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  1. #1

    Default Damper install question, im starting to hate the fox. Some help please...

    Having fun with trying to make the 1979 fox 2.3l turbo, I noticed the car on a initial timming it worked out the best on 30btdc.... That makes me think that there is something definitely wrong with it...
    Is there any way to have the damper, harmonic balancer which ever way you want to call it be miss aligned?
    I cant seem to find any information or whatever on this engine....
    When its on 0tdc on the timming mark, the camshaft aligns with the mark but then again, 30btdc initial timming and having the car run its best so far its not a good sign...

  2. #2

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    I am just starting to get to know and work on cars and the 2.3 turbo in particular so if this is a stupid comment please ignore. Just trying to help.
    When the timing marks on the damper and on the sprocket align, does the distributor rotor align with the no 1 firing position?

  3. #3
    FEP Power Member
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    Default

    First, harmonic dampeners are known to move. It's just a rubber ring holding the outer ring in place.

    The 2.3 has several timing alignments marks which need to be aligned. A loose timing belt or bad tensioner could cause the belt to skip a tooth. First put the crank pointer at zero. Next pull the distributor cap off and see if the rotor lines up with the scribe Mark. Next pull the front belt cover off and see if the cam timing marks are aligned. Also check the aux. shaft alignment. Something would need to be misaligned to have the problem you described. The only adjustable items are the cam sprocket if it has and aftermarket one and the distributor rotation.

    If you line everything up and the balancer is still off to make it run, then maybe it did slip. Btw, the timing is checked with the spout removed or the vacuum advance line removed. You can just remark the balancer with white paint dab and tune the timing until it pings and back off until it stops. Many of the carbutator rebuilders run into the spun balancer problem after they install a new carb and it still runs bad.
    Fox Body/3rd Gen MCA Gold Card Judge
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  4. #4

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    The balancer only goes on one way. There's a grove in the crankshaft that it slides over. Now that's not saying the mark on the balancer isn't TDC. So if the cam is lined up and the crank sprocket behind the balancer is lined up then u have to get the aux shaft lined up the best you can. The dizzy will drop in but might not be pointing to number one. I usually drop the dizzy in first before tighten the timing belt because than u can turn the aux shaft sprocket until the dizzy is pointing to number one than tighten the belt and make sure all the marks are inline. When tightening the belt be careful because the aux shaft turns easy if you do it that way, the crank and cam will be alot harder to turn but you have to be careful with those aswell. If that's all lined up and your stil having problems get a piston stop turn the thing over by hand one way and mark the balancer go the other and mark the balancer and in between the 2 marks is TDC and see if your original TDC mark is the same. Go slow and be careful. You can make one too if you look online how to, but be careful and go slow so you don't scratch your piston top.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  5. #5

    Default

    Thank you all for your replys... I appreciate a lot the help and will work on checking everything is ok following your guidance.
    This engine was recently rebuilt, got the car on a sales deal and want to see how far this little engine can go before it breaks down. Dont really know if the mechanic really knew what he was doing, or atleast the way I work my own cars. Just noticed a lot of play in the distributor so ordered a new one and probably gonna end up buying the esslinger double groove 4" damper. I dont like crappy stuff slipping and making huge messes if they are so damn cheap...
    What im thinking about is that it could be one tooth off from the cam, if this cam was set with a slipped damper it could add up to those 20 degrees.. im guessing but ill check things up.
    Thank u all ill post later on this days if get the time to work on it, since got some customers projects to be done first....

  6. #6

    Default

    Thank you all for your replys... I appreciate a lot the help and will work on checking everything is ok following your guidance.
    This engine was recently rebuilt, got the car on a sales deal and want to see how far this little engine can go before it breaks down. Dont really know if the mechanic really knew what he was doing, or atleast the way I work my own cars. Just noticed a lot of play in the distributor so ordered a new one and probably gonna end up buying the esslinger double groove 4" damper. I dont like crappy stuff slipping and making huge messes if they are so damn cheap...
    What im thinking about is that it could be one tooth off from the cam, if this cam was set with a slipped damper it could add up to those 20 degrees.. im guessing but ill check things up.
    Still gotta learn about this engine... Cant seem to find a spout but did the timming with vac off
    Thank u all ill post later on this days if get the time to work on it, since got some customers projects to be done first....

  7. #7

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    I didn't read all the replies so this may have already been covered but as an FYI, there is no damper/balancer on a 2.3. They are internally balanced. That is only a pulley and is no different then the power steering or AC pulley. It's just a piece of steel.
    Restoration of my 84 1/2 GT Turbo T Top:
    http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthread.php?t=124724

  8. #8

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    I wouldn't waste my money on an esslibger pulley. Like I said the balancer only goes on one way and can not slip for the TDC mark to change. The mark on it could be in the wrong spot like I said before which can be checked with a piston stop. As long as the sprocket is lined up behind the balancer on the crank there's no way the balancer can be installed off. Make sure the timing belt is tight to, might need to use a pry bar to get it tight than run the bolt in on the tensioner to hold it. Not to tight but don't want it to loose either.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  9. #9

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    Exactly, as u said could be missleading timming marks. Which i dont really like... But ill check and posibly remark the timming on the stocker one... Its not like a huge price on it.. 79 bucks....the only downside is shipping it to guatemala city where im at hahahahhaa

  10. #10

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    I've thought about them a few times. One of those mods I say I'll do next year and well it never happens. I've done just about everything else so it's time will come eventually. the 2.3s are strong little motors though.. Get it running right and crank her up.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by 80Merccapri View Post
    I've thought about them a few times. One of those mods I say I'll do next year and well it never happens. I've done just about everything else so it's time will come eventually. the 2.3s are strong little motors though.. Get it running right and crank her up.
    Yeah thats what im thinking.... Problem is getting them to run right.... Hahahaha

  12. #12

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    I don't mess with draw thru, mine was n/a I went to blow thru on. That had its own list of headaches.Keep after it and you'll get it. I spent more time working on mine than driving it when I made the switch, now all I do is drive it.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  13. #13

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    Probably it would sum up to about the same costs building a blow through setup than building an efi setup using a megasquirt... Which is what i would go for if i get tired of messing on the draw through .. the fox i own works pretty darn ok, i mean ive been using it daily for the past 3 weeks no problem... The thing is that im pretty used to 400whp and over cars as dailys...this little gas and air sucker i feel it slow ... Very slow... And i do think it should be quicker...

  14. #14
    FEP Super Member gr79's Avatar
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    Old cars are not new. Drive it and things wear out. Fact is something could happen at any time.
    My carb 2.3T has been running more that being down for repair.
    23 out of 36 years ownership. Add 1.5 prior to.
    Of course it helps i got it in 1980 as a low mile intact dealer demo car.
    Parked once for extended period due to time/money for major repairs.
    One engine rebuild, 3 trans.
    Any other car with this age would have been down the same more or less.
    Only pending issues now needs rrlca replaced and ignition switch. Rust is always a concern.
    Is reliable and driven whenever needed. No long vacation trips although it prob would do fine.

    It does require higher maintenance, official Ford shop manuals, and data logging to keep it that way.
    Have to be a DIY and understand it as much as you can.
    Very few shops, if any, exist to help anymore with this engine.
    Thus the trend to swap engine out for something else.

    The damper as i recall simple slipped on a key way. Plug and play.

    Timing is simple. Damper marks may not be totally accurate, but are good enough to get a close read.
    Initially set around factory base value to get the engine to stay running and be driveable.

    Total timing is all that matters. Really do not need timing lights to do that.
    Leave vacuum everything connected in the final driving configuration for setting total timing.
    This way the vac and mech adv, etc, are all 'in' (online) and the road is a 'dyno' test.
    Advance dist until engine does not want anymore (knock, poor performance) during road test.
    Then back off couple degrees.
    Readjust as needed. Idle, etc. Covering all driving conditions will take a period of time.
    Been doing it this way since the 60's.

    When satisfied, go to base timing procedure configuration and note what base timing now is then mark on damper.
    I think mine went from factory base 6 btdc (never ran good at that mark) to 12 btdc or something. Been a while.

    Recheck after any major changes in performance or parts config.
    Last edited by gr79; 12-29-2016 at 01:31 PM.

  15. #15

    Default

    Carbs are easy to work on, my costs for everything is pretty low. Car has all the bells and whistles a turbo car could ask for and than some. Built it prior for nitrous though so it had a good cam, ignition, and fuel system, o2 sensor and gauge etc. Carb, front mount intercooler, carb hat, boost regulator and eBay turbo prob close to 750 bucks. But I spent that in nitrous every year easily so it was an easy switch. Plus power all the time that never runs out. And the bottle when I need it. Drive mine daily and when I drive it I drive it hard. eBay turbo and header year and a half old set over 25 psi. No lag whatsoever and very responsive. If it ever goes I'll buy a better one, but I can't imagine my dyno numbers if I can ever strap it down with this engine I built. It's all about what you can afford and what you can get done with what you got to do it. I agree wth the feels slower than your other cars you drive I have the same problem when I drive something else. Just go to get on it and it's like am I dragging a trailer or something. Daily driving cars quickly weeds out the problems though. Seems reliable if you drove it the last 3 weeks daily, but from what you describe seems like your missing power somewhere. Timing issue whether something is not lined up right or dizzy is bad. Let us know what you find.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  16. #16

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gr79 View Post
    Old cars are not new. Drive it and things wear out. Fact is something could happen at any time.
    My carb 2.3T has been running more that being down for repair.
    23 out of 36 years ownership. Add 1.5 prior to.
    Of course it helps i got it in 1980 as a low mile intact dealer demo car.
    Parked once for extended period due to time/money for major repairs.
    One engine rebuild, 3 trans.
    Any other car with this age would have been down the same more or less.
    Only pending issues now needs rrlca replaced and ignition switch. Rust is always a concern.
    Is reliable and driven whenever needed. No long vacation trips although it prob would do fine.

    It does require higher maintenance, official Ford shop manuals, and data logging to keep it that way.
    Have to be a DIY and understand it as much as you can.
    Very few shops, if any, exist to help anymore with this engine.
    Thus the trend to swap engine out for something else.

    The damper as i recall simple slipped on a key way. Plug and play.

    Timing is simple. Damper marks may not be totally accurate, but are good enough to get a close read.
    Initially set around factory base value to get the engine to stay running and be driveable.

    Total timing is all that matters. Really do not need timing lights to do that.
    Leave vacuum everything connected in the final driving configuration for setting total timing.
    This way the vac and mech adv, etc, are all 'in' (online) and the road is a 'dyno' test.
    Advance dist until engine does not want anymore (knock, poor performance) during road test.
    Then back off couple degrees.
    Readjust as needed. Idle, etc. Covering all driving conditions will take a period of time.
    Been doing it this way since the 60's.

    When satisfied, go to base timing procedure configuration and note what base timing now is then mark on damper.
    I think mine went from factory base 6 btdc (never ran good at that mark) to 12 btdc or something. Been a while.

    Recheck after any major changes in performance or parts config.
    This is what i did last week, everything hooked up as working, losed up the dist cranked it reved it up to 3k rpms starting moving the distributor to the point where the engine would rev higher. Shut it down, tight it down... Running lets say great, but then again 30 degrees on timming mark.. cant barely feel any torque..
    Already tried running at 6, 10, 12 and adding 2 degrees till 18 initial timming and the way i did last week was the best result...
    One thing i dont like about trial and error is that u can damage or break things in the process.

  17. #17

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 80Merccapri View Post
    Carbs are easy to work on, my costs for everything is pretty low. Car has all the bells and whistles a turbo car could ask for and than some. Built it prior for nitrous though so it had a good cam, ignition, and fuel system, o2 sensor and gauge etc. Carb, front mount intercooler, carb hat, boost regulator and eBay turbo prob close to 750 bucks. But I spent that in nitrous every year easily so it was an easy switch. Plus power all the time that never runs out. And the bottle when I need it. Drive mine daily and when I drive it I drive it hard. eBay turbo and header year and a half old set over 25 psi. No lag whatsoever and very responsive. If it ever goes I'll buy a better one, but I can't imagine my dyno numbers if I can ever strap it down with this engine I built. It's all about what you can afford and what you can get done with what you got to do it. I agree wth the feels slower than your other cars you drive I have the same problem when I drive something else. Just go to get on it and it's like am I dragging a trailer or something. Daily driving cars quickly weeds out the problems though. Seems reliable if you drove it the last 3 weeks daily, but from what you describe seems like your missing power somewhere. Timing issue whether something is not lined up right or dizzy is bad. Let us know what you find.
    Have played with nitrous as well on many cars. Its cool while it lasts... Hahahaha but yeah i like better either an all motor or a boosted engine that a spray.

    Megasquirt is fun as hell, and you do get better results than with a carb lets say all around... Better fuel economy on daily bases, pretty much around the same neighborhood on performance with the right carb setup..
    Plus you get to control every little thing going on... Timming, fuel curves, switches, pretty much everything, quite an amazing cheap efm... But then again you do need the " know how to"

  18. #18

    Default

    I agree you can have a much more spot on fuel curve etc with fuel injection. It's easy to work on carbs but also a pain, getting the right air fuel down low at part throttle and up top when you need it. Even with a boost refrenced regulator you still need to play with your fuel jets and your air bleeds to pin point what your car likes. It's not always gonna be happy everywhere so you have to find the happy places in between, not always easy. I know a few that run that system with great success, thought about it a time or two. My car runs really well so idk if it would make that much of a power increase, but I would see a good mpg increase and make it much more driveable at a cruise I bet.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  19. #19

    Default

    If you are sure the crank sprocket, cam sprocket is in line and the dizzy points at number one what I would do is check the crank pulley for true tdc. For a easy way take out all the spark plugs so it's easy to crank over by hand and put a bar on the crank pulley and with one hand hold a straw or pencil in the number one cylinder so it's touching the top of the piston. Now before you start set it on tdc. Crank it over slowly one way until you feel the piston start to go down and stop than mark the crank pulley with a pen or sharpie. Thsn turn the engine the other way and when you feel the piston start to go down stop and mark the pulley again. See if the TDC mark is in between the two marks you made. If not go in between your two marks and try putting it there and re timing and aligning everything. Might not get you exact but will put you in the ball park.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  20. #20

    Default

    It's still not a balancer or a damper whatsoever, just a pulley. Also It is VERY possible for it to move on the crank even though that is the case. There is just a key that fits in a slot cut out of the crank and the non balancer/damper pulley. The keys deteriorate over time and may not actually just shear off but crack and let the crank pulley (which is not a damper or a balancer) slip around on the crank some but then catch back. Very easy to tell if that is the case. Just remove the pulley (nope, not the balancer or damper because there isn't one) and inspect the pulley, crank and the key for any damage. If all is well there, just re-install your non balancer/damper pulley and go on your merry way.
    Last edited by homer302; 01-01-2017 at 04:38 PM.
    Restoration of my 84 1/2 GT Turbo T Top:
    http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthread.php?t=124724

  21. #21

    Default

    I think he understands it's not a damper or a balancer. It's in the same place as one though, so if it's easier for him to understand it that way than let him understand that way.
    80 Capri built 2.3 nitrous motor with a bolt action behind it

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by homer302 View Post
    It's still not a balancer or a damper whatsoever, just a pulley. Also It is VERY possible for it to move on the crank even though that is the case. There is just a key that fits in a slot cut out of the crank and the non balancer/damper pulley. The keys deteriorate over time and may not actually just shear off but crack and let the crank pulley (which is not a damper or a balancer) slip around on the crank some but then catch back. Very easy to tell if that is the case. Just remove the pulley (nope, not the balancer or damper because there isn't one) and inspect the pulley, crank and the key for any damage. If all is well there, just re-install your non balancer/damper pulley and go on your merry way.
    Hahahaha ok ill check the non balancer/ damper crapy pulley......
    As i said in a newbie to the old crapy ford stuff... Havent found information on this anywhere, hense why i come to people that have had experiences on it....
    If the crank has the dwell or key or spotter whatever u feel like calling it, has an exact point to be set lets, say 12 oclock or 10 oclock could be a good gide aswell, but then again. Nothing shows up where i have been searching for.
    If this mark, spotter dwell key could line up with lets say tdc woulf be just perfect so i can mark down everything exactly... Ill check if that pulleys slipped though

  23. #23

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    Ok so its 0 degrees mark is dead on on spot.
    Probably having issues with distributor... Ordered a new one... While setting the distributor which is the position #1 cyl should be pointing?

  24. #24
    FEP Senior Member 8T6 SVO's Avatar
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    Default

    So the crank and cam timing are good?

    If the crank/cam/belt are set properly, sounds like you have a timing issue with the distributor and it is a tooth off. Have you tried adjusting the distributor?
    2007 SL55 - Capri Blue - Leather, 487/560 WHP/WTQ at 13.5PSI

  25. #25

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    I just ordered a new distributor q couple of days ago, might take some other days since im in guatemala city, I noticed shaft play in the one i currently have.
    I need to know which way it should be pointing, and or which are the marks for it. Havent been able to spot the1979 but i have been able to find other models :/

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