Is This Electronic Ignition Just Snake Oil?

Is This Electronic Ignition Just Snake Oil?

This is a discussion on Is This Electronic Ignition Just Snake Oil? within the Technical forums, part of the Forums category; So I think I know a thing or two about how internal combustion engines work. If you have one good spark properly timed you are ...

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  1. #1
    Senior Member parkwood60's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    Van Nuys, CA, USA.

    Is This Electronic Ignition Just Snake Oil?

    So I think I know a thing or two about how internal combustion engines work. If you have one good spark properly timed you are going to make good power, no matter if it is fired by points, hall effect, optical, or magic. But the guy from C5 keeps spamming every facebook question in the bike groups I'm in about poor running cafe racers with all these claims about his multiple spark Power Arc Ignition. C5 Performance - C5 PERFORMANCE HOME

    So what say you? The animated GIF on the power arc web site sure seems to be convincing evidence. I can't find any post anywhere online from someone who has done Dyno pulls or back to back drag strip runs with one.

    Why Buy Power Arc Products

    Also, on a related note, I have run a Dyna III on my CB750 for 15+ years now. Is there any truth to the internet rumors that Dyna is cheap Chinese crap now?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Teazer's Avatar
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    Mar 2010
    , IL, .
    It's snake oil.

    Let's back up a bit. Points or electronics doesn't make much difference as long as you get sufficient spark energy at the right time. Points wear out and timing devices get sloppy and if you were to test any old bike as-is and with a fresh set of points correctly set, you would see a small but measurable difference. Swop out points for any electronic ignition and the difference is zero to very small on a well set up bike.

    MSD - Multiple sparks are only of value if the fire takes three strikes of the match which is often the case on old bikes with crappy old carbs making huge droplets of fuel that are hard to light up. Well atomized fuel in a well set up bike doesn't benefit from those extra sparks.

    BUT a bike with worn points or a timing unit with too much slop is likely to be costing power, and an electronic ignition will improve that situation. On a simple street bike a Dyna on the original ATU is probably all it needs. For higher performance it's good insurance to have an ignition that sparks on time every time.

    I like the new DYNA S configuration and I have no idea where they have them manufactured. I doin't hear people complaining that their iPads and iPhones are cheap Chinese crap or all those Lenovo (formerly IBM) Think Pad laptops. They are professionally manufactured in state of the art fab shops and I'd expect that Dyna may have followed that same path. There are cheap Chinese parts and there are professional grade manufacturing operations. I'd be surprised if Dynatech had gone to a cheap assed backyard operation.

  3. #3
    Senior Member parkwood60's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    Van Nuys, CA, USA.
    That's pretty much exactly what my opinion was, on both topics. Besides my own logic, and knowledge of motors, my bullshit detector has been triggered by the hard sell tactics, and the cure all nature of the claims they make for it.

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  5. #4
    Banned Witworth's Avatar
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    May 2014
    A hall effect sensor is a hall effect sensor.

    I don't care where any electronic component I use is made if they test up to spec.

    I haven't heard of any quality control issues with Dyna products, now, or ever in fact. I have installed and used enough Dyna-Ss in Suzuki fours, so I should know.

    Multi-spark ignitions are basically hooey for small-bore motors. It makes more sense to install one in a badly tuned Big-Block V-8.

    Danger, is my business.

  6. #5
    Senior Member crazypj's Avatar
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    Nov 2008
    Altamonte Springs, Fl. USA, Bridgend, South Wales, U.K.
    Unless your running 12,000rpm motor you don't really need electronic ignition.
    Stock Honda are good to at least 1,000 rpm past red line where they are designed to 'float' points and prevent things breaking
    Even basic electronic ignition can allow 13,000+ rpm but then you get broken rods, etc
    I dabble in rocket science, when I\'m not picking my nose
    The other night I gave my girlfriend an orgasm, but, she spat it back at me

    'you can take my word for it or argue until you find out I'm right'

  7. #6
    Senior Member raven's Avatar
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    Jan 2009
    milledgeville, ga, USA.
    If you must have electronic ignition, you could try using the points to run through a transistor, trigger a chrysler ignition module, or a ford tfi module. Please note the tfi setup can use more power than your charging system may be able to supply on a small bike.

    fwiw when my ultima dies on the buell (assuming I ever get it in one piece....) I plan on using a secu setup. Or the czech built unit.
    Buell X1
    Honda S90 (box of parts)
    Honda CB750C (runs)
    The Others (mostly rolling wounded)

    My collar may be a little frayed, and maybe I need a shoeshine. But nobody\'s got a mortgage on my soul. I own it. Free and clear. -Phil Lovecraft

  8. #7
    Senior Member parkwood60's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    Van Nuys, CA, USA.
    I have a Dyna III, which I've used for 20 years. I had a sensor go bad years ago and they mailed me a whole new unit. I have a brand new Dyna S as well I bought for 1/2 price from a hipster who sold his CB550 before getting it to run right.

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