Distributor ID and Ignition System Help

Discussion in 'General IH Tech' started by Rollercam, Apr 26, 2017.


  1. Rollercam

    Rollercam Farmall Cub

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    I am not sure if I am posting this in the right area so feel free to move it if necessary.

    I have a 1978 Scout II with a 345. To make a long story short, I was having a local shop work on it and one of the things they were going to do was to completely rewire the vehicle. Well, they ripped out all of the old electrical system, disassembled the whole truck down to the bare shell, and then called me and said they were done with it and to come pick it up. I drove the Scout into the shop, but I had to trailer it out. That is never a good thing. I know I have a long road ahead of me, but one thing I wanted to get sorted out was the ignition system. The more I have read about scout distributors and ignition systems, the more confused I have become. I really just want to end up with a reliable, consistent system that will get me down the road. I am not a hardcore off roader and I am not looking for anything "souped up". I have attached some pictures of what I have still attached to the engine. I would like some help on identifying the distributor and knowing if I have an electronic ignition or points. Do I have a Holley or a Presolite (or maybe a hybrid as it appears to me, or maybe something totally different)? What all parts do I need for a reliable, consistent ignition system? I know some of these systems had external coils, resistors, etc. and I would just like to know what it is I actually have to have. I have read about all kinds of conversions for these distributors (both home jobs and commercial systems), but I am not sure if i need any of that for a stock motor. I have also been told that a proper functioning electronic prestolite system is all I really need to have to do [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]what I am looking to do. Thanks in advance for the help.


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  2. kevingweq

    kevingweq Y-Block King

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    From the looks of it someone has previously installed a "pertronix" electronic ignition module in your distributor
    please take picture with cap removed to be sure
     
  3. Rollercam

    Rollercam Farmall Cub

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    Okay. I will try to do that as soon as possible. The scout is at another much more established and reliable shop right now (it is the shop I should have gone to first, lesson learned...). Please correct me if I am wrong, but from what I understand, it looks like I have a prestolite distributor, but perhaps a Holley cap. I believe the prestolite caps have male terminals, but this cap has female. Should I change out the cap even if i might already have the pertronix kit or does that not matter as much now? I am assuming I still need the external coil. If so, what is the best one for that distributor set-up? Do I still need what I think is some sort of resistor that is mounted above the coil?


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  4. kevingweq

    kevingweq Y-Block King

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    It looks like a prestolite , The holley cap fits presto's but not quite perfectly , better off with right cap also the dust shield is important for a good tight fit of the cap .
    If indeed you have the pertronix , I would do a bit of research on their website ,They call for specific coils .
    The resistor is no longer needed in the ignition circuit with pertronix .
    Lots of issues have been reported with 1st gen pertronix ( burning up from key being left on )
    2nd gen and 3rd gen have become very reliable in my opinion
    See if you can pinpoint which version you have , If you have :1eye:
     
  5. jeff campbell

    jeff campbell Lives in an IH Dealership

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    it is a prestolite dizzy, always tell by the tall full body/housing.( under the cap )
     
  6. 1975IH200

    1975IH200 Y-Block King

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    Prestolite Dizzy. Good units, keep it.
    You must use the Prestolite Rotor & Cap (male terminals) and the dust cover in order for the cap to fit properly.
    Also use the proper wires for the cap!!!
    Spend a few extra bucks and purchase the higher quality parts.
    Prestolite Distributor Cap.jpg Prestolite Dust Cover 493084C1 or IDN-17.jpg
     
  7. Rollercam

    Rollercam Farmall Cub

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    Okay, I was able to get some pictures with the cap off (which by the way was really just sitting on top of the distributor and was not really being held in place by much except for one clip). It appears that this distributor already has a pertronix ignitor I kit already installed. I still think is has the wrong cap (Holley instead of prestolite (see the photos above)) on it and that needs to be swapped out, but other than that, I am not sure of what needs to be done. Should I just go ahead and swap out the coil as well for good measure? If I understand things correctly, the only additional item I need to have a functioning ignition system now is the proper cap, the correct male-ended spark plug wires, new spark plugs, and a coil (either re-use my old one or get a new one). Does this sound about right?


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  8. kevingweq

    kevingweq Y-Block King

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    Get yourself the proper dust cover , and cap,wires, Then you could test your coil with an ohmmeter to see if it meets pertronix specs
    ( on their website) http://www.pertronix.com/support/tips/
    Looks like the red ignitor wire could be rubbing on the rotor ??
    At some point you could wire up the coil and dizzy temporarily and make sure she shoots sparks
     
  9. MrCypress

    MrCypress Farmall Cub

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    Hey gents. I have the same engine and looks like same distributer. I was checking my timing today and wanted to clock the distributer to improve the low speed idle.

    I could not rotate it at all after loosening the small hold-down bracket. I don't want to force it. Am I missing something?


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  10. scoutboy74

    scoutboy74 Lives in an IH Dealership

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    You were checking your timing in what way? Willy-nilly timing adjustments are generally not the way to improve your idle speed. What is your hot idle speed now anyway? Do you have a tachometer? How does the engine run and how does the truck drive from stopped up through highway speeds? This could come down to being as simple as an idle speed adjustment on your carb, but more needs to be known about your particular situation and preferably in your own thread rather than piggy backing this one.
     
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  11. MrCypress

    MrCypress Farmall Cub

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    Point taken and I started my own thread. Thanks.
     
  12. seanhvigil

    seanhvigil Farmall Cub

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    Well you have no carb, no spark plug wires, no coolant hoses, I would bet that cools bad, looks like that should did some good work.

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