Delco ignition instead of Magnavox - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1987-1991 Parley with regards to your 1987 to 1991 Bonneville, Olds 88 or Buick Le Sabre Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 09-06-2003, 07:25 PM   #1
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Default Delco ignition instead of Magnavox

Has anyone ever swapped the Magnavox (rectangular coils) that came on the "C" 3800s with the Delco unit (individual oval coils) from a "L" (92 -94) engine ? Just acquired a complete unit and it bolts right in and the connector mated up but when I cranked the engine it just spun with no fire.

Comparing the 90 "C" with the 92 "L" wiring looks the same and both the crank sensor and the cam sensor are the same for both so in theory it should be a bolt-in swap.

Coils checked ok and the ESC was good on the AutoZone tester so is possible I just did not get the screwon connector seated properly but wanted to ask if anyone has ever tried this swap.

Reason was that I have always felt the Magnavox was marginal and have had to replace one coilpack already (misfire going up a hill at 50ish with the transmission locked up is where it usually shows up first).
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Old 09-10-2003, 11:34 PM   #2
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No response so just went ahead and did it but not without a few glitches - late ignition on my 88 was a drop in.
See http://6007.us/coils.htm
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Old 09-11-2003, 01:02 AM   #3
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I believe Deathrat did this to his 92 SE, as well. I recall one wire being different, but I don't think it mattered.
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Old 09-12-2003, 09:19 AM   #4
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No wires different, the connectors are exactly the same, was just plug and play. Glitch was that the first module tested good and caused no codes but only worked once in the car. Second one has worked flawlessly so far.

Is evident the general intended the ignitions to be interchangable when even the same multi-pin keyed connector works on both. see http://6007.us/coils.htm for detils.
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Old 09-12-2003, 10:05 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willwren
I believe Deathrat did this to his 92 SE, as well. I recall one wire being different, but I don't think it mattered.
Yes I've done it...No real problems afterwards. Just a pain in the arse to do it though. The one extra wire from the Series II harness turned out to be an additional ground wire because of the way the battery grounds were located.
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Old 09-12-2003, 03:38 PM   #6
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What pain ? Most difficult thing on mine was getting the nut on the bottom next to the stud off. Is really a "bolt in" for 88 and 90 (only years I've tried - my '92 TranSport already had the late ignition.)

Three nuts on the bottom (11 mm or 7/16" wrench), one connector (7 mm socket), six plug wires. 15 minute swap.

I keep hearing all of these horror stories about fixing things on '92 Bonnevilles, guess I should be glad ours is a '90, starter was also a 15 minute swap.
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