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rockinhawk
05-04-2014, 05:29 PM
My 63 GT started acting up and running poorly about 3 years ago.We were about 100 miles from home at a club meeting. I stopped at Advance Auto and bought a new air cleaner. That helped somewhat,but it still wasn't 100% right.
Thinking it was a fuel problem,I changed the tank (Old one was bent anyway) new lines,electric fuel pump,filters,even went through the Edelbrock.
It seemed to be doing OK so we drove it to Daytona. It started sputtering and stalling in traffic. I pulled into a NAPA store and bought a new set of points. That got us through the weekend and home, but still didn't feel just right.
A year later we headed to Daytona again for the Turkey Rod Run in the GT named Sweet Magnolia. She did fine untill about 30 miles north of Daytona where she developed a serious cough. She quit on us just outside the gate. With the help of my Nephew (aFord man) we got it inside and safely parked. I bought new plugs, wires, cap,rotor,more points and condenser. Sweet Maggie got us home but I could tell she didn't feel well.
The pink wire had given up years ago and had been replaced with a regular wire and resistor. I did away with all that and installed a 12V coil that needs no resistor.
Still not right!
About the only things left were the ignition switch itself or the old autolite distributor.

A few weeks ago I was in Jacksonville to pick up an engine I had bought from Roy Hastings and was looking through some other items he had for sale,whenI noticed a delco Window distributor! We struck a deal and I brought it home. I ordered everything new that goes in it and had it ready to install.
My son came over today,He and I removed the Autolite and found it to be in pitiful condition. So much loose motion the rotor didn't know which way to point.
The Delco was nice and tight and with all new parts was ready to go in. Once installed we hooked up a timing light and dwell meter. Got the timing close and fired it up. I turned the little allen wrench and watched the dwell ease it's way to 30o. Finished timing it and took her for a ride.
I believe Sweet Magnolia is back to her old self.

PackardV8
05-04-2014, 06:37 PM
The Autolite/Prestolite distributors should be considered suspect after 50Kmi. They can be rebuilt, but with Delco still thick on the ground, why bother?

jack vines

Studebakercenteroforegon
05-04-2014, 08:38 PM
The Autolite/Prestolite distributors should be considered suspect after 50Kmi. They can be rebuilt, but with Delco still thick on the ground, why bother?

jack vines

Well, I guess some of us just love Prestolite distributors. Put a pair of the new, improved advance weights in them and they are truly better than new.

PackardV8
05-04-2014, 09:00 PM
Yes, for true. How much are you charging to rebuild one?

jack vines

Studebakercenteroforegon
05-04-2014, 09:15 PM
I am mainly a parts dealer and so don't do much rebuilding any more except for my own vehicles. I do sell several weight sets a year to customers who do their own rebuilding. It also helps that I have quite a supply of Prestolite distributors so I have a good selection of "best used" parts.

rkapteyn
05-05-2014, 04:36 AM
I have a very nice Delco window distributor at $125.00

Robert Kapteyn
studebaker@mac.com
Put "Studebaker" in the subject line or it goes to trash.

rockinhawk
05-05-2014, 05:42 AM
Well, I guess some of us just love Prestolite distributors. Put a pair of the new, improved advance weights in them and they are truly better than new.Is there a bearing or bushing at the top that can be replaced? Mine is very sloppy at the top,and the roll pin which holds the gear on the shaft is wallowed out and very loose.

Starlight
05-05-2014, 06:57 AM
Bob Check your PMs

PackardV8
05-05-2014, 09:46 AM
Is there a bearing or bushing at the top that can be replaced? Mine is very sloppy at the top,and the roll pin which holds the gear on the shaft is wallowed out and very loose.

Yes to all the above.

No, that's not the worst of it. Most all the Autolite/Prestolite centrifugal advance weights will have the pins and/or holes in the weights worn oval. I've even seen the cam so worn it couldn't be adjusted for proper dwell.

The only good news about those distributors is they were used in enough Mopars the hard parts (bushings, cams, weights) will be available for the foreseeable future. Also, it's easy and inexpensive to convert them to the old Mopar solid state ignition. Works well and parts are widely available.

jack vines