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babychadwick

Distributor woes

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As mentioned in a previous post I have no spark.  Rather than go the route of restoring everything I have decided to swap to modern coils with internal ballast and run a pertronix electronic ignition.  Should I desire everything can be unbolted and returned to original.  For those interested in following this I will try to post updates as I can.  If anybody has any advice other than "the original works great, keep it" I would love to hear it.

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I am very interested in seeing just how you swap out the dual coil pack.  You should have a 6 volt system with positive ground as original. Pictures would be great.  I not going to do it, but interested just the same.  Good luck.

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The basic though and I may run into problems is to take the brush mount from a 60-70's Mercury outboard on their distributor to connect to the rotor.  Mix up a batch of Kevlar and epoxy and set the dist base inverted into it with a release agent.  Once hard then grind the exterior to shape and drill for the two brush mounts.

 

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40 years ago I built my own adapter for my 40 Mercury, from a defective after market coil. It worked better than the adapters that were available at the time, but I still had intermittent issues of the spark failing. I tried several after market new coils, NOS coils and reproduction coils and all of them gave me problems, so I kept my adapter. In the middle 1990's, I sent a coil off to Jake Fleming for rebuilding. It came back and worked great until I left the ignition switch on with the car not running. I would never return to an adapter and still have a rebuilt coil on my car.

 

There are many stories about sudden failures in the Pertronix electronic components in older Fords and Mercury's. The transient spikes and poor grounding system in the older cars lead to premature failure.

 

You are on a budget and the least expensive way to solve your problem is to have the original coil rebuilt and the distributor set up on a distributor machine by a competent operator. You are in Florida, so I would suggest that you send your coil and distributor to Skip Haney in Punta Gorda. He will rebuild your coil, check out the distributor and return them to you in a few days. Once you install them, you are good for at least 15,000 miles of trouble free ignition. Then you will probably have to change the points.

 

http://www.fordcollector.com/coils.htm

 

I know that you did not want to hear about how great the original system is, but I have been driving flathead Ford products since 1950 and felt that you might benefit from my experience.

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The problem here is with the salt air (we are on an island) the points will corrode in no time at all.  I know this from having run various point ignition systems.  I have not had this problem in other locations and as I do not have an air conditioned garage it does become an issue.  As far as least expensive I will have $400 invested in new plate, pertronix, and coils (not counting my labor).  I doubt I could have the original rebuilt for this.

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For a while I ran a dual coil replacement with two plug wire holes on the top and stock brushes inside.  Search this forum for possible suppliers.  i used two MSD 6A units, blaster coils, and stock points.  Trouble was, MSD was so hot it flashed over the top of the coil replacement, still ran pretty good.  My latest scheme is to use a 60-2 crank trigger wheel and sensor with a Fuel Tech computer, and two wasted spark VW-Audi V-6 coil assemblies.  I'll post should it actually work.

If you want to want to use solid state points in original distributor, Philbin Products in Portland, OR, AKA Flathead Doctor make a unit for V-12 distributors.  www.philbingroup.com. 

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On 2/4/2019 at 5:46 PM, babychadwick said:

The problem here is with the salt air (we are on an island) the points will corrode in no time at all.  I know this from having run various point ignition systems.  I have not had this problem in other locations and as I do not have an air conditioned garage it does become an issue.  As far as least expensive I will have $400 invested in new plate, pertronix, and coils (not counting my labor).  I doubt I could have the original rebuilt for this.

 

Have you contacted Skip Haney for an estimate? I still believe that rebuilding the stock set up will be less than $400. I don't know about the point corrosion problem, but I do know that there are quite a few people owning cars with points driving around Florida.

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I agree with 19tom40.  I can rebuild and strobe your distributor but I can't rebuild your coil.  You'll need to send it to Skip for that.  I think you can come in under $400 minus a lot of headaches .   

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I was talking with Mr. Richman and the general estimate was that it would be $250 for the dist, $300 for the coil (due to a crack in mine), and I didn't get the cost of the condensers.  I am getting close to completion now, I've done wires and nearly completed the plate to replace the coil.  All told I estimate the cost at $250 pertronix, $70 replacement plate materials, $45 2 new coils, $50 new plug wires, $30 for new plugs.  All together aside from the caps and rotor I will have a completely new electronic ignition system than can be entirely unbolted and returned to original.

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