1977 308GTB distributor nut fell inside flywheel portal

Discussion in '308/328' started by Neilg, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. Neilg

    Neilg Karting

    Feb 16, 2001
    174
    Waldorf, Md.
    Full Name:
    Neil Green
    Good Evening, was performing the timing belt change and removing the front bank distributor cap when unfortunately one of the distributor nuts dropped down inside the flywheel open portal (where you can view the PM 1-4 marks, etc - was wanting to ask members what is the best course of action to get the nut extracted? The clutch is fine on the car and had no clutch replacement planned. I am very sure it dropped down inside - I previously had a rag covering this opening but unfortunately removed it when lining it up the other day to the PM-1 -4 mark. Any suggestions greatly appreciated - thanks in advance.
     
  2. Nuvolari

    Nuvolari F1 Rookie
    Sponsor Owner

    Sep 3, 2002
    4,642
    Toronto / SoCal
    Full Name:
    Rob C.
    That is a super tough one because of all the metal making it hard to drop a magnet in there and disassembly would be a royal PITA to extract one nut. What you have to hope for is that the nut fell to the bottom of the bell housing. If not you can always turn the engine slowly again hoping that it fell to the bottom. If you do this remember to keep track of PM 1-4. On the assumption the nut is at the bottom you can try tying a small magnet to a string and feeding it very slowly through the thin side access port. This way your magnet can drop and run along the aluminum bell housing case without sticking to the flywheel. You may get lucky and get to the bottom to catch the lost nut. It is worth a little bit of experimenting before taking everything apart. I feel for you and wish you all the best of luck.
     
  3. Neilg

    Neilg Karting

    Feb 16, 2001
    174
    Waldorf, Md.
    Full Name:
    Neil Green
    Thanks will get one of these on order - not being too familiar with clutches, is it a good chance it remains in the bell housing somewhere? I do not know where it could possibly travel. Just wanted to confirm there is no chance it could get into the gearbox/transmission oil pan? I am dead in the water on the timing belts change as I of course can't turn the engine over by hand until I locate this nut....
     
  4. Nuvolari

    Nuvolari F1 Rookie
    Sponsor Owner

    Sep 3, 2002
    4,642
    Toronto / SoCal
    Full Name:
    Rob C.
    If your timing belts are off then you can turn the engine one revolution so that it ends up where you started. If the belts are on you need to turn it two revolutions so the cams line up. Either way you are ok.
     
  5. thorn

    thorn Formula Junior
    Silver Subscribed

    Aug 7, 2012
    530
    Tallahassee, FL
    Consider using a bore scope to see if you can find it visually.
     
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  7. Neilg

    Neilg Karting

    Feb 16, 2001
    174
    Waldorf, Md.
    Full Name:
    Neil Green
    Thanks for the replies. The timing belts are both on, was afraid to turn the engine over by hand using 36mm socket on damper due to not knowing where the nut (10mm) may move to - I am going to order both a borescope and extendable magnet, apparently in contacting Advance Auto they sell both - in watching the amount of labor involved on a YouTube video by Helidoctor regarding clutch replacement I really do not want to go there, especially since the clutch is fine! Mental lapse on my part not covering the flywheel view opening - hard lesson learned....
     
  8. 308_gt4

    308_gt4 Rookie

    Jun 19, 2014
    20
    This happened to me last year. I stopped everything I was doing, did NOT rotate the engine, but instead went directly to Harbor Freight and bought every type of magnetic extension that I could find.

    I used this tool: https://www.harborfreight.com/24-inch-2-in-1-pickup-tool-94162.html (similar to the one posted earlier). And went "fishing" I just kept sticking the tool down, wiggling it around and prayed. Finally after about 10 minutes, I was able to get it out.

    Good Luck!!
    Image Unavailable, Please Login
     
  9. Neilg

    Neilg Karting

    Feb 16, 2001
    174
    Waldorf, Md.
    Full Name:
    Neil Green
    Great! Thanks for the pic and glad you were successful - am hoping I will be also...
     

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