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Author Topic:   460 Duraspark
jkilroy
Gearhead

Posts: 1636
From: Vicksburg, MS
Registered: Dec 99

posted 07-10-2001 10:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for jkilroy   Click Here to Email jkilroy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There is a Ford Duraspark distributor, 76 the year, for a 460 on Ebay for $15. Can this unit be wired up to a MSD box? I think I remember seeing an adapter for that kind of thing in the past. Either way is $15 a good deal or would I be better off buying a rebuilt unit at Napa?

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Jay Kilroy
68' Fastback GT 390
"No such thing as a cam thats too big"

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Butch Jennings
Gearhead

Posts: 534
From: California
Registered: Apr 2000

posted 07-10-2001 12:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Butch Jennings   Click Here to Email Butch Jennings     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

I use a duraspark distributor with the advance locked out wired to an MSD7 box in my Comet. I didn't use any kind of adapter to do it, I used 2 of the 3 wires and didn't use the 3rd at all.

The orange wire from the pickup is wired to the purple wire and the purple wire from the pickup is wired to the green wire on the MSD harness....not sure if these could be reversed and still work or not, this is how it works for me now and I've never tried them otherwise. I don't use the black wire from the pickup at all.

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Butch
460 powered 1967 Comet Cyclone
10.271 @ 130.069
Butcher's Home Page
"Friends don't let friends drive Chevys"

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Mike_R
Gearhead

Posts: 142
From: Indianapolis, IN 46237
Registered: Feb 2001

posted 07-10-2001 01:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike_R   Click Here to Email Mike_R     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I run a duraspark distributor with an MSD 6AL box on a 460. It's hooked up the same as Butch mentioned.

I've heard you can buy these duraspark distributors fairly cheap at the auto parts stores. I would just check the prices and decide based on that. Also you will probably have to do some heavy recurving of the distributor when you set it up. These duraspark units are notorious for having a huge amount of advance built in.

Butch, does your engine have a "start" retard that retards your timing only upon start-up? I've been thinking of locking my timing and have been looking at these MSD retard boxes so I can retard it maybe 20 degrees or so while cranking over. How do you have yours set up? Have you been happy with the locked out timing?

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ciscokid
Journeyman

Posts: 45
From: Cleveland, TN
Registered: Jul 2001

posted 07-10-2001 02:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ciscokid     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I use a Ford factory duraspark distributor on my 460, the one that came with the 460/585 from Ford Motorsports. I used it with an MSD -6 box for a year with the advance mechanism intact. Then I changed to a Holley Annihilator system and gutted the distributor, locking the advance mechanism by bolting the movable plate to the base plate. The Holley box has a starting retard built in. Locked timing is *the* way to go. Timing is solid as a rock, you *know* what your total timing is, always. The only thing better would be a crank trigger, but this is a lot cheaper.

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Butch Jennings
Gearhead

Posts: 534
From: California
Registered: Apr 2000

posted 07-10-2001 05:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Butch Jennings   Click Here to Email Butch Jennings     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Yes Mike, I run an MSD multi step retard that has a 20 degree start retard. I recently had a starter drive go south in my Tilton starter and I'm 100% sure it's because I ran the car for a while without the retard.

The car runs great with the timing locked out.

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Butch
460 powered 1967 Comet Cyclone
10.271 @ 130.069
Butcher's Home Page
"Friends don't let friends drive Chevys"

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F551
Gearhead

Posts: 157
From: Manitoba, Canada
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 07-11-2001 09:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for F551   Click Here to Email F551     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
We are using a Duraspark dist, 7AL with a homemade crank trigger. Used a tach sensor from a diesel engine, machined an Aluminum disc and set 4 pieces of keystock at 90 degrees for the wheel. Sensor bracket was some scrap Aluminum pieces welded up.

Has been trouble free - disadvantage is the radius on the sensor bracket is not perfect - so you have to mess around to get the timing, once it's set it doesn't move. Way cheaper than buying a billet dist and a MSD or other setup.

Was very hard on starters so we found an older MSD timing computer for the start retard. It seems to need to see rotation to retard - so we start cranking the motor then throw a switch for ignition. This season put a bigger cam in, has changed cranking cylinder pressure - turns over much easier.

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Fred
68 Mustang 500CID/Powerglide - "No Tubs"
86 Mustang GT Cobra

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