Register now to get rid of these ads!

1956 ford 12V question

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by buster6972, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. buster6972
    Joined: Apr 3, 2007
    Posts: 234

    buster6972
    Member
    from Florida

    I know that ford switched over to the 12 volt system in 56, but I was wondering is everything 12v ( i.e. gauges)? Are there any differences in the distributors from a 56 and a 57?
     
  2. Tuck
    Joined: May 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,641

    Tuck
    Tech Editor
    from MINNESOTA
    1. Early Hemi Tech

    same dist.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
  3. buster6972
    Joined: Apr 3, 2007
    Posts: 234

    buster6972
    Member
    from Florida

    that was quick... Thanks a lot.
     
  4. Joe Johnston
    Joined: Jun 29, 2008
    Posts: 127

    Joe Johnston
    Member
    from Ohio

    [QUOTEsame dist. ][/QUOTE]

    Not necessarily - it depends on which Ford is in question.
    Thunderbirds used an entirely different ditributor in 57. Thunderbird 55 & 56 distributors were the same except for their vacuum advance units.
     

  5. buster6972
    Joined: Apr 3, 2007
    Posts: 234

    buster6972
    Member
    from Florida

    it is a sunliner. Would this carry the Thunderbird distributor?
     
  6. Joe Johnston
    Joined: Jun 29, 2008
    Posts: 127

    Joe Johnston
    Member
    from Ohio


    No

    The Thunderbird distributor had a mechanical tach drive.
     
  7. buster6972
    Joined: Apr 3, 2007
    Posts: 234

    buster6972
    Member
    from Florida

  8. Dominick Hide
    Joined: Dec 13, 2007
    Posts: 219

    Dominick Hide
    Member

    1956 was the last year for the loadamatic distributor. Advance on these was from a controlled vacuum source only. In 1957 Ford went to the more conventional vacuum and centrifugal combination style.
    As far as electrics, 1956 is the one and only year that the gauges run on a full 12 volts.
     
  9. 56 ford gauges didn't run on 12 volts. 12 volts were sent to a "voltage limiter" scrrewed to the back of the insturment cluster. It dropped the gauge feed voltage to 6 volts. You'll find these limiters on the back of ford insturment clusters up thorugh the 70s or 80s. Until ford began using the printed circuits on the back of the clusters, they used a limiter with spade connections, after they went to the plastic printed circuits, the limiter was a "snap in" connection to the circuit board...still worked the same. I really believe any ford analog gauge requires a 6 volt feed.
     
  10. As mentioned, there is a big difference in 56 and 57 distributors. You must use the 56 distributor with the 56 carb to get it to work properly. A 57 can be used with any carb.
     
  11. JeffB2
    Joined: Dec 18, 2006
    Posts: 8,968

    JeffB2
    Member
    from Phoenix,AZ

    Actually you are wrong,1956 Fords were a "queer year" they did have 12 volt gauges that year only, in 1957 they went back to 6 volt gauges and the use of the gauge voltage regulator.
     
  12. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    [​IMG]

    No the 56 Ford distributor will only work properly(?) with a 56 Carb due to the odd Vacuum advance system. Notice the dual diaphragms. You want the 57 up distributor with the common vacuum advance.

    [​IMG]

    57 vacuum advance
     
  13. Jims35
    Joined: Dec 22, 2009
    Posts: 279

    Jims35
    Member


    Not so on 56 only,they are full 12 volt , I'v had one in my garage for the last 30 years. Ford started the volt drop in 57.:)
     
  14. Tuck
    Joined: May 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,641

    Tuck
    Tech Editor
    from MINNESOTA
    1. Early Hemi Tech

    Good info I stand corrected-

    We had a 56.. and it was 12v pos ground- and every one would say no they were neg ground... but this was pos ground regulator and my Uncle bought the car that way brand new. Any idea why?

    So are those dizzys the same from 54 to 56? or is it 56 only?
     
  15. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    I think your uncle has his old cars confused. I've personally never seen any 12V positive ground cars. You did not get to choose the battery system when you bought a car. 56 was the first year for 12Vs negative ground. If there ever was such an animal there would be replacement parts available for it.
     
  16. Jims35
    Joined: Dec 22, 2009
    Posts: 279

    Jims35
    Member


    I remember i was all most driving age when the 55 ford came out and my dad bought one,it was 6 volt positive ground. Then i got a 56 ford a couple of years later and it was 12 volt negative ground. I have another 56 ford i bought at least 30 years ago and it is 12 volt negative ground. I had a 56 parts car a few years ago and it was 12 volt negative ground. So it sounds like some body put the battery in and hooked the cables up wrong in your uncles car or the rest of us have been doing it wrong, huh, i guess that's possible , we did it wrong.:rolleyes:__:)
    All kidding aside , maybe your uncles car was one of the very first 56 built and they built it that way before they got the memo to change to negative ground, beats me .:)
     
  17. Tuck
    Joined: May 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,641

    Tuck
    Tech Editor
    from MINNESOTA
    1. Early Hemi Tech


    Tommy- I had the car- it was pos ground- I used the regulator in the Hex and used the 6 volt pos ground gen and converted it all to pos ground twelve volt. I still have the reg- it was marked on the bottom "pos ground" in red stamped ink. He bought the car brand new and didnt change it so I don't know what to tell you other than thats the way it was for real. I did order another regulator later to convert another shoebox and I specified 12v pos ground 56 ford reg- and thats what I got.
     
  18. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    That makes more sense. It was converted to 12V positive ground and you kept it that way. 56 Fords came from the factory with 12V negative ground. After that anything is possible.
     
  19. junkyardjeff
    Joined: Jul 23, 2005
    Posts: 8,047

    junkyardjeff
    Member

    Was it a English made Ford,I think the brits used positive ground on 12 volt systems.
     
  20. Y-Blokkah
    Joined: Oct 19, 2012
    Posts: 167

    Y-Blokkah
    Member
    from Anna, Tx

     
  21. Y-Blokkah
    Joined: Oct 19, 2012
    Posts: 167

    Y-Blokkah
    Member
    from Anna, Tx

    My 56 Monarch is an original car, and the 312 distributor has both mechanical AND vac advance
     
  22. One of the first things I did when I got my '56 was put a '59 distributor in it & installed a Mallory electronic ignition. Big difference.
     

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2021 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.