Recently got my engine back in and running. The weird thing was when I had the total set to 36, the car wouldn't idle so I thought the carb might be messed up. I set the timing by ear and drove to an old performance mechanic who checked the timing and reset the carb. I was at 76 degrees total timing. Neither one of us could believe it would run. But every time I tried to bring the timing down the car would die. So I thought I had too much advance in the mechanical and put in one stiffer spring and limited the travel in the slot. Car ran great and idled great, but when I checked the timing, the mark was 180 degrees off the 0 mark on the timing tab. So I took out the distributor and reversed it thinking I found the answer and some how it ran 180 out. Not so. I had to turn it around again.
So: The question is: What is the best explanation for this? Is the cam timing off enough to do this or is my carb just plugged up and I need to idle it up at 36 total? My idle is set at 1 1/2 turns off fully closed. Is this in the ballpark for most? 68 302 with all stock stuff except the cam.