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Crap Ignition Products


James_Douglas
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I had a condenser die and eat the points on the '47 Desoto.  So, I get a set from the only surviving auto parts store (O'Reilly) in this end of San Francisco. The parts are "Blue Streak" from Standard.

 

In short, they do not fit.  The point mounting plate hole that the hold down screw goes through is about 1/2 hole diameter off.  You slip it onto the brass stud and the hole in that bottom plate must line up.  In addition, the copper plating on the bottom of the plate has crap in the plating so it is not perfectly flat and it is starting to peel of the steel base.  I had a stock of these products I had been using for 10-15 years.  This is the first item I have purchased since they closed the Long Island plants.  These points came from Mexico.  They are junk and cannot be used.

 

Just to be sure, I pulled two of my NOS Auto-lite distributor plates and placed the points on the post.  On both the screw hole was out 1/2 diameter.

 

I then went to use the capacitor.  The new one is larger in diameter than the old Blue Streak I had in my used box.  The bracket holes, three of them, would not line up properly with the plate and even if you forced it the housing would hit the cam as it spun around.

 

Has anyone purchased points and a condenser in the last six months and had no problems with them?  If so, what was the make and part number on the box?

 

As an aside, one cannot go by the part numbers on the auto part store catalogs.  They are swapping in parts like these.  One day you get once manufacturer and another you get someone else.  Hence why I am asking for anyone who has gotten something recently and what was it according to the box as opposed to the receipt.

 

Thanks all, James.

 

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unfortunately this is the new norm...however just because you own a 40's car does not mean you have to be stuck with  40's technology.....sourcing quality parts is becoming harder and eating into you drive time for more frequent maintenance....this is why so many go with the electronic ignition upgrades offered by various folks or the advanced DIYer....may be a good time weight the costs.....

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I have a Ignitor, but I have to make up an new wiring harness if I am going to use it...they require some resistors in line so that the coil interruption devices for the OD, or Underdrive if using, will not kill it.  I want to make up two sets of harness's with plugs so that if a module fails on the road and I have to switch to my back up dizzy (point) that also have a back up harness without the resistors out of it...

 

I hope in a year to have the new engine on the test stand with computerized TBI and a crank trigger...it is just in the mean time...do remember that the 1947 is my daily driver...

 

Hence why I was asking if anyone had any make-part-numbers that are know good recently.

 

James.

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Understand your car is a daily and I also understand the less than adequate points available today.  Even if you are a year out with the new engine and the TBI which I see as an excellent and simple upgrade....I would in the meantime effectively build that harness now for overall better MTBF...your next loss of ignition may place you in a less than hospitable location.....

 

it has been literally years since I have seen an ignition breaker set with phenolic resin cam....I do not know a part number, but KEM was the last of the trusted names for me long ago in ignition parts....seems a few foreign application you still get some quality parts....but am sure that market will dry up in time.

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Jerry, question if I may, do the Autolite points carry phenolic breaker cam.  I remember when the industry started going plastic..first ones seem to have a heavier/denser plastic that while not on par with phenolic would at least perform better than the softer material on most all OTC points one gets today...thanks

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A few years back I sourced some ignition parts through a Car Quest store.  The counter guy looked them up in a book by the dist type number.  He had toorder them from his jobber but they were USA made stuff.  I got two sets of points, two condensers and two caps and rotors. Google says there are stores in Cali.  They have since been taken over by Advance but they maybe worth a shot if there is one close enough to deal with.  Good quality pieces.  Not 100% percennt sure but I think I did the tune up in 2008 before we went to the POC meet in Detroit.  They are still in the car today at least 30'000 miles later.

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I have purchased a couple of dizzy caps (Standard I believe), and the brass inside is too long.  The distributor shaft won't even rotate without each point being milled down.  Good to thing I work in a machine shop. As far as points go, all the new stuff is junk. I went with a pertronix kit including the 40000 volt coil. Haven't had any problems.

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All new ignition parts made today in China are absolute landful... don't waste your time buying these new parts...

Ebay  big name quality old stock.

Same goes for signal flashers.

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Jerry and Dodgeb4ya have it right. Stock up on Autolite parts on ebay. They cost a little more, but worth it.

I personally have had very good luck with Andy Bernbaum as well. Vintage Power Wagons as well.

I still try to buy the NOS off of ebay though, never any worrying with those parts

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7 hours ago, Plymouthy Adams said:

Jerry, question if I may, do the Autolite points carry phenolic breaker cam.  I remember when the industry started going plastic..first ones seem to have a heavier/denser plastic that while not on par with phenolic would at least perform better than the softer material on most all OTC points one gets today...thanks

Plymouthy , Yes , all of the AutoLite points that I have bought have had the phenolic breaker cam lever . 

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I have a warning for you folks stocking up on NOS Autolite points.  I did this for a long time, I still have a bunch of sets.  That last time I used some, about 2 years ago on another car, the Bakelite rubbing block decided to degrade without warning.  The particles ended up destroying an NOS distributor cam. 

 

Some of the bakelite works fine and some, as evidenced by my experience, does not.  The issue is there is no way to tell in advance.  So, although I really like the idea of sourcing NOS Autolite, one should so with some trepidation.

 

James. 

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I'll stick with my Autolite plan as I've done for over 40 years. I feel safe.

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2 hours ago, Dodgeb4ya said:

I'll stick with my Autolite plan as I've done for over 40 years. I feel safe.

I have to agree with Dodge4ya.  Always look for the old Autolite products for the electrical components then as backup then the Echlins, Bluse Streak, Older NAPA P&D Sorenson Filko but it takes  some time to get  together  these components at your local swap meets. Having the cross reference numbers also help and I have a catalog that has been scanned to CD that is a cross reference for all of the major suppliers worth having in your library and then create your cross ref list over the winter time  All you have to know is the Autolite part number and then you can find the equivalent part number from the other suppliers.

I have attached a copy of the cover to show what manufactures are covered. This has a lot manufacturers. contact me if interested

 

rich hartung

desoto1939@aol.com

Ignition Cross ref cover.PNG

Edited by desoto1939
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On 1/5/2019 at 7:46 AM, James_Douglas said:

I have a warning for you folks stocking up on NOS Autolite points.  I did this for a long time, I still have a bunch of sets.  That last time I used some, about 2 years ago on another car, the Bakelite rubbing block decided to degrade without warning.  The particles ended up destroying an NOS distributor cam. 

 

Some of the bakelite works fine and some, as evidenced by my experience, does not.  The issue is there is no way to tell in advance.  So, although I really like the idea of sourcing NOS Autolite, one should so with some trepidation.

 

James. 

And here I was thinking that I should have done more to help you by offering some of my NOS stash !   I wonder if anyone else has had this problem with the phenolic failing , other than normal wear ? And were the points Auto-Lite ? And did you use the proper distributor cam lubricant ?

Edited by Jerry Roberts
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"proper distributor cam lubricant " that is a must. Of course if the cam is worn it won't help much but I've run em worn out with no trouble.

Just watch for closing point gap.

Over thinking these old MoPars is a path I don't follow.... it can get you into a real mess of trouble.

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16 hours ago, Dodgeb4ya said:

"proper distributor cam lubricant " that is a must. Of course if the cam is worn it won't help much but I've run em worn out with no trouble.

Just watch for closing point gap.

Over thinking these old MoPars is a path I don't follow.... it can get you into a real mess of trouble.

Can you give mor info on the distributor line and how to apply?

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1 hour ago, White Spyder said:

Can you give mor info on the distributor line and how to apply?

The distributor cam lube ?  I couldn't find it locally so I ordered it from Macs Ford Parts 877-230-9666 , they sell parts for the old Fords . You might find it at a tractor parts supply company . How much to put on ? Hard to say , you don't want it to splash around onto the points yet enough to do the job . 

IMG_7116 (1).jpg

IMG_8133.jpg

Edited by Jerry Roberts
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Good NOS points have insulator cam made of so called Textolite - layers of fabric hot pressed with phenolic filler. Fabric texture is quite apparent in this material. This is the same material that was used in Chevy and Ford cam gears. Textolite won't shatter and is quite wear-proof. Later development was plastic without fabric reinforcement, which is not so strong, especially after 50+ years of storage.

 

Speaking of capacitor, I wouldn't trust any 50 year old capacitor - they deteriorate with time . Modern mylar capacitors are the way to go. They are 1/4 size of old paper capacitors of the same value and voltage rating. Use 0.22 uF axial capacitor with at least 400 VDC rating

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Clean the six lobe cam of old grease... apply new "Distributor Cam Lube" sparingly to the cam lobes.... too much and it could get onto the points.

Regular grease, dielectric chassis grease won't cut it! Don't use too much..

Depending on which style of points and distributor apply a small pocket of cam lobe grease to one side of  the points fibre rubbing block and directly to the face of the block.

To which side of the rubbing block depends if you have CW or CCW style of points....

Distributor cam lube is available easily online or a parts store with bald old counter guys.

 

CCW Points Cam Lube.JPG

CW Points Cam Lube.JPG

Distributor points and cam (7).JPG

Cam lube Distributor.JPG

Distributor points and cam (1).JPG

Edited by Dodgeb4ya
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I could not get my Suburban engine to start. I had a new coil in it. Suddenly my mechanic asked if I had another coil. I handed him four old ones. My mechanic chose one, problem solved. Other things were amiss also. 

Edited by pflaming
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On ‎1‎/‎6‎/‎2019 at 12:29 PM, Jerry Roberts said:

And here I was thinking that I should have done more to help you by offering some of my NOS stash !   I wonder if anyone else has had this problem with the phenolic failing , other than normal wear ? And were the points Auto-Lite ? And did you use the proper distributor cam lubricant ?

Yes, it was a NOS Auto-Lite in the box off eBay.  I always clean the cam's, put a single drop of non-detergent oil in the center felt, the outside busing felt and then I grease the cam with cam lobe grease.  In this case the block just failed after about 2 months.  The phenolic block disintegrated into something akin to sand and with the grease to hold it ground a nice groove into a NOS cam lobe.

 

It may have been an isolated issue.  But, it has left me gun shy on the subject of using 50 year old phenolic's in mechanical applications.

 

James.

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A gray cloud following you around?

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