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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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2007/4/20 17:54
From Fresno CA
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55s also had an issue with intermittent crossfiring but that was mostly noticed around 20-40 mph and not at idle. It might still be worth looking into though. Packard changed the plug wire supports in 56 because of the crossfire and the new supports were to be retrofitted to 55s if warranted. If you have the original approx 4-5" long supports where the wires are in a bunch right above the rocker covers and held in rubber coated slots approx 1/2 inch apart, check there and also along the wire path for closely paralleled wires. If you have the replacement 10-12" long pieces that raise and separate the wires approx 2 inches apart then you might check and see if the wires are closely paralleled for any appreciable distance somewhere else along the path. Details are in 56 service counselor Vol 30 #3.

Posted on: 2019/2/21 8:17
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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The intermittent cross firing mostly affects cylinders 5 and 7. These two rear cylinders on the LH bank fire in sequence (1-8-4-3-6-5-7-2). Separating the wires to the far ends of the standard small brackets helps to mitigate this problem. Retrofitting the longer brackets, as Howard describes, is a better fix, but they are getting hard to find.

Posted on: 2019/2/21 9:01
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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2016/3/1 6:56
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I do have the original plug wire supports. Been looking for the wider '56 ones but haven't seen them available at Borth (haven't called Dulinksy yet). I will look and pay special attention to closely paralleled wire, esp 5 & 7.

thanks for the advice.

Posted on: 2019/2/21 10:10
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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Took the distributor apart tonight. All looks in decent shape. This time I went down to the counterweights. I little old oil buildup, but the weights were still freely moving. Cleaned it all up and reassembled. There was no side to side play at all; nary a wobble. There is about 1/8" up and down play but I believe that to be normal.

So distributor seems to be good. If I knew of a place near Houston that had one of those Sun distributor testing places (or equiv) I would take it there to see if it is operating perfectly. Maybe I will call around, in a city this big there has to be someone reputable. I'll also do the dist tests in the service manual to adjust spring tensions etc.

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jpg  insided dizzy II.jpg (419.70 KB)
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Posted on: 2019/2/21 21:10
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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End play should be about .010 so if 1/8 some shimming is in order.

Posted on: 2019/2/21 22:07
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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So , upon actually measuring the gap and resulting play, it is more like 0.060". The rounded, tapered edge of the shaft gave the wrong illusion of something bigger.
If it was moving up and down that much, would it really make a difference? that amount of up/down movement seems to be small compared to the height of the cam and the cam-follower.

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jpg  dist end play.jpg (354.55 KB)
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Posted on: 2019/2/22 13:32
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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2007/3/14 16:01
From New Jersey
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Up and down movement of the helical gear if it occurs will result in changes advance/retard to your ignition timing, back and forth with each gear movement. You need to do a little math to see if the amount would be significant.

Posted on: 2019/2/22 15:25
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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OK, I'll add math to the weekend chores. If the up/down movement is out of spec, what wears that allows this to happen? There is no perceptible side to side or wobble movement. Is this a normal wear condition? Is the solution to remove the helical gear, remove the shaft and add a washer or similar to take out the play? Or is this a result of the top bearing wearing down and needs to be replaced?
Removing the pin that holds the helical gear seems to be undoing factory installs, so I'm not super confident this is the right approach for a garage mechanic to unswage then reswage the gear. Not sure how much to dig into this or if this calls for professional help (whomever that is.....)..

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jpg  Dist helical gear.jpg (340.63 KB)
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Posted on: 2019/2/22 18:06
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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When I added a pointless system to my 1965 Cadillac, the kit came with shims of different thicknesses and removing the roll-pin, adding shims as needed, then putting the pin back in was easy but Ive never had to do it on a Packard so not sure what the details are. As I recall, the shims were smoother and flatter than just plain washers so perhaps your local Napa store might have what you need.

Because of the helical gear, there is always longitudinal pressure that causes wear in that direction.

Posted on: 2019/2/22 18:55
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Re: Bob's '55 Patrician Blog
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I filed the ends of the pin off, then used a center punch to knock it through the other side. Since I didnt want to bend the shaft, I was careful to support the shaft all around where I was hammering.

Have some Moroso 26140 distributor shims on order that are for the 0.5" shaft. Looking at replacing the pin. It is 3/16" and a 1" will work if I flatten the edges to make it stay. Also thinking about using a 1" roll pin from the local ACE hardware store. Seems like that may give enough pressure to stay in.

Saw a replacement NOS dist gear on ebay for $35, but i think the one I have is in decent shape? I don't see much wear on the gear itself, but not easy to tell without a side by side comparison with a new one. Maybe it is the slot for the oil pump shaft that wears, Not sure.

Hope to get this back together next weekend.

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jpg  dist roll pins.jpg (533.65 KB)
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Posted on: 2019/2/24 16:57
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