Pontiac GTO Forum banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am a new owner of a 66 goat and I would like to upgrade the ignition like I did on my 67 Mustang. I have no idea which way to go except the Ignitor 1 worked great on my fastback. I'm looking for the best combo first time out. Would the Type II be a good choice? Which wires, coil and spark plugs. Is this kit easy to install in the GM distributor? Is it necessary to remove distributor. Should I use the vacuum port afterward or the spark advance port? Sorry for all the questions but I want to do it right from the forum's experience. Thank you in advance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,208 Posts
I did the Ignitor II on my previous 400 build. This time around on my 455 build, I bought a complete distributor, Ignitor II.

I didn't have any problems out of it in the 25,000 miles I got out of the 400. I did not install the kit while the distributor was in the car as I was rebuilding the 400 engine at the time. I actually purchased a (cheap) rebuilt point style distributor so I know it was tight and had a new gear on it, and then installed the kit.

If it were me, and you know and/or are comfortable doing this, I would set your distributor on No.1 cylinder just as it would be firing along with the correct timing mark on your crank pulley, and pull the distributor to work on it. You could also inspect the distributor as well. With small parts and my big hands, I already know what would happen as I were leaning over the fender trying to install the small screws in the points plate -and then I would have more work on my hands, and probably have to pull the distributor anyway. Once finished with the conversion, just set the distributor back in -which can take a couple tries to get the rotor in the correct No 1 position.

This time around, I matched the distributor with the PerTronix Flame Thrower II coil and got some Taylor 8.2 mm wires off of the Summit site. Not installed or running yet, but that is what I got.

Spark plug, You don't need anything "fancy" or "gimmicky." Just plane old AC-Delco or Champions as recommended for your engine. You could probably open the gap up to .40"-.45" as opposed to the factory .035". Personally, I like a little tighter than wider on the gap, so .40" is what I use.

From a HotRod magazine online article:

"Controlling the operating temperature of the plug’s firing tip is the single most important factor in spark plug design. “Heat range” is the relative temperature of the spark plug’s core nose, and it is determined by the length and diameter of the insulator tip, as well as the ability of the plug to transfer heat into the cooling system. A “cold” plug transfers heat rapidly from its firing end into the cooling system and is used to avoid core nose heat saturation where combustion-chamber or cylinder-head temperatures are relatively high. A “hot” plug has a slower heat transfer rate and is used to avoid fouling under relatively low chamber or head temperatures. What’s confusing is that a “hotter” (higher performance level) engine requires a colder plug because more power equals higher cylinder temperatures.

BUT, then they throw this out which almost counters the above heat range guide: Gasoline quality: With musclecar-era leaded gas, the lead is attracted to the hotter (core-nose) part of the plug, causing glazing. The spark runs down the core nose instead of jumping the gap. Going to a slightly colder plug helps prevent lead-glazing. However, with today’s cleaner-burning oxygenated unleaded gas, an equivalent engine needs to run plugs about 1-2 heat ranges hotter than originally specified (many plug manufacturers have revised their catalogs accordingly).

With a new or unknown combination, play it safe. Always start at least 1-2 heat ranges on the cold size of the mean heat-range for the series of plug you are running. At worst, you may experience some plug fouling. On the other hand, a plug that’s too hot can cause detonation and damage the engine.

Read more: Spark Plugs Fact and Fiction- Car Craft Magazine

So, on spark plugs, you may actually want to experiment a little by selecting the stock heat range for your engine and then go 1-2 steps down or up to possibly zero in on the best range for your particular engine combo.
 

·
64-67 Expert
Joined
·
8,569 Posts
IME, changing out points for a Petronix is a downgrade, not an upgrade. The reliability isn't there. Other systems, not so sure. There is no performance gain from going electronic....only the added convenience of a maintenance-free ignition system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
345 Posts
IME, changing out points for a Petronix is a downgrade, not an upgrade. The reliability isn't there. Other systems, not so sure. There is no performance gain from going electronic....only the added convenience of a maintenance-free ignition system.

Never heard anything like this before. I've heard good reviews of the Ignitor systems. The III even has a built in rev limiter feature.

Electronic Ignition Conversion - PerTronix Ignitor

But, I prefer a good quality self contained HEI. It's requires only a one wire, straight 12 volt power source. No external coil is needed. DUI makes one of the best HEI's on the market.

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/dui-51720bl/overview/make/pontiac

"...Which wires..."

I like the better grade Taylor wires. The plug boots have grips which make 'em easier to pull off the plugs. I recently bought a yellow set for my '68 Bird bracket car. :)

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/tay-73455/overview/
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,208 Posts
IME, changing out points for a Petronix is a downgrade, not an upgrade. The reliability isn't there. Other systems, not so sure. There is no performance gain from going electronic....only the added convenience of a maintenance-free ignition system.

OMG you old fart. (..and I know I can say that and get away with it:lol:) Points are fine and I've never had problems with them, and I actually like the old dual points as well.

BUT, "The biggest pro of the system that uses points is that just about any backyard mechanic can diagnose it and get it working again. The cons are , having to change points, they may not have the best advance curve or hold dwell that well due to the design, and the point contacts like to corrode from lack of use.

HEI, advantages are a hot spark, they stay in tune and they are somewhat easy to fix if they do need repair. You can test most pieces except the module with an ohm meter. Everything is in one unit. The factory GM units often go 100 to 200k without anything more than a cap and rotor change if that. The biggest con is that they are quite a bit bigger than a point type distributor, however, the aftermarket offering of electronic distributors can be had in smaller "points size" units."

AND, as I get older, isn't it about the convenience of a maintenance-free system so I can drive more, check out the babes, and wrench less -especially in 100 degree heat, 0 degree cold, rain, snow, hurricanes, tornadoes, 1 AM with no flashlight, no full moon, and in real rural country where I can't get a cell phone signal, and.....:rofl:
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top