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Old 08-12-2005, 11:32 PM
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One-wire back to three-wire?

I've spent too long trying to find the answer so I'll just flat out ask if anyone knows. Can you add the two other wires (I believe one does the sensing and the other brings in voltage to excite the field) onto a one-wire alternator and have it perform with remote-voltage sensing as a normal three-wire does? It does have the two terminals and I think this would fix some voltage-drops I'm having under heavy electrical loads. Thanks guys.

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Old 08-13-2005, 01:16 AM
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Did a Google search and found this What's the proper way to wire an alternator?
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Old 08-13-2005, 02:49 PM
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Alternator

Doc here,

If your talking about using the one wire as a 3 wire setup, the answer is a definite NO.

You can add a Voltage Meter off the main Red wire to monitor the power output / Consumption, However if you have an Idiot light there is no provision to hook that into the Alternator itself..

Self Excitation is not an issue either.

To bring it back to stock, (or 3 wire) without excessive mods, reconvert to the 3 wire alternator..Shouldn't Be too much of a problem provided you didn't strip the old system out. And not much difference in replacement cost.

If you are having Voltage drop Issues (Are they System wide? I'd Imagine so...) Then you need to replace the alternator , as the regulator / Diode pack is on the way out...(provided they Are system wide, not individual circuit prone)

If the Drops are Circuit prone, Then you have major issues you need to address in each circuit, ( undergauge wire, bad , dirty or poor connections, Individual equipment failing and drawing way more than is required ..) In that case, Troubleshoot those systems..locate and repair..they are Disasters waiting to happen!

If it's system wide, minor load condition , volt meter across the battery , reading 11 or so volts 5 minutes after start at idle..rev and it goes to 13.75 to 14.4..the alternator is on it's way to becoming a core...replace it.

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Last edited by docvette; 08-13-2005 at 03:03 PM. Reason: Added info
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Old 08-13-2005, 04:07 PM
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Thanks for the info Doc, but just a few questions for clarity.
"Self Excitation is not an issue either." What did you mean by that?
I know that that's what makes a one-wire do what it does. The regulator inside it does have the two male connects (they were plugged by a rubber piece) that are on a standard three-wire. Would it do much damage if I tried my theory and connected about a 10ft wire to each terminal and ran them over to the junction block behind the battery?

To also clarify my "voltage drop": I did a lot of reading up on the differences between one- and three- and found that the three-s regulate voltage according to what is given at one of the two other terminals which gets its reading from the junction block downstream. The one- on the other hand reads straight from its own output post. Naturally, the one- sees almost no voltage drop at its own post when there is a drop over at the junction caused by some load. Particularly, when I'm rolling all four windows down at the same time, my volt meter reads a drop down to about 12.0V (sometimes lower; at idle I have 13.8V) I apologize if this isn't coming across very clearly, but I appreciate your help.
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Old 08-13-2005, 04:24 PM
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Alternator

Doc here,

OK, Self excitation provided externally ( I should have clarified) Is not an issue with a one wire..and If you extend that plug, to use it for anything The result At best would be open= No charge at all..Closed = Charge...No in between. And if I read what you wrote Correctly, hooking it into power will just bias the regulator 24/7 equating in a dead battery every morning..(that is if I understood it right..)

On a properly operating System period, you should see no drops or RPM swings...14.4 volts at any rpm over 300...provided you allow a period of top off time after a major drain like a cold start..

If the system is being supported properly, you should see no drops. If you do, that Alternator is headed for the big stator in the sky..another exception would be with every system taxed or overtaxed in the vehicle..then you should not see less than 13.75.

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Old 08-13-2005, 06:40 PM
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Hm, I'd have to say I don't have a properly operating system =/
So I took a chance, under the pretence hey if it blows up i'll have a better reason to buy a new one, and ran a wire from one of the two extra terminals to the accessory terminal coming off the ignition switch (gave a reading of 11.0V with high beams and AC on high). So I start her up with my little jumper disconnected at first. Idle, high beams on, AC on high, dash voltage reads 11.0V (it does go up a little if I raise the rpms above idle, not much though) . Then I connect the jumper and it kicks up to 12.5V. Miracle wire? Anywho, I played around with different connection points, but I never saw anything above 13.8V anywhere (the battery, the alt, any remote location). Sounds like I'm gonna have to cough up for a new alternator and external regulator, right?
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