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Pertronix Distibutor Help #5423597 05/07/20 07:04 PM
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JeffKeryk Offline OP
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A friend has a 55 F100 with Chevy 350 base crate engine and 700R4 transmission.
It ran with an HEI, but the HEI had problems and was a tight fit against the firewall.

He bought a Pertronix Bullet Distributor (ready to run) and Flame Thrower external coil.
Installed distributor and wired it to coil. Used 12v from HEI wire to + side of coil.

No spark. Nothing out of coil.
Does anyone have experience with these?

I have a trouble ticket in with Pertronix...
Thanks in advance.


2018 Tesla Model 3, Medium Range Battery
2018 Lexus RX450h
2013 Lexus GS350 F Sport
2006 Acura TSX
2001 Tundra Access Cab, 1998 Accord LX, 1968 Corvette L36 Roadster, 1965 Olds 4-4-2
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5423616 05/07/20 07:42 PM
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spasm3 Online Happy
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Is he using the HEI module? If he had problems before, the module could be the problem.

Get a meter out and see if there is 12 going to the coil.

[img]https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/attachments/hei-jpg.2926295/[/img]

Last edited by spasm3; 05/07/20 07:45 PM.

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Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5423643 05/07/20 08:17 PM
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Chris142 Offline
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I can't help. I had zero luck with Pertronix products. I had one that replaced GM points. It caught on fire one day. Burned my distributer down and the paint off my hood lol


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Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5423683 05/07/20 09:03 PM
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JeffKeryk Offline OP
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The HEI is removed. The distributor is the Pertronix Billet Ready to Run.
There is 12v to the coil.


2018 Tesla Model 3, Medium Range Battery
2018 Lexus RX450h
2013 Lexus GS350 F Sport
2006 Acura TSX
2001 Tundra Access Cab, 1998 Accord LX, 1968 Corvette L36 Roadster, 1965 Olds 4-4-2
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5423699 05/07/20 09:33 PM
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2001 Chevy Camaro L92/4L80E
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2000 Toyota Avalon 1MZ-FE/A541E
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5424004 05/08/20 11:00 AM
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JeffKeryk Offline OP
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Pertronix sent me a troubleshooting guide.
Basically sez you need 10v or better when cranking engine. 14.2v with engine running.
I only checked with key on.

Given this truck has been rewired and may not have sufficient voltage this is my next test.

Thanks to all.


2018 Tesla Model 3, Medium Range Battery
2018 Lexus RX450h
2013 Lexus GS350 F Sport
2006 Acura TSX
2001 Tundra Access Cab, 1998 Accord LX, 1968 Corvette L36 Roadster, 1965 Olds 4-4-2
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5424029 05/08/20 11:48 AM
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Is there a ballast resistor or ballast resistance wire in the ignition system's power delivery circuit?

Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: Chris142] #5424071 05/08/20 12:38 PM
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user52165 Offline
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Originally Posted by Chris142
I can't help. I had zero luck with Pertronix products. I had one that replaced GM points. It caught on fire one day. Burned my distributer down and the paint off my hood lol


It's been a long time, but back in the day, I had good luck with Allison or Mallory pointless setups. Pertronix was always rated poorly by those who installed. This is a very simple basic system. Rip out all ignition wiring and start over. And use upgraded battery cables and gear reduction high torque starter.

Last edited by user52165; 05/08/20 12:43 PM.
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5424110 05/08/20 01:27 PM
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JeffKeryk Offline OP
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180* out. Oldest trick in the book.
I'm fired.

Thanks for the suggestions.
Sometimes I gotta laugh at my stupidity.


2018 Tesla Model 3, Medium Range Battery
2018 Lexus RX450h
2013 Lexus GS350 F Sport
2006 Acura TSX
2001 Tundra Access Cab, 1998 Accord LX, 1968 Corvette L36 Roadster, 1965 Olds 4-4-2
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5424138 05/08/20 01:59 PM
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mk378 Online Content
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Being out of timing it would still spark though.

Looking briefly at the Pertronix website I see that they have different models for clockwise or counterclockwise rotation, so make sure you have the right one for the application. Though it may fire you're going to have operational issues with the wrong rotation. Also the "simple two wire" setup means that it depends on grounding through the distributor body to the engine block. When you have the clamp loose for adjustment it may not be grounded very well.

Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: mk378] #5424164 05/08/20 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by mk378
Being out of timing it would still spark though.

I agree, which is what blew me away.
Out of time should kick, sputter, backfire. It did none of those.
Now it's running fine.


2018 Tesla Model 3, Medium Range Battery
2018 Lexus RX450h
2013 Lexus GS350 F Sport
2006 Acura TSX
2001 Tundra Access Cab, 1998 Accord LX, 1968 Corvette L36 Roadster, 1965 Olds 4-4-2
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5424170 05/08/20 02:54 PM
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Being exactly 180 degrees off timing an engine will generally do nothing but crank like it is not sparking at all. Maybe if you completely flood it, it will eventually backfire all the accumulated gas.

But if you do a spark test there will be sparks. Also if you hook up a timing light you'll see cylinder 1 firing on the TDC mark on the crank pulley like it should. But it is firing at the "other" TDC.

Last edited by mk378; 05/08/20 02:55 PM.
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: mk378] #5424190 05/08/20 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by mk378
Also if you hook up a timing light you'll see cylinder 1 firing on the TDC mark on the crank pulley like it should. But it is firing at the "other" TDC.

That's where I was. But the timing light was not firing. I haven't used the light in a long time.
FYI - someone else found the problem earlier this morning; I was not there today.


2018 Tesla Model 3, Medium Range Battery
2018 Lexus RX450h
2013 Lexus GS350 F Sport
2006 Acura TSX
2001 Tundra Access Cab, 1998 Accord LX, 1968 Corvette L36 Roadster, 1965 Olds 4-4-2
Re: Pertronix Distibutor Help [Re: JeffKeryk] #5425028 05/09/20 07:57 PM
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another Todd Offline
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I have replaced the points/condenser on several vehicles and boats with a Pertronics module and they have always worked perfectly. Love them. Never installed a complete Pertronics distributor though.


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