1901-1953 Indian Motorcycle – Parts – Accessories – Service

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Another mystery solved – Have you been trying to time your Indian Four Cylinder? With these easy steps your nightmare will be solved!

Connecting the Ignition Wires ‑‑ The firing order of the cylinders is 1, 3, 4, 2. On battery ignition models, follow the figures given on the distributor cap; that is, the wire leading from No. I segment on the cap should go to the spark plug on No. 1 cylinder, the wire leading from No. 3 segment on the cap should go to No. 3 cylinder, etc.

Indian 4 Distributor Ignition ‑ Ignition timing should be set so that the breaker points open when the No. 1 cylinder piston is coining up on the compression stroke and the crankshaft or piston is at top dead center. Be sure breaker point gap is adjusted to .020. The advance arm “D” of the distributor must be get in the full retarded position (to the rear) when timing the motor. Top dead center may be determined by inserting a stiff wire or rod through spark plug hole of No. 1 cylinder. No. 1 cylinder refers to the front cylinder. Read 1, ‑ gears have been removed , replace 2, 3, 4, front to rear. If the timing according to the marks on the gears.

If the generator distributor unit has been removed, replace as shown in illustration, connect hose coupling, rotate motor to firing position (full retard No. 1 cylinder). Loosen clamping screw “B” and lift distributor away from generator. Rotate distributor cam shaft until points are just ready to break when the rotor on top of cam shaft is pointing to No. 1 cylinder segment in distributor cap. With advance arm “D” in retarded position, replace distributor unit and tighten clamping screw “B.” Final adjustment is made by loosening clamping screw “C” and rotating distributor body until points are just breaking for No. 1 cylinder.

Indian 4 Magneto Ignition. Ignition timing on magneto motors should be set so that the breaker points in the magneto distributor open when the No. I cylinder piston is coming up on the compression stroke and the crankshaft or piston is at top dead center. Be sure breaker point gap is adjusted to .015″. The advance arm must be set in full retard position (down) when timing the motor. Top dead center may be determined by inserting a stiff wire or rod through the spark plug hole of No. I cylinder. No. I cylinder refers to the front cylinder. Read 1, 2, 3, 4 front to rear.

If the timing gears have been removed, replace according to marks on gears.

If magneto has been removed, check timing gears and rotate motor to firing position (retarded) on No. 1 cylinder. Turn distributor shaft of magneto unit rotor on end of shaft pointing to No. I cylinder segment in distributor cap (upper right) attach magneto and coupling. Recheck.

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Comments

  • Lex ,

    On the magneto model Indian 4 1940 isn’t #1 supposed to be left bottom quadrant looking from the back of the magneto?
    You guys have it as the upper right in this post?

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