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Unread 03-14-2010, 08:06 AM   #1
197JeepRenegade
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1975 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Colorado
Posts: 47
Ignition upgrade (Team Rush?)

Hello. New here.

I looked around and found some info on this, but nothing specific to my year and engine, so if I may:

I have a 1975 CJ-5 with a 304. It has the factory electronic ignition. I have read several things about upgrading it, and have some questions.

What I would like to do is upgrade to a better electronic ignition. I have some basic skills, but I'm no mechanic. My Jeep runs pretty good now, but hoping for a little better with the upgrade.

Was thinking of going HEI, but I have heard that the gears are harder and will destroy the AMC gear.

What is the best way to upgrade this? I can afford a couple hundred bucks. I really need an easy bolt in with minimal wiring changes so that I don't screw it up. Is there a kit that would work for me? Heard about Team Rush, but googled the website and found nothing. Most of what I have found is for the I-6 and later 304's that came with a different dizzy than mine. Any help would be much appreciated, I would really like to do this swap. I take the Jeep on lots of long trips and would like a reliable setup.

thanx much!

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Unread 03-14-2010, 09:37 AM   #2
JeepHammer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 197JeepRenegade View Post
Hello. New here.

I looked around and found some info on this, but nothing specific to my year and engine, so if I may:

I have a 1975 CJ-5 with a 304. It has the factory electronic ignition. I have read several things about upgrading it, and have some questions.

What I would like to do is upgrade to a better electronic ignition. I have some basic skills, but I'm no mechanic. My Jeep runs pretty good now, but hoping for a little better with the upgrade.

Was thinking of going HEI, but I have heard that the gears are harder and will destroy the AMC gear.

What is the best way to upgrade this? I can afford a couple hundred bucks. I really need an easy bolt in with minimal wiring changes so that I don't screw it up. Is there a kit that would work for me? Heard about Team Rush, but googled the website and found nothing. Most of what I have found is for the I-6 and later 304's that came with a different dizzy than mine. Any help would be much appreciated, I would really like to do this swap. I take the Jeep on lots of long trips and would like a reliable setup.

thanx much!
$200 budget rules out the high dollar HEI distributors that can be trusted (DUI or HEI).

You have a Prestolite ignition in a '75, and they aren't worth much for performance or reliability.

Since there weren't any 'Junk Yard' HEI's that will fit in your engine directly, you will have to buy a $300 to $500 HEI if you want to go that route.

An alternative to that is getting yourself a distributor from '79 CJ-7 with 304 V-8 engine,
Runs about $50 at the discount stores.

Get yourself Distributor Cap Adapter, Distributor Cap, Rotor from a '79 Ford F-150 Pickup with 302 V-8 engine.
(around $35 for brass terminal rotor and cap)

Get yourself a good set of plug wires, which will run about $65. (MSD p/n 3119, cut to fit, comes with both boot sets, striping/crimping tool, lots of extras and good instructions)

And a $25 HEI Module from '79 Chevy Impala with V-8 engine.

Do some wiring, most of which isn't hard,
And for you money you will get a set of plug wires that WORK instead of leak and rob you of spark energy,

You will get a factory type ignition module (HEI) that can handle a full 12 volts and is reliable.
It's still a single fire 'Factory' type module, but it doesn't quit like the Prestolite, DuraSpark, ect. replacements do,
And since your current wiring harness doesn't have an ignition resistor, you will gain slightly more spark energy from using the HEI style module.

The distributor is a VERY GOOD unit, comes tuned for your specific engine, so you won't beat your brains out trying to get it to work with the AMC engine like an HEI often requires, And the Jeep/Motorcraft distributor is an reliable as an ANVIL, and doesn't have the 'Issues' built into it that the HEI units (Factory and Clone) do have.

This system is UPGRADEABLE, Where HEI clones are NOT.
As you collect some cash later on,
You can add some 'Goodies' to it, like better ignition coil, CDI ignition module (CDI increases your spark energy to the spark plugs by 500 to 600%) and works GREAT with the Jeep/Motorcraft distributor.

I think this diagram will tell you how simple this is to change over to the HEI module and Jeep/Motorcraft distributor...


Here is your factory Prestolite ignition diagrammed out...



---------------------------------

Here are two versions of the HEI module--Jeep/Motorcraft distributor...
One using the stock, factory wiring for the Prestolite to hook things up for the most part,

And one using some adapters from MSD to make things easier/neater when converting...




Notice there are some part numbers and instructions in the diagram...
If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

The ignition coils shown are 'E-Core' coils from later model Ford Vehicles.
They run about $5 in the salvage yards for the bracket, coil and connector,
And they are a real gift to guys running V-8 engines.

Ford used a very high quality coil on these engines, no sense in paying $45 or $50 for an E-core coil when you don't have to!
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Unread 03-14-2010, 11:27 AM   #3
197JeepRenegade
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Wow. I sure came to the right place! Thank you very much, JeepHammer!

I do have some questions:
Sorry, this is all new to me.

1. I guess I start by going to napa and saying "give me a distributer for a 1979 CJ-7 with a 304" and take what they give me. Here is what I found at summit, good choice?
Summit Racing SUM-850048 - Summit Racingģ Blueprinted HEI Distributors - Application - SummitRacing.com

did not know that AMC used HEI's, will the gear be hard and ruin mine? I'm thinking maybe from 75-79 they hardened the AMC gear for the HEI? Should I use my gear? Are they hard to remove?


2. Not sure what you mean by a distributer cap adapter?. If I just get the cap and rotor from the F-150, I guess it won't fit? Do I need to find an adapter from that model to the distributer I'm getting?

3. I currently have a good set of Mallory 8mm wires, almost new. Will they work?

4. Here is the module I found, ok?
ACCEL 35361 - ACCEL Ignition Control Modules - Overview - SummitRacing.com

5. This is an HEI, but in your post you said "the jeep/motorcraft distributer is reliable and does not have the HEI issues. I'm confused.

6. Looking at the second picture, Custom lookes easier, but still a bit daunting for me. I was hoping I could use the existing wires, at least for the most part.

Sorry to sound stupid, but the module is inside the HEI, right? Why optional condenser? The dizzy I buy should have a module, I must swap them out? And then I buy a MSD Adapter p/n 8869 and MSD extension 8862 to get it to hook up to the new dizzy? I mean, are all those wires just shown for help, or am I changing them? This appears to come with the coil, so I should be ok keeping it?

I can use the voltage regulator I have now?

I'm at work now, but I will go home and try to look at the wiring. Sorry many questions. I really thought I just had to hook up a power wire, that everything elsw was internal. Too bad If there was a pre-made kit that would save all this wiring, I could stretch the budget some....

As far as timing, If I make sure the number 1 is firing, I should be able to line up the new one the same and just drop it in and then time it?

thanx again!
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Unread 03-14-2010, 12:23 PM   #4
Cutlass327
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(1)

(2) AutoZone.com | | Distributor Cap | CAP ADAPT/CVR

The adapter to put the larger diameter cap on the Motorcraft distributor.

(3) The terminals are different on HEI style wires vs older. HEI usually have a sprk plug style connector on the cap too, not the holes the terminals go into as on the older caps.

(4) AutoZone.com | Vehicle Selection | Year

Save yourself some cash - the Summit Hi-Po pars are usually more $, same stuff. Ign modules are basically a signal amplifier, how much can you improve on that?

(5) Search for HEI on here and read the issues many are having with them. I think it was JH who was explaining somewhere about why the clones are not worth the money, timing and advance curve issues, among other things.

(6) Don't let wiring diagrams overwhelm you - you now own a CJ, you will start to get very familiar with wiring diagrams and such
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1978 CJ5 258/T177/D300, '86 D30/D44 WT axles, 'glass tub windshield frame, and fenders, 31x10.5 BFG A/T, TDK galv'd frame - DD and weekend toy

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Unread 03-14-2010, 01:19 PM   #5
197JeepRenegade
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Thanx cutlass. Been going over this wiring diagram. Assuming the module is inside the dizzy, it should already be hooked up to the coil and distributer. So all I should have to do is pop out the module that comes with it, put in the one JH said to buy, ground it, and run the ignition switch wire to the distributer. Not sure why I would need the MSD adapter 8869 if it is already hooked up.

I see no reason to use the existing prestolite wiring, all those wires should just be left out of the game (except of course the ignition switch hot wire and the ground)?

Assuming THAT is right, does my existing hot wire from the ignition switch have the proper voltage? And I guess if the existing modual has a condenser, just keep it?

The last question I would have is the "40 yellow to prestolite voltage reg). Not sure where I would find that wire, but it looks like I would splice it in teh wire going to the hot side of the coil from the module.
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Unread 03-14-2010, 01:30 PM   #6
Kansbiker
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Glad this got posted, I have the exact same jeep 75 with a 304, it runs really well but I want it a little smoother pulling away from stops etc. 197jeeprenegade are you going to post some pics? I'll get some of mine up and keep us up to date on your tune up progress on this thread, I'll need your advice.
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Unread 03-14-2010, 02:26 PM   #7
Cutlass327
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If you are going with the aftermarket hei dist, then you wouldn't worry about a different module. That module JH describes would be in place of the prestolite or duraspark ign module. Those modules are more failure prone than the GM one. Search for stealth hei or something like that. You use the duraspark case as a heat sink and protective covering for the GM module.
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1978 CJ5 258/T177/D300, '86 D30/D44 WT axles, 'glass tub windshield frame, and fenders, 31x10.5 BFG A/T, TDK galv'd frame - DD and weekend toy

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Unread 03-14-2010, 03:56 PM   #8
JeepHammer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 197JeepRenegade View Post
Wow. I sure came to the right place! Thank you very much, JeepHammer!

I do have some questions:
Sorry, this is all new to me.

1. I guess I start by going to napa and saying "give me a distributer for a 1979 CJ-7 with a 304" and take what they give me. Here is what I found at summit, good choice?
Summit Racing SUM-850048 - Summit Racingģ Blueprinted HEI Distributors - Application - SummitRacing.com

First off, I wouldn't buy my parts at NAPA.
They use Cardone re-manufactured distributors, just like Advance Auto or Auto Zone or any of the other discount stores.
Advance Auto/Auto Zone has the Jeep/Motorcraft distributor for $50,
You will pay more at NAPA for exactly the same thing from Cardone.

As for your link in the first question...
Wouldn't use the cheap HEI distributors.
You could very well wind up with something that will hammer your engine to death with wrong timing,
Or a hardened distributor gear which will tear the camshaft gear out of your engine.
------------------------------------------------

Quote:
did not know that AMC used HEI's, will the gear be hard and ruin mine? I'm thinking maybe from 75-79 they hardened the AMC gear for the HEI? Should I use my gear? Are they hard to remove?
They DO NOT make a factory HEI for an AMC.
Since AMC pretty much swiped the GM 'Stove Bolt' straight 6 engine,
A GM HEI can be modified to fit an AMC I-6 engine.

There is no factory HEI that will fit an AMC V-8.
Several places have 'Cloned' the HEI with a stem that will fit AMC V-8 engines, but they have all the problems of an HEI and some extras, like cheap hardened gears and other problems.
Most places did a really poor job of adapting an HEI type head to an AMC shaft.
-------------------------------------------------

Quote:
2. Not sure what you mean by a distributer cap adapter?. If I just get the cap and rotor from the F-150, I guess it won't fit? Do I need to find an adapter from that model to the distributer I'm getting?
Ford uses a two piece distirbutor cap on all it's electronic ignition distributors.
Cap Adapter, or base, and a distributor cap on top.

Have a look at this kit from MSD, you can clearly see the adapter and cap being separate,



-----------------------------------------------

Quote:
3. I currently have a good set of Mallory 8mm wires, almost new. Will they work?
Don't know.
What terminals do you have on your Mallory wires?
If they have the older Jeep style 'Socket' terminals, they will NOT work.

Part of the 'TeamRush' upgrade is you get to switch over to "Spark Plug" type terminals on the distributor cap which stay in place better, don't corrode as much and carry more current.
------------------------------------------------------

Accel 35361 is a 4 pin hei module, and will work with the Jeep/Motorcraft distributor.... If that is what you are asking...



It's also one of the early 4 pin modules that most of the 'Clone' HEI makers use, very simple operation.
--------------------------------------------------

Quote:
5. This is an HEI, but in your post you said "the jeep/motorcraft distributer is reliable and does not have the HEI issues. I'm confused.
Normal.

All electronic (No Breaker Points) Distributors need an ignition module.
They use what is called a 'Vairable Reluctor' trigger inside,
And that takes a MODULE of some kind to make the coil fire the ignition.

With an HEI, they have a very WEAK trigger internally, that triggers a module that is inside the distributor cap.
The module works much better when you get it out of the distributor cap where it isn't being 'Zapped' all the time by high voltage,
But the trigger HEI uses isn't worth taking out to skip it across a lake!

What we do is use the best STOCK distributor with the correct timing curve (Jeep/Motorcraft),
And the best STOCK module for the price (GM HEI module) and combine the two.

To upgrade the cap, rotor, plug wires on an HEI... It can't be done.
They leak, cross fire, ground fire, ect.
With a Jeep/Motorcraft distributor, you simply slap on the updated electronic ignition cap, rotor, plug wires and you are off to the races.

As far as coils go, the Ford style E-core coil puts out MUCH MORE USABLE SPARK ENERGY than the factory canister coils or the HEI E-core coil in the cap, so we use it since it performs so much better with no defects/defaults like some of the other coils have.

We are 'Cherry Picking' the best parts of the factory ignitions to make our old Jeeps finally run reliably...
And the best part is, so far, we've only used FACTORY STOCK PARTS you can find in any discount auto parts store...
No high dollar, hard to find, wait to replace parts...
Every discount store in the country carries them or something similar that will get you home in the case of a failure.
----------------------------------------------

Quote:
6. Looking at the second picture, Custom lookes easier, but still a bit daunting for me. I was hoping I could use the existing wires, at least for the most part.
Depends on what 'Wires' you are talking about...

If it's the wires to the module, the power, coil 'Green', and outputs to distributor are already there.
You CAN reuse the stock coil, but for $5 at a junk yard for the Ford E-core coil, there is no reason not to...
The wiring is already there, all you do is wire in your new coil.

The distributor change can be daunting, but it's pretty easy to walk you through that when you need help.
Not much to it if you follow directions.
I usually run a new set of 'Orange' & 'Violet' wires to the distributor from the HEI module since the Coax wire Prestolite used is pretty useless...
---------------------------------------

Quote:
Sorry to sound stupid, but the module is inside the HEI, right?
Correct.
Distributor will be Jeep/Motorcraft, used in all AMC engines from '78 to '90.
Module you have a choice on, HEI style, CDI style (CDI Capacitive Discharge Ignition),

Coil you have a choice on, Factory 'Canister' or later style E-core with spark plug terminal on top.



------------------------------------

Quote:
Why optional condenser?
To keep the ignition noise out of your radio.
--------------------------------------

Quote:
The dizzy I buy should have a module, I must swap them out?
Depends on the distributor you pick, what style, GM or Ford...

GM put the module in the distributor, a bad thing for the module.
It picks up a lot of 'Noise' in the cap, often 'False Fires'.

Ford put the module outside the distributor where it was safer.
----------------------------------

Quote:
And then I buy a MSD Adapter p/n 8869 and MSD extension 8862 to get it to hook up to the new dizzy?
I mean, are all those wires just shown for help, or am I changing them?
You do NOT have to change anything, you can cut the plug off the distributor and 'Hard Wire' it to the module.
The quick disconnects are used so you can switch parts at the drop of a hat, or for diagnostics when things go wrong and you want to access the wires without puncturing the insulation on them.
--------------------------------------------

Quote:
This appears to come with the coil, so I should be ok keeping it?
Factory 'Canister' coils work just fine, but they have three major drawbacks when used on a V-8 Jeep...

1. Socket type terminal for the high voltage.
These leak high voltage, don't keep good connection with the coil wire, collect moisture and crud, and generally aren't the 'Best' way to do things.
Since every salvage yard in the country is filled with 'Fuel Injected' Fords,
You simply raise the hood, find the distributor, follow the coil wire back to the coil...

2. They MUST be mounted UPRIGHT to work properly.
Canister coils are oil filled to keep them cool during operation,
And if you turn them on their side, an air bubble will form next to the coils inside, and you will short out the coil.

E-core coils are epoxy filled, they have no such limitations.

3. Canister coils can only be magnetically 'Saturated' to about 2,000 RPM on a V-8 engine of any type.
They take a LONG time to saturate.
If you operate much above 2,000 RPM, then using an E-core coil that saturates in about 1/3 the time of a canister coil would be a good choice since you will get a full strength spark output much higher up in the RPM range.

4. Every junk yard in the country has 'Fuel Injection' Ford/Lincoln/Mercury vehicles stacked to the rafters.
Just look for the distributor, find the coil wire, follow that coil wire back to the coil...
And take the coil, bracket, and electrical connector for about $5 to solve these problems.
----------------------------------

Quote:
I can use the voltage regulator I have now?
No issues with the voltage regulator, just leave the 'Excite' wire hooked up to the same wire that feeds coil and module and you will be fine.

-------------------------------------

Quote:
I'm at work now, but I will go home and try to look at the wiring. Sorry many questions.
I really thought I just had to hook up a power wire, that everything elsw was internal.
Too bad If there was a pre-made kit that would save all this wiring, I could stretch the budget some....
That only works with an HEI distributor...
The issue with that is you have a 14 Gauge feed wire to your existing ignition,
And to work properly a GM HEI need about a 10 Ga. wire to feed it correctly.

You *CAN* hook it up to the 14 Ga. factory wire and it will run,
But the ignition is no where putting out the 'Maximum' it should.
---------------------------------

Quote:
As far as timing, If I make sure the number 1 is firing, I should be able to line up the new one the same and just drop it in and then time it?

thanx again!
Nope.
You won't have a clue where #1 is once you remove the distributor you have now.

You should start with some basic diagnostics first...

Like finding COMPRESSION STROKE on #1 cylinder so you KNOW you are on compression.
Then find TDC of Compression stroke,
Then VERIFY the balancer is correct by checking it against the timing scale on the front of the engine...

Once that is done, you are ready to put the distributor cap on the new distributor, and mark the #1 plug wire location on the distributor body.
The reason you do this is to know where #1 is supposed to be pointing when the distributor cap is off the distributor for install...

Then you set the housing in the hole with the vacuum advance pointing the direction it's supposed to.
With a V-8 engine, this is critical since the vacuum advance will often interfere with the power steering pulley/belt.

Once you have the housing lined up where it's supposed to be,
Then you turn your attention to the rotor which should be installed on the distributor shaft...

The rotor will need to be backed up about one terminal space (Counter-Clockwise) before you engages the distributor gear into the camshaft gear.
Since there is a spiral cut in the distributor gear, it will move 'Forward' or 'Clockwise' as it engages the distributor gear.
You sould wind up with the rotor pointing at the mark you made on the housing for #1 plug termial location...

That usually doesn't happen since you won't often have the oil pump drive shaft at the bottom of the distributor lined up correctly...
And you will have to turn the engine over to get the distributor to drop fully into it's seated position.

Generally, that means you have to turn the engine over by hand TWO TIMES and bring it back to TDC to check the rotor location with #1 terminal mark...

TWO TURNS ALWAYS!
The first half turn will be 'Power' stroke as the piston goes down,
The next half turn will be 'Exhaust' stroke as piston comes back up,
Then the next half turn will be 'Intake' stroke as the piston goes back down,
Then the next half turn will be 'Compression' again...

That's TWO full turns,
One turn will get you TDC of Exhaust stroke, and your distributor will be 180 Degrees out of time if you go by the balancer mark for TDC at one turn...

Not as simple as everyone imagines!
--------------------------------------------

One thing I'd like to clear up,
There is a difference between 'Stupid' and 'Ignorant'.

Stupid is the INABILITY TO LEARN OR LISTEN.

Ignorant simply means you don't know the system yet,
But in your case, you are learning, so you aren't 'Stupid'...

'Stupid' would be preaching 'HEI SOLVES ALL PROBLEMS'...
It doesn't.
HEI comes with a lot of problems, from advance curves (Which we haven't covered here) that will knock the valves & Pistons out of your engine,
Or hardened distributor gears will eat up your camshaft gear causing MAJOR repairs...

HEI might be a 'One Wire' connection, but most of the rabbid 'HEI ONLY' guys screw that up too!
------------

Jeep/Motorcraft distributor is tuned to work WITH your AMC engine, stops all those problems.
The upgraded cap, rotor, plug wires will stop a bunch of the 'Leaks' and get the spark energy to the plugs without the problems HEI caps/rotors/coil has.

The system is modular, so you can upgrade later when money isn't an issue as much.

It DOES take a little more wiring, but in your case, most of the wiring is already there and just needs to be hooked up to the new distributor, module, and if you choose, coil.

You can trouble shoot most of the Jeep/Motorcraft system with a $6 test light from the local discount parts store very easily.
You can't do that with a HEI distributor.

It's all in what you want to do, how much you are willing to learn about the ignition system, and how much you want to ring out of the system for the bucks spent...

Last edited by JeepHammer; 03-14-2010 at 04:51 PM..
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Unread 03-14-2010, 08:53 PM   #9
Fjguercio
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I have the Summit CDI / MultiSpark, the DuraSpark Distributor, The TEAMRUSH larger diameter/taller distributor cap/rotar with BRASS terminals, and premium spark plug wires. I also used a Junk Yard Ford E coil cost me $4 with the mount and connector. The CDI would have all new wires and you leave the OEM wires all there... even a trail back up if you keep distirbutor with you?? Summit sells the CDI for $150 its a nice way to go. I did the aux grounds in the CJ everywhere I could.... man it runs sweet.

Its a the best ignition you can put in the CJ and well worth the money. I got 1000 more rpms, 3-4 mpg, 15% more pep on a rebuilt engine that already had a new tune (std) parts. That says a lot.


After storage since October MN Winters... it started righ up last weekend with a touch of the key, High Idle, Med Idle, std Idle and we drove off with a another jeeper helping him with is 86. I have a 78..... He was very impressed.

I am impressed.

I would touch the Hei Distributors, too many issues.
Not since the CDI are no longer $600-700 since the patient expired.
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Unread 03-14-2010, 08:56 PM   #10
Fjguercio
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I learned all this ignition stuff from JeepHammer..... so yes you are talking to the right guy!
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Unread 03-15-2010, 08:01 AM   #11
JeepHammer
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It's not 'Rocket Surgery'....

We just use the parts that work well together from different systems,
Only adding in aftermarket parts (Expensive & Slow Warranty) when there aren't any factory or discount parts that will do a better job.

You can't get a good 'DuraSpark' module replacment anymore, so we've started using a GM HEI module instead.
The HEI module isn't 'Idea', but it's close enough for our vehicles and it's price of $25 is a pretty good deal!

You don't need a $400 to $600 roller bearing distributor made for 10,000 RPM drag racers or 8,500 RPM NASCARs,
So the factory Jeep/Motorcraft distributors work well and only cost $50.

The list goes on, but everyone gets the idea by now...
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Unread 03-15-2010, 08:28 PM   #12
197JeepRenegade
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Thanx again. I can see, JH, why you are respected the way you are around here (I can tell from checking the other threads). Thanx also to the other posters.

I’m going to do this, but wanted to double check before opening my wallet. After reading all this about 2 times, I think the reason I’m still a little confused is that we are talking about different solutions. I’m just gonna trust you guys and go with the best one. I’ve decided not to go junk yard, and buy it from the Autozone.

1. distributer for a 79 CJ-7 with 304 cid.
2. cap, cap adapter, rotor (brass) from a 79 F-150 with 302 cid
3. Whatever plug wires fit this, will get good ones. Like MSD 3119.
4. HEI Module 79 Impala V8
5. E-Core from Ford

Questions I still have:
I’m assuming the 79 dist. Does not come with a module? If it does, I will replace it with the GM one.
E-core, any specific year, etc.?
If I understand correctly, the module I’m buying is designed to be on the inside, but I’m gonna put it on the outside.
Cutlass said “You use the duraspark case as a heat sink and protective covering for the GM module.”
So I have the module, like the accel one in the pic from JH, and I gut my existing module, and put this one in it? If so, how should I mount it/protect it?

What gauge should the orange and violet wires from the module to the dist. be? Other than (possibly) these, and the hot from the ignition switch, I assume all existing wires are acceptable gauge?
Also, you said that the hot from my ignition to the coil is only 14G. Ok, so I trace to the ignition switch, find the thick hot wire that goes to the coil, and replace it with a 10G, correct?

I’m sure I will have more questions before I get this far, but: Timing, 8 before tdc?
Same spark plugs? I have whatever they gave me when I told them the year, 1975 . Same gap?

p.s. I’m thinking the info I’m getting here is worth way more than what I’m paying 
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Unread 03-16-2010, 08:44 AM   #13
JeepHammer
Running On Empty...
1973 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: South West Indiana
Posts: 10,059
Quote:
Originally Posted by 197JeepRenegade View Post
...

Questions I still have:
Iím assuming the 79 dist. Does not come with a module?
It will NOT come with a module.
That frees you up to use what ever module you care to.
HEI, aftermarket like a CDI, ect.

Quote:
E-core, any specific year, etc.?
Anything from '86 to about '02 with fuel injection & Distributor will have the correct E-core coil.

Somewhere in the late '90s Ford started using a distributor-less ignition, which means no central coil.
Look in the late '80s and '90s fuel injected engine vehicles,
Locate the distributor (Follow plug wires) and follow the coil wire back to the ignition coil if you are using a Junk Yard coil.

If you buy the coil new, it's between $45-$50,
The coil connector will be another $15,
And the mounting bracket is VERY hard to find, and you will pay dearly for a new one.

Junk yard coils are cheap, high quality, and you can take the coil, connector & bracket for about $5 to $10.

Quote:
If I understand correctly, the module Iím buying is designed to be on the inside, but Iím gonna put it on the outside.
We don't usually put them on the 'Outside'...
We usually use the container for the old module for a protective housing for the module.

There are some 'Tricks' to mounting the module correctly, so before you mount it, get back with us and we'll tell you about such things...
I keep the mud off mine, but I do dunk it underwater, and it works fine.

Quote:
Cutlass said ďYou use the duraspark case as a heat sink and protective covering for the GM module.Ē

So I have the module, like the accel one in the pic from JH, and I gut my existing module, and put this one in it? If so, how should I mount it/protect it?
He was assuming you have a Ford DuraSpark ignition used in Jeeps from '78 to '90.... You don't.
You can use the Prestolite module case for a cover, or you can build your own cover for the module.
I use Radio Shack project box cases, run about $6 each for a nice aluminum one that isn't rusty to display your new handy work instead of using the Rusty Prestolite case for a cover!

Quote:
What gauge should the orange and violet wires from the module to the dist. be?
16 or 18 Ga.
The wires don't have to be very big since they are working on 2 or 3 volts at most.

If you twist the wires around each other, it will make the system more 'Fool Proof' since doing so helps elminate the wires from picking up 'EM' and 'RF' noise, reducing false fires.

Quote:
Other than (possibly) these, and the hot from the ignition switch, I assume all existing wires are acceptable gauge?
'Hot' from ignition switch is fine, use the factory 14 Ga. wire to the coil & module for your new coil and module,
No issues what so ever there.

Quote:
Also, you said that the hot from my ignition to the coil is only 14G.
Ok, so I trace to the ignition switch, find the thick hot wire that goes to the coil, and replace it with a 10G, correct?
Nope.
Upgrade if you are using a HEI distributor.
The HEI coil is an energy hog, it's MUCH less efficient than the Ford E-core coil is...

14 Ga. will be fine for the Jeep/Motorcraft/HEI module.

Quote:
Iím sure I will have more questions before I get this far, but: Timing, 8 before tdc?
6 to 8 degrees before TDC, depending on how easy the engine starts when you install.

Quote:
Same spark plugs?
I have whatever they gave me when I told them the year, 1975 . Same gap?
Nope, same spark plugs, but open the gap up to about 0.045" inch instead of factory gap which is somewhere between 0.028" & 0.032".

Opening the spark gap up will drive coil discharges up to about 40,000 to 45,000 volts,
And the E-core coil will give you longer, 'Hotter' discharges from it's design at those gaps.
About double what your current Prestolite is capable of handling.

Since the distributor with upgraded cap & rotor will be able to handle the discharges without failing like the small/short cap does, you can increase the spark energy to the plugs without loosing it in the distributor cap...

Quote:
p.s. Iím thinking the info Iím getting here is worth way more than what Iím paying 
Depends on who's giving the information on the internet...
Some of it is just crap, some is dangerous, much of it is from 'Quacks' that couldn't tie shoe laces...

I'm just an old fat guy that has built race cars for several years, so this is the kind of 'Trivia' I've learned down though the years...
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Unread 03-24-2010, 08:01 AM   #14
197JeepRenegade
Registered User
1975 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Colorado
Posts: 47
Hello.

I bought the parts last night. There was some question about the coil, they had 2 types. One was square shaped, the other a canister. I got the canister. I'm thinking I can put it where my old one is now. I had to order the distributer and the electrical connector, be here thurs.

I have the Radio Shack project case. Would appreciate the advice on how to mount the module.
Then I guess I will check back for specifics on wiring.
Please advise, should I go with the prestolite wiring diagram, or the custom. The custom looks easier, but I would think using the existing wiring should be easier, cheaper, and cleaner looking. I would prefer not to have a bunch of dead wires taped off laying around.
thanx
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Unread 03-26-2010, 09:00 AM   #15
197JeepRenegade
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1975 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Colorado
Posts: 47
bump for some advice
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