intake manifold gasket - distributor

hello,
I just finished putting everything back together after replacing the intake manifold gasket ('99 Chevy K1500, old body style, 80K miles). one thing to remember for somebody trying to do this is that it is
very important to mark the distributor in relation to the manifold, and the rotor in relation to the distributor base BEFORE AND AFTER the distributor is taken out. so you need three marks: 1 is distributor base to manifold, 2 is rotor to distributor base before distributor is removed, and 3 is rotor to distributor base after distrbutor is removed.
i made the mistake of only making the first two marks. after the distributor was taken out, the rotor was accidentally turned, turning also the distributor shaft, and now i had no idea how to aling the rotor so that, on insertion, the marks made before the distributor was taken out would align. after a lot of fidgeting with the distributor (taking it out, turning it slightly, putting it back in, repeated several times), i finally was able to align the marks i had made. however, the truck is not starting. it is turning over, but does not start. i believe the rotor is completely out of whack with the engine.
so if anybody has any hints on how to aling the rotor, i would appreciate them. can i simply align the timing marks by turning over the engine at the camshaft pulley and then making sure the rotor is pointing at the #1 terminal? do i have to "feel" for compression at the #1 spark plug hole and then align the rotor to the #1 terminal? how does one go about feeling for compression at the spark plug hole?
any help would be appreciated. thanks!
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First, you need to make sure that it is at #1 TDC, pull the plug out, and turn it over till #1 is on compression stroke, the align using marks. then align rotor to #1. You might need someone with a scan tools to look at the CMP retard and fine turn from there. Cam

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"r.o." wrote

Take the spark plug out, and crank the engine over by hand. If you can reach while cranking the engine, stick your finger in the hole, and you will feel the engine coming up on compression. (what you will feel is the air coming out of the hole)
Once you get #1 TDC....then you align the rotor with the (1) mark on the distributor housing. It's a little tiny number stamped into the outside edge of the housing where the cap fits on.
By the way, for next time, there are only two marks you have to make. I always mark the cap position while it is still on the distributor. These caps have two parallel lines cast into the top of the cap, I mark the position of the cap relative to the firewall using these two lines as my "sight". This automatically lines up the distributor housing to the intake. Then pull off the cap, mark where the rotor lines up with either the firewall or some other object in the engine bay that it happens to be pointing to. As you then pull the distributor out, you will notice that the rotor turns a little bit as it comes out. Remember this, and when you install it, note where the rotor "should" end up at....and then determine approximately where it should be as you install the distributor. Once the distributor is in all the way, and the rotor is lined up, stick on the cap and then you can rotate the whole dist and cap and get it lined up. Tighten down the clamp and away you go.
Ian
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I did the same thing on my 96 chevy 2500 back in December. I could not get the thing to fire at all. I ended up doing the TDC trick and #1 Terminal. Finally got it to fire up,, but cannot get it to "time" out correctly. I still have the Check Engine light on and it reads me "Cam to crank position correlation fault",, but runs great. Anyone know how to fix this problem?? Thanks in advance Philc
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Lan, I do everything that you do with one extra step. I mark the cylinders on an old distributor cap and then cut the top off. That way, you can use the cut-away cap to help line things up.
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When the distributor is in a 96 and newer V8(5.0, 5.7, 7.4) and the engine is at TDC on the #1 cylinder compression stroke the rotor should be pointing at a pointer on the side of the distributor housing that has a number 8 on it, the pointer is on the flat part of the distributor housing

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