View Full Version : Ignition: Delco Window Dist. cleaned up

10-28-2017, 08:17 PM
Several days ago, I posted about an engine I had removed from an abandoned Hawk, and kept under cover for years. I removed the Delco window distributor to use an another engine I have on a test stand. The distributor was caked with a gooey black buildup of old lube that looked more like bearing grease than motor oil. I was discouraged at first, dreading what I might find under the distributor cap. However, when I removed the cap, besides being dirty, some spider webs, corroded points, and dried light lubrication residue, the "guts" actually looked pretty good. In another thread about these type of distributors, Joe Hall mentioned the difficulty he had with the carbon resistor staying put in the rotors specified by Studebaker. Sure 'nuff...I found it missing from this old rotor that is probably over 40 years old! Only, it was not missing entirely. As I began removing parts, I discovered that little carbon rod laying in the bottom of the distributor. Makes me think that Joe's complaint about modern replacement rotors with that carbon conductor could have been going on "back in the day."

So, when I bought a new rotor, I specifically asked for the kind without that carbon insert. Anyway, I will post a pic or two of the way I found the distributor, and add some of how it cleaned up.

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=68026&d=1508900256 68138 68141

68145 68149 The last three pics are of the installation of new components. It was getting late, and today, being overcast, and daylight was fading fast. I used a bucket so if I dropped a spring or screw, I could find them easier. My faithful family owned parts store had everything I needed except for the vacuum advance. They will have me a new one next week. Next week, I have to have a medical procedure, so I wanted to get this thing back together today. It took visits to six different parts stores to find this vacuum advance. Some of the clerks didn't even know what a vacuum advance is.

At least, it's back together now. Hopefully, late next week, I'll be able to make another stab at progress on this project.:)
OH...I almost forgot. Thank you "showbizkid," (Clark Novak) our moderator. As I was working on this distributor I did an internet search and Clark's blog on the subject came up. I believe it was dated around 2009, but it has great information that validated some of the things I had already done, and had some good tips on lubricating, etc. So...Clark, if you read this, you are welcome to post a link to your blog in this thread.:)

10-28-2017, 09:48 PM
The vacuum advance for the window distributors was special for Studebaker engines.
They look like the others but have a different spring inside for the Studebaker application.

Robert Kapteyn

10-28-2017, 10:19 PM
Thanks for that reminder Bob. I don't think I read that blog close enough to check that close. I'll bet the new one I just installed is the wrong one. However, at least, it will pull "A" vacuum. I have another one coming, so I'll be sure to check that one. Also, I have already checked some of my stash of modifiers. I have a bunch of non-window Delco types, some Prestolites, and for the six cylinder distributors. Somewhere, I know I have some of the original window distributor types. But NOS at this age... I wouldn't swear to the condition of the rubber diaphragms. Thanks for your input.

10-29-2017, 01:15 AM
That is one funky looking Rotor with the "Cube" on top!
I have never seen one like that, because I have only dealt with the correct Studebaker Rotor.

Would these be for a Buick, Olds and Pontiac?

The Rotors I have had the Carbon Rod fly out of, were all Early Delco Type, not the Window type.

10-29-2017, 11:00 AM
Crane use to make a adjustable kit for Delco distributors the modifier was ajustable with allen wrench and they came with different springs . Have used one on a Oldsmobile that I modified the curve and rate had good results not sure if still sold

10-30-2017, 10:04 AM
I used a vacuum advance listed for a 65 or so Corvette years ago in the window type I put on my Hawk. I removed it when I sold the car and Joe put it on his red pickup "temporarily". When he sold the truck to Barlow Soper the distributor was still in it.:o Anyway, the advance seemed to be okay, but we weren't racing or such.