Off Roading Forums banner
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
630 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Teamrush, your email won\'t go through

Teamrush, I wanted to ask you for a rough diagram and any suggestions to convert my tractor from a generator to an alternator system. I sen't you an email, but it came back as undeliverable.

Are you out there?

Loose nut behind the wheel
Another right-wing conservative.....
Born and raised in Jeep-Town
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,870 Posts
Re: Teamrush, your email won\'t go through

It was crashed again earlier.... I think it's working again now...
(If we didn't have stalkers, I wouldn't have to have a remote account... But we do...)

Here is the Text and diagram again...
--------------------------------

The one wire alternators just don't live that long (defect in the regulator design). Small case alts. won't live if you throw big loads at them, and so called 'High Output Upgrades' always cause problems.

If you want to convert the GM 10-SI, 12-SI, 15-SI and 116 Type and the like, internally regulated, alternating generators to use on your vehicles, you will need a few things.

1, You will need a 12ga. or 14ga. fusible link or fuse wire.
2, You will need a 12 volt light fixture that has a controlled ground.
(Has two wires, and doesn't ground through the housing or bracket)
3, A GM Style, two wire alternator plug that connects to the side of the alternator.
4, A length of at least 10 Ga. wire (I prefer 8 Ga.) in red insulation.
5, A length of at least 8 Ga. wire (I prefer 6 Ga.) in black insulation.

Connect red wire to the large insulated terminal on the back of the alternator case marked 'BATT'. (8 Ga. recommended)
Connect that wire to the fusible link.
Connect the fusible link to the battery cable side of the starter solenoid.
Your positive battery side hook up is complete.

Run a ground wire (At least one size larger than the charge wire, 6 Ga. recommended) from the ground wire boss on the back of the alternator to battery.
Engine ground, alternator bracket, ect. are unacceptable as substitutes.
Your negative battery side hook up is complete.

Find a wire that is only hot while the Ignition switch is in the 'RUN' position.
(This circuit must be 'off' when the key is turned off.)
Connect to that wire with two leads...
The first, about 16 to 18 Ga. wire, travels through the 'Idiot' light, and then to #'1' terminal on the alternator plug. (Usually a white wire, and smaller than the #2 wire)
The second, about a 14 Ga. wire, travels straight from the switched source to the #'2' terminal on the alternator plug. (Usually a red wire)
Plug in the Alternator, and see if it charges.

Notes:
If you find an alternator that came out on a vehicle that had air conditioning, and a rear window defrost, you probably have a factory high output unit. Look for the standard size cases though, as there were some odd-balls put out on luxury cars.
If you are going to do deep water fording, or in excessively dusty conditions there are totally sealed units out there. I found about a dozen the other day at the army surplus store for $10 each!

Contrary to what urban myth has to say, an alternator does NOT care which way it turns.

LED style lights will NOT work. It needs to be a regular automotive style bulb. Small dash style bulbs are perfect.
You must have a light socket that controls the ground, as when the alternator is charging, there is 12 volts positive to BOTH sides of the light.
In cases where a light is not wanted, a 100 to 150 Ohm, 1 Watt resistor can be used instead of the light. I like the light idea better...
Almost any automotive parts store will have the parts described above.
Some people substitute a toggle switch for the ignition switch feed, but if you forget to turn off the switch, it will run the battery down, and possibly damage the alternator.

Don't forget to use star washers on all electrical connection, and use a good quality lead plated copper wiring ends. If you are going to be in wet climates, or salted roads, don't forget to solder the ends on, and use heat shrink tubing to make the connections bulletproof. Never trust store bought cables!

If you connect the #1 and/or #2 terminals to the BATT terminal or the battery, like some have suggested, you will have problems. Take your regulator control source (#1 & #2) from inside the vehicle. Your alternator will then compensate for any accessory and parasitic loads that way.

WARNINGS!!!
DO NOT EXCLUDE THE FUSIBLE LINK!
If you don't fuse the system, you stand a very good chance of a fire!
ALWAYS use a fusible link smaller than the charge wire. (Example: If you use a 10 Ga. charge wire, use a 12 or 14 Ga. fuse link. Larger the number, the smaller the wire)
DO NOT attach the fusible link to the battery! If the system grounds and the fusible link burns violently, it can be an ignition source for the battery gasses. Your best bet is the battery cable side of the starter solenoid. This arrangement works on Ford & Mopar engines also.

TROUBLE SHOOTING:
If you have a GM vehicle, (or a GM conversion) and the battery and alternator both test good, but it still will not charge, Check these three things...
1. Check the idiot light. The system won't charge reliably if the bulb is burned out or missing.
2. Check the fusible link. The fusible link is a soft wire with tape or a plastic collar about 4 or 5 inches from the end.
(Plastic collar is about 1 inch long X 1/2 inch dia.) The fusible link is usually found connected to the battery cable side of the starter solenoid.
3. Check to make sure the alternator is grounded. A good 85% of alternator problems are ground related.

Most factory installed alternators rely on engine ground or alternator bracket ground to service the alternator. BAD IDEA!! Outside of the starter, the alternator will require the largest capacity ground!
Rust on brackets, blocks or in bolt holes, painted surfaces, and loose fasteners all contribute to loosing ground capacity. It doesn't have to be a total break in connection to cause problems or kill the voltage regulator.
The reason the factory didn't dedicate a ground wire to the alternator is $$$. By doing a 'Close Enough' ground, they save the cost of the wire, connection ends, and labor to install it.

"I Have The Body Of A God... Buddha"
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
630 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: Teamrush, your email won\'t go through

I tried another email and it still wouldn't go through.

My mid-sixties tractor has the solenoid mounted on the starter, In that case would I connect the Batt terminal on the alt directly to the battery post?

Also, A guy on the tractor BBS reminded me about "exciting" the generator to make it charge. It worked for me, but I'm not sure it will keep charging. I have an ammeter I'd like to wire into the existing generator system so I can monitor it. Does it just connect into the larger of the 2 wires that come off the generator?

Loose nut behind the wheel
Another right-wing conservative.....
Born and raised in Jeep-Town
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,870 Posts
Re: Teamrush, your email won\'t go through

*My mid-sixties tractor has the solenoid mounted on the starter, In that case would I connect the Batt terminal on the alt directly to the battery post?*

No. Connect it to the battery side of the starter solenoid, and use a fusible link.
Keep the fusible link away from the battery.
---------------------------------

*A guy on the tractor BBS reminded me about "exciting" the generator to make it charge. It worked for me, but I'm not sure it will keep charging.*

The voltage regulator should stay polarized as long as you don't unhook anything.
If you unhook anything, or allow the battery to go completely dead, you will have to polarize the system again.
Write the procedure down in your tech manual, and also on the underside of the tractor hood... You don't always have a manual along...

It's usually as easy as jumping from the 'Batt' terminal to the 'F' (field) terminal for a second with a piece of wire on a type 'A' regulator,
Jumping from the 'Batt' terminal to the 'A' (armature) on a type 'B' regulator,
and some of the 'AB' type regulators (like for older Harley Davidsons and John Deeres), you have to hook everything up, and take the generator off, and jump to the generator instead of doing the terminals..
Some of the old 'AB' type regulators, (like for 8N fords, for example) you could flash from the regulator instead of removing the generator, but those are not real common.

There are solid state regulators that make all of that unnecessary for almost everything now.
If you tractor was originally 12 volts, there is little or no problem going to a 12 volt alternator.
If you tractor was 6 volt, you may want to reconsider.
I've see a lot of destroyed ring gears, starter gears, starter shafts, melted armatures, ect from doubling the intended voltage to the starter.
Tractor ring gears are REAL hard to change...
----------------------------------
*I have an ammeter I'd like to wire into the existing generator system so I can monitor it. Does it just connect into the larger of the 2 wires that come off the generator?*

Damned good idea!
(SEE ATTACHED DIAGRAM)

On those old systems, the ammeter always went inline with the wire that went from the voltage regulator 'BATT' terminal to the Battery Positive terminal...
If the tractor is Positive ground, still run a wire back to the Positive terminal of the battery.
---------------------------------

TAKE NOTE

If you use your old Generator, forget the 'Batt' terminal shown on the alternator, and connect to the 'Batt' terminal of the voltage regulator...

IF YOUR STARTER DOESN'T HAVE AN EXTERNAL SOLENOID...
Just a heavy starter switch, connect the fuse link to the hot side of that starter switch...

"I Have The Body Of A God... Buddha"
 

Attachments

1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top