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Pertronix distributor install into Austin Healey 100/6

TonyCap

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Hi All,

Today we installed a Pertronix distributor into an Austin Healey 100/6.
The original distributor in this car is a Lucas DM6A and as you can see from the attached picture the vacuum canister is on the left hand side of the distributor.
When we installed the Pertronix the vacuum canister ended up on the right hand side of the distributor (see attached picture) and touches the steering column when you set the timing and also the oil dipstick cannot be accessed because of this.
Has anyone else installed a Pertronix D177600 Flame-Thrower distributor into a 100/6 and had the similar issues? I was thinking of just removing the vacuum canister as I do not use it.

With the new Pertronix distributor installed the car starts and runs really nicely and the only problem is the location of the vacuum advance canister.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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  • Lucas DM6A distributor1.jpg
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  • Austin Healey Pertronix distributor install1.jpg
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  • Austin Healey Pertronix distributor install2a.jpg
    Austin Healey Pertronix distributor install2a.jpg
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steveg

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Could you drive the pin out of the tach gear and rotate it 180 degrees?

Edit: Your picture 2 shows the distributor to already be 180 degrees out. The #1 terminal on the cap should be approximately at the 2 o'clock position, not the 8 o'clock position.

From the Bentley manual -
With #1 piston TDC on compression stroke:
DistLowerDrive.jpg
DistUpperDrive.jpg
 
Last edited:

Keoke

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U Can also put the pertronix components into the original dizzy ?


The dizzy drive shown @ 20-to-2 is correct
 
OP
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TonyCap

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Thanks for the information.
In order to get the engine to TDC on #1 of the firing stroke do I need to turn over the engine until the tachometer spindle is in the same position (twenty to two) as the diagram 8.5?
At the moment I have spark plug number 1 removed and a whistle screwed into the spark plug hole so when there is a compression stroke you get the whistling sound. But the issue is that there is a compression stroke on every revolution so I am not sure when it's the firing stroke.
The other thing with the Pertronix distributor is that I was required to install the original tachometer drive gear off the DM6A to the Pertronix distributor. What I did was knock out the pin from the Pertronix distributor and using the original holes on the DM6A drive gear I drilled a hole 90 degrees from the original hole on the distributor shaft and put the DM6A drive gear on the distributor shaft. By doing this I have effectively changed the original position of the drive gear on the distributor by 90 degrees so I am not sure whether this will cause any problems?

The reason I could not use the same hole on the distributor shaft is that that hole was a larger diameter than the hole of the drive gear and if I made the hole on the drive gear larger it would reduce the strength of the connection because there was not much metal from the edge of the drive gear to the pin hole.


Could you drive the pin out of the tach gear and rotate it 180 degrees?

Edit: Your picture 2 shows the distributor to already be 180 degrees out. The #1 terminal on the cap should be approximately at the 2 o'clock position, not the 8 o'clock position.

From the Bentley manual -
With #1 piston TDC on compression stroke:
View attachment 64468 View attachment 64469
 

Attachments

  • AUSTIN HEALEY DM6A DISTRIBUTOR DRIVE GEAR.jpg
    AUSTIN HEALEY DM6A DISTRIBUTOR DRIVE GEAR.jpg
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Keoke

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Well:

Maybe when the distributor drive as shown in pic # 1 is at its 20 to 2 position as it is in the PIC # 1 and your whistle is going that is the correct firing stroke ???


Kind ah tricky to do----
 

steveg

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Tony - Compression stroke is every other revolution. Intake-compression-ignition-exhaust is how the four strokes go.

On the exhaust stroke, the exhaust valve is open so your whistle won't work.

With the engine at TDC on the compression stroke, you should be able to drive out your roll pin and rotate the tach drive gear 180 degrees to move your vacuum unit opposite the steering column.

From memory: the lower distributor drive gear can be withdrawn with a magnet* and inserted by trial and error until it's where you want it. From your description above it sounds like you want it at the 11-and-5 position.

*Edit: Lin Rose reminded me the manual says use a 5/16-24 x 3-1/2" bolt - works better than a magnet.
 
Last edited:

Lin

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Correct me if I am wrong, but on the compression stroke both valves are closed meaning there will be clearance between both of the valves and their rockers. Of course, you would need to have the rocker cover off to see this.
Lin
 

steveg

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Correct me if I am wrong, but on the compression stroke both valves are closed meaning there will be clearance between both of the valves and their rockers. Of course, you would need to have the rocker cover off to see this.
Lin

Lin - Tony's using a whistle; I've got a balloon on a spark plug base - with those one doesn't need the rocker cover off.
 
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TonyCap

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I decided to remove and refit the drive gear to the Pertronix distributor in the same position as the original distributor. (See the attached pictures)

Now the only thing I need to do is get the engine setup in the correct firing position.

I took a video of the valves so you can take a look and let me know what you mean in your previous post.

https://youtu.be/YFWuICb67y8
 

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  • Healey distributors - original and pertronix.jpg
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  • Healey distributors - original and pertronix top.jpg
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Jack T

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Sorry I'm late to the dance, but when I had an issue with the vacuum unit, I rotated the plug wires in the cap so I could turn the distributor body.
 

steveg

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Tony,
Take the plugs out and push the car in gear or rotate the engine with an adjustable spanner on the big generator nut until, with your whistle and the crank pulley notch, you achieve TDC on the compression stroke.

At that point, with the engine off, you can wiggle the two rockers on the #1 cylinder and they'll both be loose because both valves will be seated.
 

Keoke

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Sorry I'm late to the dance, but when I had an issue with the vacuum unit, I rotated the plug wires in the cap so I could turn the distributor body.

Yeah that will work:

A bit tricky too just be sure U have remembered the firing order to locate the remaining plug wires--LOL
 
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