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Triumph TR6 - Firing Order

Just upgraded my distributor cap, electronic ignition, coil and spark plug wires. The Haynes Workshop Manual shows on p88 the firing order:1 5 3 6 2 4...but with this order the engine does not fire, but as a precaution wrote down the firing order the car had before: 3 6 2 4 1 5 and with this setup it works. Is it a misprint on the manual? Puzzled...!!!Will like to hear fron the TR6 Gurus...!!!
Angel L. Traverso

Hey Angel

Too much tropical breese and Rum. Please send lots of both to following address in Canada. :)
The books right on firing order. At least on all I have seen. Page 88 is showing wire connections to dist. and plugs is also right. Your firing order is same but your out a couple of cogs at the drive end of distributor. Someone had distributor out and used exhaust stroke on one tdc for compression stroke maybe? And then just kept screwing it up till it worked. My guess.

If you want to correct remove valve cover watch for 1 cylinder to come to TDC compression stroke both rockers up valves closed. Remove and reinstall your distributor so wiring is correct.

I can't think of any aftermarket parts installed properly that would alter this.

Bill Brayford

Angel, listen to Bill or ask Steven or Rick C.
These guys know system inside and out.
Good luck.
Christopher Trace

I love this great LBC family...seems like I know all of you for a long time...sometimes I wish to have a winter season so more maintenance be given to my TR instead of having the warm breeze on my face...back to "firing order"..when Brayford says to remove distributor I guess he means the whole assembly and not just the cap...!!! Back to the garage and hope to do it before the bottle of Bacardi is over, have plenty of lemon twist and coke...oh boy, life is so hard. For those interested, my car can be seen on , it is the only one from Puerto Rico. Thanks for the inputs..
Angel L. Traverso

I had this problem twice and they all stem back to the distributor for both scenarios.

1. Check the HT leads and that they lead from the correct spot on the dist. cap to the proper cylinder and spark plug. I have this problem all the time as the cap is not labeled with cylinder numbers and always have to revert to a photograph in my Haynes manual in order to get the correct wiring. While pg 88 shows the wiring order, I use the photo on pg 92 to landmark the reference of the # 5 wire as that is the one closest to the vacuum retard. The problem with diagram is that if the dist is rotated initally to get the timing right there is a good chance that you can get 5 mixed up with 1; or 5 with 3 going by the diagram. The diagram should have had the vacuum fixture drawn in for refrence of attitude.

2. The second time I had this problem is when I rebuilt my distributor and had the firing order out by 180*. While the dog gear is offset so that it will only fit into the drive in the block one way, however the actual dog gear to the dist shaft (with pin) can be mounted two ways...correct and 180 degrees off.

Ha Chris
Thanks for the vote of confidence but I will leave the engine stuff to the guys who have a greater need for speed like Dr. Bill, Steve P, John P, (and u). After all, I am the one who set a thread record and the front carb still ain't right! Now if it is a prince of darkness question...
Rick C

P.S. Just received my order from Jeff and the u-joints he sent me are the non-greasable type. Jeff said he has been using this type for past 5 years in his MGs..any experience or suggestions (besides suggesting I put grease in them Mr. Kelly)?

PP.SS. Angel, don't you have something else to do instead of bothering us with your sob stories about warm breezes and empty bottles....:) and yes, Bill meant the whole thing. Oh ya...nice lookin' white '71 or do you think of her as a '70? that the cottage in the back-ground? There is a bunch of us who have listed with the trregistry.
Rick Crawford

Rick, as per your request will not mention any more the warm breeze, today it dropped down to 80F...hehehehe. the TR6 71 was manufactured 11/17/70 and yes it is my humble cottage...Back to firing order..when tried to reinstall the distributor it would not go in with rotor pointing to No.1, but if it is turned around 180,rotor pointing to No.6,(I think..) it fits but engine does not fire, so had to reorder the cables back to öriginal configuration". Are the pins in the distributor shaft, keyed? so they only fit one way? Will sleep with my Haynes under the pillow tonight...!!Thanks to all for their inputs.
Angel L. Traverso

I have put up to 300,000 clicks on sealed u joints. I have grease fittings on mine just to give me something to do that feels like I being nice
to my baby.
Angel, Doing it the right way is always the hardest.
Correct me if I wrong here guys, but with every distributor I've installed I had to line up the rotor/shaft 10-20 degrees to the right or clockwise
from the firing postion of the no.1 cylinder and as the as the gears meshed the distributor shaft would descend as it turned to the left or counter colckwise
and then would line up with where the no.1 cylinder
would fire with the no.1 at top dead center.
Even with the gears well greased it is still going to take you 20 minutes of fiddleing to get it right.
Christopher Trace

You got it Chris. I should have mentioned that Angel. But my frosted up nose and head is plugged with more than brain right now.

Now if I had a nice Puertorican Rum Toddy and nice +80 sea air for my cold I would be off to sleep. Oh well Dristan will have to do.

Bill Brayford

Angel-Interesting, mine is a Nov of 70 production date and I check the registry and mine was built right before yours. I hope the same drunk bloke who built mine didn't work on yours too.
Don K.

Rick, that is a fine blue TR6...keep it up.Don, haven't had any big problem on mine. Back to my firing order problem, removed the dog ear and rotated 180 degrees, have no.1 on TDC on compresion stroke, rotor pointing to no.1 lead...well about half way between 1 and 5 and still does not fire up...!!! but if I revert to öriginal set up ,it works...ce est la vie, vive la Triumph! Ran out of Bacardi rum...back to my Haynes manual, it is all greased up on page 88...!!!keep all those tips coming in....!!!
Angel L. Traverso

Hi Angel

When you lifted out your distributor underneath there is the drive unit with a slot that the drive dog fits in. This shaft can be lifted out and moved around in small increments.

The brits call them scew gears. I call them helical either way they are curved.

Taking it out with pliers turn to allow it to lift. Where you put back in it will move around oposite as it seats.

Look at the bottom right corner of page 44 Haynes at 1 TDC compression the slot should be in that 45 degree position or as they point out the correct position. Not the stupid figure 1.29 vertical the text refers to but disagrees with. May take a few tries to get right. Then check your distributor when inserted for bang on 1.

Just a disclaimer here if by chance the text is wrong and pictures right and yours is at 45 which you know is wrong put the thing vertical. Don't have my other manuals at house to check.

So set 1 @ tdc compression and go for it.

You will have to reset your timing a bit but should fire and run so be prepared.


Bill Brayford

Finally I am a happy British Toy came back to life...!!! The main problem was that whoever worked on the engine had the helix gear that dives the distributor, two tooth off...Bill Brayford and Steven were right...wish that I could send them a Bacardi bottle over the web...!!! My deepest appreciation to everybody who responded to this thread...Thanks, back to the roads...
Angel L. Traverso

This thread was discussed between 09/12/2002 and 14/12/2002

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