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Old 09-21-2020, 08:47 AM   #1
Ten1nis
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Question Condenser Issues

My '30 pickup has been leaving me along the side of the road recently. After the replacement of a new condenser, the engine fires right up and I'm on the road again. I have replaced three condensers in the last 100 miles of driving. I have a stock 6 volt system, except for a modern upper distributor plate, points and condenser. My question is, could there be do I have a faulty/weak component in the electrical system or am I just unlucky tapping into a bad bunch of condensors?
Thanks in advance for your responses.
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Old 09-21-2020, 09:04 AM   #2
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Unlucky.

And the victim of cheap junk parts being sold today.

What brand condensers did you use?

I get mine from NAPA and get their "top of the line" ECH-FA82 part for $10.

Points for this is their ECH-CS755 for $20.

.
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Old 09-21-2020, 09:16 AM   #3
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Yep, been a lot of that going around lately.

A spare attached [ but not connected] to the coil is helpful just in case. When a failure happens just connect the coil mounted one.
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Old 09-21-2020, 10:27 AM   #4
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Are your distributor plates wired or wireless??
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Old 09-21-2020, 10:40 AM   #5
Ernie Vitucci
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Hi Jim...Is the ECH - CS755 the one you recommend? Thanks, Ernie
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Old 09-21-2020, 11:11 AM   #6
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

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Hi Jim...Is the ECH - CS755 the one you recommend? Thanks, Ernie
Those are the modern points, Ernie.

The modern condenser is ECH FA82.

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Old 09-22-2020, 09:27 AM   #7
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Ford probably should have designed a heat shield for the distributor. Maybe it was cooler back then but I don't know. I've seen fabricated shields that may work to keep the heat level down.

A&L makes the most common condenser replacement for the model As as originally designed. "Blow proof" is a description that stretches the truth to some degree but my experience with them has been OK. I still carry a spare and renew that spare asap after one dies. Jim has the line on the late type. Echlin has been the most reliable manufacturer of these units over the years but I worry that could change after the buyout by Standard Motor parts.
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Old 09-22-2020, 10:47 AM   #8
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

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Originally Posted by rotorwrench View Post
Ford probably should have designed a heat shield for the distributor. Maybe it was cooler back then but I don't know. I've seen fabricated shields that may work to keep the heat level down.

A&L makes the most common condenser replacement for the model As as originally designed. "Blow proof" is a description that stretches the truth to some degree but my experience with them has been OK. I still carry a spare and renew that spare asap after one dies. Jim has the line on the late type. Echlin has been the most reliable manufacturer of these units over the years but I worry that could change after the buyout by Standard Motor parts.

He did,see page 398 of the Service Bulletins. It is part number A-12280.
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Old 09-22-2020, 12:30 PM   #9
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

I make a heat shield from some trim coil that slips between manifold and distributor.
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Old 09-22-2020, 01:51 PM   #10
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Distributor heat shields have been offered in the past by some venders . I got a few stainless steel distributor heat shields back in the 90s . I quit using the heat shields because they were more trouble than they were worth to me . The ones that I had connected under two head nuts . Any time that the shield was installed or needed to be removed would require loosening two head nuts which could cause problems with head gasket seal . The shield was slotted where it slipped past the two head studs . The screw and lock nut on the head that secures the distributor can't be removed without first having to remove the infernal heat shield . I've still got them put up somewhere but don't plan to use them again .
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Old 09-22-2020, 02:48 PM   #11
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Is A&L still making lifetime condesnsors?
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Old 09-22-2020, 03:40 PM   #12
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

I suspect your coil is the problem, not the condenser. The secondary windings of the coil may be shorting out at temperature, then when the engine cools down it starts working again.

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Old 09-22-2020, 05:07 PM   #13
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

I hear complaints about cheap inferior over seas parts. We have all heard the horror stories with the modern condenser available to us.


I brought up in another forum recently, why cant we have some smart person make a quality condenser to work on our cars?
When we look at the job duties of the condenser, we already have parts available that would outlast the life of the engine. So I was told.
Issues they would not fit in the distributor and have to mount outside and run a wire.


I picture a retired gentleman in his garage, with some simple tooling, could stamp out the case and create a condenser .... 1 condenser made to fit a 8BA, would fit a multitude of other vehicles.
A few modifications with tooling, and could be making condensers to fit, Ford, Gm, Mopar.
Is no big boys Like GM or Ford going to jump into this,

Get a system down and create 10 or 15 quality condensers in a few hours. Sell for $20 each.

China condenser sells for $10, I would be happy to pay double for a good quality condenser.
With the internet today and the forums, I see no problem selling them. Could be fun traveling to swap meets and selling.
Just need someone to step up to the plate and swing the bat
I just think there is a need for a supplier and creates a opportunity for right person.


Whats it take to create a condenser from scratch?
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Old 09-22-2020, 05:31 PM   #14
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

I get mine from TAMS in West Boylston, MA. Same one now for two seasons. Always carry a spare
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Old 09-22-2020, 08:22 PM   #15
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Quote:
Originally Posted by Los_Control View Post
I hear complaints about cheap inferior over seas parts. We have all heard the horror stories with the modern condenser available to us.


I brought up in another forum recently, why cant we have some smart person make a quality condenser to work on our cars?
When we look at the job duties of the condenser, we already have parts available that would outlast the life of the engine. So I was told.
Issues they would not fit in the distributor and have to mount outside and run a wire.


I picture a retired gentleman in his garage, with some simple tooling, could stamp out the case and create a condenser .... 1 condenser made to fit a 8BA, would fit a multitude of other vehicles.
A few modifications with tooling, and could be making condensers to fit, Ford, Gm, Mopar.
Is no big boys Like GM or Ford going to jump into this,

Get a system down and create 10 or 15 quality condensers in a few hours. Sell for $20 each.

China condenser sells for $10, I would be happy to pay double for a good quality condenser.
With the internet today and the forums, I see no problem selling them. Could be fun traveling to swap meets and selling.
Just need someone to step up to the plate and swing the bat
I just think there is a need for a supplier and creates a opportunity for right person.


Whats it take to create a condenser from scratch?
Great idea, I think you just hit a home run. All you need to do is buy a roll of tin foil and a roll of wax paper and start churning them out.
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Old 09-23-2020, 08:33 AM   #16
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Who sells A & L condensers?
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Old 09-23-2020, 08:59 AM   #17
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Perhaps I should have stated that Ford should have designed a better heat shield. Those things didn't work very well. It was just an afterthought that didn't really solve the problem. Flathead heads may be liquid cooled but they are still hot in operation and that shield didn't help with that. If any of the condensers were made with wax paper, the wax would melt out pretty quick. Mica was better but I don't know if they used it or not. Ford wasn't the only supplier of spare parts for the model A.
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Old 09-23-2020, 09:22 AM   #18
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Quote:
Originally Posted by McMimmcs View Post
Is A&L still making lifetime condesnsors?

Yes. Look for "short proof" in the description. That's theirs.

Be advised, the last time I installed one, the body of the condenser was about 1/16" or 1/8" too long. I had to fiddle around with it to get it installed and connected. Do it before you put the upper plate in.

.
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Old 09-26-2020, 04:09 PM   #19
Los_Control
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

Quote:
Originally Posted by Los_Control View Post
I hear complaints about cheap inferior over seas parts. We have all heard the horror stories with the modern condenser available to us.


I brought up in another forum recently, why cant we have some smart person make a quality condenser to work on our cars?
When we look at the job duties of the condenser, we already have parts available that would outlast the life of the engine. So I was told.
Issues they would not fit in the distributor and have to mount outside and run a wire.


I picture a retired gentleman in his garage, with some simple tooling, could stamp out the case and create a condenser .... 1 condenser made to fit a 8BA, would fit a multitude of other vehicles.
A few modifications with tooling, and could be making condensers to fit, Ford, Gm, Mopar.
Is no big boys Like GM or Ford going to jump into this,

Get a system down and create 10 or 15 quality condensers in a few hours. Sell for $20 each.

China condenser sells for $10, I would be happy to pay double for a good quality condenser.
With the internet today and the forums, I see no problem selling them. Could be fun traveling to swap meets and selling.
Just need someone to step up to the plate and swing the bat
I just think there is a need for a supplier and creates a opportunity for right person.


Whats it take to create a condenser from scratch?



I just wanted to revisit this thread. I just found a gentleman over on the H.A.M.B That actually stepped up and has been making condensers.
While they are not cheap, they look like good quality to me.
He claims been running them for 4 years and no failures yet.
I bought one and will ship on Monday
He says is a design copy from the old mallory dual point distributors, When they added dual points they moved condenser outside to the case.


The price is $60 + $8 shipping, if you are a alliance member on the HAMB, they sell for $50

If they are made well, hard to say how long one will last.

While $60 seems high for a condenser, I went trough 3 new ones and ended up using a used one. I should have thrown $30 in the trash can and and just went used.
Another poster said went through 6 condensers to get a good one, and carries 2 spares ... Thats $80 and still expecting the current condenser to fail at any time.
Whats a flatbed cost, or sitting on the side of the highway swapping condensers worth?
I think his $60 asking price is just fine, and he took them to the next level they look nice ... I may put mine on the outside of distributor so I can look at it.
Not some stamped out piece of tin and bubble gum.
His handle is tubman on the hamb, only way I know to contact him.
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Old 09-26-2020, 04:33 PM   #20
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Default Re: Condenser Issues

He is on the v8 side here
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