1971 Body/Chassis FSM

1971-74 F Engine FSM

Page Index


Retrofitting a FJ60 Large Cap Dizzy/Igniter

Delco Dizzy Dilemma

**Updated 8-3-2009 **

Man-a-not-fre must have given the first PO of my Cruiser (I'm the third) some super good deals. It has the 6 in to 1 headers,(since swapped to Downey 6 into 2 headers), seat covers, grab bar  and the one I really don't get, the Delco distributor. This POS distributor has no vacuum advance, burns points quickly (look at Fig. 2, the points are discolored from heat!), and is wearing my cam gear out! Time to pull that sucker out and put back a Toyota distributor.

Delco Dizzy 1

Fig. 1

Delco Dizzy 2

Fig. 2

My first attempt at this was to pull the distributor from a spare 1974 motor I dug up and now have. I cleaned it up and took it apart to not only see how it worked but to rebuild anything that needed it. It would have needed a lot. Axial play was out of spec and the upper bushing had severe slop in it. During this process I was continuing to read and learn. What I learned was that this dizzy was a vacuum RETARD dizzy. This style dizzy did come stock on my 1971, but like the Delco, it only has mechanical advance. Plus it has bronze bushings instead of ball bearings and the bushings are not available. Oh well, at least I now know how the dizzy works.

Dirty Dizzy

Fig. 3

Dirty Dizzy on 1974 F Engine


Disassembly 1

Cap off

Disassembly 2

Points and Breaker Plate

Disassembly 3

Points removed

Disassembly 4

Breaker Plate removed

Disassembly 5

Advance Weights

Disassembly 6

All the parts

Fig. 4

How the Toyota 1974 Vacuum Retard Dizzy comes apart


My 'New' Distributor!


I acquired a 'new ' distributor from a 1987 FJ60 2F motor for a good price. It came complete with an indented side cover.

What I got
Side Cover

Fig. 5

My first task was to test it. Not having a FJ60 FSM I had to read up on the testing procedure on the web. Here is how I set it up on the bench to test it.

Bench Testing the 79-87 Distributor and Igniter/coil

Testing the Dizzy

Fig. 6

Connecting the Dizzy

Dizzy Connection

Fig. 7

Dizzy Connection

Coil/Ignitor Connections

Fig. 8

Coil/Igniter Connections

Note: Failure to properly make the following connections correctly will result in a blown Igniter!

  1. Lay out the components on the bench as shown in Fig. 6. You do not need a cap installed. Use a test clip to ground the mounting clamp of the Igniter to the negative side of a +12 battery. It is NOT necessary to ground the distributor body on an FJ60 dizzy like it is on the earlier model distributors.
  2. Plug in the two wire connector shown in Fig. 7 to the two wire connector on the distributor body.
  3. Plug a known good coil wire/spark plug wire into the Igniter/coil tower and then plug a known good spark plug into the other end. Attach another test lead from ground to the spark plug negative electrode (the threads of the plug).
  4. Verify ALL the above connections; twice!
  5. Finally connect +12V through a 10 amp fuse to the male connector shown in Fig. 8.
  6. Rotate the gear end of the distributor. If everything is working correctly the spark plug will make a nice fat blue spark with an audible snap. If all looks good then disconnect the +12V and install it!

Weak Spark/No Spark?

If the spark is weak verify you have a fully charged battery connected and the ground connections are GOOD!

Remember to ALWAYS disconnect the +12V anytime you are not actually testing!!! The igniter pulls almost 4 amps just plugged in and not doing ANYTHING!

If it's still weak, you probably have a bad Igniter, but again check all the connections. Take each one loose and lightly sand the terminals or use a Dremel tool with a wire brush to clean them up. I cannot stress how important the ground connections are in this circuit! Re-assemble and re-test. If still weak, then substitute a known good Igniter and check again.

If you get no spark at all, it could be a bad Igniter, or a bad coil, or a bad pickup in the distributor. Substitute known good parts to see which part is bad, or test each component to see which one is actually bad. There are no user serviceable parts in the Igniter module but the pickup coil can be replaced.

Testing the Ignition Coil

Connect a wire from the + side of the coil to the + side of a +12V battery. Connect a spark plug wire into the coil tower connection and put a sparkplug in the end of it. Use a large clip lead clipped to the grounding electrode of the spark plug to the - side of the battery.  Clip a wire to the - side of the coil and rapidly touch it to the - side of the +12 volt battery. You should see a nice fat spark.

No spark? Check all the connections and try again.

Still no spark? Use an ohm meter placed across the + and minus of the coil (the primary side of the coil) You should have a low reading of 4-8 ohms depending on the coil type. Place the meter from the - side of the coil to the tower connection. You should see several thousand ohms

Coil testing

Early Coil Test

Replacement parts

According to some research on www.Ih8mud.com the mini truck Igniter/coil combo will substitute for the FJ40/60 module and is a bit smaller.

Jim Chenoweth of TLC Performance informed me that this dizzy will need a ported vacuum carb base which I do not have, and it should also be re curved to match my engine. I sent my carb and this dizzy to him so he can do it up right.

Update 1-14-2008!

I got my carb (now with ported base!) and distributor back from Jim C. in October and after powder coating the side cover and installing it, I installed these refreshed parts on the engine.

When I was cleaning up the igniter module I noticed the cable going from it to the dizzy was frayed so I decided to replace it. Always did want to see what was in the housing!

Fig. 9

Remove Igniter

Fig. 10

Remove Plastic Back

Fig. 11

Remove Module Screws

  1. Start by removing the two screws holding the igniter housing to the coil bracket, and the one screw holding the cable strain relief. See Fig. 9.
  2. Flip the housing over and using a small flat screwdriver or knife blade, pop the plastic back off the housing. See Fig. 10.
  3. Now remove the two screws holding the igniter module to the housing as shown in Fig. 11. The module is sealed and has a built in heat sink. That is what the grease on the back is. You will want to replace the grease with some computer CPU heat sink grease.
  4. You will now have the module in your hand. Notice there are 5 wires going to it. From left to right they are :


  5. Color


    Module Label
    To Coil -
    Tach Connection
    To Coil + (and +12V)
    To Dizzy Pickup + Wire
    To Dizzy Pickup - Wire


    1. Unsolder the red and white wires from the module. Use a large 100W gun to do this so you don't overheat the module.
    2. Look at the terminal in Fig. 12. Using a knife pry out the rubber plug from the end of the connector. (You can see the rubber plug in Fig. 13 - 14.) Now insert something very thin into the notches shown in Fig. 12. This will release the tab shown in Fig. 13 and allow you to pull the terminals out of the connector housing.
    3. Cut the terminals off leaving about 4 " of wire. Strip the ends. Leave the rubber plug in place. See Fig. 14.
    4. For a replacement cable I used a section of industrial video control cable. It is a twisted pair, with a foil shield. This cable MUST be shielded! I cut the cable to length, soldered one end to the module, leaving a length of drain wire, then spliced the OEM section in Fig. 14 to the other end.
    5. Refer to the dizzy connector so you get the red to the red and white to white, and insert the terminals back into the igniter connector. See the finished job in Fig. 15.
    6. Clean the back of the igniter module, and the module housing of all the old heat sink grease, and replace it with some computer CPU grease. See Fig. 16.
    7. Snap the back back on the housing, and route the wires into the strain relief. The OEM setup for the shield wire has it soldered to the wire retainer, but I crimped a ring terminal to it and placed it under the mounting screw. See Fig 16A.
    8. Reassemble the module to the housing and the coil bracket.

Fig. 12

Dizzy Connector

Fig. 13

Terminals Removed

Fig. 14

Ready to Splice

Fig. 15

All Soldered Up

Fig. 16

Heat Sink Grease

Fig 16A

Replacing Back

Update 8-3-2009! Installing the dizzy

Yes, I'm moving slowly on this. I took a break from my wiring to install the dizzy into the truck.


Before you get started: HOOK UP A OIL GAUGE to the engine separate from the OEM unit!!! You MUST monitor oil pressure after pulling and installing the distributor! The distributor shaft cam gear spins the dizzy which in turn drives the oil pump. It IS possible to get the gear engaged enough to drive the dizzy but NOT drive the oil pump! You have been warned...

Fig. 17

Line up the BB

Fig. 18

Align Slot

Fig. 19

Align Rotor

Fig. 19A

Final Rotor Position after Dizzy is dropped in place



Aligning Signal Rotor to Signal Generator


Fig. 20A

Setting Signal Rotor Gap

  1. First line up the BB (7 degrees BTDC) on the flywheel with the pointer. See Fig. 17. I have found that the easiest way to turn the engine over, especially if your alone, is to remove the flywheel cover and turn the engine with the flywheel. Even with the plugs in it's easy to turn due to the leverage provided by the large diameter flywheel. Make sure this is the compression stroke for #1 cylinder. A quick for certain way to tell is to remove the valve cover, rotate the engine until the flywheel BB is lined up, then verify that you CAN rotate BOTH valve stems for #1 cylinder. This means they are closed for the compression stroke. Another method is to remove #1 sparkplug and while someone rotates the engine put your finger over the plug hole. When you feel a jet of air from the hole, you know the cylinder is approaching TDC. Use the BB the get it exact.
  2. Look down inside the block hole for the dizzy. See the oil pump slot for the end of the dizzy shaft to engage? Use a large screwdriver to turn that slot to about 22 degrees past the # 5 spark plug. See Fig. 18.
  3. Apply a bit of oil to the O-ring at the bottom of the dizzy to aid in insertion. Hold the dizzy BODY as shown in Fig. 19. Align the timing adjustment slot so that it is centered over the adjustment bolt hole. Turn the rotor so that it's aligned as shown in Fig. 19.
  4. While keeping the body centered over the adjustment hole lower the dizzy into the hole. As the gear engages the rotor will swing to the left and the dizzy will drop down into the oil pump slot. It MUST drop ALL the way down!!! Failure to get the oil pump fully engaged by the dizzy shaft WILL result in a locked up engine in short order!!! Once it's dropped into place the rotor will be in the position shown in Fig. 19A
  5. Now turn the distributor body just enough so that the tooth of the Signal Rotor is aligned with the Signal Generator as shown in Fig. 20.
  6. Using a feeler gauge check the air gap between the tooth of the Signal rotor and the Signal Generator. See Fig. 20A. It should be .008 to .016. Anywhere in that range is fine. I set mine in the center of that range : .012 .
  7. Reinstall the rotor and cap.
  8. Connect a timing light, start the truck, and set the timing as needed for your truck. After the timing is correct tighten down the distributor hold down bolt.


Reference Information

Fig. 21

1987 Igniter Coil

Fig. 22

1987 Igniter

Fig. 23

Dizzy Parts


Fig. 24

Dizzy Clamp

Fig. 25

Complete FJ60 System

Fig. 21 shows the Coil that goes with the 1987 Igniter. The Toyota part # is 90919-02113. (The Nippendenso # is 029700-4920)

Fig. 22 shows the Igniter for the 1987 dizzy. Toyota part # is 89620-60060. (The Nippendenso # is 191100-2323).

The Toyota number for the COMBINATION of the two parts above is 19070-61060 (The Nippendenso # is 101311-2323).

Fig. 23 is a labeled pic of the parts under the cap.

Fig. 24 is a pic of the single screw that clamps the FJ60 dizzy. Though the pic only shows a flat washer I will be adding a lock washer to it.

Fig. 25 is what the 'new' dizzy/igniter/coil looks like installed in my freshly painted F engine.

On the recommendation of Jim C. I will be moving the igniter to the passenger fender or possibly the firewall once I get the body done. Toyota moved it there for a reason: to help the coil/igniter last longer by removing it from a high vibration and high heat area.



1971 Body/Chassis FSM

1971-74 F Engine FSM

Page Index

Hosted by Global Software, Inc.

©1998 - 2023 Mark C. Baker Web Designer

Please: No part of this web site may be used without express permission... email mbaker@globalsoftware-inc.com for permission.