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Old 08-26-2006, 10:04 PM
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HEI Conversion?

I have a street rod I would like to replace the motor with the Chevy 330hp crate engine which comes with an HEI ignition. My old set up had a points type distributor with a Pertronix electronic conversion. I did some research on the knowledge base and I wanted to confirm some information and ask two questions.

1. I do not have a resistance wire but I do have a ballast resister located on the fuse panel. I understand I am supposed to remove the ballast resister and bridge that gap with a 12 gauge wire, and then check for 12 volts at the distributor end of that wire. Is that correct?

2. On the new HEI GM distributor it looks like there are a couple of wires coming out of the distributor with a plastic connector on the end. How am I supposed to connect this to my existing wiring?

3. Set spark plugs to .045, set timing and then everything is supposed to work correctly?

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Old 08-26-2006, 11:33 PM
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Hei

One of the two leads should be for a tach and the other 12 volts switched from the key, I ran it from a HD solenoid that is switched, but not all GM HEI,s are the same, Mine is a Accel which is the same as early GM HEI,s I believe.
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:28 PM
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Doc here,

First, on the Ballast resistor..BE sure (not knowing what body this is in) The resistor mounted on the Fuse panel is exactly that, and not a Voltage drop or current limiter for gauges or some other stock devices..If it is and you bypass it, you could damage those devices.

Remove either wire from the resistor, and test the battery wire for the coil, With the key on it should be dead.If so, then IF those are the only wires go to and from it, it is safe to remove and bypass.

On the Installation of the HEI, Be sure your wire can support the new coil..To do that , take the resistance of the coil, (BATT to TACH on Stock HEI) and apply a little OHM's law, I=E/R to arrive at the Coil draw..Some of those monster coils can draw up to 40 amps.

If you have doubts use a relay. Run the RELAY Coil on the Switched side, and power from 10 or 12 gauge wire to the Normally open contact, and the Coil of the HEI to the movable wiper. This also will prevent shutdown run~on should that become a problem.

On the HEI, you should Have 2 Wires off the Cap (assuming a Pre~1980 Stock GM Non Computer HEI) One marked "BATT" the other Marked "TACH". Power from the Switch (or Relay) Goes to the "BATT" terminal, this is usually a 12 or 10 gauge wire, Pink or Orange , Or Purple. The TACH tap goes to any tach you may have. It (Stock) Is always White. If you have no tach, you won't use this tap.

Set your Plug Gap to .45 and REPLACE the old wires with 8.0 or 8.5 MM Plug wires of good quality, The old wires were made for 20 KV, the New system will Be about 60 or 40 KV and the old wires won't be up for it too awfully long.

You SHOULD be good to go notwithstanding any Timing issues.

Doc
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Old 08-27-2006, 09:36 PM
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clarification

I have a 1930 model A with an after market wiring harness. There are 2 wires coming out of the Pertronix module in the distributor. The black wire goes to the negative terminal on the coil. The red wire goes to the ignition switch, but there is a ballast resister wired between the red wire and positive coil terminal.

Sorry, I should have explained that better to start with. Now if I have the HEI with the wires coming out of the distributor with the plastic connector on the end, how am I going to wire that to my existing wiring?
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Old 08-28-2006, 12:37 AM
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HEI is a 1 wire operation, hook it up n go... thats why rodders love em...
the 3 wires that come out of the distributor base , connect to the distributor cap, 5 prongs on the cap... 3 for the dist. pick up, ICM...the connector will slip on only 1 way...

the other 2 are your 12V+, and tach.. look on the top of the cap, they should be label'd
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Old 08-28-2006, 02:12 AM
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Doc here,

So , this is a Pertronix HEI? Not A stock GM HEI?

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Old 08-28-2006, 06:02 PM
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The distributor I have now is a stock gm distributor with the points taken out and a Pertronix electronic kit installed. When I remove that I will want to install a stock GM HEI distributor and all I have to work with is one red wire coming from the ignition switch and one black wire coming from the coil to connect to the new GM HEI distributor.
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Old 08-28-2006, 10:55 PM
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Doc Here,

The only wire you will need is the Big red wire..No ballast resistor , no black wire..Everything else is self contained in the GM HEI cap..

Doc
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