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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Engines > Gas > Atomic 4
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  #1  
Old 09-08-2014
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Electronic Ignition

For what it is worth.
Last year I upgraded to an electronic ignition and the starting and performance of my Atomic Four has improved markedly. On those really wet days, you know where the humidity down below os 110%, and you get wet just checking the oil, I would have to dry out the distributor to get it to fire up. And then Every so often I would have to do the old cardboard scrub of the points trick. Now I get instant ignition with no stuttering and slow building of RPMs.
Knock on wood.
John
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Old 09-08-2014
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Re: Electronic Ignition

One way those things work is by providing a higher voltage spark often of shorter duration. That can lead to arc-tracking problems with wires, distributor caps and rotors. That means that while the CD/electronic ignition can bring easier starting by providing a higher voltage with lower load on the points, if you still have points. It can also cause break down of other parts which may not be able to stand the higher voltage. Keep a spare coil, cap and rotor at least and a set of wires including the HT wire from the coil to distributor for that bleak day.

It would be best to seal all of those spare ignition parts in a nice dry (with desiccant) plastic bag.

Another thing that can happen if you still have your points, the rubbing block that follows the points cam can wear down to practically nothing and the system still work. It would be an excellent idea to put a tiny swipe of points cam grease on that thing every few hundred hours if you are still using points.

Back in the day, I used electronic ignition retrofits on every thing from gas engine trucks and automobiles to farm equipment, boat motors and motor cycles. It is best if you can get one that replaces the points but they, like everything else do eventually fail. The question is, do they fail more often that what they replaced? My answer is: They fail no more often and they do provide a performance advantage including lower fuel consumption where I used them.

Make your choice and pay your money.

Have FUN!
O'

Last edited by OPossumTX; 09-08-2014 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 09-08-2014
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Re: Electronic Ignition

This is good advice. I bought a twin engine gas/petrol fueled boat once with electronic ignition. Previous owner was frustrated because engines ran rough and died a lot at idle. So I closed myself in the engine room with the lights out. When running there were hundreds of blue sparks coming from the distributor and wires. Replaced all that and used higher grade wires. Boat changed its personality and ran perfectly for years after that.
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Transmitterdan
1995 Valiant 42
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Old 09-10-2014
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Re: Electronic Ignition

The Ignitor model available from Moyer Marine replaces the points and condenser retaining only the rotor and distributor body. Also, the spark cable set they sell are well shielded. All in all it seems a much better system for the A Four that condenser and points system.
John
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Old 09-13-2014
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Re: Electronic Ignition

All the electronic ignitions I have had on motorcycles, outboards & cars had just a sensor coil, no moving parts. A new distributor cap, & coil, if not included in the kit, & new wiring, all around, should prevent any arcing problems. As far as I know, everything now comes without distributors, having one coil per cylinder.

Paul T
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