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1985 honda civic wagon ew1 timing issues

Old 05-29-2017, 08:58 AM
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Join Date: May 2017
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Default 1985 honda civic wagon ew1 timing issues


My Friend and I recently bought an 85 civic wagon as a fun project. When we bought it it didn't run properly, would overheat very quickly and idle at 3000 rpm. sounded like a timing issue and when we got it home and checked, sure enough the timing was very retarded.

The previous owner had the distributor mounted improperly (so it sat way advanced) in order to get it to idle, as soon as the distrib is back in the limits it barely idles or doesnt idle. tdc is probably 15 degrees retarded. its supposed to be about 12-14 advanced ( at least i believe that how far the marks are) so overall the timing is off about 30 degrees!

what we've tried -
1-confirm all wires/ cap/ rotor/ connections are correct
2- new timing belt/water pump tensioner
3- mechanically advance the cam one tooth (very small results with this which seemed odd)
4- rotated the cam gear 180 degrees (wouldnt run like this so we put it back)

what should we do next? could it be something in the distributor itself? a worn cam gear? the previous owner changed the oil seal and cap/ rotor, i'm not sure i trust his work.

any advice on what to dig into next would be greatly appreciated as we are at a loss of where to look.

kevin r. is offline  
Old 06-05-2017, 08:52 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: SF bay area
Posts: 232
Default Re: 1985 honda civic wagon ew1 timing issues

auto and man have different timing specs, 20ish for man and less for auto, but you can run 22, even with the auto... I run 25 with the man.

as for high idle, suspect a vacuum leak, check from underside by the alternator. or the carburetor gasket at the intake manifold.

running hot is expected if not enough advance.

good luck
letank is offline  

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