How to Correct the Timing on a Triumph TR6 Ignition

Updated July 19, 2017

The Triumph TR6 is a classic British convertible sportscar that was made from 1969 to 1976. TR6s are prized for their traditional roadster looks that are combined with a sporty straight-6 engine and a nimble handling chassis. Inaccurate ignition timing can cause multiple problems with a Triumph, including poor running, missing and less than optimum fuel economy.

Locate the distributor and the coil in the engine bay. The distributor is located on the left side of the engine block and is the component that the plug wires are installed onto. The coil is located to the left of the distributor and is bolted to the engine.

Remove the low-tension lead where it installs on the distributor. The low-tension lead is the wire that goes from the distributor to the coil. Fasten wires from the 12-volt lamp to the distributor where the low-tension lead was connected and to the battery.

Locate the crank bolt and crank pulley that protrudes from the front of the engine in the middle of the fan behind the radiator. The crank pulley has timing marks imprinted on a portion of the edge as well as an indicator hole drilled in the back of it as a reference. There is a timing pointer fastened to the timing chain cover that lines up with the timing marks.

Use a large open-ended wrench to turn the crankshaft bolt and pulley to the right (clockwise when you are standing in front of the engine) until the hole in the pulley is 3/8-inch to the left of the pointer on the timing chain cover. If you turn the crank too far, keep rotating to the right rather than turning the crank back to the left, as this may give an inaccurate reading and can cause damage to the timing chain.

Use a 1/2-inch open-ended wrench to loosen the nut on the clamp at the base of the distributor. Turn the distributor with your hand very slowly to the left until the lamp turns on. Rotate the distributor back a little to the right until the lamp turns off.

Tighten the nut on the distributor clamp with the wrench. Make sure that the light does not turn on as you are tightening the nut. If it does, loosen and retighten where the light is off. Remove the lamp from the engine bay. Reconnect the wire from the coil to the distributor.

Things You'll Need

  • 13-mm wrench
  • Open-ended wrench
  • 12-volt lamp
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About the Author

William Zane has been a freelance writer and photographer for over six years and specializes primarily in automotive-related subject matter among many other topics. He has attended the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, where he studied automotive design, and the University of New Mexico, where he studied journalism.