Upgrading older points-style ignition systems to modern electronic units is a popular upgrade. Replacing the antiquated mechanical points with accurate and dependable electronic components increases the engine's performance and fuel economy.
PerTronix is one brand that manufactures aftermarket ignition system upgrades. If your vehicle does not start or has other performance issues, the ignition may be at fault. Testing the operation of the PerTronix ignition is very easy and will help you determine why your vehicle is not operating correctly.
Remove the distributor cap without removing the plug wires to gain access to the PeTronix parts. Connect one end of a inch jumper wire to the battery negative terminal. Connect the other end of the jumper wire to the Ignitor module base plate. Inspect the Ignitor wiring connections and look for damage.
Pay particular attention to the ground wire inside the distributor for proper connection. Repair or replace any improperly connected or damaged wires. Unplug the red Ignitor module wire. Connect the red Ignitor module lead to the battery positive terminal using a jumper wire if required. Attach the black lead of the multimeter to the Ignitor module black wire. Attach the red lead of the multimeter to the battery positive terminal. Rotate the center magnetic sleeve of the distributor shaft by hand or by cranking the engine.
How Do I Test a PerTronix Ignition?
The multimeter should show a fluctuation between battery voltage and zero volts. A constant voltage reading indicates a failed module or improperly installed Hall Effect shutter wheel. Measure the clearance between the center magnetic sleeve and the Hall Effect shutter wheel using a.
If the clearance is greater than. Loosen the shutter wheel mount using a flat-head screwdriver and reposition the wheel to a. Tighten the hold down screws and double check the clearance. Repeat Step Three after adjustments have been made. Disconnect and remove the digital multimeter. Disconnect and remove all jumper wires. Connect the Ignitor leads in their original locations.
Install the distributor cap and fasten it down securely. This article was written by the It Still Works team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information.
To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Works, contact us. Step 1 Remove the distributor cap without removing the plug wires to gain access to the PeTronix parts.
Step 2 Unplug the red Ignitor module wire. Step 3 Rotate the center magnetic sleeve of the distributor shaft by hand or by cranking the engine. Step 4 Measure the clearance between the center magnetic sleeve and the Hall Effect shutter wheel using a. Items you will need 2 jumper wires, 36 inches long Digital multimeter.
About the Author This article was written by the It Still Works team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information.The Jalopy Journal.
Pertronix Ignitor and Coil Installation Troubleshooting
Register now to get rid of these ads! The H. What should have been a grand weekend of T-bird nirvana ended up on the back of a flatbed Wednesday night when my '63 'Bird decided it didn't want to run any more while speeding down I after leaving the Flashbacks cruise night.
Long story short, car has been running Pertronix Ignitor I and Flamethrower oil-filled 1. Temperature on Wednesday wasn't oppressive - around 80 deg F, car was run 20 miles one way to get to the cruise.
The car sat on the side of the road cooling down for around 40 minutes - just before the flatbed showed up I took a chance, hit the switch and it fired right off. Being cautious and since the flatbed was about to arrive, I elected to have it hauled home rather than get a few miles down the road and run the risk of stalling out again.
Yutan FlashAug 27, Been discussed a ton. When I use the search function, I get these results. Terminals are to be on a horizontal plane. ELpolackoAug 27, I'm saying this due to the fact that's it's mounted on the A.
This might help with longevity, as the pertronix coils are actually quite good. Try the Epoxy filled one, I think you'll be fine. Traditions RacingAug 27, Yutan FlashAug 28, Had the same issue awhile back, on a friends Chevelle.
Coil mounted horizontally on the firewall. Took awhile to figure it out, as it would fire right back up when cooled down. Someone suggested the windings on the coil being exposed from the oil, swapped it out, for a Napa unit, mounted vertically, and never had that problem since.Until the beginning of this year…. A new customer for this year, racing an MG Midget here in UK under a limited mods category, was doing splendidly for the first couple of races, then started experiencing a misfire.
All fuel pipes were checked and re-routed where it was considered necessary. Those still considered in danger of getting too warm were heat shielded. The misfire persisted. On to the ignition system. All was checked, but then a loose alternator wire was found and blamed for the fault.
It wasn't. Back to the ignition system then.
Since the engine would run, it wasn't considered to be the Ignitor ignition, since we are advised that these things either work or they don't.
The car isn't close to me, and therefore I couldn't be on hand to physically carry out checks myself, so it was down to advise by phone and e-mail.
We ran the gambit of all the usual suspects - plugs, leads, dizzy cap, rotor arm, coil and so on. After some time I popped the question about coil temperature, the reply was that it was so hot you couldn't comfortably hold it - A-ha!! But this was the second new Lucas Gold Sports coil tried… hmm. But it, too, was getting excessively hot - so it must be the coil right? Since the engine would still run, but the coil got hot after a short time.
As the electronic ignitions don't really require a high-power coil, it was suggested a bog-standard volt coil was tried. And there I left it as Mini Meet east was beckoning, so off I went…. One was cured pretty quickly - miraculously seemingly as nothing was changed except the rotor arm. The other person's problem, however, was a harder nut to crack. Despite changing everything from the plugs to the coil and everything in between, the misfire persisted.
Not at all helped by an occasional loss of power to the coil once the 'start' position of the ignition key was released… So there was more than one issue to cure - but it didn't explain the persistent misfire and red-hot coil.
The coil type and suitability was checked - no problem there using a coil made for ballast-resisted systems will not work properly and will cause the symptoms experienced here.
One other problem I'd known in the UK was a misfire caused by the rivets holding the Ignitor pick-up together had become loose - so these were replaced and the unit worked fine. So I checked this, but all was OK here. The decision was taken to re-fit the standard points set-up in an effort to go back to basics - still believing, as advised, that electronic ignitions either work or they don't - since something was causing the coil to over-heat and therefore produce an inadequate spark.
The engine ran like a Swiss watch! No misfire. No over-heating coil. And no cut-out when releasing the ignition switch from the 'start' position - although this was still considered a second issue. So why? The coil over-heating is generally caused by insufficient dwell period between each spark or insufficient voltage 'damping' like when a condenser breaks down.
Over-charging or under-charging by the charging system can be an issue, too much charge will cook the coil, too little will not allow the electronic ignition to function properly - but these didn't show in testing the relevant circuits… so where was the problem? It had my brain buzzing, and a determination to seek the solution once I'd returned to the UK. I called Aldon Automotive since they were the original importers and distributors of the Pertronix Ignitor kits and asked them their opinion.
Their input was thus…. They confirmed the previous statement about the charging system - make sure it wasn't over or under charging. Make sure the coil is suitable - they suggested a standard oil-filled coil with 3-ohms resistance for road use and a resin-filled coil with 1.Ignitor kits are available for the Automotive, Industrial, Marine and Agricultural industries.
Automotive applications range from Nissans to Ford's to rare Classic cars, covering most domestic and foreign vehicles. Our Marine applications include many popular and classic boats.
Many kits are available for all types of Industrial and Agricultural equipment. Ignitor kits for 6 volt and 12 volt positive ground applications are also available. The Ignitor electronic ignition is far from being universal. Each kit is designed specifically for the distributor type. However, our kits will often fit many distributors from the same manufacturer.
A kit that has been designed for a particular distributor type may also fit other distributors that use the same point set, cap and rotor. The Ignitor fits entirely inside the distributor, and in most cases installs quicker than points. There are no "black boxes" or complicated wiring. Simply remove your points and condenser or old electronic unit to install the kit into the distributor, attach the two wires to the appropriate positions, and you're done.
Some applications may require you to alter the distributor in some way e. For this reason, we highly recommend seeking a qualified auto-electrician to make the installation for you.
Our Flame-Thrower coils are designed specifically for compatibility with our Ignitor 1, 2 and 3 units. However, the Flame-Thrower 1 Coil may also be used with a point type system or any other system that calls for a 1. The unit is actually turning off, and back on as the coil charges and releases energy. The best possible remedy for this problem is to wire the Ignitor units RED WIRE directly to a switched volt source away from any voltage reduced circuit, such as a resister wire or ballast resistor.
These circuits usually are in the wire from the ignition switch to the coil. The coil will still need a minimum of 1. We think you will find when you have these "breaking up" problems, low voltage is the culprit!
We also highly recommend seeking a qualified auto-electrician to make this adjustment for you. For more information on how to Test Voltage and Resistance, see this info sheet. Pertronix lobe sensing kits use unique lobe sensor technology, which uses the point cam to trigger, rather than a magnet sleeve or ring. The standard Hall Effect Ignitor module has the integrated circuit triggered by the cobalt magnets in the magnet sleeve or ring that is mounted on the shaft usually on the cam lobes. Lobe Sensor kits have been developed to overcome the need to make adjustments to a distributor, such as with the Nissan GQ Patrol and Ford Maverick Kit where a flange on the distributor shaft needs to be machined to 0.
If you answered "NO" to any of the previous questions, go back and correct the condition before proceeding.How Ignition System Works
Note: If any modifications are made to the ignitor magnet or module, you will void your warranty. If the answer to these questions is "YES", then review some additional common solutions to a no start condition.
To determine if your systems coil is compatible with the Ignitor, some measurements should be taken prior to installation of the Ignitor. Caution… While performing this test, never leave the ignition switch on for more than 30 seconds at a time. Set your voltmeter to a 15 or volt scale. Attach an 18 or 20 AWG jumper wire from the negative coil terminal to an engine ground.
Attach positive red lead of your voltmeter to the positive side of the coil, and the negative black lead to an engine ground. Turn the ignition switch to the run position.See all 4 photos. I have a Ford with a Y-block. Before I got it the previous owner had added triple carbs, dual pipes, and a PerTronix point replacement kit. The coil was a standard 12V replacement and there is a ballast resistor in the primary circuit.
The engine ran great until recently; it became hard to start and finally wouldn't start at all. Of course this happened at a cruise night where everyone could watch while I tried unsuccessfully to get it started. Fortunately one of the guys with me had a spare coil with him, however it is from a different manufacturer and a completely different design. My question is, what is the difference between coils?
I know there are so-called "hot" coils than put out more voltage than others and it would seem the hotter the coil the better, but how do I pick the proper replacement? In simple terms coils are rated by their primary resistance—less resistance in the primary windings of the coil allows more current to flow, which makes a stronger magnetic field. When the points open or the electronic device that controls current flow shuts off the magnetic field collapses and makes a spark in the secondary windings.
It stands to reason that more current in the primary is a good thing, however the current flow is limited by the ability of the points, or the electronics in place, to handle it.
Too little resistance means too much current flow, which can burn up points and damage electronic components. For specific recommendations we contacted our pal, Don Lindfors, at PerTronix to get the straight story on coils. As he explains, PerTronix offers three oil-filled, canister-style coils and they are identified by the ignition system they are suited for:. The Flame Thrower 40,V coils have internal resistance rated at 1.
The 3. These coils can be used on virtually any inductive non-capacitive discharge ignition system. Flame Thrower II coils have lower resistance, 0. The low resistance helps to produce up to 45, V. This higher voltage allows larger spark plug gaps for added power and better fuel economy. The extremely low resistance of 0. It should be noted that these coils are compatible with Ignitor III electronics only.
Log in or Sign up. Atomic Industries www. Register now to get rid of these ads! The H. Finally finishing up the wiring on the '54 Wagon and I ran unto a snag,I've lost the wiring diagram,it's a flamethrower distributor with 2 wires and in my normal way of thinking the red wire is hot,but there is no red wire! Anyway, I have the correct coil I just don't want to wire it incorrectly and fry it. You using a ballast resistor? MerlinNov 13, Yea I know, They were quick pulls from google but he's only looking for the where the wires run from out of the dist.
If it is a standard Flame Trower Distributor, you want a 1. If it is a Flame Thrower II, you want a. If it does not have a red wire, it either isn't a PerTronix distributor, or someone has screwed with it. Don from PerTronix. Thank you Don,I had a senior moment this morning when I posted my problem,it does indeed have a read wire and I do have the correct coil.
You made may day, And thanks to the other guys who tried to help,HRP. RagtopMay 13, Thats odd man.PerTronix manufactures the aftermarket's finest ignition products for enthusiasts who want to upgrade the spark in their system resulting in a noticeable gain in horsepower. Ignitor Series sales have exceeded 5, units! Our innovative Digial HP Ignition Box represents our continued commitment to lead the ignition industry. PerTronix ignition products are maintenance free systems that are unparalled in the industry.
With the tremendous growth of the performance industry in the 90's, PerTronix began to shift our emphasis to our automotive product offering. Ignitor kit sales have exceeded 4, units. PerTronix does not currently ship our products internationally from our web store.
Choosing The Correct Ignition Coil
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Point on Performance PerTronix manufactures the aftermarket's finest ignition products for enthusiasts who want to upgrade the spark in their system resulting in a noticeable gain in horsepower. Popular Items. View All Products. Installation Instructions Download or view installation guides. About PerTronix Ignition Products With the tremendous growth of the performance industry in the 90's, PerTronix began to shift our emphasis to our automotive product offering.
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