timing

I have a 1967 firebird w/ 326 engine recently rebuilt. The cam and lifters where not changed because the engine builder said they where ok. They where
not!!!.Cam was a race cam and 3 bad lifters. I have installed a stock cam, lifters and pushrods as well as rockers. I also changed out the roller rocker studs and replaced with positive stop studs. That didnt work for setting the valves. anyway as you can tell there are some problems. Now I have gone back to the polylock type studs that where in it and have set the valve lash to 0 with a half turn. Here is my question I had to remove the timing chain to install the new cam and after several trys I am unable to get the timing correct. Yes I lined up the timing marks dot to dot on #1 compression and reset the distributor to #1 and everytime I try to start it is out of time. When I remove the # 1 plug and rotate the engine to compression the dots are not aligned. So I reset the deal and turned the cam with the dist.. out to realign the dots and that didnt work. What am I doing wrong and how the hell do you set the timing from scratch... HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bring # 1 to TDC, then install or move the cam ( no chain in place) to the position where both lobes on the cam have the lifters at the lowest point. Your marks should be either next to each other on the gears or lower one up and cam gear up, I do not which way they are on this engine with cam timed properly. The method is generic on any engine, just make sure which cylinder is one.

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I have seen some engines that when you line up the timing marks it is actually firing on #6 instead of #1. Try starting with pulling the distributor out and turning it half of a turn. I've found this to work on a couple of engines. Another way is turn the engine over slowly watch the intake valve on cylinder #1 when it opens up keep cranking till it closes, then watch for the timing mark on the crankshaft, keep cranking till it is lined up the distributor should dropped in set to #1 cylinder.

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