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Discussion Starter #1
This works on the common motors, anything that was manufactured thru the 70's, all the v-8's except the flathead and the Triton, inline 6 and 2.0/2.3, you get the point. I have done this swap more times than I can remember and it works great, if you like free gas. I usually pick up 2-3 mpg and have seen as much as 5, the points looked like the moon. The conversion comes in at around $50 american, unless you do a tune-up at the same time. Dura-spark dizzy's are cheap at the j/y, but the last one I bought re-manned for around $30( My brother is a comm'l. parts pro at adv. auto and calls me when stuff like this is on sale). Here is the wiring diagram from my old Chilton's that I use to wire in the ignition box. The only change I make is to cut out the resistance wire(BLACK GREEN) to the coil +, run fresh 12v over from the solenoid, and put a ballast resistor in the line to cut power down to the coil. If you run the coil at 12v, it will fry the d/s box(or any other ign. module, Mallory MSD,etc.). Enjoy easier starts and better mileage year round and with the price of gas, it will probably pay for itself in a few weeks. Rich
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I used the blue tab module for my conversion what did you use ?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I usually rob the harness and box from a donor with the same engine. The blue tabs are some of the most common and have the long dwell for a better spark. Rich
 

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i'm just glad mine came with one
 

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is there a difference between dura-spark, and dura-spark 2? or is there no such thing?
 

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is there a difference between dura-spark, and dura-spark 2? or is there no such thing?
Yes, there is a difference ! (There was even a Duraspark-III used on EEC-III vehicles; you don't want that for conversions)

It has been so long, I don't remember the difference ! (I think Dura 2 is more common, and has a bit less energy, but don't quote me !)


If your willing to spend the money (couple of hundred) there are a some of companies who have adapted the GM HEI to a Ford distributor base. Makes for a nice clean installation as the module and the coil are all in/on the cap.
 

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A word of caution if you have an engine that turns over 6000 rpms. The duraspark can't keep up. I shifted my 289 at around 6800 rpms. A buddy had upgraded his FE to the Duraspark and encouraged me to do the same. It started, ran and sounded good until I put it to the test and at around 5800 rpm it was like a log chain had been tied to my bumper. It just quit pulling.

LR
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Most single point distributors floated out at around 5500-6000 rpm and the factory needed some way of limiting the rpm of their assembly line motors. I guess this isn't for your balanced and blueprinted motors, but great for stock replacement using Ford parts. My pickup came with a Mallory stabbed in already, but I keep a d/s setup waiting in the wings, just in case. Rich
 

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Yes, there is a difference ! (There was even a Duraspark-III used on EEC-III vehicles; you don't want that for conversions)

It has been so long, I don't remember the difference ! (I think Dura 2 is more common, and has a bit less energy, but don't quote me !)

I don't know about a difference in output. I've always used Duraspark II in my conversions. One difference I know of is that there are two wires for power coming off the module. The red wire is how whenever the key is in the run position and uses a ballast resistor and the white wire is hot only in crank and receives a full 12 volt. The white wire provides a higher voltage and is also supposed retard the timing for easier starts.
 

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what years were the EEC3's? I don't even know what mine is... my chilton says it was the original EEC, which is funny because nothing is hooked up to it right now. it only had the oil and temp sensors hooked up to it when i had my other engine in there...
79 fairmont...
 

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I am pretty sure that the early duraspark's had a pickup coil inside the distributor, and the duraspark IIs had a hall effect sensor in there. The earlier units weren't used too long, and I think that they had an ocassional problem with the pickup coil failing when it got hot. Start and run fine cold, 10-20 minutes later it would fail like someone reached over your shoulder and turned teh ignition key off. 20 minutes to cool off, and start right up, only to repeat itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The red wire is hot whenever the key is in the run position and uses a ballast resistor and the white wire is hot only in crank and receives a full 12 volt. The white wire provides a higher voltage and is also supposed retard the timing for easier starts.
I had a problem the other day, I got in and all she did was crank. The night before, I did a thorough walk around, lights, fluids tires and wires. I was wiggling wires and broke the ballast resistor. I couldn't see through it so I checked everything. Had spark to the cap and that was pretty weak. Some P.O. put a mallory distributor in so I went to their website to see what I needed to do to troubleshoot. I also looked up the wiring diagram and noticed the p.o. wired the ballast resistor in before the module making the coil and mod. fight over 6.5 volts.
I've always had problems starting in cold weather. Always crank and pump for 30-45 seconds until she'd light under 40 degrees. I put the resistor in at the coil and she fires in 2 shakes. The reason for cutting the voltage at the coil is so the module gets 12 volts but the draw from the coil is only 6.5 or so and all that switching at high voltage causes heat and heat kills. Mallory also said running a coil at 12v would oversaturate it causing negative effects. It also said running the module at low voltage would make heat, too. Btw, did you know almost every coil put in an american manufactured car is 6.5 volts? I remember a shop teacher saying something about it in high school long ago.
I know a Mallory isn't a Duraspark, but msd and jacobs modules get wired up like this, too. The first time I wired this up I used instructions for a May Suddenly Die 6al and have had almost 0 problems the 6-7 times I've done it.
I'm not knocking it, just sharing some of my inexperience. Rich
 

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I had a problem the other day, I got in and all she did was crank. The night before, I did a thorough walk around, lights, fluids tires and wires. I was wiggling wires and broke the ballast resistor. I couldn't see through it so I checked everything. Had spark to the cap and that was pretty weak. Some P.O. put a mallory distributor in so I went to their website to see what I needed to do to troubleshoot. I also looked up the wiring diagram and noticed the p.o. wired the ballast resistor in before the module making the coil and mod. fight over 6.5 volts.
I've always had problems starting in cold weather. Always crank and pump for 30-45 seconds until she'd light under 40 degrees. I put the resistor in at the coil and she fires in 2 shakes. The reason for cutting the voltage at the coil is so the module gets 12 volts but the draw from the coil is only 6.5 or so and all that switching at high voltage causes heat and heat kills. Mallory also said running a coil at 12v would oversaturate it causing negative effects. It also said running the module at low voltage would make heat, too. Btw, did you know almost every coil put in an american manufactured car is 6.5 volts? I remember a shop teacher saying something about it in high school long ago.
I know a Mallory isn't a Duraspark, but msd and jacobs modules get wired up like this, too. The first time I wired this up I used instructions for a May Suddenly Die 6al and have had almost 0 problems the 6-7 times I've done it.
I'm not knocking it, just sharing some of my inexperience. Rich
Yeah, its been a few years since I wired one up. The ballast resistor does run to only the coil. I know the white wire is a initial timing retard.

I have used ballast resistors that supply 10v to the coil.

 

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I was a little surprised that 80_Maytag said 6.5 volts, because I thought that they were 10 volts. I guess it varies by year.
EDIT: So I just pulled out my Haynes manual for the 1980 - 1996 Bronco's and sure enough the ballast resistor reduces the voltage to between 6-8 volts in run position.
 
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