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I was lucky enough to pick up a spare ECU for my 77. It came off a 78. I called three different auto parts places and asked them to look up an ECU for a 77 and a 78. All three said it was the same so I know it will work. On each of the units there are three sets of numbers.

Part number: AII-600-000
Lot number:
For: L28

The lot numbers are different. Anybody know what this means? Thanks.

John.

PS Spooky (77Z) is running like a beast. It runs, it starts, it restarts. Sometimes, I shut it off and restart it just because I can. Looks like mechanically it is finished for the time being. Love using it as my daily driver. Started wet sanding it but the weather got real cold. Can't wait for some warm weather to get this thing painted.
 

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Manufacturers sometimes buy the components of an end item in quantities that allow a given number of that end item to be produced. Each batch of end items are generally considered to be identical to those within its own batch, and not IDENTICAL but SIMILAR to those of other batches.

This is especially so when chemicals or raw material that is in turned processed in some manner to produce yet another component.
A perfect example of this is beer. Each batch of beer is made up of hops, and barley as well as other cereals that are bought in bulk in a given quantity. Each quantity is tagged and tracked. The MIX of these different purchases comprises the LOT. Since each LOT is therefore UNIQUE, it is assigned a number. This is usually for quality control and traceability.

That way, if a given LOT is proved defective, it gives a way of identifying the end items without having to disassemble or other analysis.

When it comes to automotive components the lot number is important only in that it will identify to the manufacturer the "MIX" that created that specific unit. It may be that rubber parts, electronic components, wire, solder, epoxy glue, were EACH bought by the manufacturer from various sources. If it turned out that Provider "A" had a bad batch of epoxy that wouldn't gel or would deteriorate in a given environment then by tracing what LOT numbers would have included that manufacturer's bad product then the recall or identification of the BAD components would be limited.

In automotive manufacturing sometimes parts are bought that in turn do not correlate one to one with the finished end product. The accessories or options that each vehicle is outfitted with at the factory may differ from one car to another. As a result, it isn't always easy to assign start and end dates to identify which car would have gotten that LOT. My car was manufactured in September of 71. Due to the vents being on the tops of the rear fenders it is considered a LATE 71, yet there are many items that correlate to the EARLY 71. This is because the LOTS of those items had not yet been exhausted when my car went through the line.

Sorry for the length, but I hope you got the picture.
 

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Like escanlon said it just identifies a batch, group, lot, specific quantity of a particular item. Usually it just an internal identifier for the manufacturer for a quantity of items. For instance there might be 150 afms in a particular lot. They travel together down an assembly line as a group. At certain points QC inspectors will inspect a sampling of perhaps 7 randomly selected units from that lot. If there is a certain number of unacceptable defects in the sample the entire LOT will be rejected back to be 100 % inspected and sorted for repairs. If a high # of defects is found in subsequent lots the manufacturing process can be stopped and/or corrected. Also in the field if certain defects keep appearing in a certain lot # it is easier ot recall just a certain lot # and perhaps the lot # before and after it as a precaution. You hear it referred to in food recalls quite often. As far as the function in your car, the lot # doesn't affect anything. The Part # is the critical item.
 
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