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Technical Ford Loadmatic distributors

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jimmy six, Nov 21, 2021.

  1. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,297

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I’ve been looking in threads for the reference to shop I believe in the Northwest which rebuilds these and can covert them to centrifugal. I’ve looked in other sites I frequent but have not found the reference…..Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. sdluck
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,822

    sdluck
    Member

    GMC Bubbba?
     
  3. flatjack
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 945

    flatjack
    Member

    I've never heard of anyone doing that.
     
  4. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 19,225

    gimpyshotrods
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Unless there is no suitable later-model replacement, or aftermarket replacement, a centrifugal retrofit is in order.

    What engine?
     
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  5. jimmy six likes this.
  6. nosford
    Joined: Feb 7, 2011
    Posts: 597

    nosford
    Member

    There used to be two guys in Woodburn Oregon that built Chrysler and Y Block distributors but I don't know of any conversions from a Loadmatic to centrifugal. They had updated electronic units with ball bearing upper housings but have since went out of business last I heard. There is a company making almost the same thing called TSP (top street performance) that makes a Y Block unit that is a plug and play unit and has the centrifugal advance under the rotor much like a MSD or GM unit. I don't see it listed on their site anymore but you can look and get an idea what it looks like. I have a new one of those I would be willing to sell. Mark https://www.topstreetperformance.com/
     
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  7. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,297

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    [QUOTE="gimpyshotrods, post: 14281854, member: 82854"

    What engine?[/QUOTE]

    54-56 yblock. Aftermarket are larger and the some of the 57-64 are using later SBF parts that are not lining up. Good ones are getting scarce.
     
  8. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 35,179

    Tman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Did you call Timmy? He may know. @mctim64
     
  9. speedshifter
    Joined: Mar 3, 2008
    Posts: 307

    speedshifter
    Member

    I really do not believe it is possible to rbld a Loadamatic dist. to a centrifugal dist. There is simply not enough room in a shallow Loadamatic hsg. to incorporate a centrifugal advance unit.. speedshifter Greg White
     
  10. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 2,004

    RmK57
    Member

    If you convert to centrifugal advance or update to a modern distributor would you have replace the carburetor also? those LOM carbs had that spark control valve in them.
     
  11. jaracer
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 1,320

    jaracer
    Member

    Tony (Philbin Group) does a really good job on distributors, but I don't think he does a conversion.
     
  12. jaracer
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 1,320

    jaracer
    Member

    No, the centrifugal advance distributors don't need a venturi vacuum source. You can run the vacuum advance off ported or manifold vacuum. However, if you run a Load-O-Matic, you must have a carb with a venturi vacuum source.
     
  13. 55blacktie
    Joined: Aug 21, 2020
    Posts: 511

    55blacktie

    A CRT Performance electronic distributor will fit. Ted Eaton tested one and posted results on y-blocksforever.com. You can also go to eatonbalancing.com and read how to modify the Holley 4000 Teapot carburetor for compatibility with a 57-up distributor (including the CRT). However, you can't modify the Loadomatic distributor to work with 57-up carburetors. Your car will run, but not well.
     
  14. nosford
    Joined: Feb 7, 2011
    Posts: 597

    nosford
    Member

    54-56 yblock. Aftermarket are larger and the some of the 57-64 are using later SBF parts that are not lining up. Good ones are getting scarce.[/QUOTE]
    The TSP unit I bought is the same diameter as the stock unit and it has the correct length shaft and gear. Many of the units that were out there had a shaft that was 1/4" too short and the wrong gear, they were 289/302 units reboxed as Y-Block units. The too short shafts caused very little engagement into the oil pump driveshaft.
     
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  15. dana barlow
    Joined: May 30, 2006
    Posts: 4,564

    dana barlow
    Member
    from Miami Fla.
    1. Y-blocks

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  16. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,297

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thanks for the replies. I’m well aware of what’s out there and am trying to help out a fellow who is now starting to look for the replacement parts. 10 years ago things were not as bad and not as many pre-56 were being done that seem to want to keep the original style engine.
    I’m sure I read what I’m looking for just a few week’s ago. The weights on the top intrigues me…. Didn’t think that was possible.
     
  17. Truck64
    Joined: Oct 18, 2015
    Posts: 5,237

    Truck64
    Member
    from Ioway

    Some of the pre-57 LOM equipped engines had a distributor drive gear with a different # of teeth didn't they? Aka "can't get there from here".

    A lot of this stuff is not nearly as simple as it might seem at first, or somebody would have taken care of it already.
     
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  18. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,297

    jimmy six
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    The early ones 54 Fords and maybe Mercs.
     
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  19. drtrcrV-8
    Joined: Jan 6, 2013
    Posts: 1,524

    drtrcrV-8
    Member

    Remember to check the drive on the bottom of the Distributor : the earliest "Y-blocks"(Ford/ Mercury / Lincoln) had a blade & slot instead of the hex shaft. If they do, you will also need to change the shaft & oil pump to match the distributor
     
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  20. nosford
    Joined: Feb 7, 2011
    Posts: 597

    nosford
    Member

    The TSP unit I bought is the same diameter as the stock unit and it has the correct length shaft and gear. Many of the units that were out there had a shaft that was 1/4" too short and the wrong gear, they were 289/302 units reboxed as Y-Block units. The too short shafts caused very little engagement into the oil pump driveshaft.[/QUOTE]
    Here is a link to the TSP unit for a Y-block, they are out of stock but it shows the advance mechanism under the cap and the basic shape and size. It came with several different sets of springs for the advance weights. https://www.topstreetperformance.com/pro-series-ready-to-run-distributor-ford-y-block-3445
     
  21. nosford
    Joined: Feb 7, 2011
    Posts: 597

    nosford
    Member

    When I started researching Y Block distributors I went to this site and it was very helpful on everything EXCEPT for the 57 "ball bearing" distributor. No one could tell me the difference in that one year only and where was the ball bearing they were referring to. I ended up buying one and taking it apart and it was not what I expected at all. Takes the same points, cap, and rotor as the 58 and up but the vacuum advance is different as it has a straight arm opposed to a curved arm. This prevents installation of a pertronix module in the ball bearing 57 distributor, the mechanical advance mechanism is completely different as well. The ball bearing is the actual point plate itself and not the shaft as I expected. I will try to attach some pictures of the 57 unit. Mark IMG_0483.JPG IMG_0477.JPG IMG_0477.JPG IMG_0480.JPG IMG_0489.JPG
     
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  22. 55blacktie
    Joined: Aug 21, 2020
    Posts: 511

    55blacktie

    Ball bearings were used until 1959. You can use Pertronix I and II in the ball-bearing distributors, but not Pertronix III.
     
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  23. dana barlow
    Joined: May 30, 2006
    Posts: 4,564

    dana barlow
    Member
    from Miami Fla.
    1. Y-blocks

    I use a ball bearing dual point aftermarket kit,in my 57 Ford Dis.; Dyna-Flyte model # 378-D. <can still be found 4sale if you look,for about $50 for kit.= a lot more then in the early 60s. I should of got more kits.
    It replaces the Ford ball bearing plate with a new ball bearing plate that holds Dual Points**.
    I don't like Pertronix,if you do,be sure to have a extra unit with you. You can not fix them,when they stop,they are total dead crap. Yes,I do keep extra points an con. with me too,but that is much lower cost.
     
  24. nosford
    Joined: Feb 7, 2011
    Posts: 597

    nosford
    Member

    Interesting, I tried to install a pertronix 1 in this distributor and it hit the vacuum advance arm and prevented full movement. I installed the same pertronix part in a 1962 truck Y Block unit and it worked fine, not sure why except the later unit has a curved vacuum advance arm.
     
  25. Truck64
    Joined: Oct 18, 2015
    Posts: 5,237

    Truck64
    Member
    from Ioway

    It's possible to install the later style breaker plate on those. The ball bearing type are considered better, if they are serviceable. And that's the problem with all this stuff, it's getting worn by now and putting together a good unit can be tedious. Ask me how I know.

    The reluctors are hard to find. If you're running points especially it is important that the distributor cam lobes are smooth, not excessively worn. The reluctor slots too are prone to getting trashed. The "fat comma" centrifugal weights have steel pins that get worn flat where they ride in the reluctor slots. Dennis Carpenter has those weights. The reluctor slots can be brazed up and filed straight. What happens is the advance becomes erratic when all that stuff is loosey goosey.

    What I found is the bushing & distributor shaft are also prone to excessive wear by now, if you want a good points distributor without any sideplay, both need to be replaced. Now at that point you're looking at drilling and locating very accurately the distributor drive gear, as service replacement distributor shafts are not drilled. In effect it's a custom one off kind of thing.
     
  26. miker98038
    Joined: Jan 24, 2011
    Posts: 682

    miker98038
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    It’s FBO in Cottage Grove OR. Last post this page on Marty’s 368 Lincoln build. It’s not entire HAMB friendly, but it’s worth a look just to see the adaptor for the injection manifold and Weber’s.

    http://forums.y-blocksforever.com/Topic148849-15.aspx
     
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  27. 55blacktie
    Joined: Aug 21, 2020
    Posts: 511

    55blacktie

    People either love/hate the Pertronix conversion. Electronic distributors either work, or they don't. If I don't use a CRT Performance aftermarket distributor (pretty sure it's the same as TSP), I will put a Pertronix II in my 57 distributor. A family member has used a Pertronix I in his 65 Mustang for many years w/o issue.
     
  28. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,297

    jimmy six
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    I’m going to contact them… thanks. It wasn’t the HAMB where I read about it. It was on yblocksforever….
     
  29. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 17,467

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  30. Truck64
    Joined: Oct 18, 2015
    Posts: 5,237

    Truck64
    Member
    from Ioway

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