1983 cutlass supreme 3.8 ignition check. - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 07-17-2007, 10:20 PM   #1
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Default 1983 cutlass supreme 3.8 ignition check.

Rear wheel drive
My friend has one of these cars and he says when the engine is revved too high, it starts to backfire and and "chug" along.

It sounds to me like an ignition timing problem, possibly. I at least want to eliminate that as a possibility. I have a timing light but what I do not know is where to find the timing window in the trans or wherever.

So what degree BTC should it be adjusted to and at what RPM'*? Idle?
And where would I find the window?
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Old 07-19-2007, 05:31 PM   #2
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I can't speak specifically for that particular engine, but the older engines generally had a line indented in the harmonic balancer for the timing mark. Then, there would be a tab attached to the front of the engine that bent over the balancer that had the different timing marks on it. It is usually on the driver'* side of the car. As for the timing and speed, I no longer have any servicing information that old, but if no one speaks up, you may want to check at the library and see what they have.
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Old 07-19-2007, 08:41 PM   #3
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See if the car still has the emissions label on the radiator pannell... It will have all of the information on setting the timing of the engine, If its still readable...

And like stated above the timing marks will be on the Balancer

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Old 07-20-2007, 12:27 PM   #4
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Also..if that'* a distributor engine as I think it may be..check for corrosion on the modules inside the distributor. They can drag down the voltage and cause quite the issues as well.
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Old 07-20-2007, 06:14 PM   #5
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Yeah anything is possible... If the timing is right a Bad pickup coil could make it pop and skip too

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Old 07-21-2007, 01:24 AM   #6
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I had an 84 Cutlass, same engine. always ran fair, idle always lumpy though, found the timing chain really loose. Once we changed that, it smoothed out pretty good. I think it had 140k when that was discovered.

Worth a shot if the easy (cheap) stuff doesnt help.
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