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Ignition Drives

EFI Tuning Fundamentals

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Hi, so in the distributor ignition system, the signal is from the ignition switch, then to the igniter module, later to the cap of the distributor (the part of the middle connected directly to the ignition coil right? This is done through leads, next to the rotor sending the spark to the spark plug through the other leads that are connected to the cylinders? But how this works with the synchronization sensor (position sensor)? Is sent a signal to the position sensor to know which cylinder is firing? Can someone confirm this please, any help is appreciated

There are three basic distributor ignition setups.

The first is the points and condenser, the kettering or "clockwork" type, where no electronics are used and it's entirely mechanical and electricity, with pysical points being opened and closed by a cam lobes on the distributor shaft. These are rare on vehicles after the mid eighties. Very early engines used a thing called a "trembler coil', rather than 'points', and the rotor was effectively a distribution switch to direct the spark where it was wanted.

The second type, usually found on eighties and later cars that still used carburettors, replaced the mechanical 'points' switch with an electronic switch, still operated by the distributor shaft. I think this is the type you may be thinking of, as some referred to the ignition (switch) module as an 'ignitor'.

The third is generally found on earlier vehicles using fuel injection later engines would use a coil pack, or packs, because they're more reliable and don't wear out.. With these the ECU uses the crankshaft position sensor to 'decide' when to fire the ignition coil, which sends the spark to the distributor centre terminal which then passes it to the correct cylinder via the rotor.

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