Generator or alternator? It’s today’s litmus test of "have you gone all the way?" when considering a vintage-look rod. We like this one, too: Got points? Modern ignition takes a few dings off the style of a retro rod, but just like the popular alternator-inside-a-generator conversion, there’s a solution: the PerTronix Ignitor electronic ignition. The Ignitor is about the simplest ignition upgrade you can make, since it’s just a little module that drops in to replace ignition points in a stock distributor. There’s no external box required (though the Ignitor can be used to trigger virtually any aftermarket ignition upgrade), and with just two wires to hook up, it’s easy to make your original distributor look stock but perform with modern reliability. We’ve used Ignitors several times and have always been extra happy with ’em.

Other Benefits

Even if you don’t care about a stock vintage look, the Ignitor conversions are an inexpensive and easy way to upgrade your distributor. You can use a small-diameter points-type distributor in your Chevy to gain more firewall clearance than with an HEI, then convert it to an Ignitor. If you have an old ACCEL dual-point or a roached Mallory Unilite lying around, Pertronix makes kits for those, too. You can even upgrade factory electronic distributors—including Ford Autolites, Chryslers, and aftermarket distributors with Chrysler pickups—thereby eliminating the separate amplifier box to simplify wiring and clean up the underhood. The Ignitors do not even require a ballast resistor when used with the proper coil.

Ignitor vs. Ignitor II

The Ignitor is the standard module that PerTronix has offered for years. The latest is the Ignitor II, which has adaptive dwell control—it senses coil energy and adjusts the dwell time accordingly. The result is more ignition power available, a higher rpm, plus longer life because there’s less heat buildup during low-demand conditions. When looking at spark energy at 3,000-5,000 rpm, PerTronix says the Ignitor can produce twice the power of points, and the Ignitor II can triple the spark energy. The Ignitor should be used with coils of 1.5-ohm resistance or greater, while the Ignitor II can benefit from higher-powered, super-low-resistance coils. PerTronix offers Flamethrower (40,000 volts) and Flamethrower II (45,000 volts) coils to go with the Ignitors, though other brands can be used.

For virtually stock street engines, the $75 Ignitor should suffice. Also, the original Ignitor is all you need if you plan to use an aftermarket spark amplifier (like an MSD or Hyfire) because in that application it only works as a trigger. For high-performance applications without an additional amplifier, the Ignitor II is ideal; it’s around $120.

SOURCE
Pertronix
440 E. Arrow Hwy.
San Dimas
CA  91773
800-827-3758
www.pertronix.com