Other can correct me here, but I think if you were really 18 degrees out, valves would be hitting pistons. How did you check that you replaced the degree wheel correctly?
Rails are usually a 100k job. If yours are very dark brown, you probably should replace them - the one that goes first is the one on the left of the driver's bank as you face the engine, and you will have to remove the sprocket to extricate/replace it. I illustrate this.