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i was just wondering if an HEI distributor will bolt into my 68 350 camaro. will the distributor clear the firewall and fit snuggly?
and most of all is it a good idea to change from the mallory twin point to an HEI?
 

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personally i don't like points ignition systems,but thats me. yes a HEI will fit,but with some modifications,first need to see if it'll clear the firewall,if not may need to "dent" in slightly,also will need to change the hot wire to power the HEI.not as hard as it seems,and i feel its well worth it.some one else had a posting on this and got an answer about a small cap HEI,check that out too.good luck.

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Doug G.
68 Camaro
406 ci.
 

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actually you SHouldnt need to do anything, just dont get the coil that I have, its too close. look at my website under engines for more details,. but the HEI will fit fine . you should run a new 14G wire to the fuseblock on a resisted circut (so it will shut off when you turn the key off) or you may choose to use your orig wire that energized the old (or soon to be old) coil there have been Numerous posts on this issue, so if you search on HEI you will find about 6 million posts on it since its a hot topic. but YES it is possible and Does work with No hassle.

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I converted my 1969 to HEI and had to "massage" the firewall a little to get it to fit. Works much better than the old points distributor.

Mike
 

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I have been noticing that on some cars the motor sits back closer to the firewall than others. A good example is my '69 rs convertible vrs a friends '69 rs convertible. His motor is way forward with the fan tucked deep into the fan shroud. Mine is at least 1" further back. My firewall was dented to allow the HEI to fit his fit fine.

There was a post here a few days ago that mentioned positioning of the motor and motor mounts but didn't get much attention...



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...Dennis
Topless'69
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DJD,

The engine in my Camaro fits like yours - closer to the firewall. I did not install an HEI because I would have had to "massage" the firewall.

I went with an aftermarket distributor that fit no problem.
 

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You can change engine mounts to alter the engine setback. The further back the better from a weight distribution point of view.

But you can move it forward about an inch by changing to different mounts (BB, SB, and 6 cyl. will all work for all engines)
 

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I had to slightly dent the firewall with a ball peen hammer also....can't see it when the cap is on, but when I retard the timing and push the vacuum canister toward the firewall, I get a squeak inside the car from the cap(?) or dist(?) rubbing against the firewall. Can especially hear it when i turn a corner. Guess I need to take dist. back out and "modify firewall a little deeper"
 

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You might contact Graeme Webb, www.enginecentre.com.au for info on his compact distributor, is built like my small body HEI, on a point distributor body, under licence from me.

Graeme is here in the states at this time, gathering cores and Chevrolet engines for use in Australia and New Zealand at this moment. His distributors are marketed under the Zenith name brand.

I am the originator of the small-body HEI built on a point distributor body.

Dave Ray (aka the real IgnitionMan)
DAVE's small-body HEI.s

[This message has been edited by IgnitionMan (edited 06-23-2000).]
 

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My 2 cents: After owning a number of Chevys with points distibutors, I can see why the HEI is attractive. I wouldn't mind using a stock HEI if looks and clearance weren't an issue. Looks are a big deal with me and I could no sooner take a hammer to my Camaro's firewall than to my dog. I chose to go with Dave's small body HEI and I think its the best option if looking original and getting better performance is what you want. If looks and clearance are not an issue, than by means use a stock HEI. Although I do remember a thread where IgnitionMan mentioned not using the stock in-cap coil. The heat generated seems to affect performance.
PS, IgnitionMan: I sent my core off yesterday(Friday) via priority mail.

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Jeff Bradway - my resto page: http://67camaro.virtualave.net
 

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Thanks, Jeff. I'll keep a look-out for it.

As Jeff stated, moving the coil out of the cap is a good idea, for the coil-in-cap HEI. You get a much better coil and the under-cap temps cool off a good 40d/F.
 

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check the archives under small body HEI or my name (mike brown). you'll can follow the many posts i made on Dave's. i have one in my 396 and gas mileage jumped 2 mpg. very happy with it. dave i see you never push your own product, are you slowing down?

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To see a pic of my car, click here... pages.prodigy.net/mtbmtb/rf396ss.jpg
 

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No, Mike, not slowing down. I don't believe in posting ads in BBs, I want honest feedback from users, as yourself, and for others to make their own choices from the facts, not ad hype. That can only come from user feedback to everybody. BBs are good, everybody sees the posts, no bull, no hype.

I must point out that when Mike got his unit from me, it ran about 5 minutes, them coughed a module, defective part-new, but was fixed within an hour or so, by mikem then I sent him a propmt refund for his module purchase, and an apology for the hassles. It's called honesty, I insist on being honest, always. This type of failure on one of my conversions is very, very rare, only 6 modules in over 20 years of conversions.

Anybody can say their product is the best, highest this or that, best high-zoot banger or something, but the one that actually works may just get snow'd under by the ad BS.

Just about everybody thinks the PerTronix coils will simply put out 40,000 volts plug energy with any system it is thrown at right out of the box, and nobody reads the really fine print within the parenthesis on that box, "(available)". What that means is that the coil will make the voltage if the system driving it will drive it at that performance level. Unfortunately, most non-CD systems (except HEI) won't drive the coil any more than simply making the voltage needed to bridge the plug gaps, mostly between 6,000 to 7,000 volts, no more. NO MORE!

The HEI I build makes 29,000 to 32,000 volts because the HEI changes the way the coil is charged and fired over point and drop-in systems. Point and drop-in systems are the weakest performers (6,000 to 7,000 volts), lotta much better is the HEI (depending on components 26,000 to 32,000 volts), then the Capacitor-Discharge systems (40,000 volts to start), best.

It is hard to get a person who had been bombarded with ad hype to see the real truth about ignition, carb and tuning topics, so I just post the facts, and let people either accept the truth or remain in their ad hype dream world. I get a lot of rocks thrown at me for saying and posting what is the truth, but it's worth it in making the correct answer post.

[This message has been edited by IgnitionMan (edited 06-25-2000).]

[This message has been edited by IgnitionMan (edited 06-25-2000).]
 

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I-Man, which coils work best with you units. So far I have looked at the Accel Super Stock and MSD Blaster 2. Are there any others?
 

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I too used one of I-man's HEIs and am very pleased. It fits exactly as the original distributor and looks almost stock. I used the Acell coil and it works good. Althought it is not the one I-man recomends. The only down side is it cost me about $200 by the time I was finished. This is a little more than an off the shelf HEI which is around $150 with the coil already there. Also I-man has it already curved for your engine which is worth a little more I didn't account for. For me it was well worth the little bit extra not to have to dent the firewall to get the standard HEI to fit. Also even with the dents, to get one in, there is no guarantee you will not crack the distributor cap with the car flex on my convertable. I said this in a previous post but I think this is the perfect solution for a first gen HEI.
 

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Thanks, Rick. J, I recommend the Accel 8140 (yellow, paintable) and 8140C (chrome coils, Super-Stock round coils) along with the MSD 8202 (red) coils. I never use a large Super-Coil, they aren't wound correctly for HEI useage.

Not a defense, but my conversions do cost more than the average run-of-the-mill drop-in systems, but you get a much better system output, easy to get parts, and a full-on rebuild, curving to your application. You should be here for one, lots more than most people believe has to be done, takes time and parts.

It definately isn't you basic discount parts house, bead blast it, stick new points in, box 'er up, $35.00 please-type of job.

I do every conversion by hand, I do it, nobody else, I'm the only one here. I take pride in my work, but am really overworked. I'll stay overworked to keep the quaily up, though. I want only happy customers, most all become friends, too. They are my only, and best, advertizement I really want. That is the way I like it. My name goes on the finished product, and I'm really picky on quality, has to be right. Old-timer's (fart's?) attitude on quality.
 

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i already had a msd blaster 2 with a 6 al box. when i hooked the box up, my tach would not work. i was looking at about $45 in adapters so i sold it with the help of a fellow board member here and opted for the hei and kept the blaster 2. plus my motor looks very stock and this keeps it that way. with the 6 al box and my point dist. i really didn't see too much seat of the pants improvement. i man does make a msd box compatible dist. for less than the hei or the msd's own dist. keep in mind that it would probably cost you $50-100 for a good dist. man to recurve you stock hei (or a good afternoon of your time guessing) which needs to be done to get the full benefit, while i-man's is already curved for your engine. as he posted, i had a faulty module, quick trip to Napa for a replacement (first one they got of the shelf was also bad) and i was back in business. iman had the refund for the module and shipping back to me within a week. as i said, i'm very happy with it.


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To see a pic of my car, click here... pages.prodigy.net/mtbmtb/rf396ss.jpg

[This message has been edited by mike brown (edited 06-25-2000).]
 

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Sounds like a good system. I-man, do you recommend adding an MSD 6A box to your unit? Do you need to custom build it for such use and is it worth it? I also have a question about high voltage (30KV) arching in the small cap. Is it a problem since the original HEI cap diameter is so much bigger, is that part of the original design that prevents terminal to terminal arching? What cap do you recommend (black of course), I read somewhere drilling holes in the cap alleviates arching or static build up. Any thoughts? Also do you have off the shelf units yet or only core rebuilds? Thanks, Jack.
 

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East Moriches, that's the place people rent boats and aim stinger missiles at TWA 747's. I have a friend who lives on the Island, and knows the boat rental guy who rented that boat to those two people.

Now, for the ignition stuff:

I do two different conversions, an HEI, uses a remote from cap coil, and one without the HEI module that is designed to plug directly into the MSD 6 series boxes.

All my conversions are hand built, are tailored to the useage and application, and are done on your distributor core. I don't have access to acceptable cores to make a "specification" (one curve fits all type) distributor like others sell, so I convert one you send me. I wouldn't make a "spec" distributor anyway, I want the conversions I build to work right mout of the box, not have to put people through a tuning/changing experience.

If you look at the MSD and Mallory distributors that have been available for years, cap size isn't a problem. MSD uses as their default cap, the point design GM cap and rotor. As long as the rotor os phased to hit the cap terminals right, there won't be a problem with arcing, even with systems as powerful as the MSD 7 series boxes output.

Drilling the cap is supposed to alleviate ionized air within the cap for reduction of "cross-fire" that doesn't happen in a well-maintained distributor, besides, there are many places on stock distributors open for air flow through them, like vacuum advance mounting areas in the body, etc.

Large coil-in-cap HEI was designed to fit a coil in that cap, and a module inside it, completely self contained, and that is the ONLY reason the large cap exists, no other reason for it, not crossfire, not this or that, and that's the truth of it. If you look at most HEI caps, they use aluminum terminals, not real good for conductivity, They oxidize and carbon up easier than copper, and are just a problem far sooner than copper terminals. They can cause lots more problems than the diameter of the cap and higher voltage outputs.

For a good black cap and proper long blade rotor, NAPA, cap-RR165, rotor-RR167R (don't use the RR169R, it is a weak, short blade rotor for emissions useags). If you look at these two parts, you will see quality, copper terminals, thicker materials, and built on the same machinery that builds Accel, Mallory, MSD and other performance caps/rotors, just tinted black when made. Good stuff.
 
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