73 vs 78 coil?

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Oct 5, 2008
Kalispell, MT
I'm going to look at a barn find Cruiser a couple of hours away from here tomorrow. The owner says it's missing the coil. Can I just Throw in my stock coil from my 73? I want to see if I can't get it running and drive it before I buy it.
I searched and looked at the FAQ

Thanks, Isaac
If it is a 1978, it would have had electronic ignition w/ a coil & ignitor mounted on the fender. Chances are the whole assembly is missing. You would need another coil & ignitor to just drop in and drive away.

Or you could swap in a points dissy and coil.
Would I need a timing gun to time the points dissy and get it to run?
Would I need a timing gun to timing the points dissy and get it to run?
You need to get it running first, before you can set the timing.
You don't say if you are going with Jim's sugestion with a points dist or with a 78 FE dist.
If you go with points, you net to set the gap and rotate the dist till you get it to run, then set the timing.
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I got mine running before timing light came into play

Have to know where piston 1 is...at TDC power stroke...figger out which wire in the cap is #1....shove dizzy in thar and get rotated about before that #1 wire...set points about a matchbook...turn it over. If it doesn't try to start, rotate cap a little one way or the other. Once it starts run out, grab cap and rotate counterclockwise until u here knock and then back clockwise a bit. Listen to where it sounds right. :)

OK, i admit, that's kinda ghetto, but it works. Then get out ur timing light! :)
Ok sweet! I'm going to give i a try. Thanks for the info guys. I'll post up pics and let you know how it works.
Unfortunately I don't have an ignitor because my cruiser is a 73 and they didn't start shanging the ignition till 74 is what I understand.

Anyone live on the way from Kalispell, MT to Deerlodge, MT with a late model coil and ignitor they want to let me borrow? Anyone... probably not;)
So I started to drive to where the cruiser was and I thought I'd better call the owner and let him know i was coming again. Good thing, he tells me he might have it sold and he'll call me back in an hour! Luckily I was only pulling out of my neighborhood.
Turns out he thinks he might have it sold:crybaby: Hopefully the guy flakes out.

It was a 78 FJ40 that had been rolled in its side in 1986 and parked in a barn with only 70,000 miles on it. The hard top, windshield frame, and right fender were bent up pretty bad. Someone had scalped the front seats and the coil over the years. They started it up in 2005 and it supposedly ran good. No frame damage or rust and the original paint was still good! All for $1600:bang:

So close

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