I have a 1971 LA318 I am having a helluva time getting the intermediate shaft out of. The old intermediate shaft walked right out, used a long magnetic to pull the oil pump attracting piece out as it was broken. Bought a new Mellings intermediate shaft, greased up, and installed. Used an old distributor to line everything up. Turned the crank by hand and slowly tapped the shaft in. While turning and tapping, the distributor gear is off a few teeth from TDC. When I go and try to pull the distributor gear up and move it a few teeth, the intermediate shaft and gear wont come out at all. I have tried to long screw drivers into the slot, press handles together and get to walk it out. I tried the coat hanger method, and tried "L" bracket under the gear method. All have been failures. Any other ideas?