View Full Version : Electronic Ignition
11-13-2004, 08:58 PM
Does anyone have any experience (dumb question, ya'll da man's)
with electronic ignitions? does it make a difference in the way a bike runs? I have no starting problems right now, should I leave well enough alone or, is this a really great thing to do during the winter?:confused:
11-14-2004, 06:05 PM
I believe one of the advantages is that you don't have to adjust your point gaps. No pitting problems. Battery must be good. Smoother spark (cap). But not as hot/large. More controlled.
I run one with an electronic magneto as well. If my battery dies out - I'm never stuck. But it's the modern Triumph. So it really doesn't count.
Stan Jessup sells the flathead elect. ign. -Oregon Vintage. He could help with questions. Or ahhhh... Perry!!!
11-15-2004, 01:56 AM
Sorry no experience with electronic ignition ... Perry
11-23-2004, 11:28 AM
How about the guy advertizing in the Antique Motorcycle selling electronic ignitions for Pans, Knucks, and even VL's? Maybe he can help you.
12-05-2004, 10:30 AM
I wil try the guy that advertises in the mag. I just want to make this 45 as reliable as possible. I remember many rides I was on with my buddy and his "74 FL", and all the adjustments he was constantly making. I don't really want to update my old 46 too much, just enough to keep her running on Sunday afternoons.;)
12-05-2004, 04:56 PM
the old saying if it aint broke dont fix it . my ol 45 been on the road for like 10 years and rode hard ,never let me down might of had to change and adjust points a couple of times but never let me down . my advise is stay with the points . a piece of sandpaper in your tool roll [ you do carry tools right]and you wont have any problems ,i never had to adjust on the road / good luck
12-06-2004, 01:27 AM
Everything is reliable if you preform required maitinence! Aply a few tricks. Keep an eye on things. Use quality parts, etc.
Good point -another one of my buddies was also crabbin about guys not carrying tools. I thought that was a manditory requirement? hee-hee.
I think another plus for elect. ign. is the "wet points" problem. But I feel If your clever this is not an issue. Any tips folks can give?
12-06-2004, 10:45 PM
I usually hear nothing but good about electronics. Here's a nice story on one: http://www.virtualindian.org/xign.html
One thing for sure though, a standard points ignition rarely gives serious trouble and is always easier to diagnose and repair. You can carry all the needed spare parts and tools in you pocket for a few bucks. In all the years that I've been fooling with infernal combustion engines I've never had a set of points that couldn't be filed and re used. I've had two condensors go bad. I left the ignition turned on twice on my '76 FLH and burned up coils. I'd have to say that all the money I've spent on standard ignition parts for all my bikes over the years wouldn't be enough to pay for one electronic ignition conversion. If your electronic dies you'll not likely find another at the local parts store (cone harleys use chevy 6 point and condensor sets). The electronics seem to have become more reliable the last few years so that may never be an issue but you never know.
12-07-2004, 08:50 PM
I bought one of those kits and put it together after reading that great article. Super nice guy - sent him a thank-you for writing that. I made some notes on the schematic in the process of disecting it's function. Which you may be able to see?
Has simple function really. Darlington pair. Result = better timed spark, better starting, gas economy, running high and low idle. use w/ points -no condenser( kit has cap). Will greatly extend the life of points. less adjustment needed.
OK, I like messing around with such things. But that's just me. I disect things I don't fully understand.
Magnetic or optical timing solves wet problem. But silicone on entry areas could solve for wet. WD-40?
Why do some distributors have one way drainage holes in bottom? And some don't? Was that a military thing? Indian.
Failure of elect. ign. that I've seen! 1. Bad wiring. 2. shorted out on install. 3. not installed correctly from get go.
12-08-2004, 02:55 PM
i have one on my pan no problems work great
12-08-2004, 04:55 PM
Ive been resisting this but what the hey! I believe if it isnt broke why fix it, all my old bikes run just fine the way they came from the factory so I have no complaints nor do I see the need to spend good money to change something thats A-OK, But i understand that sometimes its good to try new things and the electronic ignition on my modern bike gives me no trouble,yet I have no desire to change that to points,dist setup either!
12-09-2004, 07:07 AM
I agree, I have several bikes that all run 6 volt with points, a lot of people ask me if I changed over to 12 volts and I respond, Why ? Do the maintenance and all is well. (all carry all the tools and spares you may need).
12-09-2004, 07:43 AM
I do have one 1941 Four that was set up with a 12volt system,alternator,and I must confess it runs the BALLS!,but I just got it from a fellow in Texas thats been running it that way for going on 25 years.sooo I probably should leave well enough alone...but guess what it will have a 6volt system back in it come spring!
Louie nice to know someone else still thinks like me!!!!!
12-09-2004, 07:29 PM
I also feel that if you've got it, use it. But in my case with this particular bike - starting from scratch, don't have a generator or mag. Will be run as bobber - don't like gen up front. Would pref to run 12V w/ halo front beam, and a few 12V accessories. So I'm going custom Alt. set-up off of mag drive( I have). It also has a tendency to rain around here when you least expect it. I plan on rideing a fair bit.
So this is why I'm personally interested in a couple of modern do-dads.
12-10-2004, 06:47 AM
Please dont take what Ive said as anything but my thoughts! I really do think its neat and creative to do the things you guys are doing! But for the most part Im an old fart and the easier things are the less hassle I seem to have,and all that neat stuff comes from people thatdidnt have the material or money 35-45 years ago to go out and chase oem parts so from that point of view to keep it runnin they came up with another way ! I call that GOOD OLD AMERICAN KNOWHOW!!! Keep the torch burning
12-11-2004, 10:43 PM
No problem - it's cool. OEM parts migrate to my machines over time. On my regular path of regression. I really just want to get the lump running and on the road for the spring.
Funny thing happened today. Shovel head guy with fouled plug. My daughter and I stop on our walk, and offer tools (close to home) and verbal support. Then my daughter speaks up and offers to sing a christmas carol to the guys bike in hopes that it would help the situation. It was a classic moment in time! Just priceless...
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