You hav3e to find top dead center of the number one cylinder. You can do this several ways. First find the timing mark on the main crank pulley. You can either remove the valve cover or remove the spark plug to make sure you get the compression stroke. You do so by either watching the valves close after going through the cycle of the intake opening, which you can line up with the intake tract, then closing then turning the crank until it reaches the mark on the pulley. Without the valve cover off you can put your finger in the spark plug hole and feeling the compression stroke. The only thing there is you can often mistake this for the exhaust stroke where the piston is pushing the exhaust fumes out. That is why taking the valve cover off is a little better. However you can tell the compression stroke is much greater pressure against you finger that the exhaust stroke because the valve is open.
Once you get Top Dead Center or TDC for sure of the number on cylinder, you can then put in the distributor and point the rotor at the number one plug wire. Make sure you have the firing order right too. Really if you can get a Chilton's or equivalent manual form Advance Auto or Auto Zone or even get them to print out the procedure that would be best as it is sometime s hard to say how the crank pulley is marked.
Let me know if this helps and getting the info from the parts store can only help because it is possible to get things 180 degrees of unless you have the valve cover off where you can watch the valves and observe the strokes in proper firing order to ensure you get it right.
Saturday, May 9th, 2015 AT 8:12 PM