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I Must be doing something wrong


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#1 38Buick 80C

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    Brian DePouli, BCA #8927

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:07 PM

Ok so got a pertronix ignitor system for the 38 RM back at Hershey last year. Finally installed it and I have no spark. So I did something wrong. I have one on my Charger and it work great and was easy.

So first off I got an 1183N6 which is a Delco early 8 cyl 6v Neg ground...supposedly

Installed everything per instructions...supposedly

Wires to the coil red to pos black to neg...definitely

No spark..determined by timing light on a plug wire to see if the light lights up. Put it on the coil wire too and would get one quick light up of the timing light then nothing.

Checked the wires to the coil again...all there all tight.

So what have I done wrong.

Yes I get photos posted soon

Brian DePouli

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#2 MrEarl

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:10 PM

are you sure your coil is good?

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#3 38Buick 80C

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:14 PM

It was good just before I changed it. How can I test?

Brian DePouli

1930 Buick Series 61,

1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C
1969 Dodge Charger
2007 BMW 335i Coupe
2008 Dodge Charger Super Bee #68

2008 Buick Enclave CXL


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#4 Bhigdog

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:41 PM

Did you also connect ignition switch to coil+? That's where the unit gets its power.
Bob Beck
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55 Buick 66C
57 Buick 46C
55 Olds S-88
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#5 38Buick 80C

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:05 PM

Did you also connect ignition switch to coil+? That's where the unit gets its power.

Yes sir

Brian DePouli

1930 Buick Series 61,

1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C
1969 Dodge Charger
2007 BMW 335i Coupe
2008 Dodge Charger Super Bee #68

2008 Buick Enclave CXL


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#6 Bhigdog

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 11:06 PM

And you put the rotor in the dist?

Edited by Bhigdog, 26 January 2013 - 11:08 PM.

Bob Beck
39 Chev PU
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55 Buick 66C
57 Buick 46C
55 Olds S-88
56 Chrysler St. Regis
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#7 Pete Phillips

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 12:12 AM

Every single one of these that has ever come into my garage (Pertronix electronic ignition systems on old cars) has given problems and not worked properly. I have removed every one that has ever been through here--with owner's permission of course--no more problems. I have had nothing but bad experiences with them, they never work properly, they cause more problems than they solve, and I will never, ever install one on an old car that I own or that someone else owns. Period! End of argument. Stay away from them. What is wrong with the original distributors and their points and spark systems? They work fine as long as you replace them after 10,000 to 12,000 miles,which for most antique cars is a long, long time.
Pete Phillips, BCA #7338

#8 Bhigdog

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 01:10 AM

And now for the flip side to that coin. I have Pertronics units in all 6 of my collector cars. The oldest 15 years the newest 2 years. They've all worked perfectly from the word "go" and continue to be trouble and maintenence free. In fact when I do an engine rebuild it has a Pertronix unit in it for the initial start up. I will never screw around with points again..................Bob

Edited by Bhigdog, 27 January 2013 - 01:14 AM.

Bob Beck
39 Chev PU
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55 Buick 66C
57 Buick 46C
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56 Chrysler St. Regis
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#9 38Buick 80C

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 01:52 AM

Yes rotor under the cap. I promise photos soon.

Like I said I have one in my 69 Charger was easy to installed worked great and has worked great for 15 years. So that's why i got one for the Buick, points are fine I agree, but I had a good experience with the Pertronix and no headaches for 15 years so why not. Anyway going to take photos now.

Brian DePouli

1930 Buick Series 61,

1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C
1969 Dodge Charger
2007 BMW 335i Coupe
2008 Dodge Charger Super Bee #68

2008 Buick Enclave CXL


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#10 38Buick 80C

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 02:03 AM

photos as promised
2013-01-26_20-55-12_584.jpg

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  • 2013-01-26_20-55-26_343.jpg


Brian DePouli

1930 Buick Series 61,

1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C
1969 Dodge Charger
2007 BMW 335i Coupe
2008 Dodge Charger Super Bee #68

2008 Buick Enclave CXL


Buick Club of America President '11-'12; '14 -'15
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BCA Carolina Chapter
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#11 Bhigdog

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 02:45 AM

Assuming the wire I see peeking out under the red wire on the coil is +6V from the ign switch everything looks correct. When I said "rotor" I mean the dist roror not the units rotor. Just sayin. Next I'd check for voltage to the coil then double check for correct #unit.........Bob
Bob Beck
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55 Buick 66C
57 Buick 46C
55 Olds S-88
56 Chrysler St. Regis
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#12 Guest_pfloro_*

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 03:15 AM

I've also had excellent experience with a 12V Pertronix unit installed for 12 years in our recently sold '66 Mustang...

I'm wondering if the voltage drop via the ballast resister to the coil is too great for this 6V Pertronix unit. After all, the module is being powered from the '+' side of the coil.
I believe this is being fed from the ignition switch through the ballast resister (or resister wire)...

I'm out of my league: Did Buick even use a ballast resister or resister wire on late 30s ignition systems???

Either way, try 'hotwiring' a direct feed from the '+' side of the coil to the positive battery terminal. This way you 'll know that you have a full 6 volts powering the Pertronix unit.
Use an alligator clip on at least one end so if the engine starts, you can easily stop it...!

My gut has a strong suspicion about this 6V Pertronix unit needing a full 6 volts to work at all...

Paul

Edited by pfloro, 27 January 2013 - 03:26 AM.


#13 First Born

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 01:01 PM

Pauls last sentence!! That is one of the things they stress. And, Paul, no ballast resistor.

Ben
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#14 wildcat465

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:20 PM

Yep, Pertronix needs full voltage to the unit for it to work effectively. Brian, you need full battery voltage where the red wire hits the coil.

I installed one on a Buick about 15 years ago, using the factory power wire, ran crappy. Ran a new wire directly to ignition switch, has run very well since.

Have not put one on any of my cars though, probably because I am too cheap.
[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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#15 DonMicheletti

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:33 PM

I find this an interesting discussion. I have had mixed results with Pertronix. Some worked and some went up in smoke in short order.
I have been driving for 54 years and have had vintage cars for 50 of those years. I have never had problems with point system ignitions - but then I maintained them well.
Why did I try the Pertronix? I just wanted to see if it made any real difference. In my case it didnt.
For a vintage car I am ine the "original points" camp. One thing about points is that if smmething should go wrong, you could probably fix it on the spot (if you know what you are doing). When the Pertronix died I was SOL.
As mentioned, for most vintage cars, 10,000 miles is a long time.

#16 38Buick 80C

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 05:29 PM

I checked, just now and have 6.78 volts at the positive terminal of the coil ignition on, no load. I need a helper to help me check what kinda drop I get when trying to spin the starter while cranking.

Brian DePouli

1930 Buick Series 61,

1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C
1969 Dodge Charger
2007 BMW 335i Coupe
2008 Dodge Charger Super Bee #68

2008 Buick Enclave CXL


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#17 Mark Shaw

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 06:12 PM

Brian,
I would be glad to help. But if I left right now it would be two flights and about ten hours to get there....
Mark Shaw BCA #40988
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#18 Marty Roth

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 07:39 PM

Several friends have gone to the Pertronics-type units and seem happy - a few have had mixed results.

For myself, I have kept all of our cars as originally equipped. They ran well for tens-, and hundreds of thousands of miles when properly maintained. I do a lot of touring, and know that if I ever have a problem on the road, I can probably adjust, or replace, or find a replacement part. I also carry normal spares in an emergency kit which include belts, hoses, clamps, points, condensor, rotor, cap, wires, plugs, etc. for each car. Yes, I could probably carry a spare electronic unit if I wanted to. And yes, I hear the argument that electronic units such as Pertronics increase fuel mileage and gve a hotter spark, and improve performance. Maybe so, but then so would a Cadillac engine in a Crosley.

I firmly believe that normal maintenance yields normal and dependable performance. I appreciate originality.

I am absolutely not trying to advise anyone else how to deal with their own car. If you feel that modern electronics is something beneficial for you and your car, by all means - do it, but maybe think about carry a spare for something which cannot be repaired or adjusted when you are miles from any other support.

#19 38Buick 80C

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 07:54 PM

ok got the wife to help. Voltage drops to 5.09 under starting load. hmmm...

Brian DePouli

1930 Buick Series 61,

1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C
1969 Dodge Charger
2007 BMW 335i Coupe
2008 Dodge Charger Super Bee #68

2008 Buick Enclave CXL


Buick Club of America President '11-'12; '14 -'15
BCA BOD 2009-2015
BCA Carolina Chapter
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#20 Marty Roth

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 08:15 PM

Brian,

Check voltage again under load, but with a temporary "HOT" lead directly from the battery to the coil. If it stays at 6-volt, then you could add a momentary switch in line to hit onlywhen starting, since it seems to be your starter which is pulling down the voltage.

Best of luck,

Marty




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