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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I spaced my distributor out from the head with a paper gasket because the o-ring was leaking after i replaced it with a new one; old o-ring was leaking oil by the distributor. After new o-ring it still leaked so i put a gasket between it. Later i got a thicker o-ring to use and then i go to take my distributor out and the little wing on the end that lines it up, was broken in half. one half still left in the head, i pulled it out with a magnet. got a new distributor, and go to put it in and i look in the hole the distributor goes in and, it looks like somethings missing?
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i took the valve cover off and don't notice anything but i'm SURE there was something that lined up that little notch on y distributor that one side wing with the notch in it before when i wasnt getting it in straight.
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(see little notch on the left side cut out)

plus, its hard to even get in there now.
I have no idea were this thing could of went or what it was.
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(I cant find anything in there)
It seems something is missing
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(It doesnt look right
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It doesnt make sense that something would of "fell" off and broke apart. but as the old distributor did, the wing "broke" off. So, something in side might of broke off. I cant tell which way is the right way to put the distributor in, and when i put it through, the o-ring is tighter but when the wing starts to hit the camshaft notch, it gets stuck unless its directly aimed at the notch that is there, like something before was guiding it.
Im giong out to see if i can find something that might of fell off the car and onto the ground out there right now
Can anyone else take their distirbutor out or has theirs out and can check what theirs looks like for me? thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
well, iguess i must of thought which way was it on when i took it im I am "ASSUMING" cause i have these pictures were i started to take them to try to figure out why my car was still leaking oil after i changed that o-ring out. I was measuring the o-ring and sizes of the hole and everything. and from what im looking at, it was this camshaft end im looking at that was there.
Im guessing(assuming) that the notch told me which way it was took out when i took it out and i knew which way was side or top/bottom.
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so im giong to try starting it and see what it does. nope no bits of metal but that looks like what im looking at so i dont see how there could of been a notch for that that wouldnt fall off during motion anyway and that would of been..stupid. (bought the wrong distributor older model and tried to remove that pin holding the wing on. hah right) Nothing to me looks odd and theres not many people proably knows a lot about this, Plus my manual shows the same shape im looking at in it with no notch for how the distributor goes in so, im assuming no metal is slinging around in my motor unhinged. gonna start this up and see if i can run it or get it to the harbor freight for a timing light if needed, or if its on backwards. if something odd happens, ill reply. just take this as a build along thread.
 

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1997 Corolla
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That slit in the end of the camshaft is slightly off of center as is the "wing" on the distributor shaft, so you can't put the distributor in 180° off.

I don't notice anything off, but I'll see if I can dig up any pictures I have.

Are you sure the leak wasn't from the valve cover gasket? You need to apply RTV sealant where the corners of the circular part around the distributor shaft are.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
the end of the exhaust camshaft were the distributor goes in. I thought there was a alignment mark. I imagine things up sometimes. Thought there was more in there to the end of that camshaft than what is in the Top picture. Wanted to make sure before I put it together, since I broke something off of the distributor. Since that, I thought I might of broke something off of the camshaft but that all wasn't making much sense, as much sense as I thought I could take the wing off another distr. and knock that pin out and swap it in. but it spins too high speed and too much to be that easy to come right off. whatever would have been on the end of the camshaft wouldnt of been a good idea. I think i just switched ideas up in my head that that notch was for just which way went which way when you pull the distributor off.
Sum this up: i thought something was missing off the end of the camshaft. i broke the .. hard to describe it, that wing off of my distributor by spacing it out with paper gaskets between it and the head trying to stop oil from leaking around it ; even after putting a new o-ring on. i bought a 30x38mm o-ring nitrile 70 durometer off ebay and it fits more snugly. why? is mine, not sealing with the oem autozone brand one? i dont know why, just it was and i wanted the oil to stop leaking. Spacing the distrubutor farther away from the head makes it barely notch up and broke it. wanted to make sure nothing was missing cause that would of blown my motor if it didnt hold there until i took the distributor off and fall out when i took it off.out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
im trying to tell what it looks like on the end. i cant tell by those blurry pictures.
Edit: i can't make out what none of that stuff in in relation to my distr. camshaft.. car. i cant tell if yours is just angled so much you cant see any space between them or is there not any space barely between them? i cant see the notches were the distributor goes in winged to the camshaft, i cant see any notches, no sign at all. if they are completely sideways i still see no signs of a notch cut out. or its too blurry. the other pictures are also at a high degree of angle.

my old distributor and the new used one are the same length. that couldnt be what it is.

but either way i cant notice anything thats missing, except for a gap and the wing doesnt seem notched up but you cant move that cam and the distributor is fully in, flush.

it doestn matter i mnot getting double paranoid here, this wasn't an issue until someone showed some pictures of i cant tell what it is. there is nothing missing i can see so im disregarding. my original question about whats on the end of the camshaft if anything im thinking missing, im not finding anything. assurance that nothing is different than my first picture would be assuring. a check on the same motor of the way they mate togther would not bother me any either.
 

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I couldn't find any pictures from my 1990. Either I never took the distributor completely off, I never took pictures, or they are on my old phone. I do have a picture from my 1997 with 7A-FE. The end of the camshaft should be the same as the 6th gens.
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
ok. mines like that. there is no way im missing a section that would bolt over the end, no way. the motor would be shot. mine though, just doesnt line up as close as in those blurry pictures, compare my 4th picture as much as those other ones but, not sure what that is for sure and the angles and the clearness of them. I have to say i just forgot something, mixed up something with something else. So, no worries, great it works. Should of looked as i was out today at that junkyard getting that one. but my car runs smooth as butter now. even better than before id say with less misses. ive not took it for a ride tho or idled even longer than a couple minuts so far.
 

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You could take off the valve cover to check how snugly the distributor fits into the camshaft end.

Did you set the ignition timing with a timing light yet?

And did you put RTV at the "corners" of the valve cover gasket near the distributor (and across the half moon area to prevent oil leaks?
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
yea im saying picture number 4 post #1 is as tight as it goes. you can see how far the wing goes into the groove. I never looked at it that closely before. Just was part of my question, i was worrying something was missing when I first looked in to the hole cause i "thought" it had a thing to line up the notch in the wing to not put it backwards in with. Might of tho had that thought mixed up with, it lets you know which side is on which end; the notch goes, on the top or on the right.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
i got to say tho besides the worrying here. wow this has fixed every little miss and everything in my car ( no its not timed yet either hah). The hard startups, that was the quickest its ever started, i barely touched the key and bam. vroom. like almost instant. every little hesitation is gone now too. I think something was burning or burnt out in my old distributor, whatever goes in there.
its as mounted as it can be, there is no other mounting. I jus thought there might be a missing part, from soem mind fart i had and just wanted to double check on it. we had the weird how it looks picture installed. It's fine, i guess. I ust looked at that becuase I was at it, took the valve cover off to check for a broken part laying in there before I started it up the first time.
 

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Sum this up: i thought something was missing off the end of the camshaft. i broke the .. hard to describe it, that wing off of my distributor by spacing it out with paper gaskets between it and the head trying to stop oil from leaking around it ; even after putting a new o-ring on. i bought a 30x38mm o-ring nitrile 70 durometer off ebay and it fits more snugly. why? is mine, not sealing with the oem autozone brand one? i dont know why, just it was and i wanted the oil to stop leaking. Spacing the distrubutor farther away from the head makes it barely notch up and broke it. wanted to make sure nothing was missing cause that would of blown my motor if it didnt hold there until i took the distributor off and fall out when i took it off.out.
The reason the "O" ring is so hard to put the distributor back on with the new ring, is that the new ring hasn't been flattened yet (from being installed and heat cycled yet). It's supposed to be like that to seal the oil in.
You don't want to space the distributor out, as it needs to be fully in to engage the drive. If not you'll break something.
 
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