I have a "Z" cylinder head on the '26 Runabout, and have been running the E-Timer for three years.
On occasion, I have changed out the Vaporizor, Holley NH straight-thru carb, standard intake, '13 original aluminum (high volume) intake, standard muffler, stainless steel straight thru muffler....
Right now, the engine has the '13 aluminum intake, no heat pipe, NH straight-thru, stainless steel muffler.
Over the weekend, decided to check initial ignition timing.... Took #1 plug out, perfectly clean, no glazing from overheating, slightly grey, no black soot - especially on the #1 plug. ( Yes, I did check the other three plugs, showed the same clean burn. Could I also believe clean combustion chamber & piston top ? )
I took this observation as a combination of factors, ... efficiency of the E-Timer, efficiency of the chamber shape of the "Z" head, the efficiency of synthetic oil, and the tuning of the fuel mixture according to road/travel conditions.
I would like to hear from other E-Timer owners on their experiences with their engines, with standard heads, other than standard spark plugs, or whatever modifications they have.
Should be interesting.
Thanks in advance
Bob; My TT runs an E-timer and as long as it operates like it does now, nobody is going to pry it out of my hands.
The engine is 0.080 over bore, has a Stype 280 cam running a tooth retarded. a SCAT crank, Std T journals with splash oiling. Took the Mag ring out and running heavy splashers with scoops on un-grooved rods.
Took the internal oil line out and have a 1/2" plastic line that runs down the left side to the front of the pan. I have a 12V alternator and battery, as well as a 375 watt inverter to run the Christmas lites and/ or a laptop and a wide band O2 sensor. Also running NGK BPR2ES Spark plugs.
Earlier this year I was having an issue with stuttering and hesitation on acceleration and back-fireing on deceleration. I removed the E-timer, put on the Anderson timer and the spare set of coils. I also put on the NH and stock manifold. The operation was returned to a reasonably smooth running engine. But in Layne OD the engine started falling on its knees around 25 Mph. Just running out of oomph. Put the E-timer back on and drove it, and felt a little stronger.
Then I returned to the original early Aluminum manifold With the OD1 Carby on it. I had a difficult time getting enough clearance to the exhaust manifold this time, so a little more grinder work. Fired it up and back to normal running. Smooth, more power, just about where the NH started to fall to its knees, the OD1 is just getting into the harness. It pulls well to above 40.
On Sat June 1, I went to San Miguel for a Model T, Model A Show. I travel the back roads and some are in need of repairs. Went about 40 miles each way and got a little more than 20 MPG.
Checked the plugs and they were in great shape.
Here Is a shot of the manifold set-up
20+ MPG on a trip in a TT ?? Damn good !
While I am a etimer owner I have never actually used it. I do however have plane for it. Bob and Jim Thank you for all the insight.
Bob; The reason for the mileage is the OD1 has an economizer valve on it. At about 35, level road and no headwind, it will run about 14-15 fuel ratio. Open the throttle and it will drop to 11-12 at at 3/4 throttle.
Any other E-Timer users to share engine maintenance experiences ?
Jim,two years ago I ran a course mapped out in modern iron for mileage then duplicated the ride in the '26 Runabout. With the early NH, '13 aluminum intake, ss muffler the average mpg came to 26. Relatively flat ground, "back roads", minimal traffic lights and my extra 100 pounds at the time... maybe the weight helped on the "momentum " ??? LOL.
I love my E timer. Not sure how many miles I have on it now but it is a big part of a car that I tour in regularly which I call a set and forget T! I hop in,push the buton and drive where I want to with a minimum of fuss. I have not pulled the head nor I do not monitor fuel economy so I cant comment on either but the smoother running and better pulling I attribute directly to the E Timer. I dont miss having to adjust the timing, in fact when I swap back to my other standard T I find myself constantly adjusting the spark because I now know just how much better it can be when you get it just right.
I do have to pull the engine soon on the E timer equipped sedan so I will be sure to let you know what is under the head.
Bob This is great thread idea. I love my ET mostly for the same reasons as Warwick.
I've tried to measure MPG, not that it matters, but always sort of mess up figuring how much gas I used or put in or where I started from.
My '12 torpedo has an OF with alum intake, .060 over alum pistons, chevy valves, stipe 250 cam, Dubats crank, and Z head, with an old alum Warford.
It drives very nice and had a new top speed of 68 n tour from Pismo Beach.
The Bosch 4003 plugs were recently removed and looked nice with a clean greyish tan. I had been earlier running too rich but leaned the carb out. With the OF adjusting for the perfect mixture is a challenge. Sure would like to get it on a dyno to fine tune the carb.
The ET is one of those aftermarket parts available to us that allows us to drive more miles with less wear and maintenance while enjoying improved performance but maintaining the original look of the T.
Has Ralph suggested auxiliary brakes ?? His cross country experience is valuable..... and he likes the freeways !
My experience with the E-Timer has been very limited but I did notice a good HOT spark while setting it up before the electrical trauma detailed elsewhere. As soon as my new motor is completely sorted I'll get the E-Timer installed and look forward to the sweeter running others have mentioned.
Aux brakes aren't enough, Bob. Front brakes make the difference.
Gene likes the freeways too, when it makes sense, like enroute to the HME.
I have two nice original Ford timer cases ready for an e-timer, if Mike gets over being mad at us and makes some more.
Thanks Ralph for your input. What input can you convey with your E-Timer driving Gene's T ?? Your community is mostly urban driving, while my area is mostly nature protected with secondary roads
Not sure you said what you meant, Bob. I run a modren disturbutor with Pertronix and auto advance.
Gee Les, I thought I was the only person who bought one and hasn't installed it yet!! The fanbelt on this racer runs over the timer because of the oddball idler that has been added for some reason. I want to chuck the water pump and go back to conventional cooling but I don't know if the Whippet radiator is any good running in thermosyphon. With things "as they is" I can't pop in the E-Timer.
I'm durned if I do's and durned if I dont's
I'm not easily scared, but that photo of a barely visible Runabout on the freeway in the fog really gives me goosebumps. He can't be driving faster than . . . what . . . 50mph max? Still makes a pretty bad bang when that Explorer hits it with only 65mph, me thinks.
That was Dec 2010, before he installed the e-timer, Bernard, and he cruised about 60 then. He has 3 tail lights, same as a modren.
WoW Ralph! Those look like some scary photos to some of our T drivers I bet?
In reality, in our T's it's not as dangerous as driving at 35 on some side streets with cross traffic and quick red lights and that guy that cuts in front of you and hits the brakes to turn into Mc D's. I think is being close to the flow of the slower traffic, watching far ahead and having your car in good mechanical condition.
Of course the morning rush hour may not be the safest place and time but ours is mostly on weekends.
Both Ralph and I now have 4 wheel brakes. Although RDR's hydraulic Metros at excellent, my newly built and installed Big 4/McNerny knock offs need more testing and adjusting but do give better braking.
I don't believe Mike is mad at anyone, maybe "perturbed" at the ones who constantly bashed without ever had the experience of the E-Timer. Just my take.....
Ralph: Thought Gene offered his ride to experience the E-Timer, Be safe, 4 wheel brake "upgrade" should help, along with the help of the "nut" behind the wheel...... (:>)
The E Timer is a device that disables the magneto and costs over $400.
Is it bashing to state the truth of the matter?
Topic: E-Timer Owner Discussion
Please refrain off-topic comments
This is the Model T Ford Club of America opinion forum. Your opinion is welcome and enjoyable.
What can one say at this point ??? Royce WILL BE Royce.
This might be a fine line, but the e-timer does nothing to disable the Magneto, it just don't need or use the AC voltage and current from the Mag, as I understand the theory of operation.
I think the point Royce was highlighting is that you lose the redundancy of the original system with the E-timer as it doesn't operate on AC (magneto). In essence, that is the same as disables (although reversible).
There are only two types of products available for sale. The ones people swear by and the ones they swear at. Some products fall in both categories.
James, you are factually correct. The magneto is not connected , the E-Timer uses battery/generator/alternator DC power. The magneto is still operational, if it was, as before..... just that the AC power is not used, the same as in other non-magneto powered ignition systems like distributors or the True Fire.
Bob is obviously in the "swears by" camp.
Gary: If you mean truthful factual information,and happy with the product, YES I Am in the "Swears by" camp.
I will apologize to Bob for going a little off thread here
I have not installed my etimer yet because I have a fine running Trufire on my '13 and charge the 12volt battery from the mag. I went this way as the Heinz coils were unsatisfactory when new in '13 and are still that way (design flaw). So i use the mag and get great ignition as well!!! All good after 10 years
No apology needed, not off thread at all, you're still an owner..... who will be appreciating the E-Timer from your driving experience. Let us know after your conversion.
I have an E-timer. It does everything it is supposed to do. There are however some things it can't do.... like disable the magneto.
Tom Carnegie said " I have an E-timer. It does everything it is supposed to do. There are however some things it can't do.... like disable the magneto. :-) "
What a relief, won't loose any more sleep over this !!
P>S> Thanks for all your efforts keeping the "500" alive & running !!
I've disabled a few magnetos too, by accident
(Thread drift). However, like Les, I have an E Timer still in the box, just waiting.............
My "disabled" mag is still working and hooked up to power the 12V battery. So I guess technically it is still hooked up and running the car just fine powering the coils albeit a little indirect. Hee Hee
Bob, Thanks for trying to keep this thread within the topic of users/owners.
Do you know anything about the new modified program that Mike was working on awhile back?
E-Timer Wish List?
While I think the E-Timer is worthwhile just as it is and happily paid the price asked to gain its many advantages, there are a couple of things I would like to see changed if it ever became possible to do so.
During my brief installation (before I burned it out) I noticed that the coils did not buzz the way a proper Model T should. They did make a sound, but it wasn't the happy sound we love so much in our coils. I understand that it is possible to adjust them to sound better but I have no idea how to do this nor would I want to unless I also had a complete set of spare coils.
I intend to carry my old Anderson timer in my tour kit and want to be able to go back IF I ever needed to. I would not care to have to fool with the coils trying to undo the adjustment I had previously made just to alter the sound.
So - my wish for a future version of the E-Timer would be no fuses on the coils and let them buzz normally so I can switch back and forth easily.
Paul: I ran my engine without the coil points on the coils for a time. Mike suggests connecting the terminals with the fuses for a purpose. If the individual coil should falter, the fuse will break the circuit telling the driver of a bad coil.
The coil noises are immaterial to the E-Timer operation, although the operator can self opt to keep the coil sounds.
When the E Timer burned out were you able to install a spare E timer from under the seat and drive home Paul?
I've never had a Ford timer fail in such a manner that the car was not able to drive back home. The beauty of the Ford system is that it doesn't rely on any charging system or battery, and there are no unreliable easy to fry circuit boards to fail and leave you stranded unexpectedly.
Paul's E-Timer autopsy results may not be complete as of today ?
If there is any trouble in the ignition system, The E-Timer is easily replaced with the standard ignition for a quick fix.
Putting pressure on a newby such as Paul, who is still learning, is over the top..even for you.
In fact he did install an Anderson timer to run his engine. He admitted he does not have a flywheel magneto, so he does rely on a battery/generator DC power supply for ignition.
From Paul's "Problem Child" posting :
"I foolishly did not install a magneto with the rebuild. I bought an E-Timer and will be fitting it once the car is completely sorted out. I could not imagine that the E-Timer would not be a huge sales success and ever be out of production or I would have fitted the magneto. Mike Kosser has been terrific in supporting his customers but he has no plans to make any more at this time. I hope this will change and E-Timers will once again be available. It is too good an idea not to pursue!
So, I intend to install an E-Timer and that should cure the low voltage ignition problems in this case. That does bring up the issue about what to do for those of us who have a weak or no magneto and wish to stay with 6v. There is a new very compact battery sold for motorcycles that possibly might be hooked up under the dash to the magneto wire. I'm not an electrical sort, but it seemed to me that this might provide the hotter spark even if it would need charging once in a while.
Vintage Paul "
In his own words.
Right, so with the coils adjusted improperly for E Timer operation there was no way he could operate the car on a normal timer.
The E Timer instructions tell you to disable the coils for best operation.
In Paul's own words "So - my wish for a future version of the E-Timer would be no fuses on the coils and let them buzz normally so I can switch back and forth easily."
If you were an E-Timer owner, or just took the time to read the instruction manual, one would know without any question to disconnect the fuses on the top terminals to have the coil work originally intended on the stock system....... and to replace the E-Timer assembly with a standard timer of your liking.
*I have a set of 4 coils, that have been properly re-built and calibrated enclosed in a closed Ford coil box and a NOS Anderson Timer in my turtle deck.... just in case the E-Timer fails..........Still waiting.....OR have a set of coils for anyone in trouble with bad coils.
Like I said, Paul is a "newby" to this Forum and has received a lot of good info and bad. So, your "quote post" of Paul just preys on his innocence and very limited experience with the workings of the E-Timer. ...he speaks of a wish for a FUTURE version of the E-Timer ..... which by current info likely will not.
Just to refresh you memory... E-Timer installation Instructions can be found at : www.modeltetimer.com
Where does it say " with the coils adjusted improperly for E Timer operation there was no way he could operate the car on a normal timer. " ????????????????????????
Where does it say : " The E Timer instructions tell you to disable the coils for best operation. " ????????????????????????
Royce, let it go already with the E-Timer bash, this thread is about an owner discussion.
My coils are properly adjusted, however I use an E-Timer so it isn't necessary, but just in case of a failure I have a back-up. So with an enabled magneto and a timer of choice, and a battery along with an E-Timer one actually has 3 different ignition systems to use. I have used the E-Timer on 2 different vehicles with great results. It has not failed me yet, I did blow the 4 amp fuse though putting the coil box cover on while the motor was running. (Not real smart) I was showing someone the jumper wires. Here is a picture of my E-Timer set-up.
I do welcome Royce's comments and feel he has helped me many times after reading his comments and suggestions. Just the same, I think he is off the beam in this case.
To switch back from E-Timer to the Anderson timer required only two things. First, the twisted on fuses needed to be untwisted from around the coil points. Second, the timers themselves needed to be switched. All of this can easily be done by the roadside should the occasion ever arise. That is one of the great things about the E-Timer. It looks completely stock and is EASILY reversible.
My suggestion for a FUTURE version of the E-Timer was only to make them sound normally without having to adjust the points for SOUND. I too am very much a traditionalist in that I want the car to look and sound as authentic as possible while still enjoying the good hot spark, smooth running and maintenance free operation the E-Timer offers.
Somebody's off their medication again........
And I own an E-Timer. Mike worked on an E-timer for Models NRS, even though it didn't come to fruition (at my request). I was also hoping he could put one into an early T two piece timer because I accidentally discharged the mag on our 09, but it didn't work out (and the original coils are unreliable).
This is not E-Timer bashing and I think it is a very useful optional accessory. However, if you follow the E-Timer installation instructions it is not as simple and some say to convert back from the E-Timer to stock coil operation. The instructions clearly say "to adjust the coil points if necessary so they buzz and sound natural". The problem is that adjusting for the "natural sound" is very likely not the correct adjustment to operate in the stock system. To correctly convert back to the stock system a HCCT or some other more modern tester/setter is required.
I think the confusion is in adjusting the points to get the original sound. It's been a while since I experimented with the E-Timer, but my recollection is that it will operate properly without upsetting the point adjustment, but the points do not sound like they do on an original system. If one were to want to make it sound original, they can do that by doing some form of point adjustment. However, if they do choose to do that, they will have messed up the proper point adjustment for original operation and will never get it back like it was without the aid of a HCCT. So if one wants the ability to swap back to the original system on the side of the road, they would, in addition to a spare timer of their choosing, either need a spare set of properly adjusted coils, or else just live with the lack of original sound while running on the E-Timer..
Oops. Jim posted while I was still gathering my thoughts.
Dean Yoder gave me a tip a few months back about a device used to adjust the points on old telephone switching relay circuits.
The unit measures from Zero to 150 Grams.
The vibrator point adjustment was just right when the points separated measuring a force of 75 grams when pushing the points open with the gauge pointer.
Setting the mechanical value made it much easier to have the coil pass the StroboSpark tests.
Now the new points have been changed again and the vibrator point appear to made of a thicker or stronger material, so the gauge doesn't work as well.
So getting back to the original post.... any maintenance experiences that E-Timer users want to share ? Same clean burning plugs, or engine issues, anything else ? ?
Still wondering why your E timer burned up? Was there something you could share to keep other E Timer owners from having their E timer fail and leave the car inoperable?
Certainly it is useful to know that the E timer instructions tell you to (direct quote) "adjust the coil points if necessary so they buzz and sound natural". Certainly if one intends to ever use a normal, reliable timer to continue driving the car it is in the best interest to NOT follow the instructions that come with the $400 electronic timer.
Who said it "burned up" ??? When Paul gets the report from Mike Kossor on what happened, I'm sure he will share that with us.
Royce, Keep your baseless assumptions to yourself.
Now lets get back to the thread topic.
Paul said that.
Here's a quote from Paul, above on this page: "During my brief installation (before I burned it out)"
Please don't call any of my direct quotes baseless assumptions.
You quoted Paul's assumption before Mike Kossor's evaluation of what ACTUALLY happened.
Me thinks the jury is still out on this.
Remember, Paul is new to Model T's. ....
Either way Paul burned out his E timer, and it would be useful to tell other E timers how to avoid doing that. It's not like you can afford to carry a spare $400 timer under the seat.
Time for you to go pick on some other electronic device you despise , like Regan's Voltage Regulator, True-Fire, Pertonix distributor, ..... your choice.
Some E-Timer owners ( of which this thread pertains ) stated some of their problems. This is reason enough for this thread, to share E-Timer experiences.
John Regan makes a lot of fine products. I've never "despised" anything that John makes. You are confused.
Despite never missing an opportunity to spew myth, misconception and misinformation, No production E-Timer has ever burned up to my knowledge nor is that likely to occur since the E-Timer incorporates a fail-safe mechanism to prevent catastrophic failure in the event of an internal fault.
It is entirely possible to cause the E-Timer or any product to fail by operating it ways it was not intended. For example, electrically connecting points of different coils while the engine is running can cause the E-Timer to fail. This fact is clearly stated on page 11 of the E-Timer installation and operating instructions. Users are also advised to avoid opening and closing metal coil box covers when the engine is running for this reason. Confirmed failures of this type or ones consistent with this type of failure are the only production E-Timer failures that I am aware of, none of which has burned up.
Regarding coil sound, The superior efficiency the E-Timer provides can alter the sound of the coil buzz but it is possible to adjust coil points to sound similar to stock operation. The point adjustment can alter engine performance if those coils are later used with the stock ignition system.
This thread is indicative of why so many of us have quite posting on this forum. It began as a friendly discussion for those with e timers to talk about their experiences. And in short order it turned into an argument begun by someone who doesn't have one.
A lot of us monitor now but fewer post. I think this is my first post in 6 months.
Its a shame the adults can't be in charge.
Mike, I was wondering if you were still reading the Forum.
That new engine that I was going to install your e-timer on is finally in the car and running.
Now, I'm here with two like new Ford Timers with the insides removed and ready to buy the e-timer that is no longer available.
One of our club members wanted to buy three of them, after he read the details I sent him. I have not talked to him recently, so I'm not sure if he ever got any at all.
As for burned up components, the small eco-fuse that is added to each original coil will burn out, as designed, if the original style timer is installed again without removing those fuses, but they were designed and added to protect the e-timer and they do work as advertised.
I am gathering parts to build an engine for something and as going to install the E-Timer, everything i heard and read about showed it to be an excellent alternative besides i like to have alternative choices, my 26 has a distributor with a Pertronix and it outperforms my stock 24 with coils and timer, i can start it fully advanced and it never kicks back, and if Dean Yoder likes the E-Timer it should be great for the rest of us who want one.But everyone is able to do to their T what they want, anyone who badmouths a product or tells me what i should or shouldn't do can KMA. Rick
Steve in Tennessee- a very wise statement. Some seem to be running with their timing retarded a bit.
I regret not buying one while they were available.
Steve in Tennessee : Don't put any nails in Royce's coffin, he may protest ?
Now back to the TOPIC >.
I was a member of the local Buick chapter , early '90's. A contemporary that I respected was adamant about "original" , although he admired original, spoke often at meetings to the effect that whatever you do to your car is your concern, and the result is a running car that one could enjoy.
He owned a '36 Special 4 dr. sedan, had a 1950 Buick 247 cu.in. straight eight engine with hydrolic lifters ( same as the engine matched with Dynaflow automatic trans ), and the '36 three speed manual gearbox. His car ran great, silent, no audible tappet noise....... and rode like a overstuffed sofa on knee action shocks.
Some chastised him, others were supportive, others had no clue.
I installed a Remberles Ball Bearing Dual Point breaker plate in my '50 Buick and it ran better than ever, no one ever knew the difference.
I see the E-Timer ignition in the same light. Hidden in the Ford commutator out of sight, gives better and hotter reliable ignition, and no one is the wiser when looking at the engine.
What could be better ???
Thank you for your posting, I'm sure it brought some factual positive light to answers others needed.
I regret not acknowledging sooner. Busy day here.
Please explain how the ignition is hotter. Spark is a function of the step up action in the coil. Since the stock Ford system and the e-timer use the Ford coil I am curious as to how that is. Not slamming the product just asking a question. To be fair, since you have on numerous occasion accused Royce of spreading false info, you should be held to the same standard.
Gary, in general the spark is hotter and more consistent with the E-timer because the amperage ramps up to a consistent fixed amount that can be higher than with battery or magneto.
As a owner and user of the E-Timer.....
The spark plugs have NEVER burned cleaner, especially # 1. Everything else I do driving I believe hasn't changed. Still start engine, use the choke, adjust fuel mixture the same. Even purchased "regular unleaded" gasoline at the same "company" stations... ( WaWa ) and used the same spark plugs... Edison #14 's . I'm aware that WaWa purchases their gas from a co-op, the gas formulations at times may change.
Using properly calibrated coils, NOS Anderson Timer, running on magneto.... spark plug tips were grey/white while the insulator and inner metal parts were black with some soot.
I only have the one Model T.
That is my true info.
Am I held to the truth standard in your eyes ??
Guess I am spoiled by the E-Timer, automatic spark advance fine tuned with advance curves in the software for the E-Timer, quick starting - hand crank or electric, and I've found myself not reaching for the spark lever to retard timing approaching hills or for a intersection.
Do you have an answer for the cleaner burning spark plugs ?
P.S. : plugs gapped at .025" in both instances, same set of plugs.
Thanks Tom for your input !
Have a great time on the "500"
Hard to believe members of a model t forum...meant to preserve the model t ford automobile....are encouraging the replacement of the stock ignition with electronic for anything other than safety reasons.
Don't do it Rob..... Keep them original. They are gorgeous cars enjoyable because of their originality, not their performance.
While I'm am a big fan of originality for cars that are close to original, there are plenty of "upgrades" that don't make the car safer, just more enjoyable for the driver/owner. Ruckstell's and Warford's are desirable, but some would argue that they make the car less safe. I can't think of any safety reason to install a z-head, flat tube radiator, Stipe cam, aluminum pistons, flags on the radiator neck, or lots of other things that owners do to their T's. Realistically, putting an electric starter on my "1916" touring isn't original, but I think that it was an excellent improvement, even if I usually hand crank the car. You may notice the quotes around 1916, my car is a long ways from being original, but it's a lot closer to stock than many of the other cars I see on tour.
But the reason that I'm responding is that I can't see how your comments are on topic for a "E-timer Owners discussion" created to discuss owner observations of how their E-Timer is working. Even though I am an E-Timer owner, I've stayed out of the conversation because it's still in the growing pile of stuff that I will put in my T eventually.
Have fun and keep cranking.
There are those that don't want to consider them...fine, and there are those that like them...fine. Somehow I'm having a problem not with the tech specs and what it does...but for the other form of modern ignition that is available, one that has no user serviceable parts when it fails and no longer has coils, barely a peep has ever been said.
I don't have one, but my car used to have one before I bought it. It ran like a bear, and when sold came to me with one of the first production batch of a new design Brand S timer in place...it lasted 'maybe' 50-100 miles, but thats a different story. No problem , my crash box always has new ones plus a few 'usable' used and at last count 16 coils ready to go (there are 3 cars after all).
But keeping on topic, at the point where the alpha stopped and beta began on the e-timer, I was offered to put a speedster through its paces. If anybody can get a T to bog...it's me...I seem to just have a natural knack for it! Too bad it was a 34 degree day. Thing was in auto, and I could zip up past 50 mph without a burp, throttle off in curves and give it full coming out, and no bog! Nice long straightaway, prob now up in the mid 50 mph range and flat, shut throttle off and the second feel the fall off start go full throttle...no burp, no bog right back at power. I would have played longer, but over 50 mph and 34 degrees in a speedster is an experience all to its' own when you didn't bring driving gloves.
We all like to know 'how' things work but really what we want is result. Mike electronically plays with timing in his programming,and I had the good fortune once to watch Mike on his test stand/scope. It's a shame he never videoed it for his site...you see the differences on a scope and can see the changes when he biases something from his keyboard or switches.
I'll probably always be a timer/coil guy myself, personal choice...but if I were building a bitsey up without a mag or with a dead mag, and needed an ignition, and they were still available, I wouldn't think twice about hesitating on an 'e'.
Forget the how for a second...(Mike is apparently a little humble...or a little gun-shy ), the below chart says it all. Mike had nothing to do with this test on a dyno. Same car, same carb setting, only ignitions changes and voltages changed.
You make a very fair point, however....how would you respond to a post on this forum discussing model t owners with v-8 turbos?
'My point is the lines does need to be drawn somewhere.
I think that it's been covered plenty of times when modern hot rod guys show up, most hod rod "T's" have virtually no original parts and this is obviously not the forum to discuss those cars. I notice that the Model A club specifies that the cars on their site must have A or B engines, nothing later.
Now, I have to wonder if you think that the e-timer that cannot be detected by observers without opening the commutator case is some how equivalent to a V-8 turbo? I'm pretty sure that some suggested turbo-ing an early Ford engine in the HP-Torque thread, and nobody batted an eye.
Obviously, the Henry Ford museum tends towards your perspective of enjoying Model T's as originally designed, yet they have used E-Timers in some of their cars. This is what they have said about this product:
"Antique Vehicle Specialist, Ken Kennedy, from The Henry Ford in Dearborn, Michigan, learned about the E-Timer at Hershey 2010 swap meet. Ken was intrigued by the E-Timer because it installs without any modification to the car or wiring; it closely mimics original coil operation, and most importantly, requires no maintenance. Ken welcomed the opportunity to become an E-Timer Beta Tester to establish reliability. Here is what he had to say about it:
“The E-Timer retains the appearance and function of the original ignition system but eliminates the mechanical wear and periodic maintenance of the coil points and timer contacts. This is a significant cost factor for the museum considering our cars operate 7 days a week for 9 months of the year putting on between 7,000 to 10,000 miles. The E-Timer has been in daily use at the Model T District in Greenfield Village since April 2010 providing dependable operation driving the equivalent of 16,000 miles. Acceleration and shifting are very smooth especially at the slow driving speeds our cars are typically driven.”
The Henry Ford in Dearborn, Michigan, 9/2011, updated 1/26/13
So I agree, the line has to drawn somewhere, but I still can't figure out why just few people, apparently including you, are so offended by the E-Timer that it should be considered to be outside the realm of the Model T hobby. Especially considering some of the alterations that are considered OK like external VW oil pumps, Delco alternators, Facet fuel pumps, Bosch distributors with Pertronics modules, True-Fire ignition, and fiberglass fenders, just to name a few.
Have fun and keep cranking.
Eric, Vince;;; My C cab didn't have any mirrors. I put a set of elephant ears on it. Is that OK??? Two of my hub caps are chrome, instead of nickel. Is that OK??? I'm sure my truck came off the assy line with no bed. Someone put a bed on it. Is that OK??? Someone put on tail lites. is that OK???
I could go on and on about the way my truck is not as it was when it came off the Dallas Assy line in Oct of 1924. Some are safety concerns, some are usability concerns. Others such as chrome vs nickel are esthetics.
I enjoy the truck the way it is and I don't make comments about others' cars. They like them, FINE.
"Don't do it Rob..... Keep them original."
It's offensive to tell somebody else what to do with their own property. Do you want to see that '09 keep its original, unreliable coils? You could buy it, I'm pretty sure.
"The modifications on MY car make it safer, more reliable and improve it’s appearance. The modifications on YOUR car are unnecessary, troublesome, gaudy and ruin the whole character of the Model T!"
Much of what sets a T apart from other cars of the era are its parts that were obsolete in 1909: ignition, 2-speed planetary, planetary steering gear, tranny brake, etc.
I'm with you, we all get to do with our cars whatever we like, and I don't think that it's anybody else's concern.
But a very vocal, extremely small minority in this group have decided to crusade against the heresy against the almighty Henry that the E-Timer seems to represent. The need to declare their righteous indignation with the concept of the E-Timer approaches the pathological. If the term "E-Timer" is mentioned in any thread, their contrary response appears to be compulsive, they do not seem to be able to restrain themselves. It's a strange thing, on virtually any other topic, these few are welcome participants in the conversation, bringing a wealth of knowledge and personal experience. They all seem like nice fellows, but something about this specific product appears to be more than they can bear.
Personally I feel that their protestations have become so pedantic that their posts on the topic have become droll, the exuberant utterances of sidewalk zealots.
I consider myself to be one of the lucky few that was able to buy one during the brief window of opportunity. One can only hope that the product will be made available again for the growing crowd that recognizes the advantage of such a subtle and easily reversible upgrade.
Have fun and keep cranking.
I still do not know what caused the E-Timer to quit producing sparks. Whatever it was blew the main fuse of 25 amps. I never saw anything likely to have caused it and it has not repeated in something like 3 hours of running both on the ramp and on the road. Mike fixed it under warranty which he did not have to do as there was no indication the E-Timer was at fault. I used the words burned out, not Mike. He says the issue was not likely connected to the main fuse issue but might have happened if two terminals were shorted together. I know I had an errant bolt that was blowing the little 4 amp ignition fuse and possibly this had something to do with it.
Whatever the cause, I will only reinstall the E-Timer once the car is completely sorted, something I am working on. It just went for its second drive yesterday and performed strongly even if it ran rough & missed from time to time.
Symantics. Practically EVERYONE uses the terms "Burned up", "Burned out", or "Fried" when they speak of the failure of most any electronic component. And practically EVERYONE knows they didn't necessarily mean that it was consumed by flames or that it was placed into a cast iron skillet with lard, shortening, possum fat, or whatever, and placed over heat. It's a common term to describe the failure of an electronic device, whether it 'just happened' or was caused by mishandling. It's rather petty to say 'It didn't burn up. It failed.'
I think it is good for everyone to know that it is not a good thing to make contact across the points (And I would assume the same would happen at the timer end, too.). While we don't all own E-Timers, any of us could be asked to look at a problem someone was having with a car that did have an E-Timer, or buy a car with an E-Timer and not have read the instructions, or whatever. It is something to think about. Kinda like not using a jumper wire to polarize a generator with a Fun Projects voltage regulator installed.
Thank you for your insight and thoughts.
Once you get your electrics straighten out, run the E=Timer and please do let us know your comments after you run a few trips around the county.
Good comments, thanks !
Good points (no pun intended). In fact, the reason I have an E-timer on the shelf waiting to put on the 13 is because the first time I started it, after a complete rebuild (including new coil ring), I switched to mag and the 13 ran beautifully (the mag was weak before).
When I switched the car off, nothing happened, it kept running. A small wire in the almost 100 year old switch broke lose inside, and contacted the bat and mag wires, and viola, my mag was "fried, toast, cooked, burned up, burned out", you get the picture. Since then I've tried in car charges, with results good enough to run the mag at speed, but not idle.
So, when I saw the E-timer, and read the results during testing, I bought one. Unfortunately, our 13 and 09 have been on the back burner (another "burn") as I'm sorting out our Model K.
Wish I had one for the Model K by the way.........
Maybe if you can commission Mike to produce one, certain other people will not comment since it is not a 'T'. It appears that Mike has done wonders so far, lets see if he can top the E-timer.
Now where is that new ECCT?
As an E-Timer owner and developer, I am offended by your comment that my differentiation between the E-Timer failure as opposed to Burned Up ; as rather petty. You Sir are well aware of Royce's obsession of maligning the E-Timer at every available opportunity with false, misleading and unsubstantiated claims. How do you classify that? His choice of the praise Burned Up was no innocent synonym to Burned Out in my view, specifically selected to yield maximum negative sensation consistent with his sustained campaign to discourage its use. You are entitled to your opinion on that subject but to call my differentiation given the history, rather petty, was out of line. Dedicate 5 years of your life to the design and development of a contribution to the hobby and have it relentlessly maligned fallaciously with total impunity or fear of censure on a public forum then let me know if you still feel my differentiation was rather petty.
Mike - There are a lot of us who believe your E-Timer is a real boon to operating our cars in the modern world. As you can see on this thread, the positive comments VASTLY outweigh the negative ones. I am sorry for my poor choice of words that possibly fueled the fire.
I hope in a matter of a couple of weeks to have my E-Timer installed and the car tour ready. You are a big part of that and I thank you for it!
I think you are wearing your feelings on your shoulders. Or perhaps its a regional thing? Where I am from, people use the terms 'burned up' and 'burned out' synonymously. Paul used the term 'burned out' and no one cared. In Royce's first response about Paul's failure, he also used the term 'burned out'. Only later did he change to 'burned up', and like I said, around here no one would notice the difference, and certainly would not feel one had a more negative connotation than the other. So yeah, I think it's rather petty to try to make something out of that.
As for Royce's 'misleading' statements...I wish he wouldn't do that. I think he understands the E-Timer well enough to know it doesn't actually harm the magneto, so yeah, I wish he wouldn't word things that way. However, it is true that with the E-Timer, the ignition does not function the same as it does with the original system on mag. Some view that as a plus, others not. I think it is just neat as hell that on magneto operation, the timing is set by the mag and not the timer. It's just something that is unique to a Model T and I find it very intriguing and would never want to do without that. The E-Timer cannot do that. And saying the car can still 'run on magneto' by using the mag as a battery charger (as has been said multiple times in the past) is NOT the same thing. So it is not just Royce that is making misleading comments.
The only real (rather than manufactured) objection to the E-Timer I have ever heard was something that John Regan said and Hal just mentioned here. The Model T has a unique ignition system and the magneto is a big part of the Model T experience. The E-Timer changes that.
I resonate to this sentiment strongly and if I had a magneto might want to stay completely stock. "Model Tness" is a personal thing to each of us. I come down on the side of wanting to stay as close as possible to the experience folks would have had back when the Model T was new. We can never get all the way there of course, but we can come close. I put the changes the E-Timer makes to the Model T experience in the same category as modern oils & gasket sealers.
The E-Timer is a real help to those of us with no or weak mags. Others value the sweeter running, better power & ease of driving even if their mag is healthy. I have not heard of anyone who has used an E-Timer who didn't like it.
Nobody really ever offends anyone else. Somebody says something and the listener decides whether or not he/she is offended. For many various reasons, some folks choose to be offended more than others. Just an observation.
Jerry, It's called 'Thin Skinned' where I come from.
Sometimes it's fairly easy to blow off an occasional comment as "oh, that's just Sam or Joe or . . .). However when some folks insist on incessantly denigrating a product or technique at seemingly every opportunity, the skin doesn't need to be thin to take offense. We have a few, and fortunately just a few, folks on this forum that make it a point to be offensive in their comments. We pretty much all know who they are and what they like to rant about but it would be tough to maintain a sense of humor and decorum when these folks fire up their rhetoric.
I think some of those who get the brunt of these uncalled for comments do a pretty fine job of maintaining their cool and I respect them for that. The ranters, not so much.
Fire! What Fire Paul? Only kidding. I have no issues with your choice of words to describe a failure; I do understand semantics. The casual morphing of Burned Out into Burned Up by Royce I perceived as inflammatory given his well known history on the topic NOT semantics as Hal sees it and felt it needed clarification to thwart yet another opportunity to spew BS about it.
Hal, my comments stand. I also searched your claim its been said multiple times the car can still ‘run on magneto’ by using the mag as a battery charger but failed to find a single occurrence. I know that I have responded to the false claim that the E-Timer disables the magneto or renders the magneto inoperative by saying the magneto still remains 100% functional and can be used to charge the battery using a suitable battery charger, run lights or operate a horn but. Please let me know if I somehow missed it because that would be misleading.
Regarding the original ignition system, let me clearly state again that I consider it an elegant electro-mechanical marvel worthy of preservation. I appreciate and respect the desire to maintain and operate the original ignition system too. I am working diligently on perfecting the ECCT which will facilitate achieving optimal performance of the original ignition system.
I'm thinking that people that want to stay as close as possible to the "Model "T" experience" that folks would have had back when their Model "T" was new should avoid driving on pavement as much as possible, and also probably consider mixing about 35% or 40% kerosene in their gasoline tanks, along with that original ignition system!
(Ha, ha,......hey, just try'n ta' do my little bit ta' keep this discussion light,.......)
I don't have time (And probably not the computer savvy) to go back and find the various instances of this and I'm not necessarily saying you are the one that said it, but it has been said more than once in response to E-Timer objections based on the T no longer operating on mag when using an E-Timer. Perhaps others remember these comments from the past? It really doesn't matter. I'll try not to bring it up again.
I have no problem with you standing by your comments. For all I know, maybe Royce DID mean something derogatory by using the word 'up' rather than 'out', but I truly had to go back and CAREFULLY read the thread again to find out what all the fuss was about. Burned up, burned out, fried... it's all the same to me. And to check myself, I asked several co-workers and they draw no distinction either. Truly symantics from where I stand.
Aside from the magneto, Ford "Steady by Jerks" ignition was obsolete by 1909.
So what? It's ALL obsolete now anyway.
If using obsolete technology were a problem to any of us, we wouldn't drive Model T's.
Even Mike's E-Timer uses obsolete technology in that it still uses the original coils. He just controls them with modern tech.
I think if anyone reads what I have posted they will realize I have never denigrated the E Timer. All of my posts on the subject - and any other subject - are factual and honest.
There does seem to be a real problem if anyone mentions that the fact that an E Timer costs $400, or that the E timer makes the Model T inoperable on Magneto. Why these facts are unpleasant is hard to fathom.
These are examples of your "factual and honest" posts. It was removed shortly after these posts (as I suspect this thread will be) not long ago.
These comments weren't directed at me, but I find them rude and offensive. Maybe I'm "thin skinned", but there is no reason to address people in this manner. In person you (or most of us anyway) would never speak to another friend or acquaintance like this.
Don't you see any problem here?
Lets get back.... AGAIN ... to the topic of this thread : E-Timer Owner Discussion..... Please !
You are not an owner, and have made it a historical fact that you will never be a E-Timer owner..... documented here on the Forum. I need not do the search, everyone knows your history. Thank you.
Completely OT and preposterous statement lucent to anyone familiar with the E-Timer threads IMHO. Attempts to reason or consider otherwise are futile but while OT, I will say a petition to censure and/or suspend forum participants who have a sustained record of repeatedly and consistently engaging in divisive, arrogant, antagonistic, argumentative or offensive behavior that alienates others from forum participation is something I think has increasing merit based on the feedback and numerous PM I have received.
I don't see any mention of E timer there.
Don't be coy with me. You know what I'm talking about.
As I understand it, when an E-timer is installed, the car is, indeed, not operable on magneto.
On the other hand, it seems quick and easy to replace the E-timer with a conventional timer and remove the coil jumpers, thus enabling magneto operation (assuming the points have not been adjusted for a pleasing buzz.)
E-timer detractors emphasize the former and downplay the latter. E=timer advocates downplay the former and emphasize the latter.
A true-Fire or distributor system ,both are not operable on magneto. They only work on DC power, 6 or 12 volt.
The E-Timer also works on DC power, 6 or 12 volts.
Never heard of anyone, including Royce, degrading True Fire or any distributor system because it didn't operate on magneto power.
The TRUTH about the E-Timer is found here : www.modeltetimer.com
Now can we get back to the topic. please ??
Bob, you may have misunderstood my first sentence — I was not talking about powering the E-timer with the magneto.
I said the car is not operable on magneto when an E-timer is installed. Pretty much what Royce said a few posts upthread "the E timer makes the Model T inoperable on Magneto".
That's the TRUTH, is it not?
I have gone on record before saying I don't care for distributors or True-Fires and for the same reason I don't care for the E-Timer. So no, there is not a double standard. At least not in my case. As a matter of fact, if I HAD to choose, I would choose an E-Timer over a distributor, and maybe over the True Fire, but certainly prefer the original system over any of the others for the reasons in my post above.
You may have cognitive issues with the English langauage.....
I said: " A true-Fire or distributor system ,both are not operable on magneto. They only work on DC power, 6 or 12 volt.
The E-Timer also works on DC power, 6 or 12 volts. "
Is the car operable on magneto with a distributor or True-Fire ??
Is That The Truth, is is not ?
I'm not aware of any non-standard Ford Model T ignition system currently available that is powered by the magneto..... are you ??
BTW, how is Bob's treatment of Chris any different than what Royce did to Kerry in Rob's post above? There seems to be a lot of intolerance on BOTH sides of this issue!
Would anyone like to answer the question ??
Is there any non-standard Ford Model T ignition system currently available that IS POWERED BY THE MAGNETO ?
Bob, I think my cognition is OK.
I may need help in expressing myself clearly, however, as what I thought was clear: "the car is not operable on magneto when an E-timer is installed" has apparently been misunderstood as somehow suggesting that E-timers need a different power supply than a distributor or True-Fire, or that these latter devices can operate on magneto. If I said that, my apologies.
Perhaps we can we try again — "the car is not operable on magneto when an E-timer is installed."
Truth or Fiction?
As for your three questions, assuming my cognition is up to the task, my answers are: Not as I understand them; I believe it is; No.
Well, this has been interesting reading here this morning, but I've finished my coffee and I guess it's time for me to "disable" this laptop computer and get busy! Later,......harold
Chris, Royce, Hal & all:
Chris Bamford....You posted:
" Truth or Fiction?
As for your three questions, assuming my cognition is up to the task, my answers are: Not as I understand them; I believe it is; No."
Now that we have that cleared up, may we please keep to the topic ?
The E-Timer, True-Fire and distributor systems all get their power from a DC source...... not the magneto.
Now I'll finish my 6th cup of coffee, thank you.
I refuse to play your game. Find someone else.
Truthful facts are just that.
A model T ignition can quite nicely be powered by the magneto and use a E-timer with the simple addition of a 12 volt battery and a magneto powered recharger. I utilize this on my Trufire equipped '13.
So I must disagree with Bob J. here (sort of)
Many people have made the unnecessary addition of a battery to start the magneto powered T. (our favorite person being one of them).
Further there were era distributor conversions that worked with only ONE T buzz coil AND worked from the magneto
Thanks for your response.
Guess we "assumed" direct power from a magneto or battery/charging system to power ignition.
I'm aware of the battery charger adaptor that converts magneto AC power to DC. Technically , still DC powered.
And.. there were period distributors that made claim to get power from the magneto. Anyone have factual info on these ? And where are they now ?
And yes, there were those who added a automotive battery to their Ford,(before 1919 electrical equipment), in "fear" of voiding their Ford warrantee.
Bosch made such a distributor. Couldn't say where they are now.
Here are "truthful facts", as you call them:
I have a Atwater Kent that can be used either way. I do not have it in service at the moment but have used it in the past
Some of you are bordering on what Mike and I were discussing yesterday. Charging a battery (Which powers any other ignition system) with the magneto is NOT the same thing as running a T ON magneto. When a stock T is running on magneto, the actual timing is determined by the magneto, not the timer. NOTHING, other than the stock system operates in this manner. Now, one can argue all day whether the original system is better, worse, obsolete, a technological wonder, etc., but one thing that cannot be argued is that it is unique in its operation compared to battery operated ignition systems, no matter what charges the battery.
"Chris: I refuse to play your game. Find someone else.
Truthful facts are just that."
No games here, Bob, just a simple question. I answered three of yours, just asking you one...
The car is not operable on magneto when an E-timer is installed. Truth or Fiction?
Actually Bob, I owe you an apology for the last post. I endeavor to be truthful in all my posts and I was indeed playing you — trying to see if you could actually agree with a statement made by Royce.
So now that my intentions are out in the open...
The car is not operable on magneto when an E-timer is installed. Truth or Fiction?
You said " When a stock T is running on magneto, the actual timing is determined by the magneto, not the timer. NOTHING, other than the stock system operates in this manner."
.......Then why is there no one set position of the spark lever that controls the timer when running on magneto ?
Running on the stock system, powered by the internal magneto, the timer determines the timing advance needed as the engine speed increases .
Yes, compared to DC timing, there is a slight built-in advance in the coil ring AC waveform. This alone does not control the advance needed for increased engine speed, so the timer has to rotate via the spark lever controlled by the driver.
You may want to re-think your statement ?
Thanks for your truthfulness, Appreciated.
The E-Timer still operates on DC power.
Thanks for your truthfulness, Appreciated.
The E-Timer still operates on DC power."
You're welcome. Always best do do the right thing even if a bit late.
And would you agree that the Model T cannot operate on magneto ignition if an E-timer is installed?
I did not say that you didn't have to use the spark advance. My point is that the timer doesn't tell the coil when to fire (As it does when running on battery). It merely ALLOWS the coil to fire on the next magneto current peak after timer contact has been made. The timer is used to select which of the 3-4 available peaks you use to fire the plug. It isn't the trigger that fires the coil. It is more like taking the safety off and then the mag acting as the trigger. But you know this.
People: Read the website.....
Q: Will the E-Timer operate on magneto?
A: No, the E-Timer was specifically designed to eliminate the variables associated with the magneto along with its ignition timing restrictions. The E-Timer will operate on 6V, 8V, 10V or 12V battery power.
Q: Will the E-Timer be damaged if accidently switched over to magneto?
A: No, the engine will simply stall if accidently switched over to magneto.
Those are the answers.....
Now, let the conversation go back to what it was intended....a discussion among e-timer OWNERS and their experiences using it....
I will not be renewing my membership. Thanks James
The E-Timer can in fact operate solely on magneto. I just completed a successful demonstration test drive with comprehensive road performance data logging capability I recently completed work on. Please refer to the "E-Timer Operates on Magneto" thread for more details so this thread can get back on topic.
William and Bob — see this link:
Turns out the E-timer can be operated from the magneto after all. Granted, not with a magneto-generated spark, but definitely without a battery and charger in the system and also without the coil jumper wires.
Don't jump to conclusions, Mike says he operates his E-Timer with magneto power. Read carefully.
Love to hear it. Keep up the great work. Happy to know that you are still pursuing your interest in the Model T ignition system.
I applaud all you have done!
Thanks Bob — I think I got that from his post. As I understand it, the magneto is powering the E-Timer although the voltage is not going directly to the coils as with the factory system. As such, I believe my earlier statement stands.
I have no regrets in starting the "E-Timer Owner Discussion" post. Owners have shared their experiences and operational maintenance showing improved cleaner combustion and improved Model T driving experiences.
I acknowledge and appreciate those posts from E-Timer owners/drivers who had the guts to post their experiences.
Asking for posts from E-Timer owners only lasted for three days, then the cyber bullies started. Wondered why ? Who knows ? ... personal vendettas, your guess is as good as mine. .... and to played and badgered to agree with bogus statements as truth is pure BS.
Personally I detest constant mis-information being gospelized as truth.
I challenge anyone to come up with a better idea for a Model T ignition with all the features of the E-Timer, still be undetectable when installed ..... and to bring that invention thru thorough testing before marketing...only to be chastised for all your years of work.
I am proud to have been involved in the Beta testing phase of the E-Timer development and eventually a very satisfied E-Timer owner. Very true that the target base for E-Timer sales would be limited , proved to be a success.
And I will be enjoying the benefits of my E-Timer for some time to come.
I am one who properly rebuilds and calibrated Ford ignition coils... so I do have an insight and appreciate the workings of the Model T original ignition. It is with this experience that I also appreciate the workings of the E-Timer and it's many features.
I applaud Mike Kossor for his diligence in bringing his invention to fruition. Thank you !
Do you have the time to elaborate.....as to why you wrote: I will not be renewing my membership. Thanks James"?
Perhaps there is something that the other Forum readers can learn from your reasoning.