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82ram150 82ram150 is offline
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Default HEI ignition upgrade
by 82ram150 08-19-2011, 03:17 PM

This is a write up on how to convert your lean burn or old mopar ignition to a more modern higher output ignition. My write up involves a 1982 Dodge D150 with a 225 slant six so you will need a distributor that is for your engine if doing this on a v8 with vacuum advance and a single pick up.

Ok first off, Tools:
-Drill and drill bits along with scredriver bits
-wrenches and ratchet and sockets
-wire cutters, strippers and crimpers
- butt connectors
-wire
-eyelet connectors
-spade connectors
-inline fuse
-relay

Im probably forgetting something else

the list of parts:
Distributor:

You need a dizzy with vacuum advance and a single pickup. I got mine at shcucks o'rielly for $54.99 plus $10 core charge. P# 30-3690. The dizzy on the lean burn system has no vacuum advance and dual pickups (one for start one for run). The lean burn computer controls timing based of the input from the various sensors.

Module:

This is just a gm 4 prong ignition module. shucks o'rielly P# CBE4P

Coil:

This is a GM hei coil. You have to get the two connectors that go to it. You can get them from any junk yard off lots of different gm cars. I got mine off an early 90's firebird. The shucks o'rielly P# E46P.

Heat sink:
Dont have an image of one that is seperate but this is a must to pull heat away from the module and keep it from over heating. You can get one out of a computer you dont use, thats where i got mine.

Ignition relay: Napa P# AR294

Other: various connectors and what not.

The conversion:

Ok i have two wiring diagrams The first is for a non leanburn vehicle for those of you that would like to use the GM coil. The second is for those of you who have a leanburn ignition.

The above diagram was made by SlantsixDan at Slantsix.org which i slightly modified.

Ok so mounting everything, you can go to a junk yard and find a mounting bracket for the coil off various GM vehicles. The module needs to be mounted to the heat sink and grounded.

Make sure when you take the distributor out that you first turn the engine to piston #1 TDC. When installing the new distributor be careful to line it back up, I'll admit I was a little worried on this step because the teeth on the distributor drive gear curve and are not straight up and down. Make sure the rotor sits at #1.

The coil can be mounted wherever you please. I mounted mine to the fender. The heatsink and module can be mounted to the coil or you can do what i did and mount that to the fender too. (Note Make sure to ground the module or your engine will not start!!! I pulled this bone head mistake)

The wiring: this is what got me. So first off if you have leanburn, diconnect all of the sensors and coil and pickups along with the ground to the computer, you should only have the positive left to the computer. The computer positive goes to a welded splice from the factory. Cut the wire near the splice.
You should have the two connectors for the coil, one will be black the other grey. There will be a white and a pink wire on both. The pink wire on the black connector goes to the positive on the module(B) The whiteish colored wire will go to negative on the module (C). From the module you go to the pick up on the distributor. The original wires for the pickeup should be orange and blue the orange will go to (W) and the blue will go to (G).

The white wire on the grey connector wil go to your tach (if you have one) if not then just make sure it is covered. Pink is your positive. Make sure to ground the coil.

Ignition relay wiring: #30 Is your constant power this needs to have a 15 amp fuse in line of it. This can go to the alternator or to the battery. #86 is your "trigger" This goes to a possitive that is only hot in "run" and "start" The "spider" that had the computer positive connected to will work fine since it is only hot in run and start, you can also use the positive from the coil since it connects to the "spider" anyways. #87 this is the coil positive and goes to the pink wire on the grey connector. #85 is ground, you can ground it to where ever, i grounded mine to the coil bracket.

For those of you with a standard ignition you need to jump the ballast resistor which will go to #86 on the ignition relay.

If you have leanburn read this: You MUST have a carb that has a ported spark tube (a vacuum port that has no vacuum at idle and has vacuum when throttle is open) for the vacuum advance on your distributor to work, otherwise your engine will not idle very smooth. I had a carb with a ported spark tube so i didnt have to worry about that. You can get a holley 1920 single bbl which will have a ported spark tube. I have a Holley 1945 but not all 1945's will have a ported spark tube so be aware.

Napa part numbers are in the wiring diagrams. It cost me a little over $100 to do this conversion.

Before conversion:
The nightmare wiring mess

The computer

Wiring harness

After conversion:
Right after my conversion so its not very clean



Here is my ignition as of now, much cleaner and professional looking.


You can see my heatsink under the module.

Optional heatsink fan
I had a problem with my module overheating because i have a black hood and there is no curculating air around the module so i added a little fan. The fan i used was originally on my heat sink when it was in a computer. There were three wires to it. A black(ground), red(positive) and white(this is like a tach wire for the computer to regulate speed of fan) you can clip the white wire we dont need it.
I screwed the fan to the bottom of my heatsink so it was pushing air up into the fins i grounded the fan to the coil mount and put a 3amp mini inline fuse in the positive which goes to the ignition positive wire so when the ignition is in run and start position the fan comes on. So far i have had no problems.

I took out 12 wires and over 50ft of wire and replaced it with 5 wires and at most 15ft of wire, because my constant goes to the battery.

This is a fairly simple ignition and my truck now runs and idles much better and i get much better mpg. Have fun and good luck!

Cody
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Old 08-19-2011, 03:29 PM   #2
crazzywolfie
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cool right up. i just thought i would point out that if you have a 318 or 360 you will most likely not run into any problems re-installing the distributor since it is a bit different then a slant 6
318, 340 and 360 distributor. i think all dodge v8's use the same slotted looking end on the distributors.
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Old 08-19-2011, 03:39 PM   #3
82ram150
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ok thanks for the pic wolfie and the knowledge. I havent owned a v8 mopar (yet) so i didnt know.
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Old 09-18-2011, 01:21 AM   #4
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An update. I have wired my ignition into the power distributuion box and a switch on my dash, so i can turn the coil on with the truck off. As long as you have the switch on, it will run, if you try starting it without the switch on, it wont start. I also have the power converter box and a couple of fans out of a couple of my parts computers. Ill have the original fan on top sucking air in and another smaller fan pushing air out. This box will house the coil and module and heatsink. it has a coupl of led's. One led will be on when the fans are on and the other is connected to a little button next to it and will be wired to the coil, as long as the coil has voltage the led will turn on when the button is pressed. There will be one positive wire going in for the inline fuse for the fans and then to the coil. The tach wire will be going out where the positive feed comes in and the pick up wires and coil wire will run out a different hole in the box and will be in conduit to make for a nice clean look, this will keep everything clean and will prevent overheating of the module and coil. Plus its somewhat an experiment and i though itd be cool to do. Here are some pics of the box and fans i will be installing in in the next few weeks.

Fans and fan led wired together

Fan led and hole that coil wire and pick up wires will go through

Hole the positive feed and tach wire will go through


Fan led

led and button to test coil
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Old 09-22-2011, 11:13 PM   #5
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Well got the cooling box installed yesterday and the coil and module into it today. I redid the positive wire from the power distributuion bo to the coil and also found a spade connector for the smaller g terminal on the module so now that is nice and tight.

Box installed




With coil and module installed






Pretty simple, the cooling fans have a 3 amp fuse spliced into the coils positive wire there is a ground for the fans and a seperate ground for the coil and module. When the coil switch is turned on the fans turn on too.

WARNING: Make sure if you have metal connectors within the pickup wires like i do to not run the coil wire to the dizzy next to it. It will make the pickup start tripping out i couldnt figure it out at first till i started messing with it because i had the pic up wires and coil wire in the same conduit.

Overall this cleaned up my ignition even more and will stay cool with the dual fans. And i wanted to do something different.
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