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Discussion Starter #1
Need advice regarding which distributor to install in my 1974 GTV (rebuilt 2L, Wes Ingram rebuilt SPICA, 10:1 pistons, street cams). Are they the same? (Centerline ID405 and RML 4101E) or is one a better choice over the other.

I appreciate any comments, experiences, or input.
 

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71 Berlina 74 GTV 17 Giulia Q4
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I tried two Centerlines, the first one I thought was broke but nope the second one was the same. I spoke with them about the curve and asked why there was only one spring and two weights, the other one I guess was just flopping around. I have basically the same set up as you engine wise (74GTV) HP pump, cams, headers, msd, ported head and manifold bla bla bla and the car was basically undrivable under 2700 rpm. Under the light the mark would not move until then which meant that comming off the line or just easy driving below 2700 was impossible, bucking and bronking. Had to rev the engine above 2700 and slip the clutch just to get off the line. If I dialed in enough advance to get it to work there it sounded like there were marbles in the engine above 5000. Please don't take this as trashing a product it just didn't work for me. I did talk with Centerline about how they came up with that and I guess if you want a race car it's great but as a daily driver it didn't cut the mustard. They did take both back and were very understanding. This has been kicked around before and I got more than one PM from others who had the same problem. I ordered the RML and it pulls from 1500 in 4th happily and carries right on all the way up. I did take it apart and took my dremmel to the slots in the base that stop the weights from advancing and lenghtened them about a 16th of an inch which allowed me to get a couple more degrees of advance so I didn't have to have quite as much initial advance as one would normally need. I'm getting right at 27 mpg with a mix of spirited and laid back driving.
Hope that helps.
 

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Richard Jemison
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Distributors

I prefer doing business with Joe, However I suggest using the 123 Distributor as sold by others. There is a thread on it in the BB.
 

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I agree with Richard, the 123 is the way to go and now I believe that there is a programmable version too! Fun!
 

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Everyone has a preference with Electronic Distributors, but I have to say that our ID405 is the product that generates the most positive feedback out of any product we sell (well, maybe it is a tie between this and our 1400 overbore piston kit).

Out of the 100s of units we sell every year, we have very few problems and most customers report easier starting and a smoother idle as the main benefits, with increases performance/driveability being an added bonus.

Michael (gigem75) is a great customer that we have a lot of respect for, but his experience is not typical. In fact, we are still trying to figure out the exact problem as we have not been able to reproduce his issues, and the distributors he returned are currently running fine.

The truth is any distributor with electronic switching will be an improvement over one with points from a reliability and ease-of-maintenance point of view.
 

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I had a GTV with the top of the line RML dizzy and electronic package. I was not too impressed with it and the guy who bought the car from me ditched it and went back to Marelliplex, I think. Someone from RML posted about the distributor but as far as I remember he did not divulge his interest in the product. He never produced an advance curve for it despite a few prompts.
I had two Marelliplexes and had to get towed twice when the trigger units failed without warning.
I am a fan of the 123 dizzy because the curves are electronically controlled, are accurate and will not change due to springs getting weak, pivots wearing and getting sloppy, etc. But they are more expensive than most other distributors. I did an extensive review of mine a year or two ago.
 

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I used to have a 123 on my race motor and it was OK, now I have the RML with MSD and the car is so much easier to use, very pleased with it.
I have seen a curve for the RML but the axis were different to normal so hard to compare. I think the power is about the same but haven't measured it. The 123 is now on a slightly modified 2 litre and performing well with I think the 045 curve. Programable 123 with MSD would have to be the ultimate although I'm still nervous about connecting the 123 to the MSD.
 

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I have been running a 123 with an MSD6AL for a couple of years and about 10k miles with no issues.
 

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I had two Marelliplexes and had to get towed twice when the trigger units failed without warning.
The simplicity of points has it's advantages.

As Scotty once said, "the more they over-tech the plumbing, the easier it is to stop up the drain".
 

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I used to brag that the only electronics in the car were in the radio and the ignition igniter. The radio never let me down.
 

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I have had the same issues that Gigem75 had with the Centerline ID405. No advance under 2500rpm, makes the low end crap. It would be a nice distributor if the advance curve could be modified to begin earlier...
 

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71 Berlina 74 GTV 17 Giulia Q4
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If I could get an electronic Marellie that was dependable I'd go for it in a new york second. The curve on the SB105, number may not be right, is great. Ran that for awhile with the msd but wanted to get rid of the points thus the search for a pointless dizzy. Some say spark scatter is a problem with the smaller bosch sized dizzies which is one reason the Marellie is larger but if it was such a problem then why do 911's have the same size dizzie and two more holes? I live in the middle of a lake and have to take the lake road which has many curves and hills with the speed limit 35. With the RML and Marrellie I can drive that in 4th the whole way if I'm lazy and go to third when I feel the urge. Back in my crazy days with the Giulietta Veloce and my first GTV's I would hang the rear wheels off the road in some places but more people live out here now which brings more traffic and joggers, and lake patrol with radar and since my car is so recognizable there is no way I could talk my way out of that one.
 

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I had two Marelliplexes and had to get towed twice when the trigger units failed without warning.
Any Marelliplex still around is what, at least 20 years old. While the electronics can last that long, the wires and connectors were fragile to begin with, and 20 years of vibration and corrosion hasn't helped. Running antique electronic devices isn't the path to reliability.

gigem75 said:
If I could get an electronic Marellie that was dependable I'd go for it in a new york second. The curve on the SB105, number may not be right, is great.
Seems that I recall a recent thread where people were discussing a Pertronix unit that would fit in a Marelli distributor. I have used Pertronix triggers in Bosch distributors with success - if you like the Marelli curve, this could be a solution that is less costly than buying an aftermarket distributor.
 

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71 Berlina 74 GTV 17 Giulia Q4
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I saw that too and it looks promising. thanks!
 

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Regarding the Marelliplex trigger module failures. The fact that the trigger units are stocked at Autozone indicates that there is a decent sales volume for them.
 

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Pertronix Ignitor Module

For what it's worth:

I recently installed a Pertronix MR-LS1 module on an NOS Marelli S103BA distributor, and it worked like a charm. The parts fit exactly as described in the instructions, with no adjustment or any similar fuzz required. It was no harder than replacing the original mechanical points.

I then installed the distributor into the car, and it started right up with no issues.

The module has been in the car for only about 500 miles, though, so I really can't comment on durability from personal experience. However, folks have mentioned they are durable enough. I expect it to have no issues, but I do keep the old mechanical points in the glove box. Call it a good luck charm...

Cheers,


enrique

PS. I've also installed the Pertronix rev limiter (available at Centerline, others?) and again, I'm happy with it. Simple installation, and works well.

PPS. I must also admit: the new 123 Electronic Distributor (programmable advance curves, built-in rev limiter) looks very nice, indeed.
 

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Regarding the Marelliplex trigger module failures. The fact that the trigger units are stocked at Autozone indicates that there is a decent sales volume for them.
By "trigger module", do you mean the 4 terminal board that mounts beneath the coil, or the piece that goes inside the distributor? I know that the MarelliPlex shares some parts with the GM HEI system, so I suppose it shouldn't be surprising that some parts are readily available here in the States.
 

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I recently replaced a Marelli distributor with the Centerline ID405. Starts and idles perfectly will have a better idea on performance when the snow is gone..... if it is ever gone
 

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Hi Jay,
It is the GM HEI module. They are (were) sourced form different manufacturers and there is a suggestion that there were quality differences.
 
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