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Electronic Ignition


edwardatherton
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I have got the Lucas DM2 distributor on the 2-litre with standard points at the moment.

A while ago I 'made' a spare Magnetronic kit (supposed to be for the 25D4 dizzy) fit but it only lasted two days before dying, so back to points again. However while it had elec ign it ran noticeably better.

Can I fit a 25D4 from a 2.25 engine onto the 2-litre and put an elec ign kit on that, or can I get elec ign for the DM2 dizzy?

Any opinions on whether I go for Magnetronic (cheaper), Optronic (more money, but that much better?), or Aldon Ignitor?

The advantage of having a 25D4 dizzy is that I could swop that onto the 2.25 I am rebuilding for the day when the 2-litre has had enough!

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I have got the Lucas DM2 distributor on the 2-litre with standard points at the moment.

A while ago I 'made' a spare Magnetronic kit (supposed to be for the 25D4 dizzy) fit but it only lasted two days before dying, so back to points again. However while it had elec ign it ran noticeably better.

Can I fit a 25D4 from a 2.25 engine onto the 2-litre and put an elec ign kit on that, or can I get elec ign for the DM2 dizzy?

Any opinions on whether I go for Magnetronic (cheaper), Optronic (more money, but that much better?), or Aldon Ignitor?

The advantage of having a 25D4 dizzy is that I could swop that onto the 2.25 I am rebuilding for the day when the 2-litre has had enough!

the cheapest electonic igninition, well actually an amplifier is the maplins kit; this effectively reduces the current going through the points so they won't burn out.

The points will be the waek spot and more sophisticate systems do away with them either by having an optical sensor (lumention) or a magnetic sensor - believe the later metro dizzy has this and fits - Les Hension or Roger Barton know all about this?

Maplins cost is £ 10, lumention around £ 130, metrol about £ 20 from scrappies, dunno aboutthe others.

As for performance, not seen a side by side comparison but if you are on a budget, I'd try the maplins (I have one in a crossflow engine and when plaed with it sure does give a hooooooge spark, probably not as big as HFH though. If this is not up to your expectations throw money at the others.

Advantage of maplines is that is is easy to rewire to original points/condenser (that you keep spare) and whatever system you fit, keep hold of the original points so you can retrofit if the fancy electronics should fail (guess how I know about that?)

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I have got the Lucas DM2 distributor on the 2-litre with standard points at the moment.

A while ago I 'made' a spare Magnetronic kit (supposed to be for the 25D4 dizzy) fit but it only lasted two days before dying, so back to points again. However while it had elec ign it ran noticeably better.

Can I fit a 25D4 from a 2.25 engine onto the 2-litre and put an elec ign kit on that, or can I get elec ign for the DM2 dizzy?

Any opinions on whether I go for Magnetronic (cheaper), Optronic (more money, but that much better?), or Aldon Ignitor?

The advantage of having a 25D4 dizzy is that I could swop that onto the 2.25 I am rebuilding for the day when the 2-litre has had enough!

I don't know whether the later dizzy will fit your 2 litre engine, but I have had may maplins kit for about 4 years and it has been very good, the points don't wear perceptibly, as long as the heel which runs on the cam of the dizzy shaft is kept lubricated.

Out of interest I fitted the electronic ignition from a maestro as per many links on the net complete with coil. I had no noticeable performance benefits over the maplins and lucas cold coil, and it failed in less than a month (waste of money). Put the Maplins system and lucas gold coil back on, and it will probably stay that way. I run a 9:1 compression engine on LPG.

If you use a maplin's kit you can easily revert to standard beside the road by reconnecting the condensor and swapping a couple of wires.

This means that when you get your new engine, you can simply transfer the maplins kit to it, and a brand new Dizzy for the 2.25 is only £20 from the likes of Paddocks.

Of course you can buy a super duper MSD blaster ignition system or similar which may be better but will cost you 10 times as much.(Take a long while if ever to pay for that kind of upgrade on any potential fuel savings!)

John's suggestion of an EDIS 4 system may be a cheaper alternative than many of the other more expensive aftermarket systems.

Regards,

Diff

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I want something that doesn't need too much work to install and doesn't compromise refitting the points if necessary. Also, I'm tight, so don't want to spend much!

These are my current thoughst, comment/agree/disagree as necessary!

Magnetronic: Not too expensive. Could revert to points fairly quickly. Could I use the 25D baseplate in the DM2 dizzy so didn't have to swap dizzy completely? Could fit high-power coil.

Optronic: Quicker switching, only need to buy fitting kit to swap between dizzys. More dosh. Cannot fit sports coil - does this matter?

Maplins: Had one fitted briefly but as soon as a drop of water touched it, it died.

Mtero/Montego or EDIS4: Too much fiddling and/or using second hand components for my liking. I use this every day for work, so needs to be reliable.

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I put an Aldon electronic ignition kit in my series 3, fits easily and can be returned to points easily.

Given no trouble at all for three years, fit and forget.

A lot of race cars have it, and not overly expensive, visit Aldon Automotive site.

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For price you can't beat maplins, it's a simple answer which can often be a good thing.

I had Aldon Ignitor II on the 109 (V8) and it was very good, they are magnetically sensed but your assumption that optical will switch faster I think is incorrect, once triggered both devices will switch current at the same speed (the speed of the transistor or whatever it is) it's just the trigger bit that works differently.

The next version will have EDIS or maybe distributorless using a modified MegaSquirt V3.

It may be worth looking at building the maplins kit using a VB921 ignition driver (as used in the MegaSquirt) in place of the main power device as they have internal current limiting and are designed for triggering coils.

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Maplins: Had one fitted briefly but as soon as a drop of water touched it, it died.

I built mine in a slightly modificed ali box frrom maplins, AB12 if memory serves me well. you can pot it so that should make it as waterproof as it can ever be.... I take it you did not pot it?

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Maplins: Had one fitted briefly but as soon as a drop of water touched it, it died.

Hi Edward,

I fitted mine in a small cast ali box (which is also used as the heatsink) this is bolted to the bulkhead. The Landrover has often waded through water with a bow wave lapping over the front of the bonnet. You can spray a hose all over the engine and engine bay without any problem. Any circuit board should be protected from the elements.

There are plenty of options for electronic ignition out there and I couldn't say the Maplins is better than any of the others, but it is the cheapest.

Regards,

Diff

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Fit edis 4 - far better than any dizzy so long as you aint concerned with origionality.

Jon

x2

It is a lot more mucking around, but it's the best option.

No dizzy could ever come close to a well mapped ecu-dis setup.

No more water proofing dramas.

Welcome to the 21st century :D

my edis setup.

ps - where the fark is the finger smilie ?

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I have the Maplin ignition amplifier on mine, properly potted it has been great.

I also have the Ducillier dizzy (SIII) which has an external condenser so swapping back to conventional ignition is even easier than on a Lucas dizzy.

NB - if you do pot it, make sure you use proper potting compound as other two-parts get hot when they cure, and test it BEFORE potting!

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I changed the Lighteweight from 24V military spec ignition to a ducellier dizzy and Lumenition (Optronic) ignition - I got the whole lot secondhand (although still new in boxes, etc) reasonably cheaply, so it seemed like a good way forward. The lumenition kit worked faultlessly, for several years and I can only assume still is (Steve M has the car now...). I have to admit I didn't look too hard at the other systems, as this was what was offerd to me, but I was very pleased with it!

Mark

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I have the Maplin ignition amplifier on mine, properly potted it has been great.

I also have the Ducillier dizzy (SIII) which has an external condenser so swapping back to conventional ignition is even easier than on a Lucas dizzy.

NB - if you do pot it, make sure you use proper potting compound as other two-parts get hot when they cure, and test it BEFORE potting!

potting compound? I have to admit that I have absolutely no idea what you are on about! My wife got some potting compound at the weekend from the garden centre but I have a sneaky feeling that burying it in a bag of compost wouldn't really help things (and there's not enough room under the bonnet either).

I have ended up getting a Maplin's kit and building it last night/this morning. For simplicity and cheapness it will be a good start! It says in the instructions that it should be covered in resin to help waterproof it - is that a potting compound?

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yep, potting compound is the resin that you set the circuit in to protect it. 2-part epoxy (ie araldite) is sometimes used, but as roger says, it gets hot when curing, which isn't a good idea for soldered things.

Mark

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By the way, my instructions stated that the heatsink has to be isolated from the body/chassis/earth. I think this was poor english translation of the original dutch instructions. The Heatsink can be bolted directly to the vehicle. Or in my case my heatsink is a finned aluminium box which is bolted directly to the bulkhead.

That potting compound looks fine, although mine isn't potted.

Regards,

Diff

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By the way, my instructions stated that the heatsink has to be isolated from the body/chassis/earth. I think this was poor english translation of the original dutch instructions. The Heatsink can be bolted directly to the vehicle. Or in my case my heatsink is a finned aluminium box which is bolted directly to the bulkhead.

That potting compound looks fine, although mine isn't potted.

Regards,

Diff

According to the diagram, the transistor mounted on the heatsink is insulated from it. The vehicle -ve is not connected to the power transistor so I'd be inclined NOT to connect the heatsink to the bodywork to be doubly safe. IIRC I omitted the transistor insulator to improve heat transfer and made sure the heatsink doesn't touch anything.

look here http://www.velleman-kit.com/be/en/product/view/?id=8946 and download the instructions PDF

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According to the diagram, the transistor mounted on the heatsink is insulated from it. The vehicle -ve is not connected to the power transistor so I'd be inclined NOT to connect the heatsink to the bodywork to be doubly safe. IIRC I omitted the transistor insulator to improve heat transfer and made sure the heatsink doesn't touch anything.

look here http://www.velleman-kit.com/be/en/product/view/?id=8946 and download the instructions PDF

Hi Roger,

The power transistor is fitted to the heat sink to take heat away from it. These two items are separated from the rest of the board by the plastic spacers. If the heat sink is then bolted to the vehicle body, there is still no connection with the board, and the vehicle body will act as a huge heatsink. Mine has been working fine this way for many years. On my paper instuctions which came in different languages, I remember that in some languages it said to connect the heatsink to the body, in english, it said don't connect to the body. Since I could find no logical reason for not connecting the heatsink to the body(provided the insulating spacers to the board are in place), that is what I did. It just makes the whole thing easier to mount which was why I mentioned it.

I had a look at the pdf but there are no instructions with it, just diagrams.

The good news is however you mount it, it works! :)

Regards,

Diff

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Hi Roger,

The power transistor is fitted to the heat sink to take heat away from it. These two items are separated from the rest of the board by the plastic spacers. If the heat sink is then bolted to the vehicle body, there is still no connection with the board, and the vehicle body will act as a huge heatsink. ........

I had a look at the pdf but there are no instructions with it, just diagrams.

The good news is however you mount it, it works! :)

Regards,

Diff

Hi Diff,

Yes, That's basically what I said, but the metal surface of the transistor is connected to one of the connections, usually the collector. If you look at the diagram in the PDF you will see a small stepped bush and a mica washer which isolates the transistor from the heatsink, thus it is perfectly safe to fasten the heatsink to the bodywork.

HOWEVER if this washer/bush fails or if you omit it like I did (for reasons stated) you must not allow the heatsink to contact the bodywork.

Cheers,

Roger

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Chances are you can buy an equivalent of the transistor with a plastic body, no insulation needed then. Or to be really flash use a VB921 coil driver in it's place - internal current limiting and protection makes it a very attractive alternative.

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QUOTE(Mark @ Jul 26 2006, 12:41 PM)

yep, potting compound is the resin that you set the circuit in to protect it. 2-part epoxy (ie araldite) is sometimes used, but as roger says, it gets hot when curing, which isn't a good idea for soldered things.

Mark

........................................

Its also a good idea to coat the electronics with a flexible paint (polyurethane or glyptol) before potting in epoxy.

There can be problems with broken joints due to different heat expansion rates otherwise.

Simon.

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