Interesting Ignition Finding

Tim Terry

When installing the ignition in my SPF40, we decided to run the coil wire from the starboard mounted coil upward, and into a small, rectangular chassis channel toward the middle of the car. This is the channel that runs across the car, just under the rear window. We saw other wiring running there and thought it would be a good use of the channel. We drilled an exit hole on the underside of the channel, for the coil wire to exit near the distributor. I terminated the wire and it seemed like a slick installation.

During a major cleaning, I discovered that the top of the oil dipstick has been lying against the outside of that chassis channel and there has been some sparking. I know this because the dipstick handle edge has an area of metal missing and that metal appears on the outside of the chassis channel, like a weld.

The coil wire looks to be intact - no nicks or anything along its length.

I'm surprised that the coil wire could energize that entire chassis channel and cause a "short" with the dipstick. I guess I'll have to give up the "slick" installation and run the coil wire in free space.