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neat rotor temporary fix

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  • neat rotor temporary fix

    I was having an intermittent problem with my 56 Hawk. Every once in a while it would "lurch". It wasn't a stumble like you would expect with an accelater pump, more like an momentary lack of power. The last time I took it out it did it 3 or 4 times in a mile. So today I installed the Pertronix ignition module to see if maybe the problem was points related. The car started right up and seemed to be running really nice so I test drove for about 3 blocks and it suddenly quit. I thought I had fried the Pertronix unit so walked a block to a buddy's house to get a tow home. we went back to the Hawk and checked for spark from the coil wire, a good spark so at least the Pertronix was OK, but no spark at the plugs. So the culprit should be the cap or rotor. Sure enough, the rotor was bad, a break from the middle piece to the edge. My buddy (a brand x old car guy) said he had seen someone use the spring from a ball point pen to provide the continuity through the rotor, so we put one in, wrapped some electrical tape around it to keep it from bouncing out, the Hwak started right up and drove home with no problems (and no lurching). I think (hope) I have solved the problem. Tomorrow I will be ordering a new rotor(plus a spare). Sometimes there are simple solutions (at least temporarily) to vexing problems. That's the way our parents and grandparents lived. We often seem to have forgotten thier ingenuity. I thought this might be of interest and will now be carrying a ball point pen in my tool box.Happy Father's Day to y'all.


  • #2
    I enjoyed your story, and agree with you about the use of ingenuity to solve problems back in a simpler time. Thanks for sharing.

    Dave Bonn
    '54 Champion starliner


    • #3
      You can also use the pen as a traechia tube in an emergency.

      '50 Champion, 1 family owner


      • #4
        I used chewing gum "tin foil" found on the ground to bridge a GT Hawk rotor. It held itself in OK for the drive needed.

        It probably wouldn't work as well for an emergency tracheotomy though.

        Lark Parker

        Just an innocent possum strolling down life's highway.
        Lark Parker --Just an innocent possum strolling down life's highway.


        • #5
          You deserve the "Macgyver" award for that one!

          1963 Lark, 259 V8, two-tone paint, Twin Traction. Driven often, always noticed!


          • #6
            Ha! You think a ball-point pen spring is funny--once I bought a '51 Land Cruiser from a wrecking yard, towed it home and was working on it. It started but ran TERRIBLE. Engine shook like it was possessed.

            I took the distributor cap off, inspected it, seemed OK, points looked to be opening OK, wires in the right holes. I was about to put the cap back on but when I looked for the rotor, couldn't find it. Looked under the car--no rotor--ANYWHERE. Frankly, the more I thot about it, I didn't remember even taking the rotor out. Got one out of my other Commander, assembled the distributor--viola! Ran like a dream.

            So someone had assembled it WITHOUT a rotor, couldn't make it run right and sold it to the junk yard.

            Top THAT one![)]