Originally Posted by Mouser
Working on my 1985 Chevy 4x4. 305 engine.
Was wondering if there is an upgrade option for the electronic spark control module? I would like to upgrade the distributor and any components that are in some way connected to it, but I never messed with an ESCM. Can it be bypassed alltogether? Thanks for any tips!
I've got the exact same engine. The ignition module in the distributor is a 5-pin module and can't be replaced by a CD ignition box like dogwater mentioned in his earlier HEI.
What type of upgrade options are you looking for? An MSD 6-series ignition box (and the like) will work fine with the electronic spark control module. I believe most aftermarket coils and non-module ignition components will work fine also. I'm going to be putting some sort of CD ignition on mine in the next month. I haven't seen an aftermarket 5-pin module for performance applications, but that doesn't mean they aren't out there.
If you want to just bypass the ESC because it's getting false-positives from engine noise, you can unplug the 4-pin connector and jumper two of the pins on the distributor side. I'll have to go look up which ones they are. If you want to replace it with a non-esc distributor, any sbc 4-pin HEI should work and have all of the aftermarket goodies available. But the only thing I think that will buy you is the aftermarket performance modules.