CarTalk.com Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Coiled Again

I am trying to replace an old 6 volt coil and I noticed that a part number for a 6 cylinder 1942 Mopar firewall mount coil is different from an 8 cylinder, althought they appear to be he same configuration and mount. What would the differences be? Volts and Amps? How big of a difference and would substitutung be cardinal sin?

In 1942, the only Chrysler cars that had eight cylinder engines were the Chrysler Saratoga and the Chrysler New Yorker. This was an inline flathead eight cylinder engine. All Chrysler automobiles were 6 volt. Unless the eight cylinder cars had a resistor built into the coil as opposed to a separate ballast resistor, which I doubt is the case, I can’t imagine what the difference would be. Only one cylinder fires at a time no matter how many cylinders are in the engine, so I don’t think there would be a difference in current draw. Furthermore, I think that no Chrysler product had a dual point distributor set-up, so this couldn’t account for the difference.

The Chysler 8 cylinder cars came with a semi-automatic transmission which shifted into high when one released the accelerator. When the accelerator was released, the ignition was interrupted. However, the same transmission was available on the 6 cylinder 1942 DeSoto, so this can’t have anything to do with the differnces in part numbers.

I can’t see where substituting one coil for the other would make a difference.