February 13, 2012 at 11:20 #7365
My 2 litre pinto engine loves eating its contacts every 3/4 meetings. They become very badly burnt. I have a very large collection of contacts and condensers in my box of goodies, not all ford parts, have fitted a new ignition coil the same as already fitted to the car, but cannot seem to get over this problem. Is this a common problem with the pinto or am I just doing something wrong? Could I fit electronic points?
MartinFebruary 13, 2012 at 11:21 #7366
This is a good question, as it could affect many racers out there without realising it; it is not a common problem with road going Pintos, mainly because there running what it came off the production line with. However, when it comes to us, it is possible that we fit an engine, then get all the necessary parts to make it run and we accidentally get a “mismatch” of the ignition system. Your problem is probably in this area.
I would suggest that you have an electronic coil fitted to your points distributor. When you have this situation, the electronic coil is a high voltage type and is built to give a very high output because they do not have to take into account the erosion of the points. When this type of coil is fitted to a points type ignition system, the points will burn out very quickly.
Pinto engines were fitted with several different coils and some of them, while being suitable for electronic ignitions, are not suitable for points distributors.
The standard 12 volt coil suitable for points, has an output of 17 KV +. This type of coil is regarded as a low voltage coil, but do not think it’s unsuitable.
The majority of points systems will run well with this coil provided the engines compression is not too high, not over 10:1 and that the rpm limit, 6500 and head are standard. However, if you have a worked head or higher compression ratio, then the higher pressure inside your engine will need more coil spark to fire the mixture properly.
Then you will need an up-rated low voltage coil, Lucas sports for example. These coils rate about 26 KV. They look similar to ordinary coils, but are different inside and produce more secondary voltage. These coils are direct replacements for standard coils. They will not burn the points out and have more output that standard making them suitable for 7500 to 8000 RPM.
Also fitted was a ballast resister coil. They are basically a 9-volt low voltage coil, which have 12 volts fed into them only for starting, making them a high voltage coil. If you run this type of coil continuously on 12 volts, they will also burn out your points. Regarding your box of points, Motor factor points are reasonably good, but preference should be with Motorcraft points. Same goes for condensers.
As a footnote to your question, thought should also be given to your HT leads, you should always use new leads, but standard replacements will usually be of the suppression type. It is far better to use copper wire HT leads. Copper wires are excellent conductors of electricity and, essentially, cause no losses compared to suppression wires.
So basically, change your coil for a sports type one and I think your burning issue will disappear.
The late ‘Pop C’
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