If you hooked the timing light up properly, it should only show the timing marks when the #1 cyclinder fires. Considering how easy it is to hook up a timing light,I feel it safe to assume that the problem is elsewhere. The only other reason for a jumping timing mark would be that there is a speed mismatch between the distributor (and the firing of the #1 plug) and the crankshaft, where the timing marks generally are. I can think of 2 possible causes. - Is the distributor being driven at the correct speed and ratio? It should be running at half the speed of the engine; 2 revolutions of the crankshaft equals 1 revolution of the distributor rotor. However either replacing the distibutor with the wrong one or (more likely) stripped gears will screw this up. - Is the rotor actually spinning at the same speed as the distributor shaft? Though most distributor rotors are keyed to the shaft, this isn't always true. My Honda stalled on the road a few times after the set-screw fell out. Friction would drive the rotor at a rapidly decreasing and increasingly mismatched speed, so the engine would run oddly for a few seconds before dying. A timing light would've made for an interesting show whenever that happened. Rolfo adds: If your distributor has a vacuum line going to it and there is a leak somewhere, like a little hole in the diaphram of the vacuum advance, or in one of the vacuum lines, that would do it. Also I have seen a sloppy fitting distributor cap vibrate back and forth causing a similar symptom.
Broken or weak spring on the timing chain tensioner? Worn out timing chain doesn't seem possible on a Festiva, mine's never been replaced and just turned 334,000 miles. I once had a problem with a Chevy Luv that threw me. It idled perfectly, like a clock, with 120 PSI on all four cyl, but rev it up any, and it backfired and went back to idle- Timing chain tensioner problem, they have two tensioners or guides.....
The make would help. Some used a timing chain and others used gear to gear. The distributor could be worn also.
NO not that engine.
Yes, it if is worn and jumps a tooth.
YES THE VALVES WILL HIT THE PISTONS IF TIMING BELT JUMPS OR BRAKES YES THE VALVES WILL HIT THE PISTONS IF TIMING BELT JUMPS OR BRAKES
timing that jumps, usauly is motor turns over but does not fire. Or motor back fires, either out of carberator or muffler/tail pipe. you can also get a timing light, and point it at the timing metal indercator, just above the the pulley on your engine.
usually they bend, the pistons and crank keep going and the cam position of the valve timing changes. if jumps one or two notches they probly won't hit and bend, however of the belt brakes or jumps a lot of teeth they will hidt.;
The sport of horse racing over jumps is called steeplechasing, while racing with no jumps is called flat racing.
Check for excessive slack in the timing chain.
Timing way retarded.
if its 2002 /2003 with timing chain get the updated tensioner and new chain fitted before it jumps as these do at 50,000!