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Tech Forum : How to tune timing?

- BMW E21 Community
   - Tech Forum
      - How to tune timing?
Gabi_323i   Posted Tuesday, Aug 9th 4:39pm [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Member
Post nr. 87
   
Bucharest, Romania
11/80 323i 2.7i Motronic 1.3
i'm interested about tuning my timing, the car doesent run right, has no power
what is the procedure? i think i can get a stoboscope lamp for that but i don`t know the EXACT procedure to do that, i will apreciate any advice
i know that i have to hold down the stobo to the front flywheel but there are two marks, z and o?
and the vacuums from the distribuitor need to be disconected? thank you
Gabi
E21 323i L-Jetronic

BB320i   Posted Wednesday, Aug 10th 8:08am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Member
Post nr. 69

Arizona
83 320i
I'm surprised no one has replied!

I set timing using an odd-ball method, which I'd describe here but I don't want to be laughed at :/(some pretty knowlegable guys on this site). I've used a timing light once in my life, many moon ago - I seem to do just fine with my odd-ball method.

Check the "search" function (top left) for key words (timing, distributor, etc...).

Hopefully the other guys on the site will pony up to your request.


bmw_m_320i   Posted Wednesday, Aug 10th 8:51am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Member
Post nr. 388
   
Helena, Montana
none right now :(
I've got a weird method as well, that doesnt involve a timing. I can just feel when its right....thats the easiest way to describe it

DHoang   Posted Wednesday, Aug 10th 7:13pm [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Member
Post nr. 298
   
Texas USA
323i, e39 528i, Maserati Spider, Tundra LTD V8 p/up
The z and o marks are 22 deg apart. Basically, time the engine (unplug vacuum advance) @ 1500 rpm to the 0 mark, and when you plug back the vacuum line, the timing mark should rise up to the z mark. If not, then you have a leak somewhere at the vacuum advance.

Next check the mechanical advance, vacuum disconnected.

To do this, you want to get a timing light that has a timing retard function built into it. This timing light typically has a rotary knob at the back to alter the strobe accordingly.

The idea is to utilize the timing light's retard feature to read the baseline. Say, the mechanical advance at 3000 rpm is supposed to be 30 degs adv, then if you set the timing light to 30 degs retarded, you shuold be strobing the "o" mark. When you reset the timing light back to zero strobe, then you'd be reading something else on the crank balancer (presumably 30 deg. advance, or higher/above the Z mark).

Also, it goes w/out saying, you will also need a precise rpm meter. Using your dash rpm to gauge this detailed work is naive.

Here's your 323i mechanical advance spec:

RPM Degrees
1000 11-17
1500 22
2400 27
3000 30
3500 33 (ends)

If your mech. advance is off, check your distributor springs, and whatever else associated w/ the mechanical advance.

I timed it per the specs above on my 323i (it worked out per values given) and my car revs to the moon, pulling like a freight train all the way up redline w/out a hiccup. I even get 3rd gear scratches no problems at all.

But, there's no way I can drive it on 87 unleaded gas. It's 91 (or better, 93) octane.

g323   Posted Wednesday, Dec 10th 2:07am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Member
Post nr. 321
   
California
323i 1982
which where do i plug in the advance/retard lines? Which one goes on top, which one goes on the bottom?

Right now I have -
Vertical tube coming off Dist-Bottom of Throttle body

Horizontal tube- top of throttle body, is this correct?

g323   Posted Wednesday, Dec 10th 3:00am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Member
Post nr. 322
   
California
323i 1982
also, when i plug the vac lines in again, the timing hardly changes from the dynamic,,,,replace the vacuum advance canister?


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