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Frame Off and Distributor Woes

Jrod

Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
9
Location
New Jersey
Corvette
1981 Maroon Metallic 4-speed
Hello all, I'm brand new to this forum, but not brand new to the corvette world. I've had my 81 for 9 yrs now, and promised her I would restore her right when the time/money allowed. I disconnected the body from the frame and then sent her out to do what I didn't have the time/means to do. The chassis, suspension, brakes, rear, etc have all been done by County Corvette in PA. I cant say enough great things about those guys. Anyway, my question is about the stock distributor. I have replaced the stock motor (it left me no choice, but I saved everything except for the carb) with the gm universal 350 (the engine has almost no miles on it). I now have a holley 650 on top. I want to make sure the timing is correct, but with the computer controls and unoriginal carb do I need to change the distributor too ( maybe mech/vac advance)? If so, how will the tach be hooked up I know it was all electronic, but still must have been linked to the distributor. I'm wondering if I will have to get a distributor with a mechanicla tach linkage and then get a mechanical tach. Your help would be greatly appreciated.
Also, if anyone would like to see the pics of my car during any stage of the resto process send me a message and I'll send you the link for website made for me by County Corvette. I've pasted a few below.

 

navy2kcoupe

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 16, 2006
Messages
799
Location
West Central FL and SE Mass.
Corvette
2000 Navy Blue Coupe A4 Z51
WOW! The frame and running gear look excellent!
Andy :w
 

6880 Mike

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 30, 2006
Messages
2,723
Location
The Bluegrass State
Corvette
1968 convertible; 1980 L-82
Use the stock distributor and wiring harness to get her running. You can make corrections/changes after run in.

:)
 

spikebot 81

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 19, 2007
Messages
343
Location
vancouver wa
Corvette
81 white, not stock
Any 1980 or older gm distr will have a connector on the cap for the tack plug in. Most after market distr. will also have this plug in. The 81 tack is not controled by the ecm. The ecm distr. controled spark advance so yes you will need a new dizzy with a vac advance. Ive removed the stock carb and dizzy on mine. The only thing that wont work without the computer system is the torque converter lock up for the th350c tranny
 

Jrod

Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
9
Location
New Jersey
Corvette
1981 Maroon Metallic 4-speed
Thanks for all the quick replies, I think I'm going to get the a msd distributor (#8365) and get her running as soon as I can. I'll let you all know how it works out. My 81 is coming home on Sunday and I have countless hours left to put in before she is running again. I'll make any pics available for anyone who would like to see them. Coffeejolts is right, I know the motor isn't quite as nice looking as the chassis, but I'll be working on that. That rusty water pump will be the first thing to go. I've also got plently of shiny goodies for the motor. I'll most likely be sanding, priming, and painting every little bracket I can for the next few months. Thanks again to all who responded with both the feedback and tech advice.
 

Peer81

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2003
Messages
2,497
Location
Netherlands
Corvette
'81 Black
Great looking project! Good thing to look at the engine to make it as good as new to.
All pictures are welcome of course :) And maybe a good idea to powdercoat all the small stuff, doesn't chirp as easily.

Groeten Peter
 

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