Installation – Corvair Distributor with Smart Coil

Power:  Use of generators are discouraged as the alternator provides cleaner, less noisy, and consistent power for the EFI system.  If you plan to use a generator, it is highly recommended to install a power conditioner (capacitor box) inline to minimize the power spikes.  One wire alternators (Converted LM) are easily obtainable at swap meets and from other Corvair members. Early model swaps will require a new Delcotron and Alternator.  On late models, the ECM and Relay panel is designed to be mounted at the old external regulator location.   Remember to add a diode on the gauge side of the alternator to prevent “running-on” feedback through the dash light.

The Corvair EFI installation is simple if taken in small areas and verify each operation as you install.

  1. Remove Old System 
  2. Install Fuel System (Tank to Engine Bay)
  3. Install EFI TBIs
  4. Install Wiring Harness.
  5. Check with Tuner Studio.

Safety:  Have a fire extinguisher or other items handy for your safety when working with fuel. Gasoline is very flammable and can get out of hand quickly.  Minimize the use of rubber hose as it does not resist fire or abrasion.  If you are not comfortable doing your fuel line work, you may want to find someone more experienced to help.  You may lose your car or even your life…. so think about safety in all aspects of installation, testing, repair and driving.

Remove Old System:  Before removing your system, make sure that your engine is pointed to #1 plug wire position.  This will aid in the installation and ensure a quick and easy start after installation.  You must remove the Carbs, Fuel Lines, round fuel pump and fuel pump rod. (take the Linkage off also and lay aside as you will reuse these items).  Do not remove the inside Carb stud as it needs no adjustment.  The outside stud will need 1/2″ removed from the bottom (course threads) to in sure proper fit of the throttle body.  

Fuel System:

Tank/Line  Condition:  You must first ask yourself….. and be honest about the condition of your tank.  If your tank has rust and garbage, these items will go through the pump and destroy it…. period.  If your tank is not in good shape or is suspect, remove tank, have it cleaned or install a new one.  Corvair tanks are over 50 years old and most have rust and is recommended that tank is removed and cleaned.  This will put your Corvair on the side of the road and one of the last things you want to scrimp on.  The 68/69 and Turbos have a return line already built in, but is very restrictive due to its small size.  We recommend replacing the return line with 5/16″ Steel tube.

Fuel Pumps:  You must decide which method of fuel system you want.  They are 3 fuel system methods:

  1.  Fuel Pump in Tank: (most difficult, but quite and low failure rate)
  2.  External High Pressure pump: (Pump under passenger floor) Noisier than all others
  3.  External 2 Pumps:  One (1) low pressure pump under passenger floor and One (1) high pressure pump behind firewall area (above differential/starter area).  This allows the repair or replacement of pumps without removing tank and also has a filter between the low and high pressure pumps for high pressure pump protection. 

The fuel return 5/16″ Steel tube must be ran regardless of system chosen from the FPR (Fuel Pressure Regulator) to the tank neck Nozzle.  It is recommended to remove the fuel inlet nozzle *neck”, braze in a 5/16″ steel tube (2″ in length) and attach to the return line.  An alternate way would to drill and install grommet with fitting as as it will not require brazing, but the neck must still be removed.  Excess fuel will flow from FPR to tank to be recycled through system. Line must be brazed in or some other leak proof way of rerouting fuel back to tank in a manner that allows for reassembly of the nozzle back into the Corvair through the fuel door/slot opening.  DO NOT PERFORM ON CORVAIR – IT MUST BE REMOVED.

The main fuel line can be reused as long as rust is not an issue and should be replaced if you are unsure.  It connects to the Fuel pressure regulator Inlet marked in yellow.  You will have to attach a rubber hose between the Inlet and your line to your tank.  We have a barbed fitting that you will attach the fuel line too, but you may need to put a “bump” with a worm clamp on your line to insure it does not slip off under high pressure.

USE ONLY HIGH PRESSURE EFI RUBBER LINE.  All others will fail and when they do fail you will  have 58 lbs of pressured gas spraying on the exhaust system.   This is one of the last things you want to “Cheap out”  on as you will lose your car and maybe something more valuable.

Install the Throttle Body Units:  The unit with the TPS must be installed on the drivers side of vehicle. Use new gaskets for a good seal along with the insulators on both sides or the linkage will “bottom out”.  You should install the thin gaskets (not thick) along with the insulator as the thickness of these are engineered on the Corvair for the proper linkage height.   The outside stud needs to be “shortened” as not to stick too high and interfere with the installation of the TBIU.

Install Logic Coil:   Mount Logic Coil with bracket in the original coil location. Install the 3 wire Bosch connector into the ignition coil module.  The ground terminal must be connected to the head and will not run/damage electronics if left lose or disconnected.  These Coils are very efficient in the dissipation of  heat and should last years, but locating the coil in a cooler location will add life to any coil (off the engine).  The logic coil requires a LS2 type of plug wire to distributor and is provided with kit. 

Install Distributor:  Rotate engine to 25 degrees BTDC and rotor should be pointed at #1 wire on the distributor.  You may have to rotate engine to get the distributor to “drop in” to the oil pump slot and properly seat.  Bring the engine back to 25 degrees BTDC and verify rotor is pointed to #1 plug wire and lock position with 9/16″ wrench.  Do not rotate angle of distributor after performing this procedure or it will have to be performed again before starting.  The distributor does not have any wiring or electrical connections other than the spark plug wires. 

Install Fuel Lines:  You may need to slightly bend 1/4″ fuel lines to fit to injectors and for installer preference and alignment.  Use properly sized fuel line wrenches when connecting lines to TBIU and test under pressure before starting engine.  Fuel is under 58 lbs of pressure and leaks can ruin you day.  Always think safety when working around fuel.

Install ECM and Wiring Harness:  ECM should be mounted with the 4 mounting tabs.  It is water resistant, but not waterproof and care should be used to keep water directly away from the ECM.  All connectors are weather pack or water tight, but care should always be used with liquids and electronic components.  Optimum location would be inside the passenger cabin, but it would require a 1-1/2″ hole cut into body to allow connectors to pass and the longer the wires, the more noise than can be introduced into the system,  so for these reasons the ECM is located in the engine compartment.  The Fuel pump connector is a spade terminal and needs a wire ran to the pump(s) and is NOT included in the harness.  Black heat shrink tubes are included in kit to seal spade and  terminals and will seal after heated (do not use open flame).  They should only be installed after installation and testing has been completed as they will need to be removed to open connection.    You may modify location and route, but cutting wire violates your warranty.

Mount and Connect Map Sensor:  Mount to firewall and push green weatherpak connector until fully seated.

Connect Fuel Injectors:  The injector connectors are the GM LS type and are push and click to connect.  They have a clip on the side to disconnect.

Connect TPS:  TPS is located on the front of the driver’s side TBIU and is a weatherpak 3 conductor round connector.

Connect Air Temp Sensor:  The Air Temp sensor (ATS) connector is pre-installed to the  wiring harness as it is a push into grommet type of install.   It can be removed with its clip on the side of the weatherpak connector.

Engine Temp Sensor:  This is a thermistor type sensor and installed in the choke hole of the drivers side head.  Drill/Tap the choke hole with a  1/4-27 NPT  and install the sensor until tight.   It connects to the yellow singe wire with a 1/4″ terminal and is labeled “ENG TEMP”.

36-1 Trigger Wheel

36-1 Trigger Wheel:  The 36-1 trigger wheel in installed to the front of the harmonic balancer.  It should be installed with the engine at 0 degrees with missing tooth to the left (see pic). The 2ea 3/8″ bolts are installed with spacers between the trigger wheel and the harmonic balancer.

Trigger Sensor and Bracket:  Bracket is mounted in the fuel pump “hold down” bolt hole.  This bracket is mounted through the open slot hole with a 3/8″ bolt and may need to be shimmed or bent to allow sensor to be centered.  Sensor should be positioned about the thickness of a credit card above the wheel without touching.  After getting the proper gap between the wheel and sensor, lock the position with the hex head  set screw.

Brown EFI systems are intended for off-road use only.