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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Default 123 Ignition systems

    Not for the first time, I'm contemplating moving away from points and mechanical advance-retart systems for the CX.

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    I've fitted a Hall Effect device in the Renault R8 and it is working perfectly. But the Citroen distributors I have are rather more worn and I want to just get away from all that stuff.

    I have found a company in Holland that will custom-make a 123 system if I given them a distributor.

    Does anyone have experience with 123 ignition systems?
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
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    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

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    UFO
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    YES! Got mine from Hawk some years ago for the UFO, and once set up I have never had to touch it since. LOVE LOVE LOVE!

  3. #3
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Using a 123 on our 504 rally car and extremely happy.

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    Fellow Frogger! pottsy's Avatar
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    Got one on Moby Dick and also one on the Mini.

    Transformed both engines from old tractors to smooth performers!

    Couldn't recommend them high enough!

    Cheers, Pottsy
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2006 307 Auto 5 Door ("Spike" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
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    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
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    1000+ Posts BIGRR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pottsy View Post
    Got one on Moby Dick and also one on the Mini.

    Transformed both engines from old tractors to smooth performers!

    Couldn't recommend them high enough!

    Cheers, Pottsy
    Sounds laike I will have to get one of these for the 407 HDi coupe (If they can transform a Mini, to a smooth performer)!
    Present fleet:-
    Peugeot 93' 205 Gti 16v
    Peugeot 73' 504 Ti from new
    Peugeot 08' 407 Hdi Coupe from new

    Previous fleet:-
    Peugeot 95' 605 Sv
    Peugeot 92' 205 Gti
    Renault 72' 16TS from new
    Renault 69' 10
    Renault 71' 10s
    Renault 68' 10 from new

    "Be reasonable do it my way!"


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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnW View Post
    Not for the first time, I'm contemplating moving away from points and mechanical advance-retart systems for the CX.

    I've fitted a Hall Effect device in the Renault R8 and it is working perfectly. But the Citroen distributors I have are rather more worn and I want to just get away from all that stuff.

    I have found a company in Holland that will custom-make a 123 system if I given them a distributor.

    Does anyone have experience with 123 ignition systems?
    Thanks guys. I thought I'd get that sort of response! Looks like I'll go down that path now I've found a way of doing it. There's a new model out that handles either rotation direction, so the later R4 Cleon/Sierra engine 123 devices should also do the R8.
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

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    UFO
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    It doubled the amount of power output at the rear wheels!

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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UFO View Post
    It doubled the amount of power output at the rear wheels!
    Only doubled? Don't think I'll bother then.

    Has anyone bought the "tune" version that allows you to program the advance curve?
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

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    1000+ Posts 504-504-504's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UFO View Post
    It doubled the amount of power output at the rear wheels!
    I wondered what that rubber band that came in the kit was for.

    Paul

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    sans witticism SLC206's Avatar
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    two times nothin' is nothin'
    Regards,

    Simon

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  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger! pottsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BIGRR View Post
    Sounds like I will have to get one of these for the 407 HDi coupe (If they can transform a Mini, to a smooth performer)!
    I'd be really keen to see just how you fit a unit to the HDi. You may need to develop new engineering principles as well as cobble up a drive to it. And if you manage to fit spark plugs in, I suspect that the insane compression ratio might also make it difficult to find suitably strong plugs!

    The engines may not have become as smooth as more modern plants, but the biggest noticeable improvement on both motors was the smoothness of the power delivery.

    On a normal distributor, the advance is approximated by the use of springs working against the centrifugal mechanism. To "steepen" the curve above a certain number of revs a second spring comes in to play. The transition between the two strengths of spring is noticeable as a rough physical change in engine response.

    In the 123, this transition simply doesn't exist so the centrifugal advance is a smooth progression over the whole range of revs, hence the smoother engine feeling.

    From my dyno test I found only a couple of HP difference between distributors, and was disappointed not to see the aforementioned change in the torque delivery. Just goes to show that the seat of the pants is sometimes more sensitive than an expensive instrument. Mind you, one could also surmise that a sensitive instrument shows the reality while the pants are subjective.

    Either way, the DS certainly felt smoother and less agricultural with the 123, while the Mini felt more spritely and smooth as the revs increased. It was interesting that the day after I fitted the unit to the Mini my No 3 son hi-jacked the little beast for a motorkhana down at Avalon. He came home wondering just what I'd done to the car as it seemed to go much quicker than his previous outing at the same venue in the same car.

    Cheers, Pottsy
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2006 307 Auto 5 Door ("Spike" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  12. #12
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Pretty sure they don't make a CX 123 yet. Maybe if they get a bit of interest Could you use the dizzie from a later car for it's optical pickup?

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  13. #13
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron View Post
    Pretty sure they don't make a CX 123 yet. Maybe if they get a bit of interest Could you use the dizzie from a later car for it's optical pickup?

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    Shane,

    You are right that the 123 people don't do one for the CX. I've been checking for years...

    However, they have sent me to a place in Holland that will do one if I send them a distributor to use. They rebush, reseal and reshaft it and fit the 123 gear inside the body (it is a standard Ducellier distributor after all, just a different bottom end drive from the DS).

    There are two options, a 16-option pre-programmed 123 and a "tune" one, which is more expensive but fully programmable by laptop with a graphic "drag and drop" system for setting the points on the advance curve. I'm going the latter way I think, in case none of the 16 options suit.

    I will report back in a few months when I have it installed.

    Do you have any thoughts on the subject of 16 preset curves versus more expensive fully programmable, but more fiddly to set up obviously?
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BIGRR View Post
    Sounds laike I will have to get one of these for the 407 HDi coupe (If they can transform a Mini, to a smooth performer)!
    You want to try and do what????
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

  15. #15
    1000+ Posts BIGRR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pottsy View Post
    I'd be really keen to see just how you fit a unit to the HDi. You may need to develop new engineering principles as well as cobble up a drive to it. And if you manage to fit spark plugs in, I suspect that the insane compression ratio might also make it difficult to find suitably strong plugs!

    Cheers, Pottsy
    I might be able to drive it off the end of one of the turbos and gear it down (a bit), or do you think I would need two units and remove one lead from each. Have still not managed to work out where to fit the plugs though. Probably may be hard to stop the pinging too!
    Present fleet:-
    Peugeot 93' 205 Gti 16v
    Peugeot 73' 504 Ti from new
    Peugeot 08' 407 Hdi Coupe from new

    Previous fleet:-
    Peugeot 95' 605 Sv
    Peugeot 92' 205 Gti
    Renault 72' 16TS from new
    Renault 69' 10
    Renault 71' 10s
    Renault 68' 10 from new

    "Be reasonable do it my way!"


  16. #16
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron View Post
    Pretty sure they don't make a CX 123 yet. Maybe if they get a bit of interest Could you use the dizzie from a later car for it's optical pickup?

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    Hi Shane, well my 123 TUNE has arrived. They've done a beautiful job of building it into the distributor that I sent them and reckon they've programmed a standard CX 2400 advance/vacuum curve into it. There's a mini-USB port under a rubber plug at the side, so it is possible to check all sorts of things while the engine is running. The softward for the TUNE gear downloads easily and its "dashboard" shows all sorts of things like manifold vacuum as well as revs and advance.

    123 Ignition systems-123-modified-distributor-cx-2400.jpg

    123 Ignition systems-123-top-view-tdc-led.jpg

    That's the good news.

    The bad news is that I haven't found time to play yet, but I will and will report back.

    Cheers
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

  17. #17
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Emmachisit ?

  18. #18
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alpine View Post
    Emmachisit ?
    Ah, Strine lives.

    They are in the range $500-700 very approximately. I know, "ouch".
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnW View Post
    , well my 123 TUNE has arrived. They've done a beautiful job of building it into the distributor that I sent them and reckon they've programmed a standard CX 2400 advance/vacuum curve into it. There's a mini-USB port under a rubber plug at the side, so it is possible to check all sorts of things while the engine is running. The softward for the TUNE gear downloads easily and its "dashboard" shows all sorts of things like manifold vacuum as well as revs and advance.

    The bad news is that I haven't found time to play yet, but I will and will report back.

    Cheers
    John can you update us on how this worked out on your CX? Is it worth doing? I’m thinking of doing one on the GS.

    Similar to your situation they require the old dizzy be sent to them. Ballpark quote for Tune+ with bluetooth is 629 euro, VAT included, initial programming included, Shipping excluded.

  20. #20
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Well, to summarise it works like a dream. I haven't touched it since it was fitted. Excellent people to deal with. I do enjoy not having to even think about points.....

    I fitted a Hot Spark kit to the Ducellier distributor on the Renault R8, which deals with the points issue but relies upon the mechanical and vacuum advance systems being OK. I can vouch for that being a good, lower cost option if the distributor is in good condition after 5-6 years of trouble-free driving.

    Good luck!

    Cheers
    Wildebeest likes this.
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

  21. #21
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    Hi All

    A while back I posted that the unit designed for the 1289cc engine did not live up to expectations.

    I spent more time with the unit, played with the various settings, played with the initial advance and twiddled with the carby and found:



    1. Startup and "cold" (we don't do winter in these parts) running was much improved
    2. With an old carby idle was much improved
    3. Acceleration was smooth all the way to the red line
    4. When coming off a trailing throttle back onto power there was a hesitation, this I traced to an accumulation of crankcase fumes being drawn into the combustion process, not the 1123 system.


    So yes, in spite of my initial reservations it has been a winner.

    That said, it now lives in my cupboard as I've not got a decent car to put it in.

    Glad to have the oportunity to correct that.

    P
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnW View Post
    Well, to summarise it works like a dream. I haven't touched it since it was fitted. Excellent people to deal with. I do enjoy not having to even think about points.....
    That’s great to hear. Can I ask do they make up a new distributor body to match the one you sent them? Or do they fit their gizmo inside the old body? And do you need some kind of surge protector to shield the electronics from frying? Also are you just running the standard curves they programmed or have you toyed with something more aggressive.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Exfrogger View Post
    Startup and "cold" (we don't do winter in these parts) running was much improved
    So do you (or did you) still have to use the choke until the engine warmed up?

    (Sorry still getting my head around what the 123 system effectively changes or replaces what we’re used to doing in an analog world)

  24. #24
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    In my case, 123 doesn't offer a CX unit or I'd have bought one. So it went to the folk in Holland who fitted a 123 unit into the Ducellier distributor body I sent them. I've not touched the standard CX 2400 curves they programmed it with. Works like a dream.

    For Exfrogger, would than unit be suitable for a certain R10 1300 engine???

    Cheers
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Peugeot 306 XT 1995 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnW View Post
    fitted a 123 unit into the Ducellier distributor body I sent them
    Ok got it, thanks. Likely the same with a GS then, as they donít make one for them either.

    My other concern is the GS dizzy is quite short in length (see pic) and being a SEV also has half its side cut away to accommodate the cassette points.

    Not sure how much room they effectively need to fit their electronic innards - can only suck it and see I guess.

    Also wondering is the vacuum capsule still needed or used? Or do they just leave it in there for show/originality.

    123 Ignition systems-08f40f72-a935-4f40-84b2-f58e725d7688.jpg

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