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 Post subject: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 12:29 am 
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I am merely driving my van
I am merely driving my van

Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:50 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Falmouth, Cape Cod, MA, USA
Astro’s at the shop now - some things I’m just not capable of doing (replacing fuel feed line, maybe both, from tank to engine). There is a (small) possibility that a new fuel filter will solve my issues (that’s how the rotted line finally broke, when I tried to do a change), but just in case I’m hedging my bets looking at other parts I may need. I heard about aftermarket distributors that are better quality at decent prices and here’s the least expensive one I’ve found so far: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Chevy-V6-4-3L- ... 1940310110. I checked the eBay seller's record (I did the math at 1 month and 6 months - only 1% unhappy) is very good. Anybody have any experience with this product or manufacturer?

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2004 RWD Astro Base purchased late 2018 - 3rd time’s a charm?
2000 AWD Safari SLE purchased 2011 - hanging onto for parts and possible rebuild.
1988 AWD Safari purchased very used; replaced engine w/rebuilt; scrapped at 23 years.

Falmouth, Cape Cod, USA


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 Post subject: Re: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2010 11:02 pm
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I have no experience with any aside from what is sold at the local auto parts store, but for after market Skip White distributors have a good reputation on this and the other Astro forum, so I would take a look at one of those as well.

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want to follow along, or think our paths may cross, Facebook kjswiley


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 Post subject: Re: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:28 pm 
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Alright,
1.
Yes, that is the dizzy you want, if the van is "new to you" a full tuneup, plugs, wires, cap and rotor, air and fuel filters, PCV valve, clean screen on the EGR all are a good thing to do. I always pop a new distributor for good measure. Change all the fluids as well, a radiator flush, and oil change. Farther down the list trans fluid and filter, differentials and transfer case fluids as well. Clean and inspect everything you touch on the way in and out.
This will give you a good baseline to begin with.

2.
When buying on fleabay don't look just at the percentages, look at the individual complaints and why. 99% of that seller's issue is his doing, shipping and or communication. Buy from some one else. These are not precision instruments built in a clean room but in fact mass produced bits assembled by underpaid employees (probably piecework and often kids) in sweatshops of China. Quality control is only the obviously broken are culled. Brought to the states in bulk and sold individually by re-sellers.
There will be bad parts....
How a seller takes care of the client after the sale is more important than the parts you buy on fleabay, good description or cut and paste?
Quick returns or refunds?
Communication and fast shipping are the priority, this seller fails at both.

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'97 Safari, 290,000 miles,,, retired
'93 Safari shorty, 350 swap
'02 Astro, my new work van


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 Post subject: Re: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 8:41 pm 
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I am merely driving my van
I am merely driving my van

Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:50 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Falmouth, Cape Cod, MA, USA
Wiley wrote:
I have no experience with any aside from what is sold at the local auto parts store, but for after market Skip White distributors have a good reputation on this and the other Astro forum, so I would take a look at one of those as well.

Thx. Checked them out and it looks like they don’t sell the pancake dist. for this vehicle. Here’s the page with the choices: https://skipwhiteperformance.com/catalo ... dist_7489/. Everything I’ve read so far indicates the pancake style is the correct replacement.

_________________
2004 RWD Astro Base purchased late 2018 - 3rd time’s a charm?
2000 AWD Safari SLE purchased 2011 - hanging onto for parts and possible rebuild.
1988 AWD Safari purchased very used; replaced engine w/rebuilt; scrapped at 23 years.

Falmouth, Cape Cod, USA


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 Post subject: Re: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:07 pm 
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I am merely driving my van
I am merely driving my van

Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:50 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Falmouth, Cape Cod, MA, USA
WoodButcher wrote:
Alright,
1.
Yes, that is the dizzy you want, if the van is "new to you" a full tuneup, plugs, wires, cap and rotor, air and fuel filters, PCV valve, clean screen on the EGR all are a good thing to do. I always pop a new distributor for good measure. Change all the fluids as well, a radiator flush, and oil change. Farther down the list trans fluid and filter, differentials and transfer case fluids as well. Clean and inspect everything you touch on the way in and out.
This will give you a good baseline to begin with.

2.
When buying on fleabay don't look just at the percentages, look at the individual complaints and why. 99% of that seller's issue is his doing, shipping and or communication. Buy from some one else. These are not precision instruments built in a clean room but in fact mass produced bits assembled by underpaid employees (probably piecework and often kids) in sweatshops of China. Quality control is only the obviously broken are culled. Brought to the states in bulk and sold individually by re-sellers.
There will be bad parts....
How a seller takes care of the client after the sale is more important than the parts you buy on fleabay, good description or cut and paste?
Quick returns or refunds?
Communication and fast shipping are the priority, this seller fails at both.


WB - Thx a lot for your detailed reply. Extremely helpful and informative.
1 - Already did some of your list but didn’t consider some towards the end. Will add more to my long list. I’m playing catchup right now - just trying to get this thing on the road so I have transportation. Only one I see missing is MAF sensor clean, which I only learned about due to the codes the OBDII is sending right now and my research into potential solutions (P0016, 171, 174, 300). Your advice re: clean/touch everything on the way in and out is exceptional, and something I’ve only thought about in the past two weeks studying diagnostics. I’m sure I’ve got hoses in there begging for replacement (given the 94K mileage). :) While trying to change the fuel filter (and snapping the rotted one in the process) I had a good look at the lines in that area and realized both fuel lines probably need total replacement. Having an actual baseline is something I rejoice in hearing about from anyone - the scientific method has been my mantra since I was a kid.

2 - Thx for steering me away from that seller. I read all the negative reviews but was going strictly by the law of averages rather than paying better attention to the details. You’re absolutely right about the reasons for the negative ones so I’ll be looking more closely at the next sellers I check out with your advice in mind.

_________________
2004 RWD Astro Base purchased late 2018 - 3rd time’s a charm?
2000 AWD Safari SLE purchased 2011 - hanging onto for parts and possible rebuild.
1988 AWD Safari purchased very used; replaced engine w/rebuilt; scrapped at 23 years.

Falmouth, Cape Cod, USA


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 Post subject: Re: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 4:23 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2010 11:02 pm
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Location: Socal
Rein wrote:
Wiley wrote:
I have no experience with any aside from what is sold at the local auto parts store, but for after market Skip White distributors have a good reputation on this and the other Astro forum, so I would take a look at one of those as well.

Thx. Checked them out and it looks like they don’t sell the pancake dist. for this vehicle. Here’s the page with the choices: https://skipwhiteperformance.com/catalo ... dist_7489/. Everything I’ve read so far indicates the pancake style is the correct replacement.



https://www.skipwhiteperformance.com/ca ... -bk_89687/

Here you go, again I have no experience with these, but they seem legit based on others comments.

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2guys1truck.com: 2004 AWD Chevy Astro from California to Colombia!
want to follow along, or think our paths may cross, Facebook kjswiley


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 Post subject: Re: Quality, experience with billet aluminum distributor?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:22 pm 
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I am merely driving my van
I am merely driving my van

Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:50 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Falmouth, Cape Cod, MA, USA
Wiley

Thanks for helping me out again! That’s the one.

Seems like SWP doesn’t have their database updated or maybe detailed enough to include that dist. in their choices. Didn’t think to search “gm distributor” which then did bring up that result. Maybe I’ll send them an email to help them (and others like me who just assumed their site navigation worked perfectly) fix that little glitch. I just sent (last week) the makers of Wiley Wallaby Licorice (how’s that for a coincidence, dude?) an email telling them how much I liked their product. A couple days ago I got a large box full of several different flavors - free! I’ve heard of this happening before but really wasn’t looking for a freebie - just a pat on the back for a great product. Think I should give a pat on the back to SWP and ask for a freebie dist.? ;-)

_________________
2004 RWD Astro Base purchased late 2018 - 3rd time’s a charm?
2000 AWD Safari SLE purchased 2011 - hanging onto for parts and possible rebuild.
1988 AWD Safari purchased very used; replaced engine w/rebuilt; scrapped at 23 years.

Falmouth, Cape Cod, USA


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