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Old 05-16-2021, 10:39 AM   #1
Ricosan
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Default Condenser

Hey Guys,

Iíve cut open an original condenser for my Ď34 and stuffed a NAPA FA5 inside for a snug fit. The end of the FA5 sits on the original spring in the old condenser.
My question: how do I attach the two without damage to the FA5?

Richard
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Old 05-16-2021, 11:01 AM   #2
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Default Re: Condenser

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Originally Posted by Ricosan View Post
Hey Guys,

Iíve cut open an original condenser for my Ď34 and stuffed a NAPA FA5 inside for a snug fit. The end of the FA5 sits on the original spring in the old condenser.
My question: how do I attach the two without damage to the FA5?

Richard
Just a little solder will work fine. I've done this very same thing with a Hunt's Magneto condenser.
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Old 05-16-2021, 11:05 AM   #3
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Default Re: Condenser

I would use a low temp solder and flux. Good advice Kube.
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Old 05-16-2021, 12:09 PM   #4
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Default Re: Condenser

Given the amount of time you're putting into this - and that you probably don't want the condenser to fail, you might consider using a higher quality magneto condenser instead of the NAPA stuff. It used to be that NAPA supplied high quality condensers - now it seems that too many of them fail . . . usually at the worst possible time. Consider buying a .36uF Vertex magneto condenser - Bubba should have them. They are not cheap - but they are about the only type of condenser that I run these days.
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Old 05-16-2021, 02:29 PM   #5
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Default Re: Condenser

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Given the amount of time you're putting into this - and that you probably don't want the condenser to fail, you might consider using a higher quality magneto condenser instead of the NAPA stuff. It used to be that NAPA supplied high quality condensers - now it seems that too many of them fail . . . usually at the worst possible time. Consider buying a .36uF Vertex magneto condenser - Bubba should have them. They are not cheap - but they are about the only type of condenser that I run these days.
That's what the Joe Hunt Magneto condensers are that I use. I believe that's where "bubba" gets his. About $30 but well worth it in my opinion.
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Old 05-16-2021, 02:41 PM   #6
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Totally agree with Kube and going for the "Bubba/Vertex/Joe Hunt condensers. Do it once and be done. I have done this for my 32 and 40. Dig out your soldering iron and go for it.
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Old 05-16-2021, 02:43 PM   #7
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Default Re: Condenser

I'll bet I've killed the sale of about 100 sales of my "Trash Cans" by recommending these when "lookin' good" is not important.

It's for the good of the hobby. (Obsession?)
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Old 05-17-2021, 06:30 AM   #8
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Default Re: Condenser

Don't use the FA5 for a V8 it has the capacitance for a 4 Cyl.
As mentioned above the magneto Cap. is the way to go but you can not use the same mounting technique since the magneto Cap. has a wire lead.

Keep the internals of the old Cap. away from you since it is carcinogenic.
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Old 05-17-2021, 06:33 AM   #9
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Default Re: Condenser

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I'll bet I've killed the sale of about 100 sales of my "Trash Cans" by recommending these when "lookin' good" is not important.

It's for the good of the hobby. (Obsession?)
But, you are one solid dude . . . and we appreciate it!
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Old 05-17-2021, 10:07 AM   #10
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Default Re: Condenser

Thanks for all the great info. Looking hard at Vertex.
Too bad about the FA5.

Richard
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Old 05-17-2021, 10:43 AM   #11
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Default Re: Condenser

Hey Guys

Found Joe Hunt’s website. Tracked down a .36uF vertex Magnitogorsk condenser. Looks like it will work. I ordered it.
Richard
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Old 05-17-2021, 11:18 AM   #12
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Default Re: Condenser

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Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked View Post
Given the amount of time you're putting into this - and that you probably don't want the condenser to fail, you might consider using a higher quality magneto condenser instead of the NAPA stuff. It used to be that NAPA supplied high quality condensers - now it seems that too many of them fail . . . usually at the worst possible time. Consider buying a .36uF Vertex magneto condenser - Bubba should have them. They are not cheap - but they are about the only type of condenser that I run these days.
IH-200 is a magneto condenser that works and lasts for years with
no point damage. Skip has sold hundreds of them. G.M.
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Old 05-17-2021, 11:59 AM   #13
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Default Re: Condenser

According to Michael at Third Gen he has found a quality replacement also.
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Old 05-17-2021, 01:13 PM   #14
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Default Re: Condenser

Hey Guys,
Thanks for the additional options for this project. If this doesn’t fit right, I’ll check with Michael and Skip.
Thanks again

Richard
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Old 05-17-2021, 07:53 PM   #15
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Default Re: Condenser

I only run .36 UF Magneto Condensers in my V8s and I recommend them to other guys when I rebuild V8 distributor, Recommended by Bubba all others have too low a M.F.D.
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Old 05-17-2021, 08:51 PM   #16
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I only run .36 UF Magneto Condensers in my V8s and I recommend them to other guys when I rebuild V8 distributor, Recommended by Bubba all others have too low a M.F.D.
I will have to challenge this statement. The capacitance of a condenser is best determined by several factors, the two most important being coil inductance and the optimum speed of the engine. I have not done any research on early (pre-war) Ford coils, but from what I have seen, early Fords seem to have required more capacitance than current can coils. Because of age and attrition, there are few (if any) original early Ford coils actually being used these days, and just about everyone is using something more modern. Most modern "can" coils (and, I believe "Skip's coils) are of modern manufacture and, in fact, are better suited to condensers in the lower 20's range (which most modern capacitors are). I believe the long-time .36 micro-farad recommendation is just a "hangover" from the old Mallory "trash can" condensers that were so popular 40 or 50 years ago. That recommendation seems to be just an expression of the old "if some is good, more is better" convention.

In all actuality, the actual capacitance of the condenser is not that important as long as it is within reason. For most uses, a .22 is as good, if not better than a .36. What is more important is the ability to with stand the voltage spikes present in the "dirty" power from cars with generators, as well as the heat and vibration encountered in day to day automotive operation.

I have a pre-war Ford document on my computer in Florida that list the condensers they supplied with their distributors back in the day and shows capacitances from the low .20's to the low .40's, as well as the interesting statement that "too low a capacitance will accelerate point wear, while too much capacitance will hurt performance".
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Old 05-17-2021, 09:39 PM   #17
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Default Re: Condenser

I have to ask, is .22 considered low and .36 considered high? I think I've asked this before, but you know about age and memory.
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Old 05-17-2021, 09:53 PM   #18
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That is correct.
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Old 05-18-2021, 06:42 AM   #19
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Default Re: Condenser

Just to add some more mud to the situation, there are two main Vertex magneto condensers - one at .28uF and the heavier duty one (designed for the higher output versions of the mag - usually the external coil versions) that is .036uF. Also, the .28uF is about $15 - $18 while the .36uF one is pushing $40. I see no reason not to try the .28uF version . . . maybe I'll order a few and report back.

The challenge is that I'm sure they will work just fine on my distributor machine - only time will tell on actual usage on cars.
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Old 05-18-2021, 10:04 AM   #20
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It's not all that hard to understand. In my earlier post, I said that one of the factors that effects condenser capacitance is engine speed. The faster an engine turns, the more sparks are needed per time period, and more capacitance is required to absorb all of the extra energy produced per time period. The magnetos being mentioned here are units intended specifically for racing, where engine RPM's are much higher than for a normal street driven car. In such a case, the accelerated point deterioration caused by low speed operation is acceptable. I also believe this was Mallory's reason for making their "Trash Cans" with a higher capacitance (.36 micro-farads) than normal, as their condensers, too, were intended to be used on "racing units".

The question is point deterioration. If you can accept possible accelerated point wear, the magneto condensers will work just fine on the street. In the final analysis, unless it's way out in left field, the actual difference in capacitance in the condensers available manifests itself only in differing rates of point deterioration.
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