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Coil wire mistake, did I fry something?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Bill Van Dyke, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. Bill Van Dyke
    Joined: May 21, 2008
    Posts: 810

    Bill Van Dyke
    Member

    Dropped in a new Pertronix ignition and a Flamethrower coil in my SBC. After cranking with no results, I discovered I had hooked the red and black wires from the distributor correctly, but for some reason (known only to Murphy) I had hooked the wire from the switch to the coil to the - pole of the coil. Fixed that by hooking the ign wire to the positive pole. Still no start. Checked power to the + pole and it showed good. Then used one of those air gap thingies between the coil wire and the top coil outlet. Can't see a spark. By hooking the ign wire to the wrong pole on the coil and cranking the engine over did I fry something in the coil or ignition? What should I try next?
     
  2. Bill Van Dyke
    Joined: May 21, 2008
    Posts: 810

    Bill Van Dyke
    Member

  3. Dapostman
    Joined: Apr 24, 2011
    Posts: 294

    Dapostman
    Member

    I've never worked with a Pertronix, but if you put power to the positive and break the negative connection, you should get a single spark, if you don't, the coil is bad. A buzzer will give a constant spark, if hooked in series with the primary.
     
  4. Bill Van Dyke
    Joined: May 21, 2008
    Posts: 810

    Bill Van Dyke
    Member

    Thanks JULY. Although unused, the coil has been on the shelf for about 5 years. Are you saying that with the + hooked up and the ign on I should get a spark when I touch the negative distributor wire to it's post?
     
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  5. blown240
    Joined: Aug 2, 2005
    Posts: 1,656

    blown240
    Member
    from So-cal

    if you give power to the + side; whenever you ground the - side you should get a single spark to the coil wire.
     
  6. Splinter
    Joined: May 14, 2005
    Posts: 1,113

    Splinter
    Member

    Try swapping out the coil for another- if no spark, you burned the Pertronix unit.
     
  7. Splinter
    Joined: May 14, 2005
    Posts: 1,113

    Splinter
    Member

    But I wouldn't tell them that when you go to return it.....those solid state ciruits are finicky somethimes....
     
  8. Bill Van Dyke
    Joined: May 21, 2008
    Posts: 810

    Bill Van Dyke
    Member

  9. blown240
    Joined: Aug 2, 2005
    Posts: 1,656

    blown240
    Member
    from So-cal

    Another thing to check is that the magnet on the the distributor shaft is lined up with the top of the pickup. I had the same problem with a GMC V6 once, and it ended up being that the magnet wasn't quite lined up correctly.
     
  10. badshifter
    Joined: Apr 28, 2006
    Posts: 3,172

    badshifter
    Member

    Yeah, screw the vendor. Make them pay for your mistake.
     
  11. Bill Van Dyke
    Joined: May 21, 2008
    Posts: 810

    Bill Van Dyke
    Member

    Never entered my head. My generation doesn't think that way.
     
  12. Do you have power to the unit while cranking? Ignition ON and ignition start are two different circuits...
     
  13. tricky steve
    Joined: Aug 4, 2008
    Posts: 380

    tricky steve
    Member
    from fenton,mo.

    yep, you fried it, i did the same exact thing .. dang it
     
  14. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,687

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    I doubt you fried it. Make sure you have positive 12v. to the + side, then hook the red and black of the Pertronix to the correct + and - sides of the coil.
    Be sure you did NOT put a ground wire on the - side of your coil!!!! If it is grounded it will ground the output and you wont get spark. I've seen Pertronix's wired backwards and reversed them and all worked fine. I've also seen people ground the neg.- side and they wont work. Once the ground was removed and wires reversed they worked fine.
    If it doesn't work fine I'd suspect the coil once it's correctly wired. Depending on the vehicle, if it has a resistor inline on the 12v. feed, be sure to remove that too. They reduce voltage to around 8-9V. and Pertronix need full 12V.
     
  15. sqhd
    Joined: Sep 9, 2006
    Posts: 71

    sqhd
    Member

    Yup, you fried it. Did it too on my Buick. Get another one.

    Carl
     
  16. Ebbsspeed
    Joined: Nov 11, 2005
    Posts: 5,035

    Ebbsspeed
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Actually, the spark is created when you "REMOVE" the ground, not apply it. The spark is caused by the collapsing of the magnetic field created by the primary windings inducing a voltage spike in the secondary windings.

    I'm not sure if reversing the polarity on a Pertronix will cause it to fail or not, sounds like some posts above have made that mistake, corrected it, and were OK. Others, not so much. If your coil checks out OK, then you're likely a member of the "others" group.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011

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