Apr. 01, 2004 By Rick Sieman
Quick Fix How To
By Fidel Gonzales

Ugly scene: You're driving along 40 miles from nowhere, in the middle of Baja, heading for a beach that's another 20 miles away. Your truck emits a loud "POP" sound under the hood, the exhaust backfires a few times, and your (up until now) trusty 4x4 drifts to a silent halt.

Oooops! What now?

What now, indeed. Chances are, you just sheared the pin locating your distributor gear. And the chances are even higher if you have an older truck/4x4/SUV as most of us do.

Don't despair. If you have just a few basic tools, we can get you back on the off-road again. And if you wander off-road without any tools, well, you're probably too dumb to even read this article.

Now pay attention.

1. To give yourself a basis reference point, mark the distributor base where it sits on the motor. This way, the distributor can be re-installed in the same location, ensuring close to proper ignition timing. A simple scratch from a screwdriver tip will work fine.

2. Remove the distributor carefully, making sure no dirt falls inside the hole. Clean the area around the distributor port before removing the distributor.

Off-Road.com Newsletter
Join our Weekly Newsletter to get the latest off-road news, reviews, events, and alerts!