HoonTruck: Ready, Set, Ignite!

In life, they say that timing is everything. It’s certainly great for making balls of fire shoot forth from a carburetor sitting atop a 352 cubic inch V8 engine.
Why are we messing with the timing? Well, that’s because we are installing a new electronic ignition into the HoonTruck. I opted to swap points for the Pertronix Ignitor II ignition. I also purchased the hotter coil that goes with it.
My father-in-law and I installed this system, and it actually works pretty well on my truck. We were going to fix the brakes while we were under there but I found that I need a new metering valve.
Since we couldn’t do the brakes, we turned to the side mirrors. I ordered a set of 5″ round mirrors from LMC Truck to replace the single driver’s side mirror that the pickup came wearing. I’m not sure how I feel about them yet, but it is nice to have *some* visibility on that passenger side. Thumbs up for symmetry?

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  1. dukeisduke Avatar

    Are the Pertronix ignitors pretty reliable now? I bought one (and the Pertronix coil) when they first came out, and put it in my ’66 Corvair. Other guys in our local club were using them as well, and every one of us kept the old breaker plate with points as a backup, in case the Ignitor crapped out (a not uncommon problem with the early ones).
    The only thing I wasn’t crazy about was the 40 degree fixed dwell.

    1. Jeff Glucker Avatar
      Jeff Glucker

      The Ignitor II has internal software to automatically adjust dwell.
      Yes it still has the plastic gauge, and yes I held on to my points just in case… I’ve heard nothing but good things about the brand though.

      1. dukeisduke Avatar

        Excellent – the dwell adjustability is a nice addition.

    2. dead_elvis, inc. Avatar
      dead_elvis, inc.

      When was this? I ran them on ACVWs in the ’90s, never had one fail in any way.

    3. mad_science Avatar

      I’ve had a Pertronix Ignitor II since (searches email for order confirmation…) 2011 with no issues. Lots of miles, 1 track day. Came with a tiny plastic spacer which I’ve since lost.

    4. Vairship Avatar

      I *think* (dangerous, I know) that the problem is that the Corvair actually uses 6 volts to supply the ignition circuit (with just a 12 volt burst at start-up), even though the rest of their electrical system is 12 volts. Mainly because Chevy keeps old parts in production forever and since the change-over from 6 to 12 volts wasn’t that long ago…
      Running 6 volts through the Pertronix stuff tends to give trouble, so you have to change the wiring, which most people (and mechanics) forget.

  2. dukeisduke Avatar

    Also, do they still come with the little plastic gauge to set the air gap?

  3. Bryce Womeldurf Avatar

    Two steps forward, three steps back. I know the feeling! At least HoonTruck didn’t become BoomTruck. hahaha The mirrors look good up close. Do they look tiny when seen from further back? Maybe now that I’m graduating this weekend, I’ll finally have the time to rebuild and re-attach the passenger side mirror on my Miata.

  4. Kiefmo Avatar

    Wait, 352?
    Why did I think this truck had a 360 or a 390? Did I miss something, or have I been confused from the start?

    1. mad_science Avatar

      There was some mystery as to whether it was a 390 or 352.
      The only difference is the stroke, which is near-impossible to measure without partial disassembly of the motor. There are no casting/part number differences on the motor itself.

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