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How to Set the Timing on a 1969 Dodge Slant Six

Dodge produced two slant six engines in 1969: the 170 and the 225. Although both engines were relatively small for the era, they did produce respectable power for their size. Neither engine has power to spare, however, so it is of critical importance that the timing is set properly. Fortunately, doing so on either engine is a straightforward job.

Tools Used: Golf tee, pencil or some similar instrument, Chalk, Socket wrench, Timing light, Wrench

Set Timing

Pull the thin rubber hose off the vacuum canister on the side of the distributor, then plug the opening on the tip of the hose with a golf tee, pencil or some similar instrument.

Locate the metal timing pointer just above the harmonic balancer on the front of the engine.

Mark the appropriate timing point on the timing pointer with chalk. Draw a chalk mark at the 5-degree mark to the right of "0" if the engine is a 170-cubic-inch engine with a manual transmission. Draw a chalk mark at 2.5 degrees (to the right of "0" and between the unmarked line) if the engine is a 170-cubic-inch engine with an automatic transmission. Draw a chalk mark on the "0" if the engine is a 225-cubic-inch engine with either a manual or automatic transmission.

Attach a socket wrench to the bolt in the center of the harmonic balancer, then rotate the balancer with the socket wrench in a clockwise direction until a divot on the edge of the harmonic balancer appears.

Mark the divot on the edge of the harmonic balancer with chalk.

Attach a timing light to the engine, following the manufacturer's instructions. The instructions will call for one of the timing light's wires to be attached to the No. 1 spark plug wire. The No. 1 spark plug wire is the wire closest to the front of the engine.

Ensure that each of the timing light's wires are clear of the engine's fan blades, then turn the engine on. Point the timing light at the timing pointer and pull the light's trigger.

Observe the timing light illuminate the two chalk marks. If the chalk marks do not align, the timing must be adjusted.

Loosen the bolt at the base of the distributor with a wrench, then slowly turn the body of the distributor until the two chalked timing points align under the illumination of the timing light.

Turn the engine off, disconnect the timing light and tighten the distributor bolt. Reattach the thin rubber hose to the vacuum canister on the side of the distributor.

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