Yes Gavin, the needle roller conversion evolved for good reasons, i won't argue that,
it's just that the main reason was to compensate for people's inability to get the standard
job done properly. When 'hotting up' the engine, fitting different cranks etc, the quality
of earlier oil pumps not rebuilt properly etc. All these reasons made the needle race
an attractive option. BUT all conversions are not equal, i've seen many that are poorer
than the old bush setup in terms of accuracy and engineering, bad welding and distorted
cases and covers etc. Not a job for an average diy guy as a mill is a minimum requirement.
When done properly the needle race uses an inner which is pressed onto the crank so no
wear on the actual shaft takes place.
Electronic ignition is a pet subject with me, like many, i would never go back to points by choice.
I understand the roadside failure thing but once again, i've never experienced a failure of EI.
I do admit that i have a 'get you home' box in the side cover though, it takes about 3 minutes
to just swap the leads over. No advance/retard makes starting a bit more difficult but as i said
it will get me home. I suppose with a background in the field, electronics doesn't frighten me.
These days if you look under your car hood/bonnet so much is electronic, why worry?