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Old 01-06-2019, 07:10 PM   #1
Rand
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Default Dwell RPM meter

I'm looking for a good inexpensive dwell/rpm meter. I've bought 2 separate old school units off that auction site with no luck. Both non working. I've even looked at the few swap meets they have here with no luck.
Question..anybody have a good one to sell or steer me in the right direction to find one?
Thank you!
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Old 01-06-2019, 10:35 PM   #2
Flathead Fever
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I've had a Sun tach/dwell meter like this one for over 40-year's. Back when I was 16 and setting dual points on a Hipo 289 and a Boss 302. They would go to 7000 rpm so the dwell must have been accurate. You don't really need a dwell meter. If you set them with a feeler gauge, you will be real close. But its always nice to verify it with a dwell meter. I think this came from Sear's. It was decent meter for home use but probably not as good as the commercial ones that came on the Sun Scopes. I bet if your patient you can find a real nice one on eBay still in the box. How often does the average car guy use one of these at home?

I looked on eBay. There are several of these Snap-On Dwell Meters in various conditions and prices. These look like the quality dwell meters similar to the ones that came in the old scopes. You need to be careful with those clip on magnetic leads. They break if they get dropped. I've broke one or two of them on the old Sun scopes dropping them. The leads are so long on the scopes it was easy for them to hit the ground.

I bought an entire 1970s sun scope that works great because the guy no longer had room for it in his garage for $100.00. These were the best scopes ever made for looking at ignition patterns. We had them at work and then they replaced with the bar graph digital pieces of junk.
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Old 01-06-2019, 10:42 PM   #3
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I have that Sun unit too. Not saying I used it either that much. Maybe it's effective.


https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Sun...FuYZ:rk:1:pf:0
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:19 AM   #4
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

Sears is a very good tach, dwell meter .......
Seen a couple on ebay this morning, thats what we have used for a long time , no battery required and is right on all the time....
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Old 01-07-2019, 11:12 AM   #5
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I walked into an auto parts store and asked if they sold dwell meters. All three (young) countermen looked at me and then each other in silence.
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Old 01-07-2019, 11:18 AM   #6
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

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Originally Posted by Mike51Merc View Post
I walked into an auto parts store and asked if they sold dwell meters. All three (young) countermen looked at me and then each other in silence.
Most Autozone stores rent out automotive tools. One day I asked about a ring compressor and watched as several countermen puzzled over how to use it.
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Old 01-07-2019, 11:35 AM   #7
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

How long can our hobby exist? All the "old" parts men are gone. If it doesn't have a screen or keys, then most young people aren't interested.
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Old 01-07-2019, 11:52 AM   #8
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

The old sunīs are good equipment but with age replacing old components and need for calibration it is a fact.
If you are willing to pay around $150 there are good Multimeters built for automotive service that has RPM and Dutycycle(dwell) in them.
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Old 01-07-2019, 12:12 PM   #9
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

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Originally Posted by Mike51Merc View Post
I walked into an auto parts store and asked if they sold dwell meters. All three (young) countermen looked at me and then each other in silence.






I guess we can't expect anymore since most of the parts counter people now were born long after points and carburetors were around.


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Old 01-07-2019, 01:41 PM   #10
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I built a KnightKit "Engine Analyzer" in the 60's, that had tach and dwell functions. Being made of discrete components (no integrated circuits or other nonsense) one of those would be a good buy. They were calibrated using household current (60 cycles = 3600 RPM as I recall).
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Old 01-07-2019, 01:59 PM   #11
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I found the one we use new , its the best i ever had , no batterys required etc....

https://www.google.com/search?q=SEAR...53227241436691
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Old 01-07-2019, 09:01 PM   #12
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

Thanks Bubba!
I'm going to look into that one
I clicked on the link and it listed a bunch of them...which one are you reffering to?
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Old 01-08-2019, 02:57 PM   #13
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

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Originally Posted by Rand View Post
Thanks Bubba!
I'm going to look into that one
I clicked on the link and it listed a bunch of them...which one are you reffering to?
Actron CP7605 Dwell/Tachometer/Voltmeter Analyzer BLACK ONE......
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Old 01-08-2019, 03:18 PM   #14
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I have one sold by Sears, it was a pretty good one but haven't use it in years.
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Old 01-08-2019, 06:25 PM   #15
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I have an Aacron unit that I bought at a garage sale about 20 years ago. The only problem was that it didn't have instructions and I didn't know how to use all of the capabilities of the unit. I went on the internet, and with our old friend "Google" and was able to find and download the instruction sheets. They seem to still in business and I am very satisfied with my $2 purchase.
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Old 01-08-2019, 06:30 PM   #16
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I had a Sears unit I purchased in the early 60s. No idea where it is now, guess I should look for it!
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Old 01-08-2019, 10:57 PM   #17
Rand
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

Originally Posted by Rand View Post
Thanks Bubba!
I'm going to look into that one
I clicked on the link and it listed a bunch of them...which one are you reffering to?
Actron CP7605 Dwell/Tachometer/Voltmeter Analyzer BLACK ONE......

Thank you very much!
BTW. My dizzy runny beautifully that you rebuilt!
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Old 01-08-2019, 11:44 PM   #18
Flathead Fever
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I showed my son-n-law an oil can spout and he could not guess what it was. Plus it was sitting next to a vintage oil can????? I wonder how long he would try and twist the top off that oil can before he figured it out what the spout was for?


We were still were using dwell meters in the 1980s on the Chevys, with the electronic controlled 4V carbs. That was right before fuel injection took over. It was an interesting carburetor. You set the dwell meter to the 6 cyl scale and hooked it up to the mixture control solenoid on the carb. Its just an auxiliary fuel injector on the carb to fine tune the air fuel ratio for the best catalytic convertor efficiently. The dwell meter read the on and off time of the solenoid, just like it does a set of points. You adjusted air fuel mixture screws until the dwell was right in the middle of the 6 cyl scale. That gave the computer the ability to adjust the mixture control full lean or full rich by opening the mixture control solenoid for a shorter or longer period of time. Those carbs ran good when they were adjust properly. I have all this knowledge and nobody to pass it on to. It almost makes me feel like I wasted my life. Gasoline powered cars will just be a very brief time in history. I'm glad I didn't live in the horse drawn era and I'm glad I have no interest in today's 100K+ Tesla's electric golf carts. Future people are never going to understand why we were so fascinated with our primitive engines.
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Old 01-09-2019, 12:12 AM   #19
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I still remember the first car I got where you could just reach in that little window on distributor and set the points. Some kind of rocket motor Oldsmobile. I've always meant to find my meter and try it on something, never have.
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Old 01-20-2019, 01:21 PM   #20
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Default Re: Dwell RPM meter

I got, at a flea market, a Niehoff Dwell-Tach T-44! The guy who had it was kind enough to open the battery compartment, and it was clean. No physical damage! Got it home and could not get it to calibrate with new batteries! Started fiddling and found some crud on the battery contacts. Got it cleaned and then kind of reverse engineered how to use it and got it all written down in a word file. It works perfectly. For my model A Ford, the only meter I really use is the tach. If the points are set right on a model A and timed right, dwell is interesting but ?????
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