I got some time to tinker with the engine tonight - I checked the valves again and, somehow, made them worse...so I'll be revisiting them again maybe tomorrow. I used the distributor as the guide for TDC but I now suspect that the distributor is off by a couple of degrees. The car will run but it's not happy about it. It's a good education for me - I've never been real good at setting/adjusting the timing and it's about time I learned to get it right.
I did swap out the odd carb linkage lever so both sides are the same and correct.