you live? Do you feel short of breath when you run or hike? Well, just think what your poor Camaro thinks when you stand on the throttle! There is no air at 4,800 feet of altitude! Through some rough calculations, you're down around 60 hp compared to sea level. At your vehicle weight, it's between .5 and .6 slower in the quarter-mile. Now, yes, you can help your car through tuning.