Jul 27, 2013

As some of you know I have been having issues with my 72 bb. Last summer I got the car out twice after the starter grenaded into pieces...turns out the root cause was the distributor. I have been trying to save up the money to fix the car ... but then my daily driver cracked a front spring, the strut went..and so did the wheel bearing, so out the door any money I saved up to fix the vette.

Needless to say summer is coming and I REALLY want to drive the vette this year so my question (s) are...

1) in your opinion should I stick to the stock distributor...mechanical, with points...or switch to hei. When the starter was replaced last year I put in new plugs for the stock setup.

2) if I stick to the stock style with points, where is the cheapest place to buy one. I have checked rockauto as they have the easiest site search I find...and they range vastly in price. I have checked many other sites and find myself getting lost on whether or not they are "points" as they don't specify.

Any feedback is greatly appreciated. I am on a limited budget and just want to get the car running properly and enjoy it...and finally meet some of you!

you've got 3 choices.

1 - points distributor
2 - points dist. with electronic module eliminating the points.
3 - hei distributor.

big block and small block use the same dist.
if you go with the hei then you will need either a tach drive or convert to an electronic tach., kinda pricey.
personally i would go with option 2, you will have electronic ignition and your mechanical tach, plus visually it will look correct for the model year.
i hope this helps.
Thanks for the responses guys.

Buckhorn - do you have any links for a decent #2 option? I did alot of reading last night and was confused about the 350 vs 454....on some sites it stated specifically "for small block chevy only". I forget the name but it starts with a P, and read some BAD reviews that were pretty consistent.

thanks again!!
....if you go with HEI then you need to change the plug wires to....more expence. buckhorn's option 2 idea is the best of both worlds. If it was me , I would just stick with the original point setup. I don't know what the problem is you stated saying the dist caused the starter to blow up.....they are not connected ??? All you need is a new cap, rotor, points ( vented preferred ) and condensor and everything is new and will last a long time. The coil rarely fails so should be OK. Napa or even C-Tire, or ebay should have all you need. Stock appearance remains and no mods needed.
Delco D112P Heavy Duty Points

When we bought our L78 '69 Chevelle it had an HEI. When the HEI died, I freshened up a stock points distributor with Delco D112P heavy duty points and carried on just the same. Started and ran just as well as before. I had trouble with aftermarket points in that I had to frequently reset the dwell. The rubbing block kept wearing down. Delco points were never a problem. You can't get anything simpler than the stock ignition. I put close to 200K miles on a similar distributor setup in the old COPO Chevelle when I had it on the road. Just the old KISS system in practice.
Too much initial advance can have the engine kick back on the starter and break things. This doesn't happen if the ignition is set up right.
Too much initial advance can have the engine kick back on the starter and break things

That was the issue....currently the distributer is completely seized. At some point my dad advanced the timing just to get the car started....I didn't know as the car sat for 2 years...
I switched everything to HEI on my 71 BB. It works well but was quite expensive. Yes, you do need new wires and they too are expensive.
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