Been Busy - Distributor Rebuild

1962-1965 Datsun L320 and NL320 forums - The truck that started it all in the US. All 320-specific topics and discussion can be found here.
User avatar
Li'l Truckie
Posts: 558
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2014 9:28 am
Car: 3 x '65 PL 320
1 x '64 PL 320
1 x '63 PL 320
1 x '62 PL 320 - parts :(
1 x '60 PLG-222
and many more Datsuns from 48hp to over 500hp
Location: Leavenworth, KS

Been Busy - Distributor Rebuild

Postby Li'l Truckie » Sun Aug 31, 2014 6:21 pm

Okay, been playing catch-up the past couple of weeks and working on other 320 projects. One was a distributor rebuild for a Datsun enthusiast.

Chances are your 320 or other Datsun with an E1 and Hitachi D406 Distributor looks or looked like this at one time. No problem, we can fix it!

So here's what I received in the mail -
Image
Pretty dirty to say the least. Note the seized vacuum adjust screw -
Image
Hard to tell but the wire lead from the condenser, contact point arm and wire lead from the breaker plate tab to the coil lead are not secure, they are improperly grounded, and the plastic insulators are in need of replacement.

One last issue I did not notice until later was that the Weight-governor and the Cam Assembly were rusted together and I wasn't until after a good cleaning with solvent and carb cleaner did these two parts move freely.
Image

All these the faults equal two big problems - An in-op Datsun that will not fire and run and a frustrated Datsun enthusiast.

So let's get started! Time to disassemble everything and clean everything up.
Image
Image

With everything cleaned up and painted to look nice, pretty, and factory new it's time to re-assemble everything.
Image
DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING! Oh, and make sure your monster pets are at least fed and entertained while you work.

I have found it is easiest to start with the coil terminal or terminal B per the parts manual. Had to improvise a little and from this pic you can see the rubber O-ring grommet we use to insure proper insulation on the terminal lead to the coil -
Image
The bakelite insulator was still in good shape so we could re-use this piece. However, the outside bakelite insulator was broken in two so I used a nylon washer to insure proper insulation -
Image
A new brass washer and nut round out this bit of the rebuild.

Next it's time to install the breaker plate, vacuum, distributor cap clips, and contact point base. Pretty easy to assemble as it really only goes back together one way.
Image
Note the washer on the far right of the contact points. This is the locking screw you tighten up once you have set your point gap. Insure the washer is big enough so that it does not slip into the adjusting oval and do not use a lock washer without the flat washer as it will bind in the oval and throw off your point gap.
As I mentioned before, I had to make a trip to the hardware store to source some rubber grommets and O-rings for the rebuild. So besides the nut and bolt aisle, you might need to check out the yellow Serv-Lit boxes in the plumbing section and the lamp repair section at your hardware store.
Image
As you can see in the above photo it's time to replace some of the insulators. So here again we have a rubber grommet for an insulator on the breaker plate contact arm tab that we found in the the lamp repair aisle at the hardware store.
Image

So to make sure I get the sequence of how the condenser lead, contact point arm and the wire lead that runs from the breaker plate (terminal A) to the coil lead (terminal B), I pulled the working distributor from my '64.
Image
And here is everything put back together -
Image
As you can see from the above picture the contact point arm, condenser lead, and wire lead from terminal A (breaker plate) to terminal B (lead/terminal to coil) are completely insulated from the distributor body and the breaker plate.

The next morning we stuck this distributor in the '64 and it fired right up! After a few revs, and a quick wipe down, it was boxed up and sent out in the mail.

Let me know if you have any questions -
cheers,
Li'l Truckie

Up next - fuel pump disaster...ugh....


Gemmer
Posts: 86
Joined: Mon Jan 27, 2014 5:38 pm
Car: 1964 Datsun PU 320
Location: Roseville,Ca

Re: Been Busy - Distributor Rebuild

Postby Gemmer » Mon Sep 01, 2014 10:40 pm

Nice work! Well explained.
Look forward to your fuel pump project. I have been running mine with an electric for 25 years but would like to get the original pump working. Diaphram is shot.

Conner
Posts: 69
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2012 9:52 am
Car: SRL31101633
1964 L320

Re: Been Busy - Distributor Rebuild

Postby Conner » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:13 am

Awesome job on the dizzy. Very nice work.

User avatar
Li'l Truckie
Posts: 558
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2014 9:28 am
Car: 3 x '65 PL 320
1 x '64 PL 320
1 x '63 PL 320
1 x '62 PL 320 - parts :(
1 x '60 PLG-222
and many more Datsuns from 48hp to over 500hp
Location: Leavenworth, KS

Re: Been Busy - Distributor Rebuild

Postby Li'l Truckie » Sat Sep 06, 2014 5:53 pm

Thanks Conner.

Here it is up and running.

Image


Return to “Datsun 320”