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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 1988.5 with the late model (small connector) distributor. Unfortunately, after some 180,000 miles, the distributor bearings are shot. [In what follows I will use the model years 1987 and 1989 in asking my question(s) to avoid the problem of the mid-year changes in 1988]

When I checked on PartsAmerica (Checker + online sales) their listing is very confused. A Beck-Arney rebuilt distributor has the same part number for 1987 and 1989. Yet a Cardone rebuilt has a different part number (and a very different price - ~$170 for 1987 and ~$325 for a 1989).

Does anyone know what is going on here? I always thought the early (1987) and late (1989) model distributors were the same except for the electrical connector - 1987 has a fat round one and 1989 uses a smaller sort of oval one. Yet if the connector is the only difference, what gives with the large price difference for a rebuilt?

A friend has a 1987 he will give me so I am all the more interested in understanding if it will work in my 1988.5.

TIA for any help you can provide

· Registered
2,871 Posts
Look up the part No's for the Ignitor assy, if they match, then just swap connectors around. I know my
SJ410 and the early Sami distys swap with a connector mod.

Factory PN's

disty complete: 33100-83031
Ignitor assy: 33370-83030

While you have it out, shim that gear for .005-.007 clearance to the housing, that is worth a couple
of ponies depending on how bad it was to begin.

Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey, thanks for the info!

The distributor in my Sammy must have at least 1/8" of vertical play. Is this OEM?

Any recommendations for where to find the shims I'll need to cut this back to .005"?

· Registered
2,871 Posts
A couple of guys have asked where to find washers for shiming the disty. Ususally I get
them from speed shops and dealers, but Suzuki doesn't have them in the parts book,
and speed shops, well need I say more?

I took a quick look on line and Thomas's Register came up with 96 companies that
manufacture them, So I'm back to recomending checking your local bearing house.

TR List

I just checked a spare disty and the shaft dia (measured on the end, I think its a
straight shaft, not steped) is .468 inches so the ID of the washer needs to be slightly
larger, (.470-.472 or so?) .472 comes out to be 12 MM so that may be a good start
point. OD should be around .750, inches,
its not critical.

Thickness: you need washers at .002, .005 .010 and possibly other thicker (.025? thicker?)
washers to be able to get a fairly precise stack. you are unlikely to get a single washer to meet
your needs.

Now that I know what I am looking for, I'll call/visit my local bearing house to see what's available.
Maybe I'll stock them...

Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I belive that "86-"87 use that round style connector.
The '88-mid'89 use the small oval connector.These can be interchanged with no problems.I ended up soldering in both style connectors into the harnness. Now it does not matter what one I get for a replacement.
Late '89-'95 also use that same connector but the disty.,is different.This one is for the EFI setup.I'm sure that would explain the major price differance.

Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi All

Thanks for the info! We have been on travel so please pardon my late acknowlegment of your help.

A friend gave me a 1987 distributor and a simple change of the connector had our Sammy running great in less than a hour.

One additional point (to the info already posted). The late model distributor in our Zuk (the one that failed) had at least an 1/8" vertical play. The 1987 I installed had ~.008". Since I don't know the history of either distributor I can't be sure either one is OEM with regard to the vertical shaft play. Perhaps this yet another difference between early and late model distributors?

This Board is SUPER. Thanks again for the help!
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