I Can’t Get My Old Distributor Lined Up So Points Are Timed Right

This is especially important when installing an aftermarket electronic ignition

Here is an email we recently received from a customer trying to install electronic ignition in his 230SL:  Greetings, I am finally getting around to the Electronic Ignition.  The instructions are good once you figure out what you are trying to do. I installed the brackets and pickup near the port where the wiring harness goes out of the distributor so the sensor and the rotor pickup align. The issue I am having is that the timing is way off.  I have tried moving the pickup to different locations in the distributor, but I cannot get the timing close to the required location. I have attached two photos showing the issue, along with the receipt for the Electronic Ignition. The first photo shows the vacuum advance is rotated clockwise until it hits the head, where I am still about 8 to 12 degrees off on the timing. The second photo shows the installation of the pickup and the rotor are installed. The car is a 1963 230SL with a Bosch Distributor.

Problem & Solution

Common among these chassis:

W110 W111 W112 Sedan
W111 W112 Coupe
W108 W109

If this should happen to you, you will need to remove the distributor from the engine block and turn the teeth a couple notches and then reinstall the distributor back into the engine. It does not matter where the teeth are - just where the rotor is in relation to the distributor housing. But you will have to check the wires going into the distributor cap. Someone may have moved things around in the past.  It might take a couple of tries to get it where you want it.