Negative ground vs positive ground discussion

rkrochen

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I decided to open a discussion regarding what really is the best method of grounding either positive or negative or is there a difference in the end.
Generally in North America we utilize negative ground although there was some early designs incorporating positive ground.
In Europe they have traditionally used positive ground.
While I was taking my apprenticeship the teachers were discussing how power flows in the battery and its circuit. They demonstrated that current actually flows negative to positive. They utilized videos showing a spark jumping from the negative terminal to the cable which clearly shows direction of current flow. This seems to be fine but I started wondering how the ignitions system works if this is true.
The coil produces current that flows through the distributor the spark plugs wires and then spark plugs. My question is simple if current flows from the battery negative cable to the block that makes the block a negative. For the ignition system if we use the same thought that current flows from negative which would be the coil to positive which would then be the block however we know the block is negative so current should not flow as we are sending current from a negative to another negative.
With this in mind the positive ground method is actually correct as it makes the block a positive.
So how does negative ground work.
Can someone explain this. It took me four years to get an answer that may or may not be correct.
I am sure this will create some interesting responses and am interested in hearing them.
 
I decided to open a discussion regarding what really is the best method of grounding either positive or negative or is there a difference in the end.
Generally in North America we utilize negative ground although there was some early designs incorporating positive ground.
In Europe they have traditionally used positive ground.
While I was taking my apprenticeship the teachers were discussing how power flows in the battery and its circuit. They demonstrated that current actually flows negative to positive. They utilized videos showing a spark jumping from the negative terminal to the cable which clearly shows direction of current flow. This seems to be fine but I started wondering how the ignitions system works if this is true.
The coil produces current that flows through the distributor the spark plugs wires and then spark plugs. My question is simple if current flows from the battery negative cable to the block that makes the block a negative. For the ignition system if we use the same thought that current flows from negative which would be the coil to positive which would then be the block however we know the block is negative so current should not flow as we are sending current from a negative to another negative.
With this in mind the positive ground method is actually correct as it makes the block a positive.
So how does negative ground work.
Can someone explain this. It took me four years to get an answer that may or may not be correct.
I am sure this will create some interesting responses and am interested in hearing them.
It’s a choice. It appears that corrosion of wiring and components would be a factor, but I am certainly not an expert.
I found this discussion:

What are the tradeoffs for positive vs. negative ground?
 
In my memory, positive ground systems were much more prone to corroded battery terminals. Also remember that the primary winding of the ignition coil is only grounded through the points or ignition module. Reversing the primary cinnections on the coil will reverse the secondary current. The old test for cecondary polarity was to make the spark jump from the coil wire (or a plug wire) to the lead in a lead pencil and from thence to the block. If the spark "flared" between the pencil and the block, all was good. If the "flare" was on the other side, the coil connection needed to be reversed.
Back many years ago, a friend replaced the battery in his Volvo. The car ran poorly and the radio did not work. When we realized that the battery had been reversed and we changed the connection, all was good. The old Volvo had a generator, so it survived where an alternatod would have been "fried"! Lindsay
 
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