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Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Buffalo, NY
    Posts
    78

    Default PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    Is it worth the effort and cost to convert the 470 distributor to pointless PerTronix and use their coil as well?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Portland, Oregon,
    Posts
    7,255

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    The Pertronix kits are Hall Effect.... not my preferred scenario.... but I don't know if there is any other option for this engine.

    More importantly, understand that installing the Pertronix kit alone, does ZERO to any of the distributor's mechanical advancing system.
    These tend to wear over the years, and may no longer be providing the correct Ignition Advance curve and/or limit.
    This is very important!

    If you were to do this, consider having the distributor tested on an Old School distributor machine.
    The Tech can make any corrections to this, including re-bushing, if need be.
    Most want the original points installed while doing this.
    Once the curve is checked, and/or recalibrated, the Kit can be installed.
    Rick ... aka Ricardo
    Portland, Oregon
    28' SDN F/B w/ twin Volvo Penta 5.7L DP's

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Northboro, Ma, USA
    Posts
    3,461

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    Rick,

    he had another post saying If I remeber this boat has low hours and was well kept!

    That bieng said,

    It is ALWAYS worth upgrading a points ignition to a electronic in my opinion.

    This gives you ZERO maintenance with the execption of the rotor (which is the same as original even though a new one comes with the kit) and the cap. The caps tend to last a long time (several years).

    One thing when installing this conversion like Rick says, make sure the advance wieghts and springs are in good shape and work freely. The other thing is when one of these conversion kits are installed the "dwell" is changed radically therefore the initial timing will be WAY OFF and thus needs to be reset to 4-6 degrees before top dead center (BTDC). The motor may have a difficult time actually starting so be prepared to turn the distributor a bit to get it running.

    Also I would reccomend purchasing the reccommended coil from pertronix just to have a "matched set" if you will.

    I would say the cost looks like this.

    points rotor and condeser every year,~ $30.00,
    labor, (You assign how much it will cost vs time to do it each year as it is suposed to be done) each time you must set point gap and timing accordingly. Points start to wear out as soon as you start the motor.

    Pertronix conversion + coil, ~ $150.00 (just a guess). One time install, set timeing and never have to do it ever again. Dwell never changes due to wear like old points ignition. In other words SET IT AND FORGET IT.........

    JMHO
    Last edited by kghost; 10-21-2011 at 12:45 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Portland, Oregon,
    Posts
    7,255

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    The Pertronix dwell is controlled via the pick-up/sensor unit's proximity to the Hall unit.
    The kit should offer a spec for this.

    There is another issue with the Pertronix, and that is the height alignment of the Hall unit and the pick-up/sensor unit.
    These must be aligned correctly in order to offer the best performance.

    Bottom line, and let me preface this..... IN MY OPINION ONLY, these are a rather cheezy means of creating an electronic triggering type ignition system.
    Not the Hall Effect itself per 'se........, but rather Pertronix's method of achieving this by placing the Hall Effect magnets in this plastic retro-fit component.





    Look at the VR technology compared to the Pertronix unit above.

    These are very accurate, work well, and rarely cause any issues or fail.







    Now.... just an FYI.... Mallory does offer a YL648AV for this engine.
    http://bpi.ebasicpower.com/mm5/graph...MAL9-26111.jpg

    Since they offer the YL, it may behoove you to see if Mallory offers a YLM for this engine.
    The YLM would be VR triggering.

    Cost more.... yes..... but it will be a superior ignition system.

    Edit:
    Again, it's not the Hall Effect system.... many autos use Hall Effect today, and very successfully.
    It's Pertronix's way of going about this that I have an issue with.
    Last edited by RicardoMarine; 10-21-2011 at 01:26 PM.
    Rick ... aka Ricardo
    Portland, Oregon
    28' SDN F/B w/ twin Volvo Penta 5.7L DP's

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Northboro, Ma, USA
    Posts
    3,461

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    Rick the pertronixs systems I have installed come with a new base plate and the parts fit where they fit. The gaps are all ready pre-engineered.
    Again these were the ones I did.....

    I do like the aftermarket dist that looks sweet,

    In my opinion, you spend thousands on a boat, hundreds and hudreds on gas, what would a couple extra houndred mean in the big picture for ABSOLUTE piece of mind.

    Christ I spent more then $500 on a very loud sound system for my boat this year, two speakers, one 170 watt per channel amp, 95 amp islolator, 850 amp deep cycle battery just for the amp, 7 band graphic equalizer...etc etc...the old one would not get loud enough as the cooler got more empty............lol

    so for me that distributor would be the best!! That is a true set it and forget it and best of all I bet you can get rid of the resistance wire and run a straight 12 volts to the coil (new coil of course)!!

  6. #6

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    If you are going to stay with the original distributor. (And the distributor is in good shape as Ricardo had asked) I think the only choice you have is the Pertronix setup. I agree with Ricardo about it looking pretty cheesy but I have had good luck so far with the original distributor and and Pertronix ignition setup with the Flame thrower 2 40,000 volt coil. I am sure the Pertronix is no match for the aftermarket that Ricardo mentioned but alot of folks are running the Pertronix rather successfully on the 470's. I noticed immediately:

    1) ability to idle lower and smoother than the standard points setup.

    2)easier cold startups

    3) a little more power

    It is kind a pain in the ass to install but I think it it was worth it for the money. I think kghost nailed it at about $150.00. I also installed 8mm wires and make sure to regap plugs to .040 (no more). Make sure the top of distributor is free of rust or scale so when you try and install the plastic piece you do not break it. I have to be honest. I broke mine on the first attempt like a dummy. Just trying to save you the trouble that's all. Also, if all else is well and good the 470's with electronic ignition seem to idle,run,etc. best at around 5-6 btdc. Just fyi, initial timing according to a Mercruiser publication was taken down from 8 dbtdc to 4 dbtdc because of poorer quality fuels which can lead to piston failure. Oh yeah, clean up the weights and check bushings for slop. Most of those distributors do have a little play as I later found out but I would do as Ricardo suggests and find out if the wear in bushings is within tolerance. It could affect the clearance on the pickup causing problems. You will also have to file a small part of distributor cap to ensure wires don't get crushed when reinstalling the cap after installation. I noticed it took alot of the shake out of my engine at low idle. The 470's are known for a pretty nasty idle. (hard on front motor mounts with points) Oh yeah, don't try and set the timing by ear. (You have to have a timing light). The timing has to be set at as low an idle as you can (600-650rpms) get without stalling engine due to the quick rate of timing advance curve. best of luck, Tom

  7. #7

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    i paid 72$ for my kit from pertronix direct, installed it in 15 min, it has worked flawlessly ever since, 4 years so far. I have been using them in all my points cars etc for over 25 years with zero issues. highly recomonded

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    630

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    I've been using first gen units in my 440s for years. They work flawlessly. Inexpensive way of getting out of points. +1 to Rick also, people have to realize that these will not cure a worn distributor. If you're having ignition problems, diagnose, and if it's just points and condensor at fault or all is well and you simply want an inexpensive upgrade, then consider the conversion. If diagnosis indicates distributor wear issues, don't even consider the conversion, it will not solve the problem...look for a newer electronic distributor.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Portland, Oregon,
    Posts
    7,255

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    I'll agree..... when they work, they work, and they certainly do a better job than contact points do!
    Just don't substitute one for points, if you are under the impression that it will solve other potential ignition advancing issues for an older distributor.

    Always set BASE, but take it further and check the progressive ignition advance and be certain that it is offering the OEM suggested curve/limit.

    (sorry for the redundancy)

    .
    Rick ... aka Ricardo
    Portland, Oregon
    28' SDN F/B w/ twin Volvo Penta 5.7L DP's

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    630

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    Because of the repercussions, redundancy is a good thing in this case Rick, I'm willing to bet most in the business do not take the extra step and check that TA is to spec.
    Last edited by WoodieMan; 10-23-2011 at 11:03 PM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Portland, Oregon,
    Posts
    7,255

    Default Re: PerTronix ignition conversion on a 470.

    Quote Originally Posted by WoodieMan View Post
    Because of the repercussions, redundancy is a good thing in this case Rick, I'm willing to bet most in the business do not take the extra step and check that TA is to spec.
    Thanks Woodie. I tend to occasionally repeat some of this stuff.
    As I'm sure that you do............, I/we see this all too often.
    If the owner is lucky, his system is lacking advance, and his loss has been performance only.
    If not so lucky, his system has been throwing excessive spark lead at it....., and by the time he knows it, he has detonation damage.


    .
    Rick ... aka Ricardo
    Portland, Oregon
    28' SDN F/B w/ twin Volvo Penta 5.7L DP's

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