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Ignition Systems

The ignition system of a car is one of the most overlooked components when it comes to tuning the engine. Many people believe that once they have completed their modifications the only remaining tasks are to get the ignition timing right and finally to turn the ignition on. However, it is a little more complicated than that. To start with the spark has to be strong enough for the air fuel mix. Air molecules are an insulator and if you have modified your car to allow more air into the engine then the standard ignition system may be too weak to ignite the air fuel mix. This is particularly true when it is cold when fuel vaporization is less effective.

Once the air fuel mix is being ignited the next thing to consider is the rate at which the flame passes through the combustion chamber - too fast and it puts too much load on the conrods, pistons and bearings. Too slow and it does not generate the maximum power.

There are two types of ignition systems, points type and transistor. Points types rely on contact break points to perform the spark timing and distribution. Transistor HEI ignition systems on the other hand use electronic circuitry and magnetic pulses. Both types of ignition systems are good for standard engines, but for modified engines they are not optimal.

Electronic advance control will significantly improve ignition and it also eliminates the need for a distributor. However, you then need something else to send a signal to the engine control unit so it can calculate the ignition timing and firing angle for each cylinder. This can be achieved by using a pulse generator attached to the circumference of the flywheel or the front pulley of the crankshaft.

When you are shopping for car components it pays to buy quality components. If you want to buy a new ignition system then check out our quality car components from top brands such as MSD Ignition and Accel. You can contact us at 1-800-276-7566, or email using the address [email protected].