Another ignition issue to be aware of...

There are 2 types of distributor cap. The top entry type use modern plug in leads. Really these are best as they allow a degree of waterproofing. The original Amphicar cap had side entry leads, some prefer the look of these and they work fine but ONLY if you use original type solid copper cored ignition leads.
The side entry caps make an electrical connection to the lead with a screw in pin. The connects fine with the low resistance copper but not with carbon, the point of contact is not big enough causing a hot spot and eventually the carbon burns and the lead becomes open circuit. So if you want to use a side entry cap don't cut the end off modern carbon leads, it'll come back and bite you, instead use proper Amphicar/Triumph spec copper cored ignition cable, this is easy to find and at the other end you can buy screw in rather than push on connectors for the spark plugs that also look like the original Lodge brand.
 

jfriese

Active Member
Cameron,

I prefer the original looks of the side entry cap but I have AM/FM radios in my Amphicars and using solid plug wires causes horrible radio noise. There's a easy fix for the problem you mention though. Use resistive wires with their carbon cores but push a small straight pin into the carbon at the end of the wire. The pin in the cap will stab into the carbon and touch the straight pin. The straight pin will spread the contact area along the length of the pin and contact a lot of carbon. Years ago I had the problem you mention and came up with this fix. It has worked just fine since then with no noise in the radio.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 

mike_israel

Amphicar Forum Admin
Staff member
I have not seen one in person but Pertronix now makes a complete replacement distributor with vacuum advance and side exit cap for 4-cylinder engines using a Lucas 23D, 25D or 45D

From what I can tell, it uses standard push on wires. Might be a good balance between original look and modern performance. Let's you ditch the points as well.
 

Ken Chambers

Platinum Subscriber
I recently installed a True Spark Ignition pointless distributor on my 1147 engine. No external module, everything is inside under the cap. It is a top entry cap and uses standard ignition wires. I installed copper core wires and can't detect any radio interference on either AM or FM (Retrosound radio). The new distributor was a drop-in replacement but you need to reuse your original distributor clamping plate. True Spark distributor number 41427E and True Spark coil TT2981E. I needed a complete distributor for an engine I'm rebuilding that was missing its distributor. Installed it in the "daily driver" to test it out but that's where it's staying. Can't really say the distributor made any performance improvements, just can't tell the difference. And no future point maintenance.
 

jfriese

Active Member
Hi Pertronix has those drop in electronic distributor units for positive and negative. It's an easy drop in and also eliminates the points and doesn't have any external boxes. I've used them for 12 years now in my Amphicars with no problems. The last time I looked they were under $100.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 
John is correct a pin will help spread the current along the carbon core. Electronic ignition works well but the resulting bigger spark can put more stress on the HT components. The original quality stuff is fine but not the sub standard remade items like those junk rotor arms that are still being sold, everyone should really check now (pics in my other post) and if they have one remove it, throw it in the lake, and fit something that won't randomly fail without warning !
 

Similar threads


Top