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Old 01-09-2008, 06:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation Newbie engine replacement problems

Hey guys. First post here at Pirate 4x4, and I'm in need of some help. Any and all responses are appreciated.

Me and a buddy decided to swap out the I6 4.0 in my 88 Comanche. During the swap, we also decided to change the clutch, and any other parts we came across that were in need of some love. Once it was all back together, some issues came up.

Keep in mind that neither of us have any mechanical background, and this was all done by careful labeling, digital camera pictures, about 50 phonecalls to a local 4x4 shop, and reference to a Haynes (I know, boo) manual.

1. Where can I find a proper diagram of where all the vacuum lines/hoses go? I followed the diagram in the Haynes manual, but it seems to be pretty much completely out to lunch. (Had a mechanic take a look at it, he also says it's out to lunch)

2. The mechanic from #1 also tells me that there is blow-by in this engine. He removed the front breather hose from the valve cover while the engine was idling, and smoke was pouring out as soon as the engine got hot. What are the chances of having blow-by in a brand new engine from a dealership? Is there any chance it's not blow-by, but in fact just gasket sealer burning off, or something like that?

3. The mechanic from #'s 1 and 2 also stated that the distributor was the incorrect one for the engine. The old engine ran off this distributor and ran fine. Is there any way that the distributor could be wrong, or is he out to lunch? Is there any way I can verify the year of the new engine to confirm that the dealership gave me the right one?

The vehicle will start and idle nicely as it stands, but getting on the gas causes sputtering, stalling, popping, and it puts out very little power. We've been trying to trace the source of the problem (and suspect it has something to do with ignition timing, as we're pretty clueless when it comes to that aspect and have adjusted it around for hours), and after taking it to this mechanic, have become worried about what is going on with the engine.

Any advice or insight you can offer is greatly appreciated.

Please help a noob who is slightly over his head!!!
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Old 01-09-2008, 06:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You bought the engine "new", used, or rebuilt?

Either way, yes, your distributor is probably wrong, because there is no way you got an '88 version of the 4.0L.
That's most likely your sputtering, too. I had a similar problem on my '89 YJ with the 4.2L which ended up being the stator in the distributor. Not the same motor, so take that with a grain of salt.

Here is a link for you: diagrams
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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he can to have an 1988 model 4.0. the 4.2 came in the YJ's. The stator is definitely bad in your distibutor. Make sure to mark the location of where it is now because there should be two different mounting locations. Most manuals will reference this for you.
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjeepman View Post
he can to have an 1988 model 4.0. the 4.2 came in the YJ's. The stator is definitely bad in your distibutor. Make sure to mark the location of where it is now because there should be two different mounting locations. Most manuals will reference this for you.
Sorry, I meant to say that if he bought it "new" from the dealer, it was most likely a newer 4.0L
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Old 01-09-2008, 08:31 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjeepman View Post
he can to have an 1988 model 4.0. the 4.2 came in the YJ's. The stator is definitely bad in your distibutor. Make sure to mark the location of where it is now because there should be two different mounting locations. Most manuals will reference this for you.
Can you clarify this for me? We had alot of trouble even getting the timing close enough to idle, let alone run well. The Haynes manual has about 1/4 of a paragraph on ignition timing, and the diagrams all show the distributor cap 180 degrees of how the bolts in this one force us to mount it.
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Old 01-09-2008, 08:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmaclean View Post
Can you clarify this for me? We had alot of trouble even getting the timing close enough to idle, let alone run well. The Haynes manual has about 1/4 of a paragraph on ignition timing, and the diagrams all show the distributor cap 180 degrees of how the bolts in this one force us to mount it.
He is actually referring to the location of the stator, not the distributor.

Did you find top dead center before installing your distributor?
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Old 01-09-2008, 09:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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We found TDC as best as we knew how, using a mark on the drive pulley/vibration damper and the markings stamped on the block for 0 degrees. The haynes manual had a para about feeling for compression at the #1 plug while manually turning the engine over, but we haven't done that.

The stator mounts into a notched in the distributor and can only align one way. (I'm assuming the stator is the rotating piece with the brush that provides the spark to each plug wire)

Someone suggested on another forum that the "blow-by" smoke could simply be because the oil is new. It's synthetic, and has about a n hour of idling and a little bit of driving on it. Does that sound reasonable?

Last edited by johnmaclean; 01-09-2008 at 09:05 PM.
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Old 01-09-2008, 09:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmaclean View Post
We found TDC as best as we knew how, using a mark on the drive pulley/vibration damper and the markings stamped on the block for 0 degrees. The haynes manual had a para about feeling for compression at the #1 plug while manually turning the engine over, but we haven't done that.
You might want to try that, since you said that yours is mounted differently than shown in the manual.

Quote:
The stator mounts into a notched in the distributor and can only align one way. (I'm assuming the stator is the rotating piece with the brush that provides the spark to each plug wire)
You're thinking of the rotor. The stator is under the rotor, there should be a wire exiting the distributor - that wire is attached to your stator.

Quote:
Someone suggested on another forum that the "blow-by" smoke could simply be because the oil is new. It's synthetic, and has about a n hour of idling and a little bit of driving on it. Does that sound reasonable?
it's not because the oil is new, but because your engine is new. If you start finding oil in your air filter, I'd be worried. Until then, I would hold off on the worrying.

Last edited by the Merg; 01-09-2008 at 09:19 PM.
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Old 01-10-2008, 06:44 AM   #9 (permalink)
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you might need to turn the oil pump with a screw driver (pull dist. and stick a screwdriver and turn the oil pump with the #1 cyl. at TDC, then install the dist. correctly) in order to index the distributer right. you could also have some vac. lines going in the wrong spot. make sure your MAP sensor is hooked up correctly, that could cause the sputtering also.
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Old 01-10-2008, 10:53 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Origonaly posted by john maclean
"We found TDC as best as we knew how, using a mark on the drive pulley/vibration damper and the markings stamped on the block for 0 degrees. The haynes manual had a para about feeling for compression at the #1 plug while manually turning the engine over, but we haven't done that."

Actually before we mounted the oil pan we tipped the engine up and rotated the crankshaft until the notch was aligned while we watched the pistons move, and the piston was right at the top. I was in the shop for a long time putting that distributor into every configuration i could manage and only 1 way would even alow the engine to start so i am certain that it is aligned as well as it can be without modifying it or changing it.
I'll try the new distributor and playing with my vacuum lines more to hopefully sort it out.

Reference the vacuum lines, there's just some blanks i need help filling in (i know its tough without seeing it but any help offered is still apreciated):

1. on the throttle bodythere is 2 vaccume line-fittings (both within one rubber grommet) one apparently goes straight to the MAP sensor; what hooks up to the other?

2. The 2 lines that run past the air box to the EGR selanoid connect to what on the other end?

3. The schamatic i have (Haynes manual) shows one line running from the [vacuum motor] mounted on the front outer side of the air box, straight back to one of 2 little silver nipples at the rear of the air box lid... is that correct? along with that... where that line attaches to the air box lid, what does the second little silver nipple attatch to?

The schematics i recieved (thanks by the way) are good, but dont seem to cover these questions... and I'll probly have moer within a few hours.
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Old 01-13-2008, 12:32 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Whoa! On these engines the distributor has no effect whatsoever on ignition timing, that's all in the crank position sensor. The distributor sets the fuel synch- basically it needs to be timed only to the extent of telling the pcm when cyl 1 fires so cyl 1 injector fires, not 3 or 4 etc.

You'll have to search around some but there is detailed info on the web about how to properly synchronize the distributor and eliminate fuel synch issues. I remember cutting up an old dist cap helped the process greatly. Bad crank sensors can cause similar problems while still allowing the engine to run- a lot of sensors can, actually. If this is a brand new engine it's a wise idea to have all new sensors on it.

Those two vacuum lines on the throttle body- one goes to the MAP sensor, the other one goes nowhere. It's just a nipple to keep the grommet aligned in the TB if I remember right.
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Old 01-13-2008, 06:27 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I had the same problem last year when I did my engine swap.
I had puchased a new distributor to go with the engine but it was'nt set right.
I put the old on in and it ran fine.

Try pulling a distributor from a running 4.0 and swap it in.

If you use a new distributor you have to modify it.
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