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Old 1st August 2020, 16:51
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Thanks Mitchelkitman, you're absolutely right, that is how it works. The problem I had was that the voltage was too high at 12v in the 'normally live' coil circuit at the end of the ballast wire, where it's supposed to be 6v or thereabouts.

I have a separate ballast resistor in series with the 'normally live' ignition wire in my Midget and the coil positive wire reads 8v until you crank it, then it jumps to 12v, as you say, from a connection on the output side of the starter solenoid.

I did a bit of research about the ballast wire in old Triumphs and it seems the resistance breaks down over time leaving you with burnt out points and a fried coil, hence bypassing it in mine as I suspect it's failed.

The whole ballast resistor thing was a good idea fifty years ago, but with a well maintained ignition system and electronic ignition starting shouldn't be a problem, fingers crossed...
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