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Ignition coils - what are you using?


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Admittedly there are few choices these days regarding ignition coils - especially 6v coils. 

The original coils were in the 33 Lincoln I'm restoring, broken tops and all. These had the mounts welded directly onto the coil as most old(er) coils did, and fit under the cowl inside the car. 

 

So what are you using? Standard replacements from local auto parts store (with modification) or something different? 

 

 

 

Edited by a griffin (see edit history)
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I would get a name brand 6 volt coil like Standard/Blue Streak. Avoid the cheapest ones, probably made in China. Once you get it running, you can take the time to either repair the original ones or toss them...

 

Frank

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I'm a Early Fod V8 guy and use Skip (George) Haney in Punta Gorda FL, who opens the original Ford coils, that are the top of the distributor and puts a modern coil in there.  Problem solved.  He advertises in the Early Ford V8 Times.  I've never had one of his fail.

PM me for the address and phone #.  The reprodution coils always failed me.

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11 hours ago, 60FlatTop said:

I have been very happy with NAPA's Echlin brand ignition products for the past 25 years. That's when to old "go to" brands started letting me down.

 

Here is what I would good with:

https://www.napaonline.com/en/p/ECHIC7

 

I think they are made in China, but the spec must be a lot higher.

The part I bolded says everything.

The Chinese, and everyone else, WILL produce quality products IF the vendors DEMAND it but you'll pay for it.

As much as I like to buy American in too many cases it isn't even possible anymore....... :(

 

 

 

 

 

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For my old Chevrolets 1929 i picked up the Borg Warner BWD E5 from my local parts store. been working fine for me. even have a spare just in case. nice thing they were the same shape and size as my original one, and they are solid black no label on them. so fits right in and looks great :)

20170627_202914.jpg

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19 hours ago, Paul Dobbin said:

I'm a Early Fod V8 guy and use Skip (George) Haney in Punta Gorda FL, who opens the original Ford coils, that are the top of the distributor and puts a modern coil in there.  Problem solved.  He advertises in the Early Ford V8 Times.  I've never had one of his fail.

PM me for the address and phone #.  The reprodution coils always failed me.

Thanks for the offer. Upon your mention of him, I looked him up online and left a message to see if he can help me. 

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I have tried to use an Echlin in my Pierce Arrow but the body of the coil was too large to fit into the holder that is mounted on the firewall.

 

 

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The coil I had been using on my 1925 Buick was a Central Tractor 6 Volt  from China. All marked "no external resistance required". Assuming it has an internal ballast. The original Delco style has a porcelain form with a wire wound ballast resistor. One like this was not on the car at the time but the modern made in China version. 

coil.jpg.124c1361c60c4f3fc2185a542987eb81.jpg 

Of the 2 decent original coils I have this ballast measures between 2 and 3 ohms.

So I checked several other suppliers and they all seemed to carry the same unit at much higher prices. When I got my 1925 Master I replaced the functioning original Delco with the same type modern coil.

 I had a New, never used Epoxy case BIG A 6 Volt made in Texas (no external resistance required) and installed it in my Standard after the engine rebuild.

287187941_s-l300(1).jpg.1e30d364f7a9839102cc69369ffb2325.jpg

 Everything seemed to be fine but after a 20 mile run the coil was HOT!  (Coil is mounted up behind the dash not in the engine compartment). It felt hot enough to burn you. I know the original design with the exposed resistor created much heat in dropping the voltage to the points.

  I replaced with another C/T china unit. After a 140 mile run it was uncomfotably warm. I believe I could live with that but I am always burning points. (expensive ones) I have replaced the condensor 3 times.

 Anyone else have this experience?

Edited by dibarlaw (see edit history)
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If you know your way around a digital multimeter you could measure the amount of current flowing through the coil when the points are closed and the engine is not running. Typical values are 4 to 6 amps of current.  The primary side of the coil needs to create a magnetic field inside the coil that is sufficiently strong to make a good spark on the secondary side of the coil when the points open.  The strength of the magnetic field is based on the number of turns of wire in the primary side and the amount of current flowing through them.  Since the coil turns are a fixed value during its manufacturing, the number of amps from the car’s electrical system determines the magnetic field strength, more amps means more magnetic field and a stronger spark on the secondary.  
You can overload the primary by putting too much current in the primary coil windings and generating excessive heat.  A resistor in the primary circuit can help manage the current to a level that generates less heat.  A six volt coil that has a primary resistance value of about 1.2 ohms will draw 5.0 amps and if the primary resistance is increased to 2.0 ohms the current flow will be 3.0 amps.  If you are meter savvy you can measure the dc resistance of the coil that gets greatly overheated and see what it measures.  If it measures less than 1 ohm your current draw will be more than 6 amps.

As for your points issue, this might be helpful

 

 

6AFBD482-9C4D-4223-8CF9-DA2051A09A7F.jpeg

Edited by TerryB (see edit history)
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I got a 'HOT' 6-Volt coil from Brillman's Tractor Parts down in Virginia.  I told them that I was looking for an ignition coil for my old Buicks.  They told me that what they have will certainly do the job.  The fellow told me that a standard coil like what was used on Chevrolet Sixes in the 30's, 40's, and 50's was somewhere between 25 - 30,000 volts.  He said that their coils are 55,000 volts.  I got one and really like it and I am going back for two more.  At $37.00 you can't beat the price.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

AACA Life Member #947918

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22 hours ago, TerryB said:

If you know your way around a digital multimeter you could measure the amount of current flowing through the coil when the points are closed and the engine is not running. Typical values are 4 to 6 amps of current.  The primary side of the coil needs to create a magnetic field inside the coil that is sufficiently strong to make a good spark on the secondary side of the coil when the points open.  The strength of the magnetic field is based on the number of turns of wire in the primary side and the amount of current flowing through them.  Since the coil turns are a fixed value during its manufacturing, the number of amps from the car’s electrical system determines the magnetic field strength, more amps means more magnetic field and a stronger spark on the secondary.  
You can overload the primary by putting too much current in the primary coil windings and generating excessive heat.  A resistor in the primary circuit can help manage the current to a level that generates less heat.  A six volt coil that has a primary resistance value of about 1.2 ohms will draw 5.0 amps and if the primary resistance is increased to 2.0 ohms the current flow will be 3.0 amps.  If you are meter savvy you can measure the dc resistance of the coil that gets greatly overheated and see what it measures.  If it measures less than 1 ohm your current draw will be more than 6 amps.

As for your points issue, this might be helpful

 

 

6AFBD482-9C4D-4223-8CF9-DA2051A09A7F.jpeg

TerryB:

 Thank you for your explanations. I will go over the system again with my digital multimeter now that I know what values to be looking for. I do have a capacitor checker that I have used for my radio work. But just like all my other equipment it is vintage and would need calibrated. Also it would be helpfull if originally the required microfarad designations were stated in the systems diagrams. Also marked on the case of the very generic looking condensers.

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