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Performance Distributors

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Has anyone upgraded their distributor to a high performance model?  I just replaced my OEM distrubutor with a DUI on my 2001 Sunsetter VLX, finding power loss at the top end.  Wondering if the EFI needs to be re-tuned for a high performance distributor, to allow more fuel injection for the hotter, bigger spark?

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What high performance distributor did you install?  Most OEM distributors on the GM small block provide the performance you need.  The coil is what determines spark and spark intensity, distributor only distributes it to the correct cylinder at the correct time.  There could be a variety of reasons the new distributor is not functioning as you hoped, either timing or spark level is not to spec.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I talked with my mechanic, who says that there is a timing reset procedure when replacing any distributor.  This DUI distributor required a new HP 45K volt coil, and also requires resetting the spark plug gaps to .065, I have done both.  I have not checked the timing, but was very careful to replace the new distributor in the exact same position as the old one.  As this is an electronic distributor with advance controlled by the ECM, I am wondering if the timing needs to be reset at that ECM?  Basically, the engine drops off at 4K RPM, which clearly seems to be a timing issue.  Has anyone ever done the timing reset procedure on a 5.7L Vortec with an ECM?  My mechanic is out of pocket until the spring, just doing winterizations until then, so I figured I'd see if any of you have done this timing reset procedure.


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I don't know about a 2001, but my 2012 requires me to use diacom to set timing .  I'd suggest contacting a mechanic who is qualified to work on whatever engine it is that you have.  He should know how to time it.

Edited by oldjeep
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@CDOBU - Jody Seal at Florida Inboards does a lot of engine upgrades and offers advice on the BOS (Ball of Spray) forum.  ECM timing controlled boats tend to require or need a Diacom scanner to set base timing, although you might be able to get a base timing w/o one.  Have you tried to see what max timing actially reads?  Also, you might want to call Davis and get some insight from them on marine distributor installation.  What was the reason you changed distributors?

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