I am a newbee-looking into my first T! - Had a Model A Tudor (31) years ago. I have been looking into a 1914 that has original engine and a new HH that allowed a starter to be added. I guess that is OK.. But it also has an alternator/12 volt conversion and VW distributor. I was wondering what would be required to get rid of the distributor and revert back to mag/coils? Is that a big deal - both effort and cost???
Is the coil box still mounted under the dash, coils (rebuilt) about $50 per coil a new TW timer another $70 or so and maybe a different timing cover. I have the 12 volt conversion too and the coils like it the starter bendix spring doesn't unless you put in some kind of resistor. there ar some "T" people in your area that may contact you they can help a lot.
Coils work well on 12V battery. Since you have a 12V conversion, it is fairly simple to remove the distributor and change back to coils on battery. I have two cars that I bought with distributors and have changed back to coils on 12V battery. (my magnetos do not work)
If you have a working magneto in the car, then it is also fairly easy to go back to coils on mag, but if the mag is dead or missing, then there is major work involved.
I'm sure others will comment.
If you are reverting to coils from the distributor... then convert back to 6 volts and a real generator. That presumes the magneto is working. Frankly, I wouldn't bother changing any of it unless you are becoming a purist.
If it's a 1914 block there are no provisions for a real 6 volt generator. Simple quick test is with the car running and using an ANALOG meter or even a 6/12 volt tail light bulb between the mag terminal on the hogs head and ground, do you get any AC voltage or does the bulb glow? If you get a reading or the bulb lights up at least you have a place to start if you want to use the magneto. Remember it's a AC generator and a working mag will interfere with digital meters readings.
OOps, I guess I wasn't paying attention to the year.
Thanks for the input - This is a car I am considering buying - but the distributor conversion bothers me because I am concerned that when I have issues (inevitable) help may be harder to get than original parts. There is no mag and only two coils in the box. So reverting may be expensive. a frustrating proposition....
LOTS of guys run this distributor conversion and parts and help are quite available. Buy it, Drive it, Have FUN with it. In a few years IF it still bothers you THEN convert it back!!!
As mentioned $ depends on what's left after the conversion to dist. I'll bet a no existing original parts conversion back to coils will run into the $500.00 area. That's not counting the mag if it's gone too. That's A LOT more $ + labor. IMOP: distributors are so common on T's that it's just fine with me. IE: not worth the expense to change. It works fine, parts are readily available and it's an easy system to learn & master. It doesn't add anything power-wise and in fact it works just as well as a coil set-up and doesn't require having the coils set up properly 'cause they ain't there! Also, the starter isn't a problem either. Thousands were probably done over the years.
You guys are awesome - thanks so much for the info. Now I just need make up my mind (and momma's)
Biggest issue converting back is the mag intact and working
I bought a T using a distributer and did all the changes hooked up the wire and nothing mag was totally removed