Vortec Distributor

Discussion in 'General Chevy & GM Tech Questions' started by rusty_buckets, Mar 7, 2010.

  1. rusty_buckets

    rusty_buckets New Member

    Has anybody had to replace the distributor in a vortec 350? I was giving my burbon a tune up the other day and was changing cap and rotor and noticed there was play in my distributor so i took it out to investigate said play and to my supprize i found that it is all made up of plastic,i reinstalled it so i could have something to drive while looking for a new one,does anybody know if there is a aftermarket replacement that is made up of metal and not cheasy prone to fail plastic? I am very disipointed in GM for getting so cheap.:grrrrrr:
  2. Silverado Junkie

    Silverado Junkie Rockstar 4 Years 500 Posts

    The best distributor money can buy is from MSD.
  3. unplugged

    unplugged Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    You don't mention the year of your truck. The MSD 8366 is a good choice for Vortec 350's 1987 to 1995.
  4. vncj96

    vncj96 Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    the vortec 350 was only from 1996-00
  5. rusty_buckets

    rusty_buckets New Member

    my burbon is a 98, i think i found one from Summit Racing but am going to call them tomorrow and get the scoop from them, its aluminum body and is a factory replacement size with the same cap and rotor and at the moment its affordable for my budget the msd is a great distributor but out of my price range for now
  6. BHatton

    BHatton New Member

    I just replaced my distributor. No fun at all, let me tell you! I did get an aftermarket, but due to finances, I got a generic plastic one. A few things to note, though -
    There was no 'looseness' problem with the plastic housing on my old one. The problem was that the gear at the bottom that mates to the cam gear was worn almost paper thin, to a point where the teeth on the gear were actually sharp. I was replacing my distributor because the two cap hold-down holes in the base were broken and the cap was being held on with wire ties and make-shift washers. Cheesy, but it worked.
    The new plastic distributor has threaded brass inserts at the cap hold-down points. I'm sure the Summit one is nice, but probably triple the price. Check ebay - there is a guy on there selling billet aluminum distributors for the Vortec 350. That's where I got mine, but I bought his stock replacement.

    BTW - mine is a 1999 1500 4x4 Suburban.
    NOW... if anyone knows how to get the timing right... that would be a God-send. As soon as I put the new distributor in, the engine started tapping (sounds almost like a valve tap) and I got a P1345 error (cam/crank sensor out of time). I've shifted the distribtor teeth in each direction to no avail and everyone tells me the computer handles the timing and there is no way to set it!
    Yes, I marked everything when I disassembled and put it all back together "right"... I think. The truck runs OK (obvious lack of power, but better than pre-distributor) and the tap goes away once the engine warms up, but the P1345 won't go away.
    I use this truck, mostly, for hauling boy scouts and their trailer. Lately I have been using my 1991 2500 4x2 Suburban, but it's a work truck... not suited for passengers really.
  7. rusty_buckets

    rusty_buckets New Member

    thanks for the info BHatton, when i pulled my distributor to investigate the loosness it was not the easyest to stab back in like others i have done also the numbnuts that owned this before me had replaced the intake gaskets and stabbed distributor a tooth of and the computer did compinsate for it when i stabbed it back in i put it were it was supposed to be so wires were no longer rubbing on fuel lines and didnt have to retime it it was dead on but i would have to belive if you were more than a tooth off the computer might not be able to compinsate that much,just and idea
  8. Smitty.

    Smitty. New Member

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