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Here's a few pictures of what I got. I turned the motor by hand with a ball of paper pushed in number spark plug. After turning it popped out the line on harmonic balancer shows it a number before 0, but the looks to be pointing at # 5 or # 7. Should I turn it some more to find top dead center. This is my first time trying to do this with no help. I hope someone can guide me through.
 

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1965 Malibu SS
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Johnny, remove drivers side valve cover, number one cylinder is the most forward one. The first rocker arm is exhaust, the next in intake valve, cylinder one. rotate engine until tou see number one intake valve close the check your timing mark on harmonic balancer, it should be close to 10 12 degrees before top dead center. If it is then remove distributor cap, your rotor should be pointing towards number one cylinder, plug wire for number one should be directly over it.
 

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Rotor terminal is pointing at cylinder 5 or 7 or between them.
That does not make any difference. What makes the difference is where the plug terminal for those cylinders are located on the distributor cap.

You may know that.
BUT I have seen dozens of people think the rotor terminal needs to point at the #1 cylinder without any relation as to where the plug wire is at.
Follow me.
 

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Like the old mechanic told me at the station when I was a kid, "You can start the No.1 firing any place you want on the engine just make sure after number 1, 8-4-3-6-5-7-2 follow afterward" always have done it that way all my life.
 

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The reason I point rotor to number one is to have vacuum advance generally pointing towards cylinder two, to allow dist. body to rotateto advance or retard timing without vac. advance canister hitting firewall or intake runners on some high rise manifolds.
 

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Aren’t there different timing pointer and balancer combinations as well? On my father in law’s 67 Camaro with a 70’s 350 but all 67 accessories (waterpump, brackets, etc) it was the later balancer and 67 timing tab/timing cover. No way to line it up using the balancer.
 

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1) Bump engine around until you feel pressure in cylinder #1 (or your paper trick)
2) Rotate engine carefully with a socket on the balancer retention bolt until it's at roughly 8* BTDC
3) Pull distributor and re-install to where the rotor points at the vacuum canister
4) Bump the motor over with starter until the tang on the distributor finds the slot in the oil pump drive, and the distributor seats itself down that last little bit.
5) Start engine, re-set timing with your timing light
6) Happy motoring!
 
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