Distributor Stuck 1973 Ford Mach 1 Mustang

Ford Distributor Stuck

Hi All,

I’m working on a 351 Cleaveland engine by Ford, and cannot move the distributor. I don’t need to remove it, just twist it to adjust the timing. I’ve loosened the bolt and used lubricant, as well as some force, but to no avail. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

My first thought for anything that is stuck is to use heat and work it slowly. If you are going to use a spray, I recommend “Blaster PB Penetrating oil” (PB Blaster). Chisel and Hammer are the last resort but may be necessary.

Here are some ideas from around the web.

  • WD-40 is a solvent and it won’t hurt to try it. Just keep soaking it and the rubber hammer on the vac advance is probably better than trying to turn the housing with something.
  • Try pulling it up and out. First mark where the rotor is aimed. When you get the dizzy up and out,then clean the base, and reinstall with rotor ending up in the original position it was in before you yanked it.
  • In one shop I worked, 390 Fords were famous for stuck distributors. One mechanic would get the engine hot, give the base of the distributor a blast from a CO2 fire extinguisher, I was awed, it worked. He did shoot the extinguisher under a towel so there was no mess. No good on a non-running engine though…

Source: Bob

Build a dam around it with putty and fill it with vinegar. The vinegar is acidic and dissolves the corroded aluminum. If it doesn’t work after you’ve tried the solvent, brake fluid, brake clean, etc then its hammer and chisel time although I did get one out with a slide hammer and steel strap around the housing.