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Technical mallory dual point? mopar

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by mcmopar, Jul 9, 2017.

  1. mcmopar
    Joined: Nov 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,590

    mcmopar
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Strum, wi

    I was at Iola this weekend and I found a new Mallory dual point distributor for $40, had to buy it. I always like a deal and wanted to run one in my 37 Dodge pickup. I know nothing about these except I need to buy a dwell meter and a timing light. I haven't had the motor running in 2 years, would you get it running with stock stuff then switch to the dual point? The motor already is a 1969 318 points motor. Why is there no vacuum advance on it? I'm sure I have more questions just don't know what to ask. what would a good dwell meter and timing light cost me?
    Tony
     
  2. 302GMC
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 6,452

    302GMC
    Member
    from Idaho

    I'd get it running right with the stock ignition, or find an Auto-Lite factory dual point. That way, I'd have a shiny new Mallory in a box to show to people, and an engine that was reliable.
     
    uncleandy 65, dan31 and stillrunners like this.
  3. earlymopar
    Joined: Feb 26, 2007
    Posts: 1,288

    earlymopar
    Member

    I threw one of those in the trash 20 years ago. I wouldn't use it for anything other than a base for an electronic conversion.

    - EM
     
  4. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,365

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    To answer your question, most older Mallory dual points were mechanical advance only. I kinda make a specialty of them and have some knowledge and a bit of literature. If you can post the model number here, I can probably tell you more about it; what it is for and what options it has (tach drive, etc.). Is this one with a "flattop" two piece cap? If so the cap is worth more than you paid for the whole unit. Does it have the brass "trash can" condenser? If it's good (the cases on most of them are split) it's almost worth the $40. I run one on the 331 Chrysler in my race car and one on the '51 Merc in my '51 Ford coupe. There is nothing wrong with them and they are reliable and run fine. The only thing you may be lacking is a little in the fuel economy because of no vacuum advance.

    Like I said, the caps are around, but (relatively) expensive. If yours is new, you should be set for the next 50 years. I have had no problem getting rotors or points. In that vein, I have most of the miscellaneous parts you may need, including the trash can condensers (that I reproduce). Get hold of me if you need anything.

    As to getting the engine running, it is a little more fussy adjusting the points (two sets instead of one), but if you're careful this will work just fine. (If it is new, it's probably a better bet.) The points gap and dwell should be on the tag on the side.

    As to you two other guys : this is the H.A.M.B.; I hope you don't have automatics, A/C, and pastel paint!:p And before you throw any more out, get hold of me.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2017

  5. I put a Pertronix unit in my DP Mallory 4 years ago, and haven't looked back. Runs better, starts easier, and picked up a bit on fuel mileage.
     
    Deuces, Montana1 and hotroddon like this.
  6. To the original question "Why doesn't it have vacuum advance?"
    It's because they were made as "Race" distributors where vacuum advance is of no value.
    Vac advance on the street will help with mileage and keeping the motor cooler on the highway.
     
    Truck64, Deuces and stillrunners like this.
  7. greybeard360
    Joined: Feb 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,557

    greybeard360
    Member

    You can adjust the curve in those to work well on the street. Adjust the point gap and put it in. If you are playing with old cars.... You should already have a dwell meter and timing light.

    Sent from my Moto G Play using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    tubman likes this.
  8. RodStRace
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,395

    RodStRace
    Member

    tubman, glad you have fun with these.
    To OP, they are really poor for a normally aspirated rod on the street. Fussy, no vacuum advance, expensive hard to find parts.
    The later ones in addition to being a poor design had the "Super Shops sez pull value out so we can advertise them cheaper" mentality that is why great names like Levi's and Schwinn have been ruined by Walmart.
    If OP is asking how to set it up and get it running, it's a good bet he will not have the tools or experience to get it curved, set and installed to be trouble free. A stock single point will provide all the triggering needed at typical street RPMS, be easier to set up and service, and the parts will be cheaper and easier to find.
     
    Frankie47 likes this.
  9. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,365

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    My only comment is that I am referring to the older "flattop" Mallory's. The latest ones ARE crap. Again, remember this is the H.A.M.B., not "Beater Banter" or "Modern Mopars".:D
     
  10. lostone
    Joined: Oct 13, 2013
    Posts: 1,473

    lostone
    Member
    from kansas

    I ran one in a 400 Pontiac for 8 yrs with no problems. Still have the distributor.

    To set my dwell I just pulled the distributor out, changed points, set them with a feeler gauge and dropped it back in, set timing, move on.

    Like stated it's mechanical so you will have to set it up which is possible with a timing light and some skill. Luckily I had access to a distributor machine at the time.
     
  11. I've had a Mallory YL 579 HP twin point dissy in the 318 poly in my 1940 Dodge for about 40yrs without any problem, yep its a mechanical advance, points set at 16thou, last set about 15yrs ago.....lol..........runs fine............this dissy was supposedly for the 273-318 LA series but I havn't had the heart to tell it that its in an earlier version..............lol...........have both an electronic aftermarket dissy and a fake magneto also but either will require a small bit of firewall surgery & I'm lazy.........lol........andyd
     
  12. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 47,365

    squirrel
    Member

    Set the points with a feeler gauge, and see how it does when you feel like experimenting and learning something.

    The stock distributor will probably work fine for you, but it's always neat to put old hot rod parts on a car. even if you decide later to take them off.

    (the condenser is probably the most likely part of it to have issues)

    I'm running a Mallory dual point in my "race" car, which gets a lot of street miles. I've spend time playing with a couple of them. It seems to run ok, I suppose, it'll do 130 or so in the quarter mile, which 99.99999% of cars equipped with electronic ignition won't do.
     
  13. Mark Roby
    Joined: Sep 29, 2015
    Posts: 96

    Mark Roby

    Now THAT was an answer!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    Deuces and Alonzo "Lon" Wilson like this.
  14. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 20,105

    Moriarity
    SUPER MODERATOR
    Staff Member

    I run flat cap mallorys in my 331 caddy powered 40, my 364 nailhead powered 55 chev and my 61 vette with a mana fre small block. every one of them run great. set the points, drop it in and go. do not listen to all the naysayers here. Cars ran with point distibutors for decades and I for one do not understand the fear of point ignitions these days.
     
  15. mcmopar
    Joined: Nov 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,590

    mcmopar
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Strum, wi

    Thanks for the response. I will get it running with stock electronics first. I am trying to get it ready for the H.A.M.B drags.
    Tubman thanks for the response. The number is 2557901. It still has the cloth between the points and everything is new inside.
    It makes sense on the vacuum advance now that it's said.
    And for the nasayer a out my skills to so this I an VERY confident that I can do it, just gotta ask questions. My dad said I can do anything and so far he was right.
    I hope to talk to a few of ya this weekend at the meltdown drags.
    Tony
     
  16. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 47,365

    squirrel
    Member

    at least it is for a small block. the small and big block mopar distributors look the same, but they go different directions, which can cause problems since the mechanical advance becomes retard if you run it backwards.
     
  17. 73RR
    Joined: Jan 29, 2007
    Posts: 6,514

    73RR
    Member

    OK, I'm a bit confused by the post and the replies.... Is there no vac can on the current 318 distributor or does the Mallory lack the vacuum?
    If the 318 dizzy has no vacuum the it might very well be a lean-burn piece except for the part number given....or is that the Mallory pn? :confused::confused:

    .
     
  18. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 47,365

    squirrel
    Member

    no vacuum on the Mallory, is what I understood (or assumed) from reading the post.
     
  19. upspirate
    Joined: Apr 15, 2012
    Posts: 2,243

    upspirate
    Member

    Back in '73 I ran one in my old Duster 340 when the stock Presto-lite dual point bit the dust and it worked fine.

    I did find that it was much easier to pull it, set my drink next to the vise, and clamp it in the vise to set it up rather than reaching to the rear of the engine to work on it.

    The way those old Mopars were, you either re-installed it correctly, or 180 degree out, very easy
     
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  20. mcmopar
    Joined: Nov 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,590

    mcmopar
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Strum, wi

    No advance on the dual point one but there is on the stock one. The part number is for the mallory. I was told that it has been on the shelf for over 20 years. The cap looks like a bakelite cap. Deep maroon in color.
    Tony
     
  21. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,365

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Ooops! I thought it was a flattop! I have had a couple of the later ones, but for 8BA flatheads. It was odd, one had a plastic "key" you could insert and set the total advance. That one worked fine for me with total advance set to 24 degrees. The other one (I think it was newer) didn't have the provision for the key and was set for an SBC advance curve, which is totally unsuited for a flathead. That number tells me nothing , so I guess I'll bow out now.
     
  22. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 47,365

    squirrel
    Member

    the number is still listed on the summit web page, although it's not available to buy. It probably works with the advance key, which is a later model thing on most of the Mallory distributor (later meaning the ones they made in the 1970s and later used it)

    Like he said, it's not a big deal to swap the distributor on a mopar.
     
  23. Just another point of interest is the shaft on the big block distributors are shorter than the small block


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  24. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 47,365

    squirrel
    Member

    I thought there was something like that. I haven't messed with them for a long time, so I forget the details.
     
  25. RodStRace
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,395

    RodStRace
    Member

    tubman, I hope I didn't step on your toes. I also dig working on older aftermarket and HP stuff, but I prefer having it be an improvement over basic stocker stuff. Flatty stuff and 6V stuff needed help. By the early-mid 60s (the time frame when the SBM came out), all three had fairly decent 12v single (and a few dual) point distributors.
    On those newer Mallorys, we both agree they are not the same. Those were the ones I was expecting from a swap meet 40 buck purchase.

    To OP, I mention tools because having a distributor machine (Yeah, I've got one in the garage) makes this a lot easier than test, adjust, measure difference, repeat until you are happy than without. The number of shops with such a critter is moving from endangered to darn near extinct! When was the last time you saw a 'scope in a 'tune up' shop? Same thing, only even more esoteric.

    This isn't trying to backpedal, just a deeper explanation of my original post. What you got is IMHO not going to provide any better performance over a good rebuilt stock unit. Those stockers can be modified (slots opened or brazed, springs changed, vacuum cans adjusted) as much as the dual point. The DP design simply allows longer dwell (coil saturation), which has been answered even better by other non-HAMB designs (EI) and is moot using a good coil and staying under 4500 RPM (street driving) with a single point.
     
    Ragmanray likes this.
  26. I once tried to put a big block one in a small block and could not figure out why it wouldn't fit into the oil pump drive......haven't ever forgotten


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  27. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,365

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I guess you just don't get what this as all about.
     
    Moriarity likes this.
  28. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,347

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Yes. Why would anybody want some old 'trick' part to run on their engine? Especially on this site...:p
     
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  29. Just pulled a flat top two piece cap style non vac dual point out of the small block in my Chevy LUV. After the condenser went bad I converted it to PerTronix but it was really tough to get it to run consistently without pinging. It's an 11.75:1 motor, ported iron heads, early Z28 manifold, Erson Cam and a Holley 650 double pumper. It's run low 12's at OCIR. Since we have a half dozen distributor machines at work I decided to see what was up. Well, the advance was all over the place, wouldn't make the same curve twice. I really dug the look and it's been in there since 1975 but I decided not to fuck with it, put a new PerTronix vac advance stock look distributor in it and it hasn't run better in 40 years. So for now it looks cool hanging on the wall and maybe some day I'll mess with it, but the new curve and vac advance sure make it run nice.

    Sent from my XT1650 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  30. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,365

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Don - One question : Did it run OK before the condenser went bad and you installed the Pertronix?
     

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