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Old 06-12-2003, 01:41 AM
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Coil question

hey guys, i am currently attempting to rebuild my first 289. I see alot of stuff advertised to improve the igniton, such as a new coil, 45,000 volt wires, and so on. My question is, what does all this mean, and should i add this to my new engine. will it improve street performance, or is it just for the track. Its going to be an everyday drive, but i wanted it to run as great as possible. I also wasnt sure what i should be looking for in a distributer. Thanks in advance.

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Old 06-12-2003, 05:33 AM
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While stock ignition systems run ok and big manufacturers have spent millions developing them a good aftermarket systems will work better in most applications. If your application is going to benifit from this depends upon the performance level required but for sure a better, cleaner spark will make the most of any application.
For a mild street motor a stock system in good order is fine.
If you want to push it a bit and really want to ensure the electrical side is 100% it think the msd units offer the best value and performance.
A msd 6al offers a rev limiter, multiple spark discharge (to ensure you light off the fuel) and reliability. It also eliminates the ballast resistor which can be a sourse of many ignition problems as well as will run a multitude of different coils to get the spark.
If you do not want to invest in an ignition unit then a good coil (required anyway) and good leads are fairly essential.
The basics are - Coils provide the spark and leads stop it going where you don't want it, benifits over stock systems grow as you increse performace as denser mixtures at higher compressions take more igniting and better ignition is required.
Don,t overlook the plugs many do, plugs are the end point where you deliver the spark, plugs have heat ranges and gaps these can be critical and many minor plug problems are overlooked and solved by adding a msd or other more powerful ignition system and simply blasting a spark across them, as i said earlier a good stock system should work fine.
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Old 06-12-2003, 12:39 PM
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Dont waste your money!!!

If you can find an early model HEI that is applicable to your engine GET IT!!! I found and picked one up at the boneyard for $50 + $40 to give it a tune up. i.e. cap, rotor, and coil. Just have to cut the positive wire (coming from the battery)and crimp a fitting (female) onto the distributor side that says "batt" or "dist". You dont want to plug into the side that says tach, for obvious reasons. Hope you can fit/find an upgrade, Its really simple.
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Old 06-12-2003, 12:44 PM
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I forgot to add, you will need 8mm plug wires to route your spark. And you wont be nickle and dimed like you will be if you have a "special" set up.
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