CDI Conversion - HCS Snowmobile Forums

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Old 01-04-2007, 03:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Anybody know if it is possible to convert a points ignition over to a CDI unit? I have a 1972 Panther with a 399 Kawasaki motor and I am sick of messing around with the points. :banghead:
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Old 01-05-2007, 05:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Current Sled(s): 09 Apex LTX 10 Vector LTX 96 500SKS
Previous Sled(s): 96Ultra 95XLTSP 72 440TNT 73 SW433 69 Panther 399
Location: Minnesota - West Metro
Favorite Riding Area: Central/North MN
13-14 Mileage: 2500
12-13 Mileage: 1595
11-12 Mileage: Big Fat 0
10-11 Mileage: 1300
Age: 55
Riding Since: 1976
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Hey 180MPH,


I have a couple of 1973 Panthers with a 340 & 400 Kawasaki. I feel your pain.

What I have found in my search is that no one really makes a conversion. I even emailed Hewtech to see if they are going to make something and they told me no. But I did some experimenting with my sleds and found the coils on the back of the engine would get too hot and cut out after about 1/2 hr of running. I relocated the coils up on the fan housing on the flat portion behind the fan itself where the ID tag resides. All of the cut outs after the motor got hot were GONE!


To lessen the maintenance of points make sure the point cam is smooth and lubricated and set the points to open when the marks on the flywheel and the flywheel housing line up making sure the cam is in the retarded position and the motor is turning in the direction of normal rotation when the opening point occurs. Also make sure the points are clean after setting them. Wiping a piece of paper between them with brake cleaner sprayed on it them wipe again with a dry piece of paper works great for me.

I also had one bad coil that was open on the secondary when cold. Replacing that also helped a bunch. It can be easily checked with an ohmmeter

Good Luck!
Steve

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Old 01-08-2007, 12:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the advice Engineman, I talked to some people over the weekend and they said the same thing about cleaning the points with brake fluid and a piece of paper. That helped a lot, I am getting great spark now but, it is still amazing how finicky those points can be.

My flywheel has an "F" and "T" stamped on it, I assume that the points should start to open when the "F" is lined up with the mark on the flywheel housing. "T" = top dead center and "F" = fire?

I have that same problem with the engine cutting out when the coils get hot. I made a spacer out of a phenolic material and put it between the coils and the engine hoping that will keep some of the heat away. Not sure if this will work yet as I haven't had it running yet.

Kinda funny that when my dad bought this snowmobile brand new in the 70's the thing ran like a top for years. Now it is nothing but maintainence, things get old I guess.
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Old 01-09-2007, 12:00 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Current Sled(s): 09 Apex LTX 10 Vector LTX 96 500SKS
Previous Sled(s): 96Ultra 95XLTSP 72 440TNT 73 SW433 69 Panther 399
Location: Minnesota - West Metro
Favorite Riding Area: Central/North MN
13-14 Mileage: 2500
12-13 Mileage: 1595
11-12 Mileage: Big Fat 0
10-11 Mileage: 1300
Age: 55
Riding Since: 1976
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Hey 180MPH,

You are correct the "F" mark is the firing position when the system is in the retarded state (no pun intended).

I know what you mean about the thing ran for so many years without a problem. The insulation inside the coils may be failing due to age and heat aggrivates the problem. The other option is to buy new coils but that is a bit expensive and there is no guarentee that the problem would be fixed. It is interesting to note that on the later Kawasakis used on AC & Deere that the coils were reloctated behind the fan.

Good Luck!

Steve

:beerchug:

PS: I hope you used brake CLEANER and not brake FLUID! (probably just a typo...)
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Current Sled(s): 68 Panther, 70 Puma 744 MOD, 91 EXT,
Previous Sled(s): 70 340 Panther, 75 440 Suzuki Fury, 74 Raider.
Location: central Pa
Favorite Riding Area: Mile Run, Pa
Riding Since: 1972
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Hi guys, You can convert the 70-73 T1 motors from points/condenser to CDI. All the CDI parts from a 74 or 75 T1 motor will swap right into the older kawiaski motors. I have done this, it works great. Find a blown 74 or 75 panther/cheetah or lynx, change out the stator plate/flywheel and coils. No need the change the crank. Now, Its been a while and I have sold the sled, buit I dont think there is any wiring to change. Just use your head...l8tr...Paul.
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Old 03-13-2007, 02:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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try filing the points with a point file. dont use sandpaper or a match striker as it will leave residue on the points and they wont make proper contact.
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Old 03-17-2007, 03:40 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Super easy just find the coil mag and cdi as stated and you are off to the races.
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