View Full Version : What the Heck!!??

09-23-2009, 03:25 PM
I replaced the coil on the 62 Hawk with a Pertronix 1.5 Ohm Flamethrower Coil. Later I installed a Pertronix Ignitor Ignition System to replace the old point system. The car has run flawlessly, until about a week ago, when I thought that I was having fuel delivery problems. I have a new Edelbrock Performer 500 cfm Carb with electric chock. I am thinking that I have a clogged fuel filter. I check the fuel deliver to the Carb... its flowing quite well. Then I see what appears to be fluid leak from around the coil... I look and see what appears to be oil leaking from the coil. I removed the coil to see what model I had and discovered that there is a 1/8" crack almost completely around the secondary tower! No wonder there was oil leaking from the coil!!

Anyone ever have this happen to them, or know what could have caused it? The engine has not really overheated... perhaps to only about 230-240F., but that should cause such a crack? Could it?

IN the mean time, I have ordered another new PErtronix coil. Assuming its a manufacturing defect, I intend to send it back to PErtronix when I receive the new one. I don't want to experience the crack again... so any ideas what I should look for?

Laisez le bon temps roulez avec un Studebaker

09-23-2009, 04:43 PM
There have been several reports on the forum about those coils failing.

09-23-2009, 04:56 PM
For the coil to crack its case, it had to overheat. Engine heat wouldn't do it, it was the coil.

'50 Champion, 1 family owner

09-23-2009, 05:51 PM
Most interesting.:( What makes the coil overheat though?? Bad product? In all my years of fooling with cars, I have never seen one crack like this!![8]

Laisez le bon temps roulez avec un Studebaker

09-24-2009, 07:58 PM
Do you have a resistor in the primary wire going to the coil? if not, Maybe you should. I had the same thing happen on an old MOPAR with the old HEMI many moons ago. I had been working on the car and left it swutched on over night. NT

Neil Thornton
Hazlehurst, GA
'57 Silver Hawk
'56 Sky Hawk
'51 2R16 dump truck
Many others.

09-24-2009, 08:19 PM
i had trouble with coils when i modified my 302 in my 69 galaxie. i went to a mallory super coil and never had any more troubles.

2006,f-150,2x4,v-6,5-speed manual,8ft bed, will post stude info when i get it on the road.

09-24-2009, 09:26 PM
I have the same setup in my 283.I noticed that the coil was getting very hot, so just for the heck of it,I reinstalled the ballast resistor.Petronix says that you don't need it with their coil,but I did it anyway.It has worked well for me and the car starts and runs just fine.(Please note:This is the opinion of a certified CASO and a glorified parts changer at best.)

09-24-2009, 09:46 PM
Genericly speaking, the only thing that will cause a coil to overheat is that it is drawing too much amperage. That will typically happen only if windings get shorted causing the designed applied voltage to flow through less resistance (the wire windings) causing the windings that are carrying the full voltage to overheat. Simple answer, the coil went bad.

'50 Champion, 1 family owner

09-24-2009, 11:06 PM
I had to bypass a bad resistor once on a '57 Prez, and boy, the coil got HOT!!![:0]

09-25-2009, 06:34 PM
In all my years of fooling with mechanical engines, I have never, never ever, seen a coil do what my PErtronix did. It swoll into a dome shape at the top of the coil, then split around the output tower. All the oil leaked out. After taking the coil off, I shook it gently and heard things rattling around inside!:( I got a new Pertronix coil and am checking it out now to see if it gets hot. I wrote Pertronix Tech and asked again if I needed a ballast resistor and this is their response:


No, you do not need a resistor with the 1.5 ohm coil and you should not be concerned with the coil cracking again.

Technical Dept.
909-599-5955 ext. 1025"

I can only assume that I got a defective coil (I hope).[:I]

If I can get some pictures I will try to post them to the forum and let everyone see the old coil.[?]

Laisez le bon temps roulez avec un Studebaker

09-25-2009, 09:04 PM
You must have a ballast resistor in line. I had a stock coil do that and some aftermarket coils do that on different cars and when I added a ballast resistor the problem never happened again.


09-25-2009, 09:31 PM
I drove the car for a short while. Maybe 3 miles for about 15 minutes, just to go to the store and back. When I got back, the coil was hot!! Perhaps not to the point of burning myself at touching it. But I doubt I could have held it in my hand for very long!!! Something just ain't right!!:(:(

When I installed the original Pertronix coil, I ran a wire directly from the ignition switch to the coil... so there is no ballast resistor. I think I may pick up a resistor tomorrow and put it on to see what happens... can't hurt... I guess! I'm lost!!![?]

Laisez le bon temps roulez avec un Studebaker

Colgate Studebaker
09-25-2009, 09:56 PM
I have the pertronics coil on my brothers Avanti, and after installing a Mallory distributor in place of the original unit with a Pertronics module, Dave T. advised that the Pertronics coil does have an internal resistor. He also advised that we use an additional external resistor to prevent an overheating issue from having only the internal resistor to rely on. Haven't had an issue since adding the externalresistor. B.V.