I wrote an entry on my blog dedicated to the installation of the PerTronix Ignitor electronic ignition conversion for a Ford flathead and thought I'd share on

I ordered this product based on the Amazon reviews describing it's simplicity and reliability. The reviews didn't lie.

This is what came in the box. The ring on top is the "magnet sleeve" that fits over your rotor shaft. Bottom left is the receiver and ignition plate and on the right is the little baggy of hardware.


There is a sheet of instructions which are brief but thorough. It tells you in detail what you how to run their set up.

It covers all the technical stuff about what primary resistance your ignition coil needs to be, wiring diagram, etc.

This set-up is just about idiot proof, and this thing comes with a 30 WEEK replacement warranty which they stand by.http://www.amazon.com/PerTronix-1283…


PerTronix offers it's own line of performance coils. If you want to eliminate the need for a condenser, which is what I did, I went with the Flame-Thrower 1.5 ohm Coil which is what Pertronix reccomends even though I had already purchased and installed a new coil.

For V8 applications you want to with the 1.5 ohm coil and for the I6 you want the 3.0 ohm.


These things come in chrome or black. I chose black for the stock look and because chrome seems to look dirty fasterhttp://www.amazon.com/PerTronix-4001…


This is the stock set-up. With the cap and rotor removed you can see the breaker points, condenser, rotor shaft, and vacuum advance plate. Most of this is removed and replaced with the new system.This setup uses a cam-follower to open and close the points as the rotor shafts spins with the rotation of the crank.The advance plate is actuated by vacuum to advance the spark as the RPMs rise.

This is the PerTronix system installed. It's clean, tidy and eliminates all those moving parts and any need for maintenance, including lubrication.


The kit replaces the points by screwing down the ignitor plate to the old breaker plate. This allows your advance mechanism to still do it's job.
Just two screws and it's in.

This conversion reduces clutter under the distributor cap by making a lot of the wires and junk related to the points useless.

The whole conversion was done in less than an hour.

By reducing the number of the moving parts in the distributor you also remove the possibility that they can fail. There is no part-on-part contact, nothing rubs on anything else. After the installation was complete I tried to start the car and it wouldn't go at first.Turns out I didn't have the module grounded properly. I took the advance plate back off and reattached the ground and whaddya know it cranked right up.


To finish up the installation I twisted the red and black wires coming from the distributor and sleeved them in heat shrink to protect them and give them a clean appearance. Then I cut the wires to length and crimped on the terminals, heat shrinked those, and wired up the coil.

With the stock points I had the timing set in advance, but when I checked the timing after the electronic ignition was installed it was dead on time, no longer advanced. After advancing the timing it starts right up, just like it used to.

Right off I noticed that the engine revs faster now. It feels a little faster too, I would not be surprised if it was literally faster on the stopwatch.

The sweet spot for cruising was right around 55 mph before, going faster felt like I had to push it harder than was comfortable. Now the sweet spot is up on the other side 60, a notable and worthwhile gain.

Was this all the Pertronix product? It could be, but the ignition conversion wasn't the only variable here.

The new Pertronix coil spits 40,000 volts, which I would hazard to guess is higher than stock and a hotter spark definitely can improve power. Resetting the timing could have something to do with the better performance too.

I won't ever have to set points again which is good because it's not particularly fun and I'm not particularly good at it. My points will never short and fuse together and my car won't ever run like crap again because my points got dirty.

This because I made the easy and relatively inexpensive, about 100 buck for the coil and module, switch to electronic ignition. There is a reason why the automotive industry no longer uses points. This is a good way to lend a little more reliability to your vintage engine without investing a ton of time and money, all while maintaining a stock appearance if that's what you're into. Bring your flatty up to speed!