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Spitfire ignition in 78 spitfire


My wife's cousin purchased a 1978 Spitfire. It ran great for a couple days and then it ran terrible, then would not start. I went over and got it running and the next day it would not start. I finally got tired of fooling with it and ordered a Pertronix. Put it in today and now it will not even fire. The only thing I have
find is that it only has 8 volts to the coil. We removed a ballast resistor from the firewall. It seems that there is another resister possibly a resistor wire.
Any help would be appreciated,


Jedi Warrior
Country flag
I do believe that has a resistor wire in the harness...don't have the 78 wiring diagram on hand..

just a thought, is there 12 volts when cranking. mine was setup to crank at 12 volts and run at 8 volts.


Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
Yup, ballast wire in the harness, in addition to the "drive resistor" on the firewall. You'll need to run a new wire to deliver 12v to the Pertronix; then either fit a ballast between it and the coil or get a "12 volt" coil.


You changed the distributor but not the coil... and you removed the ballast resistor? It's not that simple.

See the schematic linked below:
'78 Spit Wiring Diagram Link
The coil wiring is in the top, right corner. The wiring is not simple. The paragraph below is a quick workaround.

The factory ignition system was set up for a different coil and type of distributor. Now that you have invested in a new distributor with electronic ignition go ahead and invest in a new, 3 Ohm, standard coil. Run a white 16 AWG wire from the white wire on the ignition switch directly to coil (+). Connect the Pertronix red wire to coil (+). Connect the black Pertronix wire to coil (-).

Be sure you tape off all the old wires so they don't touch earth and don't forget to set the ignition timing.


Thanks much guys. This answers several questions. He had purchased the Pertronix module and coil from TRF and recommended by Albert so we should be good there.
He purchased the car from some kind of dealer in GA. I suspect this was a problem from the previous owner. The reason is that when offered a considerable lower price they accepted without hesitation and even included transport to WI. The car is nice looking so the original price would have been fair if the car did not have problems.
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