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Old 08-12-2004, 06:43 PM   #1
73Cleveland
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Default Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

I'm looking to replace the points & condenser with an electronic unit. Which one has has anyone had the best/worst luck with? I'm running a stock 73 Cleveland 4V. I've heard the pertronix (not sure of the spelling) is a decent unit.

One other question... If I swap out the points for an electronic unit, do I need to re-adjust the timing? The reason I ask is the fact that the distributer seems to have become "one" with the block and may never move again! I'm going to try penetrating oil but am not sure if that will help.

Any input will be appreciated!
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Old 08-13-2004, 09:33 AM   #2
horseshoeing
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

I got some break-free here in GA. If you want to come and get it, I will give you some of it.

I changed my whole distributer, so I don't know about what you are doing.
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Old 08-14-2004, 02:29 PM   #3
73Cleveland
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

I've heard I really don't need to change my distributer. Something like a pertronix sould just mount on the current breaker plate in the distributer. At least that's my take on it.
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Old 08-15-2004, 05:13 PM   #4
horseshoeing
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

If you look at the distributers they are not all the same. Its all in the rpm's and how much volts it can take from a msd. If you are not going to hotrod your motor, don't worry about it. If you put a msd on it save gas and get more hp for you motor. It also stops you plugs from fouling out. If you don't care and are tried of points, just go the way you are going. If you funds are small, don't worry about it yet. Go with a new intake and carb 1st.
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Old 08-16-2004, 01:29 PM   #5
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

You have a few options. For all of them, you'll need to retime the motor. If you just want to get rid of the points, Pertronix, Crane and Mallory all make systems that replace the points in your factory distributor. You could also install a Ford Duraspark system for cheap money with junkyard parts. There are also big bucks systems that may be overkill for your application. I'd work on getting your distributor free as at the very least you'll need to turn it the set the timing, points or electronic.
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Old 08-20-2004, 09:04 PM   #6
73Cleveland
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

Thanks to all that replied!

If I do the duraspark or durspark II system, what will I need in the way of a wiring harness change? I'm familiar with those ignition systems but never installed either in an older car. I know the duraspark II has a lot hotter spark. I like the idea of going with the duraspark II system if I can without a lot of re-engineering!

If I can't get the duraspark installed, I think I'll do a pertronix upgrade.

My funds are kind of limited at the moment so I have to be careful with where I invest! I'm also looking at a RAM Air kit and maybe some larger wheels.

My biggest challenge will be freeing up the distributor. That may be at least a coupla 6-packs and lots a penertating oil!

Thanks again!
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Old 08-20-2004, 11:16 PM   #7
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

If you can get a system from a junk car you can get all the wiring with it. A 351m or 400 will have the same distributor as a Cleveland. There is one harness that goes from the module to the distributor and coil. I shortened mine to make it fit better. You can use the same wire that powers your points coil to power the Duraspark coil. There are two other wires to connect on the module, a 12V that is on in both the crank and run position to power the module and a 12V that is only powered in the crank position that is used to retard the timing during starting.
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Old 08-21-2004, 02:47 AM   #8
73Cleveland
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

I will check out getting the parts from a "donor" car.

Do you by chance know the color codes for the run & crank wires?

I assume I can use say the lead for the starter solenoid for the crank lead and just tap in somewhere for power for the run lead. Could I use the + lead for the coil for the run lead or would that cause low voltage for the coil?

I'll have to look at the durspark II module but I thought there were two plugs on it with at least two wires in each. If that is the case, one should be the ground and I'll need to figure out what the rest are. It's been a long time since I worked with that vintage of module so please have patience with me!

Thanks for your help!
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Old 08-21-2004, 01:56 PM   #9
69FECoupe
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

You can use the solenoid wire for the crank power. For the module power, I tapped into the wire that feeds the coil right after the ignition switch before the resistor wire. It has 12v in both the crank and run position. The module you need is the one with the blue strain relief where the wires come out of the module. It has two plugs, one with two wires and one with four wires. The plug with four wires goes to the distributor. The two wire plug is for the module power and crank signal. If you do a Google search for "Duraspark" or "Duraspark conversion" you'll be able to download a wiring diagram. It sounds much more difficult than it is. The "Steve's Mustang" web page also has some good information.
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Old 08-21-2004, 04:01 PM   #10
73Cleveland
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Default RE: Electronic Ignition, Which One is Best?

Thanks for the great info! I really owe you one!

I checked out "Steve's Mustang" web page and it has the info you mentioned as well as other good info.

I should have remembered about the second plug on the module going to the distributor.

I'm going shopping next week for donor car parts! The real fun will still be in getting the old distributor out.

Thanks again, I really appreciate all your help!
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Old 08-21-2004, 04:01 PM
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