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1Michel 07-07-2012 10:19 PM

How to turn a distributor into a oil pump primer
I was looking for a old distributor to make a primer out of it and realized that nobody even knows what a distributor is any more! I found a distributor from an 85 Corvette (SBC) that I knew would work for what I needed (BBC and SBC use the same distributor). Once back home, I took it apart and cut it up to get it to do the job.

Here is what I started with:

Removed the junk in the top of the distributor, removed the gear at the bottom and removed the shaft:

General idea of what I am trying to accomplish:

Chuck the distributor shaft into a handheld drill (you can flatten out the sides of the top end of the shaft to keep it from spinning in the chuck:

Just to make more room, I removed most of the housing base (this distributor had an aluminum housing so it was easy to cut):

I cut apart the gear to be able to reuse the lower part with the dowel pin, but not have the gear trying to spin the camshaft:

The finished product, reassembled:

Installed in the engine, ready to prime the oil pump stock distributor can be seen in the background):

With this you can prime the oiling system in your SBC or BBC. Turn clockwise to prime. Don't forget to rotate the engine about a quarter turn at a time to get all the lifters and pushrods to lubricate. You may need a faster drill, mine tops out at 450RPM unloaded, and the oil barely was coming out of cylinder number 1 and 2 pushrods.

Good luck!

Oh and by the way, I say I did this but as you know, I'm working with one hand soooo
I used my buddy Fastphil's hands to accomplish this who came to help me today LOL
(who asked you to tell you guys he's awsome... for a Mustang guy ) LOL

big2bird 07-08-2012 04:22 AM

Good post.:beer:

GoVetteGo 08-05-2012 03:05 PM

Great post!!! I did the same thing but didn't reduce the size of the housing!! Guess what I will be doing soon!!!


MYBAD79 08-06-2012 03:32 AM

great thread !!!

grumpyvette 08-21-2014 04:56 PM

ALL electric drills WILL eventually run into over heating issues spinning a oil pump primer because the torque load that results causes the drill to spin at a fairly high load and LOW rpm, resulting in a good deal of resistance and HEAT but not much cooling air flow thru the drill.
the simple answer is to braze a deep well socket to the upper end of the oil pump primer tool you make from a distributor or purchase than spin it with an air ratchet , which won,t result in a drill burning up its motor

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