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How do I hook up my dwell meter?

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  • Sonny
    replied
    quote:Originally posted by hank63

    Sonny,
    I don't know what you can get done in USA, but about 5 years ago I had a defunct vacuum advance unit and no new or NOS replacements available. In the end, I found a chap in Christchurch, New Zealand, who restores these. He pulls 'em apart, re-plates the metal and replaces the diaphragm with a hi-temp mtrl. Not very expensive, either. Don't know if he's still in business, unfortunately.
    / H
    Thanks Hank! Nice to know that we at least have some backup, but isn't it something that we have to find a guy who specializes in rebuilding something as simple as vacuum advances?

    Sonny
    http://RacingStudebakers.com

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  • hank63
    replied
    Sonny,
    I don't know what you can get done in USA, but about 5 years ago I had a defunct vacuum advance unit and no new or NOS replacements available. In the end, I found a chap in Christchurch, New Zealand, who restores these. He pulls 'em apart, re-plates the metal and replaces the diaphragm with a hi-temp mtrl. Not very expensive, either. Don't know if he's still in business, unfortunately.
    / H

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  • studeclunker
    replied
    My last new cars were an 85 Cougar (Merc./Ford) wagon and a Dodge Aries (90) wagon. Both of them were shop hounds. The Dodge was more painless than the Furd product. Chrysler really lost thier shirt on that maintenance contract. After the Aries I swore that there would be no more new cars for me. [V] Things would be easier if financing was available for professionally restored classics. Then again... do I really need the payments?[8)] Well... I do need the reliability.[:I]

    Lotsa Larks!
    Studeclunker
    A.K.A: out2lunch

    Leave a comment:


  • Sonny
    replied
    quote:Originally posted by Mr.Biggs

    I'm running Pertronix modules in my Studes......... <SNIP>
    Miscreant at large.
    We're talking "purity" here Bob. [^] Ok, ok, I'm just busting 'em a little, 'cause I agree with you, slappin' a Pertronix system in is a GOOD thing. But, here's one more way to look at it. As you know, doing a "real" tune up is, or is rapidly becoming, a lost art. Believe it or not, My own son had NO idea what setting the dwell on his SS Chevy meant! My fault I guess, I never really gave him a good tune up lesson, I just normally did it 'cause it was easier. I promise you, he knows how to tune now!

    Well, if all of us just keep putting nothing but a Pertronix unit in, pretty soon you'll have to see if you can find ignition parts at a swap meet somewhere. PLUS, you'll be in the same boat as the Toyota driver, except that you know how to replace the module! Hell, have you seen what new ignition parts are going for now? I had a HELL of a time, (AND it was expensive as hell), trying to find a vacuum advance. Everywhere I went, "It's a "special order" for antique parts"! A simple, stupid vacuum advance for an '86 Ford is a specialty item now? I STILL can't believe it.

    One other way to look at it, if you do put a Pertronix unit in, you can't check dwell 'cause, "What the hell, why would ya wanna anyway? The module chip takes care of it!" Well, the Pertronix unit is so good, it doesn't care if the distributor shaft is wobbling, it triggers the ignition anyway, (unless of course it's soooo bad that it touches the module! []). When I slap a dwell meter on it gives me more than just the information it displays on the meter.

    Anyway, "Where's a happy medium?", I dunno, I use Pertronix too, love 'em, BUT, we gotta keep the torch going to keep the art of tuning the oldsters from becoming lost, and damn it, it IS an art. Anybody up for dual points? [8D]


    Sonny
    http://RacingStudebakers.com

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  • JDP
    replied
    I like everything about the Pertronix except the failure rate. I've had two that just died without warning, one that would just cut off for a instant, scarying the crap out of me. I now carry a spare module when I travel.

    Studebaker On The Net http://stude.com
    64 R2 4 speed Challenger (Plain Wrapper)
    63 R2 4 speed GT Hawk
    55 Speedster
    50 2R 10 truck

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  • Roscomacaw
    replied
    I'm running Pertronix modules in my Studes. There was an instantly noticeable difference when I went to them in the way the engine's start cold. And I didn't add the modules because the points had failed or were old - just because I wanted a better spark.
    I've not had a failure - yet - in a couple of years of driving with them. And I look at it like this..[:I] Most folks will only sound off when something goes WRONG. When it goes as expected, you don't hear them crowing around town that they can't get over the fact their engine's still running after converting.[}]
    Sure, I carry points and condensor as a hedge against possible failure. But I also carry a water pump and fuel pump too - and it's been years since I've had to use one of my spares.
    Think of it like this - with a few spares in a shoebox, you're MILES ahead of the guy next to you in a Toyota! If HE has something go south, he's gonna be down AT LEAST a few hours (if not days or weeks even) while it's diagnosed and waits for parts to show and a "technician" to affix them to the wound.[xx(]
    Even an EXTRA Pretronix module looks downright CHEAP when compared to some electrical trinket for a Toyota (or a Ford even![8])
    We "Masters of Frugality" (Studebaker Drivers) get SO caught up in pinching pennies that we get "pound foolish" about simple preparedness to ward off possible frustrations. I don't care if you're going cross-country or cross-town. Carry those few spares and be beholden to NO mechanics or parts store idiots: "Studeebaker - Studeebaker - say, who made them Studeebakers anyway? I can't seem to find 'em on my compooter."[V]

    Miscreant at large.

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  • 65cruiser
    replied
    FYI, there are some good deals on dwell meters to be had on Ebay. I bought a really nice Snap-On for under $30.00.

    ________________________
    Mark Anderson
    http://home.alltel.net/anderm
    1965 Studebaker Cruiser

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  • Sonny
    replied
    quote:Originally posted by Tom B

    Having lived through this pretty good course in dwell/gap, is there a dwell meter which will work on a six volt engine? or is there a way to power one with 12 volts to work on a six volt system?

    I'm not at all sure my .015 feeler gage is anywhere near accurate, and the range from .013 to .018 seems pretty sloppy, anyway.

    Tom Bredehoft
    '53 Commander Coupe
    '60 Lark VI
    http://RacingStudebakers.com

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  • Tom Bredehoft
    replied
    Having lived through this pretty good course in dwell/gap, is there a dwell meter which will work on a six volt engine? or is there a way to power one with 12 volts to work on a six volt system?

    I'm not at all sure my .015 feeler gage is anywhere near accurate, and the range from .013 to .018 seems pretty sloppy, anyway.

    Tom Bredehoft
    '53 Commander Coupe
    '60 Lark VI

    Leave a comment:


  • 65cruiser
    replied
    It's a done deal. Today I went to FLAPS and bought points, plugs, condensor, distributor cap and rotor. I wasn't really sure about the cap and rotor but thought I'd just start with all new. First I gapped and replaced the plugs. They were pretty rusty on the outside--looked like they hadn't been changed in a long time, but they were in good shape. Then the cap and rotor. The rotor towers were rusty inside, so I was glad I replaced that piece. I had to cleanup the ends of the spark plug wires as they were corroded too, but in too good a shape to replace. The points were in pretty good shape, probably could have filed and regapped them, but I replaced them anyway and saved the old ones "just in case". I set the gap, buttoned it all up and hit the key. She fired right up. I set the idle and checked the dwell. It was dead on, right around 32 (manual calls for 31-34). I checked the timing. I was a bit too far advanced, so I reset that then took her for a spin.

    What can I say. Runs like a new Studebaker ought to run and gave me a darn good bit of satisfaction too

    ________________________
    Mark Anderson
    http://home.alltel.net/anderm
    1965 Studebaker Cruiser

    Leave a comment:


  • Sonny
    replied
    Yep, that's right, when you set the gap, it effectively sets the dwell. Conversely, when you set the dwell, it effectively sets the gap. Gap=dwell or dwell=gap. [^]

    We'll say it this way, using your dwell meter, just make sure the dwell is right and I guarantee that the gap will be perfect!!

    Sonny
    http://RacingStudebakers.com

    Leave a comment:


  • 65cruiser
    replied
    Right, when I set the gap, it effectively sets the dwell. *If* the dwell is off at that point, I need to recheck my gap--right?

    ________________________
    Mark Anderson
    http://home.alltel.net/anderm
    1965 Studebaker Cruiser

    Leave a comment:


  • JDP
    replied
    No, you are adjusting the dwell everytime you adjust the point gap. Just because you can't do it with a allen wrench through a window does not mean you are not setting the 'dwell' by messing with the gap.

    Studebaker On The Net http://stude.com
    64 R2 4 speed Challenger (Plain Wrapper)
    63 R2 4 speed GT Hawk
    55 Speedster
    50 2R 10 truck

    Leave a comment:


  • 65cruiser
    replied
    I think I confused you Sonny with the comment about the window on the distributor. The V8s have those, but my 194 six does not. So, technically, I can't adjust the dwell, just the point gap. So, when I check my dwell now and see that it's off, that tells me my gap must be wrong.



    ________________________
    Mark Anderson
    http://home.alltel.net/anderm
    1965 Studebaker Cruiser

    Leave a comment:


  • Sonny
    replied
    quote:Originally posted by hank63

    Mark, you've hit the nail on the head with your comments about "modern" cars. I think of 'em as "Plastic Fantastic Electronic Money Generators" (for dealers & makers).
    Buy a new car today, and you end up "married" to the autorised dealer. He has the necessary diagnostic equipment, unique to "your" model. They don't repair either, it's only "the whatsit is no good, we'll put a new one in for you". Must be a genuine part or your warranty goes south in a big way. So, the owner keeps putting his hand into the pocket on a regular basis.
    Thankfully, the classic cars are always there - no plastic, no electronics and no depreciation.
    / H
    Hank, I laughed so hard my sides hurt!! Toooo funny! From now on I'm gonna refer to the new cars as a PFEMG!!! Man did you EVER hit the nail right on the head. That's the car maker's plan, Get 'em, KEEP 'em paying! They make TONS more money fixing your car than they do selling it to ya! I know what you're gonna do, just like I'm gonna do, keep driving my Studebakers, right on past ALL those dealerships. Thanks for the great laugh!



    Sonny
    http://RacingStudebakers.com

    Leave a comment:

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