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 MSD Distributor - Tach Question???
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ledhed76
Cochise

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 16 Jun 2010 :  9:05:21 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
So I am thinking about replacing my old worn out HEI on my '76 Formula with a MSD Ready-To-Run distributor and a Blaster 2 Coil with no ignition box...my question is where do I hook up the tach??....the old HEI has a plug for the tach....would the tach lead now hook to the coil??....Most of you guys will probably think I am crazy for spending the money on this MSD stuff but I get a severe discount from where I work....the install instructions are linked below....sorry if this is a dumb question but i am new to some of this stuff...


http://www.msdignition.com/uploadedFiles/MSDIgnitioncom/Products/distributors/8528_instructions.pdf


Edited by - ledhed76 on 16 Jun 2010 9:16:59 PM

PontiacMatt
Many Ponies

USA
1410 Posts

Posted - 16 Jun 2010 :  11:01:23 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think the tach would have to hook up to the coil... Is this a stock Tach? or aftermarket? no even sure if that matters...?

Here's the instructions from Auto Meter. (I just recently bought one of their tachs... They're doing a "Rebate" sale right now, I paid $120 for the tach, am eligle for a $40 rebate... I'll see what happens. Just wanted to share in case someone is thinking of buying one.)


*72' Pontiac Lemans* - Work in Progress
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ledhed76
Cochise

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 17 Jun 2010 :  07:41:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
i am trying to use the stock tach....here is some more info....do we have the inline filters??...


http://www.msdignition.com/page.aspx?id=3300&terms=tachometer
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ledhed76
Cochise

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 17 Jun 2010 :  9:16:26 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
MSD tech support claims you just hook it to the negative side of the coil....I guess I can believe them??
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PontiacMatt
Many Ponies

USA
1410 Posts

Posted - 17 Jun 2010 :  10:07:09 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If it were me, I would trust them... I think it will be fine to do it that way. seems like all the other "instructions" point to the same thing- connecting to the coil. Go for it, and good luck!

Let us know how you like that "Ready-To-Run" Distributor.

*72' Pontiac Lemans* - Work in Progress

Edited by - PontiacMatt on 17 Jun 2010 10:07:50 PM
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BVR421
Sitting Bull

Bahamas
245 Posts

Posted - 20 Jun 2010 :  8:41:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ledhed76

So I am thinking about replacing my old worn out HEI on my '76 Formula with a MSD Ready-To-Run distributor and a Blaster 2 Coil with no ignition box.....Most of you guys will probably think I am crazy for spending the money on this MSD stuff but I get a severe discount from where I work....the install instructions are linked below....sorry if this is a dumb question but i am new to some of this stuff...


Sounds like a definite downgrade (electrically) to me but the bling factor will be worth the money LOL Seriously if the hei is really hurting you may gain something but I doubt it. The msd should be a little easier to build your own advance curve.
just dont expect as hot a spark as a stock hei.
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BVR421
Sitting Bull

Bahamas
245 Posts

Posted - 20 Jun 2010 :  8:44:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ledhed76

MSD tech support claims you just hook it to the negative side of the coil....I guess I can believe them??



This is how people have been connecting tachs of all kinds to coils of all kinds for about the last 40 years, Dont fear.

As with ANY electrical work its probably a good idea to have both battery cables disconnected until you have checked and doublechecked your wiring.

Edited by - BVR421 on 20 Jun 2010 8:49:50 PM
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John-Henry
Sitting Bull

USA
102 Posts

Posted - 22 Jun 2010 :  9:59:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BVR421

quote:
Originally posted by ledhed76

So I am thinking about replacing my old worn out HEI on my '76 Formula with a MSD Ready-To-Run distributor and a Blaster 2 Coil with no ignition box.....Most of you guys will probably think I am crazy for spending the money on this MSD stuff but I get a severe discount from where I work....the install instructions are linked below....sorry if this is a dumb question but i am new to some of this stuff...


Sounds like a definite downgrade (electrically) to me but the bling factor will be worth the money LOL Seriously if the hei is really hurting you may gain something but I doubt it. The msd should be a little easier to build your own advance curve.
just dont expect as hot a spark as a stock hei.



The Blaster coil will definitely increase the spark over a regular coil though. If you don't believe me, try the old method of seeing if there is a spark from the plug wires by holding it about an inch away from the block. I got a shock so strong from doing this my whole left side curled up in paralysis... my wife lovingly laughed her ass off.

Don't use regular wires with the MSD coil, it needs something beefier.
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4794 Posts

Posted - 02 Feb 2011 :  09:25:11 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I'm revisiting this thread because it involves MSD ignition.

MSD has a new digital ignition for 2011. It's called MSD Ignition Digital 6a or 6al. The part number for the one I'm checking out is PN 6425. This newbie is so new no one has commented about on the other boards.

Here is the link to this new product from MSD.

http://www.msdignition.com/Products/New_Products/6425-Digital-6AL-Ignition-Control.aspx

The old analog unit is a pretty proven piece. Lots of hot rodders and racers use them successfully. So far I've been content with the stock HEI, but my thoughts of having multiple sparks between idle and 3000 rpm may be a solution to cleaning up my exhaust. This is the reason I'm checking this out.

I have concerns on how this will work with the stock in dash tach. Ledhed76 did you ever get that issue resolved with the analog unit?

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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ledhed76
Cochise

USA
304 Posts

Posted - 02 Feb 2011 :  9:49:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
i was going to hook it to the negative coil terminal like was discussed, but after i got all my stuff i realized that there was a separate green tach wire coming off the distributor....it is not shown on the picture or the installation instructions on the link below...everything worked out fine...i left the inline filter alone and had no issues...it is a little odd that when you turn on the switch now, the tach pegs itself one time...i remember seeing this in race cars though....and by the way, i did get the Ready-to-Run model and the 6AL box....and yes my idle does not smell as bad as it once did....i dialed in my advance curve and am very pleased with the unit...wish i had known about the new digital box 6 months ago....



http://www.msdignition.com/uploadedFiles/MSDIgnitioncom/Products/distributors/8528_instructions.pdf
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 03 Feb 2011 :  08:44:23 AM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage  Reply with Quote
There has to be something else up with the smelly exhaust at idle, and the fact that a multi-spark ignition would help is a clue. Generally speaking, a healthy points or HEI setup should have no problems idling smooth under no load with complete combustion. It's in high compression high rpm environments that a multi-spark ignition really likes to shine. How many of us have similiar pontiac engines without that issue? There has to be a small detail somewhere.
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Luis Cervantes
Cochise

USA
286 Posts

Posted - 04 Feb 2011 :  9:03:23 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Cleaned up my idle immediately after starting my new MSD 6A some years ago. Exhaust did smell cleaner.
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Jeff Fritchie
Sitting Bull

136 Posts

Posted - 06 Feb 2011 :  01:25:52 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
there is no multi spark after 3000 rpm so its not for high rpm environments. I think it has more to do with being able to set the timing more accuratly and being able to adjust total timing with diffrent bushings and springs to set your own curve to your car and driving style that makes this system out perform others. not saying hei is not a great unit its just not as user friendly when it comes to average joe being able to taylor his own system with out having a dist. machine to set up an hei properly. with the msd you put in the bushings and springs you want and you know its right and it operates just as it should. not going to get in to the witch one puts out more spark but as stated that is more important with high compression. I would think accurate timing events are just as important as every last volt getting to the plug. If you say its under powered then I would love you to post yourself on youtube touching a live coil cause it is quite a funny site to see the dace that get performed while trying to get your hands away from it fast enough. there is probably some truth to the multi spark cleaning up the idle but i think that is more of a mask for a carb adjustment issue that needs to be sorted out after knowing the timing is doing exactly what it should when you want it to. get the timing dead nuts then adjust fuel.
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5335 Posts

Posted - 06 Feb 2011 :  01:46:35 AM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage  Reply with Quote
"get the timing dead nuts then adjust fuel."

+1
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jeff
Buffalo

USA
93 Posts

Posted - 20 Mar 2012 :  07:38:45 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The tach pegs at key on to show you where the ready to run's built in rev limiter is set at. Youre install instructions should explain this feature and how to set it, the ones at there web site do.

73 Formula 72 T/A clone 406 #12 heads, Comp 280H, RPM intake,hooker comp. headers, Scorpion rockers 4spd. 3:42 gears
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Miles
Sitting Bull

Canada
140 Posts

Posted - 30 Jul 2013 :  08:31:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thought I'd add my MSD ready to run experience to this older thread.
I bought a r2r and blaster 2.
The tach connects to the grey wire on the MSD.
The distributor has a built in rev limiter which is set by grounding the tach lead pigtail at 1/2 desired rpm limit. Took me a couple of hours and two calls to MSD to get it to set, once I did I had to re-set it every time I turned on the car. Didn't work.
The vacuum advance is supposed to be 10 deg at 15" I got 21 deg. at 10". Didn't work. Phoned MSD tech line who said I should buy an adjustable canister for the distributor. He had no answer when I asked him why I should have to spend money to modify a very expensive brand new product to get it to work as advertised.
I took the whole works back to the store and wouldn't leave until I got a refund.
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