Engine ping sound - is it like a rattle on hard acceleration? - Vintage Mustang Forums

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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Engine ping sound - is it like a rattle on hard acceleration?

Not sure I know what engine ping sounds like. tried a few youtube videos. Is the ping a sort of rattle sound the engine makes upon hard acceleration?

from other threads, once ping is heard, then adjust the timing back a few degrees, drive it again to duplicate the ping, if the ping is there, reduce timing back a couple degrees, drive it again, no ping - you've achieved the correct timing?
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 02:20 PM
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Yes, spark knock generally sounds like a rattle from deep within the engine.
What octane gas are you using? What engine do you have? Stock engine?

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 04:05 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 74Rallye View Post
Yes, spark knock generally sounds like a rattle from deep within the engine.
What octane gas are you using? What engine do you have? Stock engine?
289 hipo cam starting with 91 octane. just getting the timing straightened out.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 04:31 PM
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think of spark knock, or pinging, as some pebbles bouncing around in a tin can. and yes, back the timing off a couple of degrees and see if that stops it.

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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 10:37 PM
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I've never successfully been able to figure out what "pinging" sounds like. Everyone says that it sounds like rattling or tapping, but my engine is fairly loud and always sounds that way anyways, no matter what the timing is...
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 12:35 AM
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One disadvantage of loud pipes! You could blow the engine without hearing a big problem until it blows! Severe pinging can destroy a piston...not a good thing!

Modern computer control almost eliminates the problem if the sensors are working.


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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 01:13 AM
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Could pinging occur at a certain throttle position, regardless of speed? I get a noise like described only it's at 1/4 throttle street or highway speeds. But after I go past that point it goes away.


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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 01:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tubbster1966 View Post
Could pinging occur at a certain throttle position, regardless of speed? I get a noise like described only it's at 1/4 throttle street or highway speeds. But after I go past that point it goes away.


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pinging usually happens at low speeds and high loads. i found in most cars i have had over the years, when they did ping it was between 35 and 55 mph.

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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 08:30 AM
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The owners manual for my old 57 triumph says listen for the ping and back off the thumbscrew on the timing a degree or two because gas back then across the world did not have a consistent octane, so you could have to lift the hood on a bad tank of gas and click the thumb screw a couple of clicks. You should hear it best under 3000 RPM e.g. 1500- 2500 under a good load. It does sound like marbles. Like Kelly, I have never heard it on my 351 with headers and flowmasters...

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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 09:41 AM
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I'll 2nd the comment about loud pipes masking the sounds you need to be listening for. If I run regular gas in my truck I get spark knock/pinging when accelerating. I would describe the sound as a barely noticeable clatter, not a pinging noise. It's subtle enough that a crapped out muffler would make it impossible to hear.
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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 10:03 AM Thread Starter
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OK, I hear the sound of deep engine rattle or a can of muffled pebbles. Not sure where the word ping came from - since I'm expecting a high pitched noise, not a rattle.


Can the distributor be too far advanced as to cause a high idle? Seems not that I advanced it, the engine is running fast, adjusting the idle screw on the carb does nothing to change it.

Setting timing - by reading other threads, if the engine is stock, then the timing spec in the book applies. Any changes from stock - cam, intake, exhaust, all bets are sorta off and the timing setting is a "feel" kind of thing? find out where the pining occurs, and adjust from there? Different for every engine based on how it's built?
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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 12:13 PM
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If your idle is uncontrollable, you probably have a vacuum leak. Detonation can be caused by several things. The end result is a rattle sound that can damage pistons. It's not something you want to leave go on in your engine. You need to set your timing correctly, once you find your vacuum issue. Then if the rattle is still present, there are other things to check.
post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 01:47 PM
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This is an excellent article which, among other things, explains detonation and pre-ignition.

Engine Basics: Detonation and Pre-Ignition by Allen W. Cline

Test drove a Mustang convertible in '65, bought one this year(2013)...I don't like to rush into things.
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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 04:00 PM
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Pinging sounds a lot like a coffee percolator.
If the pinging begins at higher load it could be a failed head gasket between cylinders.
I know this from experience.
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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-22-2017, 04:26 PM
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It could be the vacuum advance if you have that plugged in, here is an article:

FORDMUSCLE webmagazine: Timing is Everything - Distributor Curving for Maximum Power

Quote "Remember vacuum advance is load dependent, so you cannot check it with a timing light with the car in neutral. The best way to set vacuum advance is by feel, under real driving conditions. Connect the vacuum line and drive the car up a steep, long grade, with the car in high gear and at a low speed, 30-40mph. Occasionally push the accelerator to the floor, and listen and feel for knocking and/or loss of power. If you detect this, immediately back of. This means the canister is advancing too much and you should adjust the canister so the diaphragm is 'tighter', by turning the screw counterclockwise."

Thats for an adjustable vacuum canister.
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