Pleasant Surprise from Cardone #2!

Electrical & Ignition

  1. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Having bought a re-manufactured 30-3817 distributor from AutoZone over a year ago with decent improvement in my ignition, I noticed the "flat" acceleration had not been alleviated but in light of the unarguable overall improvement in performance, I considered my $38 well spent, and still do. Still, when I found that the vacuum advance apparently was never anything BUT DECORATIVE on that particular unit, I resolved to remedy the matter as soon as I could afford to. Last week, I bought a brand new 84-3817 Cardone "Select" from CarId for $78, which, considering the outrageous price of vacuum advances for my 66 383 2V, is a BARGAIN of the First Order!

    I popped it in this evening, fired Mathilda up with an immediate, obvious improvement again, in part due to the fact that replacing points had come due again, as I normally do twice annually, but also with the added bonus of a WORKING vacuum advance! :D I took Mathilda out on the highway with the utmost satisfaction. Unlike the reman dizzie, which was "Hecho in Mexico con puntas de merde" this set, made in China, surprisingly is very solidly made all through with good heavy duty points and overall top quality workmanship. THAT pleasant surprise seems born out in the initial performance tonight, though I will follow up this post in about a week if anything adverse occurs. Otherwise, consider these a "Good Deal" and a viable alternative to more expensive electronic units.

    I for one am HUGELY pleased I can continue to run a traditional breaker point ignition with some assurance of newly manufactured replacement parts that will work. I guess Cardone IS exercising good quality control with the sino-slave plant they hired to turn out this product.
     
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  2. CBODY67

    CBODY67 Old Man with a Hat

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    I know that Chinese parts tend to get a bad rap for their alleged (sometimes rightfully so) "inexpensiveness" in quality and materials. But what they build is determined by their customer, not specifically by the vendor/contractor. Being the go-to low cost provider, usually, a company that desires to have a lower price point product usually ends up in China or similar. I term those things "the 30000 miles parts" as the typical buyer just wants something to get them a little farther down the road until they can get a different vehicle. Gates came out with a "Charter" line of belts that sold for about $3.00 each and they sold very well in the "blue collar" parts of town auto supplies ( I had a friend that worked/managed one for several years). When he would try to upsell the customers, "I just need something to last a year until I can get another car" was the typical reply. A year of so later, they'd be back needing a new belt for the same car . . . instant replay.

    Glad Mathilda is smiling again!
    CBODY67
     
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  3. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Ah yes, and she is smiling broadly too! I had to slightly re-time and tune tonight, to optimize her. Got the following running data:

    Vacuum: ~19 in.
    RPM: 600
    Dwell < : 37.5 degrees *
    Oil pressure: 25 psi
    Temp: 195 F
    Timing: -12.5 degrees BTDC after adjustment from ~ -15 degrees.

    The 19 inches vacuum at idle was consistent up through 1500 rpm.

    * This motor hits this high dwell with the points gapped to .017" as recommended by the FSM and other authoritative sources. I have for past tune-ups reduced the gap to .016" to get the dwell angle down to 32 degrees. I'm sure Cardone set the gap at .017". Given that vacuum IS better with this, I'm inclined to leave the dwell a little high and see how she runs for the next month. That's an EXCELLENT old 383 in Tilly! The compression data looks like a bell curve, with each side showing near 160 psi for the middle cylinders, with the end cylinders down to the upper 120s, or 130 psi. She doesn't burn more than a tablespoon or 2 of oil in a month, though leaks will do a bit more. All told, for a motor with WELL over 100 kilo-miles on it, I'm quite pleased with Bill Weertman's engineering.
     
  4. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Post Script: Replaced the points with my Mopar 2098244 ones. After doing so and a little touch and go with exactly gapping at .017 inches, I took off for a test drive and for the first time inadvertently spun the tires on takeoff! Dwell again is at 37 degrees, and I moved timing to ~ 13 degrees BTDC, pulling ~18.5 inches vacuum, NO knocks on flooring the gas either.

    The Sino-points are better than MOST Turd-World made ones, brass contact screws, good spring and big rubbing block for the precisely octagonal distributor cam, but genuine Mopar is better again by the same contrast and then some. I wonder where their vacuum advance is made. 'Twould be nice to score another for the reman they did for me with the worthless pot on it. Oh well.... another tinker job for a rainy day here.
     
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  5. detmatt

    detmatt Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    Dang, she sounds like she’s running great!
     
  6. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    She really is! Hard to beat the $70.54 + shipping I spent on CarId for this solution. She's running COOL now too, w the Cold Case radiator. I still have a host of issues to address, brakes, rear suspension, fuel sending unit, carburetor, bad lifter, timing chain, fan clutch, tail light lenses just to name the IMMEDIATELY KNOWN problems, but YES, she is RUNNING GREAT now! :D
     
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  7. Turboomni

    Turboomni Old Man with a Hat

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    I hope my story ends like yours. Dug into the previous owners tune Abit other than setting points plugs. She ran ok but as I said in another thread the vacuum advance was hooked to the wrong port. Dwell was about 33 and steady. swapped ports on the vacuum advance and she wouldnt run. Upped the idle screw and got it running and put a timing light on it and it was 3 to 4 degrees btdc!. It was using the vacuum cannister to hold a base timing and nothing else. I stopped for the evening and got it to 9 btdc and it still wasn't happy although better. I will shoot for 12 to 13 degrees tomorrow. If sorted out I would think starts will be much better as there is little vacuum cranking it. This stuff is rather new to me and a little experience was from the distant past in the 70's. Any tips and advice would be appreciated.
     
  8. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Have you read any of the tuning tips from folks like Allpar? MOST useful! You want that -12.5 degrees BTDC. Dwell normally is steady, unless you have a wonky timing chain or the cam gear is chipped. A motor will run w/o the vac advance, as I lamented for over 2 yrs, but they run sluggish when you need the quick pickup. So long as you have the vacuum advance pulled off a source below the carburetor, like the port they put on them which opens into the manifold space itself, you will be fine. My Stromberg WWC carb just feeds the vac advance right below the point where it seats to the manifold. Simple and solid.

    I plan to invest in a little MoPar timing tape to mark my balancer better, after a good scrubbing. The white nail polish or white-out works well enough up to ~ -15 degrees but to really total up how much timing an engine has, one needs to go through from no vac advance to full at high rpm to account for the mechanical advance correctly too. For now, I'm pretty pleased w my setup, but work is yet needed.....
     
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  9. Turboomni

    Turboomni Old Man with a Hat

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    Thanks for the reply. I too replaced my distributor with a Cardone unit.
     
  10. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Some ADVICE NOW: 1.) Change out the breaker points, preferably w some NOS Mopar ones, or something from folks around here wheich are compatible.

    2.) Be DOUBLE DAMNED SURE TO DO THE SAME W THE CONDENSER!

    MINE DIED THIS MORNING!!! costing me $50 in lost work! Again, get something of GOOD Made in U.S. quality or the Standard AL111 at the least. The Chinese-chickenshit stuff doesn't last worth a damn. So far, the distributor itself, vac advance included, is doing quite well, but they can't make DECENT points or condensers. I repeat, CAN'T.
     
  11. halifaxhops

    halifaxhops Retired USAF MSGT (SW) yes navy also. FCBO Gold Member

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  12. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Ah, you have some left! I saw a posting from March but seeing how rapidly yours were going then, I found some Mopar 2098058 (Ch103) for $8 ea and grabbed a couple. The damned Chinese, Mexicans or worst of all, the Indians can't make decent condensers to save their worthless lives. Appallingly BAD crap! Standard Blue Streak stuff is the only new name brand I would resort to in emergencies.

    Thus far, the new sino-vacuum advance works. The breaker plate appears to be made of the common zinc plated steel we see so much of in modern hardware. The octagonal cam is finished to nice sharp pointed angles lacking the forgiving rounding of older Mopar stuff, though this may in part be due to much wear. The sharper angle allows for NO slop in gapping the breaker, but this gives a GOOD response when you set it just right.

    Last night I got Tilly home on some unlabelled new condenser I had in the glove box, and switched it for a good U.S.A. made NOS one I'd copped a yr back as part of a set sold under the "Preferred" name and made in New York state. The dwell sits at 34 degrees with this setup and the motor again is pulling near 19 inches vacuum, so I'm going to roll with this setup for awhile and will report for good or ill on this new reproduction product. Am curious now about how well it will wear.
     
  13. halifaxhops

    halifaxhops Retired USAF MSGT (SW) yes navy also. FCBO Gold Member

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    Sounds like it is covered, hey just FYI with a sharp points cam you need good points spring tension or you will get point float at the higher rpms. stock is usually 20-24
     
  14. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    Oh she's purring perfectly now! Vacuum back up to 19 inches. Dwell 34 degrees. One should expect slightly higher dwell as literally, the points have a longer surface on which they will stay closed, charging the coil and condenser before a prompt, sharp opening. I'm using Mopar's stock 2098244 points and yes, they're set to about a 20 oz pull. I DON'T plan to ever run this motor over 4k rpm! She has a 2.91 or maybe 2.76 open rear end behind her, which I LIKE, but isn't meant for rapid accelerations.
     
  15. halifaxhops

    halifaxhops Retired USAF MSGT (SW) yes navy also. FCBO Gold Member

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    Nice!
     
  16. mr. fix it

    mr. fix it Old Man with a Hat

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    I’m reading this thread and thinking that for the time spent with points/condenser setup, why not convert to an oem electronic setup?
    Install it, set it and forget it as long as you have a spare of the ballast resistors you are set for life
    For the purists P&C are fine but don’t forget the ignition on or you will fry them in a few minutes if I recall correctly.
    With the electronic setup you can even hide the little orange box out of sight provided it can get cool air and again set for life!
     
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  17. Turboomni

    Turboomni Old Man with a Hat

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    Actually if you leave a Pertronix Ignitor 1 with the engine not running ignition on it will to fry.
    Well my little saga has ended. Miss on cylinder one ,vacuum advance hooked to manifold vacuum not ported vacuum. Vacuum lines plugged was running 4 degrees btdc. Anyways put the vacuum advance to ported vacuum ,plugged manifold vacuum line on the carb. Went to 12.5 degrees btdc with new points ,condenser,cap,rotor,6 volt ignition coil and she has.never run better. Pulling 20 inches of vacuum,,30 degrees dwell this Woolly Mammouth low compression 440 is sucking gas happily!!!
     
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  18. Turboomni

    Turboomni Old Man with a Hat

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    So far my hot start problems are gone since there's no real vacuum when cranking the engine was trying to start with 4btdc. I understand what you say about electronic ignition. I remember building a Heathkit capacitive discharge ignition kit for my 68 Oldsmobile Cutlass. I was about to abandon points but she is running so good now !
     
  19. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Senior Member

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    I stick w points because they're easy to replace, inexpensive and with skill acquired over 40 years of driving with them, VERY adjustable! I had the orange box and a big Accel coil on my 1966 New Yorker back in 04-05. THAT was MORE trouble than a breaker point ignition. I've looked over the Pertronix and like modern setups but with 'Tilly now purring along pulling 19 inches vacuum on my conventional ignition (for 1966) I don't expect any of the solid state stuff would gain me anything. Besides, I can't fit a whole distributor in my glove box.
     
  20. rapidtrans

    rapidtrans Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Have never fried a set of points by leaving the key in “start” mode. I’ve toasted two Pertronics II systems. 1st time the key was left in “start”. 2nd time it just died. Installed new points, condenser, coil and ballast resister. Car starts better both cold and hot.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
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