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Duraspark conversion.

Hale Ranger

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Thanks to each of you for your comments. I do appreciate your contribution. :)
 


Hale Ranger

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I have no practical experience with this (just my $0.02) but from what I've seen/read, the most common location is on the driver's side inner fender liner, just forward of the brake master cylinder. This location provides easy access to the two wiring connectors and there even seems to be holes (or indents for holes) already in the liner. The downside is that this spot seems to be susceptible to road spray & debris when the truck makes a hard left turn.

So, do you try to extend the fender liner so road spray isn't an issue? Or, do you build some sort shield/box for the ignition module? We already know that the ign. module is subject to overheat so you'd want it someplace where it can stay cool.

I've seen them mounted on the firewall, just above the distributor. I've seen them mounted in the cab. Of course, that means you have to extend the wiring.

I've thought about adding a heat sink (which I've done on a motorcycle I owned). The ign. module has ribbing on the top surface but it's nothing like a heat sink from a computer. You just need to purchase the correct epoxy.

At this point, you need to decide what kind of effort you want to put into your install. Keep us posted on what you decide and why. Hope this helps.
Thanks for the excellent reply. I'm sorry for the delayed reply.

I did a google search for heat sinks and found a lot of options on eBay and amazon which included 3M adhesive just for heat sink applications. Again, I want to thank you for the idea of adding a heat sink.

My project is on hold until the weather allows me warmer weather since I don't have a garage that is available for the project. I don't want to rush the project. Letting time or the lack of it be an issue in having a successful project is not a place I want to go.
 

Bronco648

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I did a google search for heat sinks and found a lot of options on eBay and amazon which included 3M adhesive just for heat sink applications. Again, I want to thank you for the idea of adding a heat sink.
I am still trying to figure out how to provide more cooling but a heat sink, as much as I like the idea, might not work. The reason being is that the top of the ign. module isn't flat. It has a bit of a 'saw tooth' profile. Heat sinks require flat surfaces to work most efficiently. In this way the heat is transferred from the heat-generating device to the cooling fins to be dissipated. With the saw teeth on the top of the module, it may not be possible for the heat sink to work in the way it's intended. Worse, adding a heat sink (with epoxy) may even cause the module to retain heat which would cause it to fail quicker. I'm thinking the saw teeth are the heat sink even though they're not as efficient as they could be. Also, the people that designed and built these things had to take heat (and heat dissipation) into consideration. We may be trying to re-engineer something that doesn't really need it.
 

franklin2

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Only thing I have ever heard anyone doing with a duraspark module to try to help keep it cool was to use longer bolts and stand-offs to raise it up off the fender so air could get under it.

Here is a picture of my heatsink. But I am using a GM HEI module with my Duraspark II distributor. I should say "was", until the duraspark distributor crapped out.

2.8 hei conversion by D Franklin, on Flickr
 

19Walt93

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I'd replace all those crimp connectors with heat shrink versions. I've never added a heat sink to a Duraspark module, the fins on the housing work fine.
 

franklin2

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I have been talking for months about what I am going to do, all the while driving to work everyday with the TFI distributor and locked timing. My fuel mileage is not that great, and with the price of gas if I could get a little better it would pay for itself. Right now I am getting around 16-17mpg. But it runs so good, you can't hardly tell it's running at idle it's so smooth and it starts right now in the cold weather.

I just went out and tore down the cardone rebuild with the worn out bushing. You can't find parts for these things. It was a little tough getting the bushing out, but I measured it afterward, and verified it is the same bushing that Ford used in the small block Ford distributors. The mustang places are selling these bushings that have been reproduced. The Ford original part number is B8QH-12120-A. These dimensions are approximate, but the bushing is about .467 ID, .688 OD and approx 1.715 long.

I start looking at the rest of my "rebuilt" Cardone distributor. I hope I can polish the shaft, the holes in the weights are wore out, the pickup coil is original. That's all I got to look at tonight. I can't find any of these parts. But I did find something, I am really going to stick my neck out here. I found a brand new duraspark II distributor for a 300 six. Probably china made, it doesn't say. But the price is right, on sale for $39.00. I am hoping I can at least use some of the weights and springs inside it, and possibly even the bushing, not sure. Theoretically I will use my old cologne housing, shaft and gear, and use the new plate, springs, weights, pickup, etc. And bushing if it turns out to be the same size.
 

Bronco648

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@franklin2 Please keep us updated. I have a brand new Cardone distributor in the box but would be interested to know what it takes to have a spare/back-up. Thanks!
 

franklin2

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Update on the 300 six china distributor "marriage with the original cardone duraspark II 2.8 distributor;

Not as I had hoped, but all is not lost. I was hoping I could take the main bushing out of the 300 six distributor and use in the 2.8 distributor. Not the same size. So I had to buy the bushing from a mustang parts place for $25.00 plus $6.00 shipping.

The weights and pivot pins are completely wore out in the 2.8 distributor. The weight setup in the 300 distributor is different, but it basically does the same job. I was trying to retro fit that whole assembly into the 2.8 but I could not see it working without modifications with a lathe. What I am going to do is take the pivot pins out of the 300 six dist, and install them in the 2.8. One good thing is they are a little bit larger than the 2.8 pins. So once I get them installed I can drill out the 2.8 weight pivot holes so they are round again and it should be good. The pins are welded into the 2.8 plate, and they are mashed into the 300 six plate. I am going to use a grinder and possibly a drill to get the weld and the mashed over part out so I can pull the pins, and then get them installed and spot weld them in place in their new home. Get that all assembled with the drilled out weights and that should be good.

I am then working my up to the top. I think some of that stuff may interchange as well, I will have to wait till I get there.
 

Bronco648

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Of all the stuff I've read on the Duraspark conversion, no one says what happens with all of the left-over wiring. I have wires on the passenger side of the engine compartment just sitting on the inner fender and battery box. Is there anything there that's (re)used or should I just unplug it all? Do people also remove the 'brain box' from behind the passenger side kick panel?
 

RobbieD

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Yes, it cleans things up considerably to just remove it after the Duraspark conversion.

I removed all of the stuff which was no longer used or needed- the computer and its wiring harness, the vacuum solenoid bank, and its related reservoir and vacuum tubing.

My pile of removed "leftovers":

74264
 

Hale Ranger

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2WD
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If you don't pay attention, you will pay someone else
Yes, it cleans things up considerably to just remove it after the Duraspark conversion.

I removed all of the stuff which was no longer used or needed- the computer and its wiring harness, the vacuum solenoid bank, and its related reservoir and vacuum tubing.

My pile of removed "leftovers":

View attachment 74264
What would be great to see is how clean the engine looks without all that vacuum and wiring that was removed.
 

Bronco648

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Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Tire Size
14"
What would be great to see is how clean the engine looks without all that vacuum and wiring that was removed.
Pop the hood on any mid-60s Mustang and that'll give you a good idea. ;) If you can be patient, I'll post a picture when I have my truck back in running condition (hopefully June-July).
 

RobbieD

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What would be great to see is how clean the engine looks without all that vacuum and wiring that was removed.
OK. Here's a few.

'84 model, automatic with AC and I kept the AIR pump. EGR was deleted, along with the several various sensors and actuators for the feedback system. Original 2150A carb was kept, but rebuilt and the idle solenoid replaced with a homemade metering block. Ford Duraspark module with a can style coil. Remaining wiring was reharnessed and cleaned up as needed.

74272


74273


Not really "clean", but definitely less cluttered.

74276


Pop the hood on any mid-60s Mustang and that'll give you a good idea.
YES! With all of the crap removed, the old truck is now just like the old '60s cars that I grew up with.
 

Bronco648

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Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Tire Size
14"
Your pics reminded me of something: does anyone know what fan belt to use if you only have an alternator (no AIR pump)?

(Truck doesn't have AC and the Fan/PS pump belt would be same as factory)
 

RobbieD

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Not sure on that one. I'd start with RockAuto, and check that and some other parts website so see if you pin it down by how it's equipped (i.e.- alt only, no AC). If the belt length spec is listed, you could then check it on the truck with a tape measure before ordering or buying one.
 

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