I have found as i get older some stuff "just plain makes sense". The distributor on a early flathead engine falls into that arena for sure!
With the coil and complete ignition mounted on a single housing the helmet was the first unitized ignition on the market. Every thing the engine needs for spark and spark control is right there in one section. I am sure we all wish to take it apart and massage it and make it work, and i will assist in any way i can , however the practicallity of doing it that way can be very troublesome and problematic! I suggest just removing the three bolts , placing it all in a box and ship it to us.
(Thats what this customer did) We can clean, polish, replace tune and adjust then return a new heart for the engine. All you do then is mount, wire and run hopefully runs well for a very long time. Tell your friends you did it your self , thats fine with us!!