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How do you tell if your car has "points" (these are somehow in the ignition system)

i have a 75 280Z... FI... 4spd manual....

if i had to guess, i would assume points were something carbed cars had... but.. i could be wrong.
i'm pretty sure they're part of the distributor.

thanks for answering my stoopid question.
i'm just trying to learn.
(i do plan on taking a course in automotive basics... and hopefully something that will teach me to weld...one of these days at a community college when i can afford it)
again, thanks!

-Justin
 

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Your car is fuel injected, therefor has an electronic ignition system. Points ignition system was used prior to'73 in most cars (at least Mopars) and I believe on every Carb'd Z. EFI ZCars all use an Electronic ignition system. No points.

To explain what points do you'd have to understand how a mechanical ignition system works, they are indeed inside the distribitor. There's a small bolt lookin 'doohickey' that turns just as your rotor turns, it's connected to the same shaft. This bolt doohickey has lobes on it, just like a cam does. Every time a lobe comes in contact with the points it opens them. It's hard to explain, they're like a set of tweezers almost. But they open, and tell the coil when to spark.

Here's a brief description of a 'points and condenser' ignition system from a web search.

"Ignition points are a set of electrical contacts to switch the coil off and on at the appropriate time. The points are opened and closed by the mechanical action of the distributor shaft lobes pushing on them. "

Well, you get the picture. Go to a junkyard and pull the cap off any carb'd car. You'll see what i'm talking about.
 

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73 last year...

Hey, why go to Community College? If you're under 21, you probably can still enroll at the local High-School adult-ed automotive class for free. Taht's what I did for YEARS after I graduated. It was great: the same shop I worked in while at High-School, fully equipped and close to home. Since I knew the dayschool teacher, he gave me a set of keys for all the tool cabinets and I had free run of the place after the night-school teacher got wind of what I was doing. Most of the guys who take those classes are "repeats" who don't have shop space, so the instructor lets them have free-run and can spend time with learners personally, as the "regulars" are just there for their projects.
Here in California, Community College is CHEAP, but free is even better. This is, of course, IF your local high-school even still has "AutoShop" classes anymore. The wonderful shop I learned in was converted to a "computer lab" full of cubicles---what a waste! They can put cubicles in portable classrooms, you need a shop to teach shop. When I think of my old highschool AutoShop teacher telling the kids about computers, I just shudder!
Good Luck, and READ READ READ!
Oh, and to answer your question, a 75 should have an electronic-triggered system and not a point-and-condenser system. Thank the almighty for that bit of automotive evolution! Points suck!
 

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Re: 73 last year...

**** yeah man. Points ignition SUCKS ASS. Man, I remember when i had my '71 Charger still with the stock Points ignition system. To get that thing right, I had to take the distributor out, put it ina vice, and get the points centered on one of the lobes, then gap it, then put it back in and Time it again.

UGH, at least the gap was good. It was just annoying as ****. But now I converted to a Mopar Electronic Ignition. Works beautifully. :)
 
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