I know that this is a dead horse, but I have something to add which was not noted in previous posts.
I recently bought the 123 Distributor. Now that it's finally working, I'd say that I'm very pleased. The general consensus seems to be more positive than negative.
I have three points of interest.
One: I was apparently the poor soul that had to change the position of the rotor shaft relative to the key-way (alignment pins). I had followed the instructions to the letter, but the rotor never seemed to line up anywhere close to a spark plug wire. The manufacturer was not helpful at all. They even have a note on thier website indicating that they don't answer installation questions. They just refer you to the forum.
Changing the pin was a pain. It doesn't tap out easily. I rubbed it on some emory paper to ease re-installation. Once I had relocated the pin (about 20 degrees off from the factory position) the car started and ran beautifully!
Two: I brought the distributor down to RML in Daytona this weekend to compare it to Ric's product and let him have a look at it. We mapped two of the settings on his tester. Of course he was biased, it is his competition after all...
The setting #0 was pretty much useless. The Shankle setting however was interesting. Ric and I disagreed on the topic. He didn't like the steep slope of the #E (Shankle) curve. He feels that it's advance curve needs to be steeper higher up. It seemed fine to me. I'd be happy to share our numbers and other opinions if people are interested.
Three: A few notes on the installation process itself.
1. Once the 123Dist is installed, the stock ignition control module becomes unnecessary. What must remain however, is a signal jumping from pin #1 on the ICM to the fuel ECU. It's a white jumper with a male/female spade connector on the '87 spider. For ease, I simply pulled the connector from the ICM and left the wiring harness intact. Later-on I will re-run just a large gauge white wire directly from the coil junction to the ECU input.
2. The outer case of the distributor can be rotated 360 degrees to facilitate the red/black wires.
3. Instead of a alignment grove for setting static timing of the rotor, the 123 uses a green LED that shines through one of four holes in the rotor base. Which hole is shines through is irrelevent. They are all 90 degrees apart. One simply needs to make certain that they place the #1 wire in which ever position the rotor points to. The light is MUCH nicer than the old groove since it allows more precision alignment. Of course, I had to go back and fine tune the darn thing with a timing light, so that green light became moot.
4. Some unfortunate individuals may need to reloacte the pin I mentioned earlier. Once it's done, all will be well.
I hope you find this interesting.
1987 Spider Veloce