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Old 05-25-2020, 09:30 AM   #1
DomeLight
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Default Ignition wire falls out

I have a 1931 Coupe with an original style ignition wire, with brass clips on the ends, and an aftermarket coil of some unknown type. The ignition wire falls out of the coil socket periodically and makes it hard to continue.

If I install a coil designed for an A can I expect the wire to stay in the coil? Is there some design of the socket that holds the original brass clips firmly?

I have tried to adjust the clip shape by bending it but this has not had any desirable effect.

Incidentally, once I drove over a bump, and the engine kept running, but the sound changed slightly. I stopped when it was safe and opened the hood. The ignition wire had fallen out but came to rest about a quarter inch away from the coil socket. The spark was jumping the gap, enough to keep the engine firing.
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Old 05-25-2020, 09:35 AM   #2
chrs1961815
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

If you cannot get it to stay by bending the clip on the wire - it is probably the coil. Originals and new ones thesedays work fine. Your coil may have not been made for the application. Another thought - are you sure that you have the right wire?
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Old 05-25-2020, 09:40 AM   #3
DomeLight
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

It is a lacquered wire that I bought for the purpose from one of the Model A supply houses. It came with clips and instructions to solder them in place. I think it is the right type.

Thanks, I think I will splurge on a new coil in the hopes that it holds the wire better.
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Old 05-25-2020, 10:26 AM   #4
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Default Ignition wire falls out

If you are going to order a coil, you may want to order a new coil wire as well. The one I purchased from Bratton’s recently was quite a firm fit for the coil and the distributor cap.

If it turns out to be the wire, a spare coil is nice to have on hand anyway.

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Old 05-25-2020, 12:22 PM   #5
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

Not being able to see the end you are asking about and how it was soldered on, you should be able to bend the tangs out from the side and should stay in place. Unless it is some exotic coil, most all coils should have about the same size hole where that wire fits. You could also try installing a boot at that end.
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Old 05-25-2020, 12:23 PM   #6
Kurt in NJ
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

Perhaps the solder bump is too large and it prevents it from seating in the groove in the coil tower
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Old 05-25-2020, 01:41 PM   #7
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

I secured mine with a little bit of black silicone caulk. Cant see it and it holds firm.
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Old 05-25-2020, 02:46 PM   #8
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

You could always expand the clips with a screwdriver a bit to fit more securely in the coil.
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Old 05-25-2020, 03:55 PM   #9
DomeLight
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

Thanks everyone for the thoughts.

burner31 and redmodelt: I tried spreading the clip arms but it still slips out. I think the coil socket must be a different shape than the original and it just doesn't engage. The previous owner had a boot on the wire but it slipped off with that also.

Kurt in NJ: I thought of that, so I filed down the solder blob to the brass (it was still soldered on the inside of the clip). Still slips out.

1crosscut: Now I have the wire lashed on with zip ties - your silicone caulk idea seems better than mine if I can't get it to stay with a correct coil.

I have taken shrew 01's advice and ordered both a coil and a wire. I am hopeful that will solve the problem.

Thanks again.
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:23 AM   #10
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

IIRC, original wires were 7mm, some of the newer stuff is 8mm. Perhaps you have a 7mm wire and a coil made for 8mm wire.
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:35 AM   #11
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

Did you look into the coil to see if there is an old wire end clip that was stuck in there by accident? That might cause the new one to not seat. Usually the clip ends grip very tightly into the coil.
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:49 AM   #12
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

Do you have a rubber boot that holds securely?
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Old 05-26-2020, 11:03 AM   #13
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Default Re: Ignition wire falls out

My coil wire was bad, it had a boot on it hiding corrosion. I ordered a new wire and installed it leaving the boot off the coil end but left a boot on the dizzy end. I've been running around with the hood off and water might get into that connection. The old coil wire terminal ends would pull out easily, even after messing around with them, I did use some electrical grease on the connections.
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