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Extreme Ignitions

Ignition Tech Part 3

Apr 9, 2007

Taking into account all the products needed to build a high-performance powerplant, an ignition system is probably last on the list. Yet the ignition system is probably one of the most important pieces of equipment, second only to the engine management system. A properly set-up ignition system is vital not only for making horsepower, but also for saving your powerplant from going to pieces. A high-performance engine ingesting 30 psi of boost pressure is of no use unless the ignition system is able to keep up with the demand and ignite the entire air/fuel mixture effectively.

In Part 2 of Ignition Tech (May 2000), we covered some of the basic ignition boxes available in the performance market. This time around we plan to step it up a notch by bringing you some of the hottest ignition boxes capable of igniting any air/fuel mixture. Not only do the boxes listed below produce more spark energy than"conventional" street boxes, but they also offer a number of trick features. In the previous Ignition Tech article, we listed some of the most basic boxes. In contrast, these extreme energy boxes feature; programmable, hand-held controllers; PC software; digital circuitry; individual cylinder timing; built-in retards and rev limiters-amongst other things. We have yet to see import racers take advantage of these high-performance boxes, but it's only a matter of time before they do.

0007_turp_01_z+ignition_system+top_view Photo 1/1   |   Extreme Ignitions

MSD Programmable Digital-7The MSD Programmable Digital-7 is by the far the most advanced ignition control MSD has to offer for the street/strip enthusiast. With the MSD Programmable Digital-7, you have complete control of ignition timing even between individual cylinders. In the past, engine builders and tuners had to compromise their ignition timing because no one cylinder needs exactly the same ignition timing. No matter how well you build an engine, every cylinder will not receive the same amount of air and fuel mixture. Intake manifold design, crankshaft imperfections, cam(s) profile design-many factors-can all affect airflow into the cylinders. In turn, ignition timing must be custom tailored for every individual cylinder for optimum power output. With the Programmable Digital-7 advanced technology and individual cylinder management system, tuners are finally capable of running exact timing programs for each cylinder. The tuner is able to program up to 5 of timing retard into each individual cylinder in 0.1 increments.

Besides cylinder-to-cylinder ignition timing, the user is able to plot both "run" and "launch" timing curve. A run timing curve can be plotted in 0.1 increments per 100 rpm throughout the entire rpm range of the engine. The tuner is able to program a timing curve exclusively for the launch. As starting line conditions start to deteriorate, you can set a completely different curve for the launch. A launch retard feature is also available; the user is capable of retarding up to 15 of ignition timing for 0-2.5 seconds after launch.

The features are limitless with the programmable Digital-7. Multi-stage nitrous systems can benefit from the Digital-7 three-stage retard. There is also a gear retard that enables the user to program a timing retard of up to 5 with every gear change. The box also incorporates a start retard for easy engine cranking and start-ups.

Designed exclusively for the MSD programmable Digital-7 Ignition System is the Pro-Data+ software program. The Pro-Data+ software enables the tuner to plot ignition curves, rpm limits, shift points and retards-all in one program. With the use of a laptop PC running Windows 95, 98 or NT, the Pro-Data+ displays and plots an rpm/timing chart for the entire run and launch curve. A tachometer and dial preview the timing retard for each individual cylinder. Included in the Pro-Data+ software is a complete program ladder displaying all of the ignition adjustments. With use of the tach and retard dial, the tuner is able to run the engine or trigger the ignition with an MSD Tester and view the timing curve throughout the entire rpm range.

OPERATING VOLTAGE +12-18 VDC, negative ground
CURRENT REQUIREMENTS 1.1 amp per 1,000 rpm
RPM RANGE 12,500 rpm with 14.4 Volts
SPARK SERIES DURATION 20 crankshaft rotation
ENERGY OUPUT MAX 190 millijoules per spark
VOLTAGE OUPUT Primary: 535 volts
Secondary: 40,000 volts
WEIGHT & SIZE 4.7lbs., 9.5"Lx4.5"Wx2.2"H
ENGINE COMPATIBILITY 4, 6 or 8 cylinders

Holley Annihilator ICTHolley offers a complete line of ignition boxes but none as advanced as the Annihilator ICT. The Annihilator ICT is one of the first racing ignition systems from Holley to offer individual cylinder timing. Individual cylinder timing can be adjusted in 0.1-degree increments to a maximum of 9.9 degrees of retard for each 100-rpm point from 1000 to 16,000 rpm. With this kind of capability, the Annihilator ICT can compensate ignition timing to accomodate cam profiles' imperfections and other variances for maximum breathing efficiency of each cylinder.

The Annihilator ICT is a fully programmable timing computer that generates a 32-point timing curve from zero to 50 degrees (in 1-degree increments) from 500 to 16,000 rpm.

Holley's Annihilator ICT offers several of the same features found in the Pro Strip Annihilator, as well as including some just for this model. The Annihilator ICT is fully programmable through the Quickshot Programmer. Two large LED displays offer easy viewing while a soft-touch key pad and an extra-long, 5-foot cord make for quick-and-simple adjustments, even while strapped into the driver's seat. The unit has capacitive discharge energy of 135 millijoules at 525 volts.

Besides its 135 millijoules of energy, each spark plug is automatically refired for up to five times, or up to 34 times after each timing trigger from 50 to 3,000 rpm. This ensures a complete burn of the entire air/fuel mixture and also increases throttle response. Each Annihilator box features the company's patented Engine Friendly(tm) rev limiters. Each of the four rev limiters can be fully programmed from 1000 to 16,000 rpm.

Along with the four rev limiters, the Annihilator ICT features four rpm-activated switches and precision timing retard that are a perfect fit for multi-stage nitrous kits. Each retard is adjustable from zero to 20 degrees in 1-degree increments. A feature that should go well with forced induction powerplants is the boost retard option. With the addition of a map sensor, ignition timing can be retarded from zero degrees to five degrees in 0.1 increments for every pound of boost pressure. The amount of boost retard can also be limited and will not retard past the set amount. Equally as important as boost retard is the vacuum advance feature; timing advance is also adjustable from zero degrees to five degrees in 0.1 increments for every inch of Hg. Like the boost retard, the vacuum advance can also be limited. One of the most important options the Annihilator ICT has to offer is the emergency kill switch. With the properly installed oil pressure safety switch, the engine will shut down if oil pressure drops below 10 psi.

+10-24 VDC, negative ground
6.0 amp @ 6,000 rpm
16,000 rpm with 13.8 volts
22.5 crankshaft rotation
135 millijoules per spark
Primary: 525 volts
3.35lbs., 5.84"Lx5.54"Wx1.7"H
3, 4, 6 or 8 cylinders

Electromotive HPV-3B Ignition SystemElectromotive HPV-3B Ignition System brings ignition systems to a whole new level. The PC -programmable HPV-3B is a complete stand-alone unit that provides the tuning flexibility that is sometimes compromised with stock ignition curves found in production vehicles. Electromotive ignition utilizes a 60-tooth, crankshaft-mounted trigger wheel to measure accurate engine speed and position. This eliminates the possibilities of spark scatter sometimes caused by mechanical distributors. The unit constantly monitors and updates engine positions every six degrees for accurate engine timing every time.

Electromotive can guarantee +/-1/4 degree of timing accuracy to over 12,000 rpm.

The HPV-3B offers a user-friendly laptop programming for easy tuning. This software allows the tuner to define a three-dimensional advance table based on rpm and manifold pressure. With a few keystrokes, vacuum advance and boost retard adjustments can be easily made. Also included are coolant advance, knock control and dual rev limiters.

The Engine Monitor Screen shows, in real-time, exactly what your engine is doing at any rpm. Spark advance can be changed on-the-fly from the keyboard for quicker tuning time. The HPV-3B lets you dial in eight rpm break points, eight manifold pressure points and 64 spark advance values.

Electromotive's HPV Ignition Systems utilizes multiple coils controlled by patented digital circuitry. Taking advantage of its multiple coil configuration-each coil has more time to charge and discharge. Each coil pack is fully charged up to 9600 rpm using a standard 12-volt battery and even higher with a 16-volt racing battery. Duration of spark is crucial when it comes to a complete burn of the intake charge. Electromotive ignitions supply up to 60 degrees of spark duration. The direct spark delivery means no energy is wasted in the cap or rotor. All the energy goes straight to your spark plugs from the coils, ensuring maximum performance and reliability.

OPERATING VOLTAGE +10-18 VDC, negative ground
RPM RANGE 12,000 rpm
SPARK SERIES DURATION 60 crankshaft rotation
ENERGY OUPUT MAX 120 millijoules per spark
ENGINE COMPATIBILITY 4, 6, 8 or 12 cylinders and rotary

Mallory Hyfire VIIc Pro CD Ignition SystemMallory Ignition has expanded its line of ignition boxes with the addition of the Hyfire VIIc Pro Competition Ignition. Like many of the Hyfire line of ignition boxes, the Hyfire VIIc features state-of-the-art digital circuitry for precise and fast processing speeds. The Hyfire VIIc also runs dual microprocessors so no "chips" are needed to set rev limiters, retard adjustments, shift light activation, etc. All adjustments are programmed through the Pro Control keypad. With a built-in, three-stage rpm limiter, the user is capable of setting a burnout, launch and rev limiter in 100-rpm increments up to 12,000 rpm. Multi-stage nitrous engines can take advantage of the three-step ignition retard-each adjustable from 0.1 to 25 degree of retard. Engines modified with locked distributors can benefit from the Hyfire VIIc's vacuum advance feature. A high-speed advance with an adjustable cut in speed from 5000 to 10,000 rpm and a slope of 0.1 to 3 degrees per 1000 rpm. The Mallory Hyfire VIIc combines the power of 165 millijoules of spark with unlimited features-all in one, easy-to-install unit.

+8-18 VDC, negative ground
0.67 amp per 1,000 rpm
12,800 rpm with 14.4 volts
165 millijoules per spark
Primary: 575 volts
2.{{{90}}} lbs.
8 cylinders


Manassas, VA 20110
Holley Performance Products
Bowling Green, KY 42101



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