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  #1  
Old 07-27-2015, 01:11 AM
cmac2012's Avatar
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Location: Berkeley, CA
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Upgrading classic Ferraris and the like with electronic ignition

For all y'all peeps who have just been burning to know how you can fit an electronic ignition system to your 60s era Ferrari and other autos of the points, breaker, condenser era, I'm here to help:

http://pertronix.com/catalogs/pdf/ptx/2010/ptx2010_ignition_conv.pdf

The graphic refers to V8s but down below they have info for all the Ferrari buffs here. Turns out you can get more current, aka heat, to the plugs at high RPM with the electronic system. Not sure what they cost but hey, for my near million dollar Ferrari, gonna get it. Like the policy used to be (likely still is) at Canlis Restaurant in Seattle: 'No prices on the menu; if you have to ask, you can't afford it.'

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1986 300SDL, 351K
1984 300D, 133K
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Old 07-27-2015, 06:29 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Lafayette Indiana
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On my 59 Ferrari the spark generating capability was so poor the gap on the plug was barely the thickness of two business cards...the narrowest gap of any car I have worked In IIRC.

On that car there were two distributors each firing six cylinders. Each distributor had two sets of points firing three cylinders. The ramps on the rotor were very gently sloped so that the points would not float at high rpm. The only drawback to all this impressive hardware is that it is very possible to get one distributor too advanced and the other too retarded.....don't ask how I know.
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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Old 07-28-2015, 03:36 AM
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Holy crap, sounds like tuning that car was a labor of love. Last points car I had IIRC were my Saabs (96 and 95, late 60s).
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1986 300SDL, 351K
1984 300D, 133K
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Old 07-28-2015, 06:38 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
dieselarchitect
 
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Location: Lafayette Indiana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmac2012 View Post
Holy crap, sounds like tuning that car was a labor of love. Last points car I had IIRC were my Saabs (96 and 95, late 60s).
The most challenging thing was figuring out the correct timing marks on the flywheel (where you have a window to point the timing light). There were at least 15 timing marks with obscure letters and numerals with no book available to tell you which ones were operative.

Tuning the three carburators was simple compared to the timing.
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #5  
Old 07-28-2015, 05:04 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texafornia
Posts: 5,493
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmac2012 View Post
For all y'all peeps who have just been burning to know how you can fit an electronic ignition system to your 60s era Ferrari and other autos of the points, breaker, condenser era, I'm here to help:

http://pertronix.com/catalogs/pdf/ptx/2010/ptx2010_ignition_conv.pdf

The graphic refers to V8s but down below they have info for all the Ferrari buffs here. Turns out you can get more current, aka heat, to the plugs at high RPM with the electronic system. Not sure what they cost but hey, for my near million dollar Ferrari, gonna get it. Like the policy used to be (likely still is) at Canlis Restaurant in Seattle: 'No prices on the menu; if you have to ask, you can't afford it.'
Been around since the Reagen administration, in aftermarket form that is,
first hall cell ignition used by the big three was ford I believe.
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  #6  
Old 07-28-2015, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
The most challenging thing was figuring out the correct timing marks on the flywheel (where you have a window to point the timing light). There were at least 15 timing marks with obscure letters and numerals with no book available to tell you which ones were operative.

Tuning the three carburators was simple compared to the timing.
you are talking about the spinning optical wheel ,that you mount under the distributor rotor, that was their original 1st gen style.

The second style pertronix--for the SBC was much easier,, it was just a little module that you screw in place of the points and that was it.
Like the ford hall cell ignition. I ran them from 96 on..
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  #7  
Old 07-28-2015, 07:34 PM
t walgamuth's Avatar
dieselarchitect
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Lafayette Indiana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panZZer View Post
you are talking about the spinning optical wheel ,that you mount under the distributor rotor, that was their original 1st gen style.

The second style pertronix--for the SBC was much easier,, it was just a little module that you screw in place of the points and that was it.
Like the ford hall cell ignition. I ran them from 96 on..
Ummm....no....nothing like that at all.

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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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