Ignition stuff - Allison/Crane XR700
and some Speedbleeder information
Ballast resistor, fuel shutoff, fuel filter and safety-braker. I mounted the ballast resistor using a longer bolt for the brake balance (PDWA) unit. Note that all homemade crimped staycon connectors are also soldered, contrary to Triumph/Spitfire list naysayers. A piece of aluminum round stock with a 1/4 inch hole (actually a part for a steel wire cable end fitting kit I found at Home Depot) is used to space it up from the brake item and allowing it to cool off in free air. The fuel shutoff is mostly for winter storage, one year the fuel pump started a slow leak and my mother was quite concerned with the smell in her garage!
Another view. Notice the discoloration on the chrome ignition coil. This is a result of not using the ballast resistor shown here. Resistor is as specified in the instructions that came with the XR-700 kit, 1.2-1.9 ohm, Chrysler style, Echlin ICR23 or Wells CR107.
Showing Allison/Crane ignition module, master cylinders and their diapers. Rustoleum where brake fluid did its damage years ago. The clutch system is silicon fluid now after a few years with hydraulic jack oil (accidental fill-up, that's another story).
I have a SpeedBleeder on the clutch slave cylinder. Great invention! It is speed bleeder part SB3824 that stands for 3/8 x 24 thread. I also have the same item on the rear wheel cylinders. I tried them on the front calipers but found that they need to be longer in the body as the hex end bottoms out on the caliper when tightening, making it uncertain as to whether the bleeder is sealed when closed. I think they offer an extended version SB3824L as it turns out. Check them out at http://www.speedbleeder.com/ Their size chart and photos are at http://www.speedbleeder.com/size.htm. I'd recommend the SB3824 for the rear and clutch slave and the SB3824L for the front calipers.
The Allison/Crane XR700 ignition system was a fantastic improvement for the drivability of this car. The Delco "click-vernier" distributor from my 1968 Mk3 Spitfire, with points and vacuum advance, was somewhat troublesome at low speeds due to the shaft bushing wear and thereby inconsistent ignition. The optical trigger and higher output of the "chrome" coil have eliminated that. This system is highly recommended! Major Major Major improvement (Remember him? What book?)!
Here’s some later info for Crane/Allison ignition:
In a message dated
> I have a 1976 spit, that has started acting up. I am not sure if it is
> ignition or fuel. It runs for about 20 miles and quits, backfires, runs
> rough, stalls. I thought it was the electronic ignition for sure. I
> ordered another XR-700 from Crane Cams Inc. Same part number that was on
> the car. I am told that dealers put this item on new cars because the Lucas
> electronic ignition was not reliable. The new module was smaller but looked
> the same otherwise. Here is the sad story:
> 1. I put the new module in, same problem
> 2. I put the new sensor in, seemed to be better but same problem, it ran 30
> miles before giving up.
> 3. I put a new coil in, no difference.
> 4, Dwell is running constant at 40
> 5. Timing light shows 10 degrees advance.
> Everything seems in order but I am still having periods of stalling, rough
I had the same problem when I first installed the Crane system.
Set the spark plug gap to 0.025" (stock gap)
If you opened it up expecting more voltage = bigger gap, that screws up the
logic in the Allison module. Put new plugs in.
Also, make sure the rotor in the distributor is pointing at the plug wire
contact when firing! You can install the pickup in a convenient position
only to find the firing of the coil happens when the rotor is off contact.
Also, check the coil temperature after running a distance. If it's too hot to
touch, you need to insert a ballast resistor in series with the positive wire
to the coil as described in the installation information.
When all's ok, the Crane system is one of the best things I added to my
Spitfire to make it a more enjoyable and reliable car!