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Denis Jeffries
Senior Member

45 Posts

Posted - 05/15/2012 :  12:49:09 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm trying to find a gauge that I can measure TDC. Thanks for the help

Denis J

Advanced Member

2252 Posts

Posted - 05/15/2012 :  1:48:03 PM  Show Profile  Visit 454MRW's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Buy a cheap digital indicator with a long tip, and slip a piece of thin fuel line hose over the stub above the tip and it will snugly fit into the spark plug hole. This one looks like it would work well, and the 2nd one is what I bought and added a smaller fuel line hose for a tip extension. It works great and very accurate. Mike

Michael R. Winter
I enjoy rebuilding and appreciating Pentons!
1974 250 HS Pentons-1980 KTM 175-400'S
1975 Can Am 175 TNT & 77 250 Black Widow
1979 Husqvarna OR390
1976-78 RM & 77-79 PE Suzuki's
1974 CR250M 07 CR125R 79 CR250R
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Steve Minor
Advanced Member

1216 Posts

Posted - 05/15/2012 :  3:34:09 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mike is right...that set up he suggested is tried and true.

You have a Harbor Freight nearby?

Steve Minor
Wilmington, NC
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kip kern
Advanced Member

2702 Posts

Posted - 05/15/2012 :  5:57:47 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Check out the snowmobile section for a Sachs timing device. About $30 and you can time anything with a piston. They thread in and you can time it to tenths of a mm. Have been using one for 25 years.,
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Advanced Member

172 Posts

Posted - 05/16/2012 :  09:18:39 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
All good answers from Mike, Steve, and Kip and the options all work well.

I started out with a piston stop tool, then it got borrowed and never returned.

Then I went with the dial indicator from Harbor Freight (see Steve's post) and broke the ceramic out of the spark plug. Then with set screws/epoxy, fit the dial indicator into the spark plug base.

The only thing to watch for is that sometimes the fins on a cylinder of some makes are tool tall/narrow in the plug area to allow the dial indicator to rotate and thread into the plug hole. But just a few threads is all it takes.

I used the dial indicator/fuel line rig like Mike suggested, for at least 10 years and it always worked; before getting bored one day and breaking apart a few spark plugs.

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Advanced Member

671 Posts

Posted - 05/16/2012 :  10:08:58 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Or, you could go to and purchase a Motorcycle Timing Gauge kit No.278. The kit includes Dial Indicator, Adapter (screws into spark plug hole), 2 Pin Contacts (1.5" & 2" long) and an "O" ring.

I have used this tool for over 40 years on everything from a 60cc to a 495cc motor and on various motors - motorcycles, chain saws, lawn trimmers, mowers, etc.

You may have to call them to request the kit. 800-866-5287

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Advanced Member

593 Posts

Posted - 05/16/2012 :  4:36:11 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just spoke with the folks at Central Tool, the new part number for this is 6491A, and as it turns out they are just a couple of towns away for me. The lady I spoke with also mentioned that most of the Snap On and MAC tool truck guys sell these as well.



Kevin J. Donovan
Foster, Rhode Island
72 Jack Piner (My Ride)
72 Six Day (Wifes Ride)
71 Suzuki TS125 (Project)
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