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Old 04-04-2003, 10:05 PM
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Post Should I use a high amp alternator or 2 batteries

I am running a 496 bb chevy with a lot of electrical accessories. Starting with dual electric fan, electric water pump, MSD box and coil, and 4 tube neon light kit. Also a electric fuel pump and a 2-stage nitrous kit with a decent sound system. In addition to the stock electrical system. To accomodate for all this extra power should I up grade to a higher amp alternator or should I run two batteries and store more power or do both? The stock alternator is only 80 amps. While using all of this extra equipment I don't want to rob power from my ignition system for drag strip races. But I want to run all the accesories INCLUDING THE NEON LIGHTS!! This is kind of a show car/strip car <img src="graemlins/drool.gif" border="0" alt="[drool]" /> People tell me that I can't have both! WHY NOT <img src="confused.gif" border="0">

[ April 05, 2003: Message edited by: ss crazy ]</p>

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Old 04-05-2003, 12:28 AM
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I would upgrade to a 130A alternator and large capacity deep cycle battery (at least 850 CCA). You can buy a cut out switch to disable the alternator for competition events.
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Old 04-05-2003, 01:13 AM
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So you are saying that as long as I have at least a 850 ca battery and it's fully charge that it should be able to power everything(except radio system) no problem during my drag strip runs? So running two batteries is a plus or a no no? I haven't seen any 130 amp GM one wire alternators just 65, 80, 100, 140, 200. Thanks for your input KULTULZ
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Old 04-05-2003, 05:16 AM
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It's very simple, alternators supply all power when the engine is running. Batteries only job is to start the car, supply power when the car is not running, and supply power for accessories that function all the time (clock memories, alarms, computer memories, etc.). So you need to be clearer as to your habits to know what you'll need. Do you just want to make sure you have enough power for everything when your car is running? Then go with the 140Amp alternator you mentioned to power all your stuff and keep the battery charged (and yes it's always good to have a high CCA rated battery in any car). Do you sit in parking lots for extended periods with radio on, lights on, etc., etc.? During these times your draining your battery, your alternator is no help. If the highest rated battery isn't enough for extended usage without the car running then a second battery might help. Most RVs have a back-up battery to help power all their goodies when it's not running. Also you need to do some testing. Do you sit idling alot at shows or whatever with the car idling? Check to see after installing a good alternator that she's outputting enough at idle to power what you're running. Alternators only output a fraction of their ability at idle. So as you can see your habits will play a role in determining what you need for your car. Good luck.

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Old 04-05-2003, 07:23 AM
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[quote]So you are saying that as long as I have at least a 850 ca battery and it's fully charge that it should be able to power everything(except radio system) no problem during my drag strip runs?<hr></blockquote>

As long as the battery is fully charged...it will operate the fuel pump and ignition system. With a cut-out switch...the alternator will not be charging...hence dragging...while going down the strip. You merely flip the switch on the return road to give it a little juice.

[quote]So running two batteries is a plus or a no no? I haven't seen any 130 amp GM one wire alternators just 65, 80, 100, 140, 200.<hr></blockquote>

No...you may need two batteries. You need to add up all the amperage draw of your accessories and make sure you have enough reserve to cover it. You may want two batteries as extra ballast...I don't know your setup. Don't forget their are now racing batteries that go up to 16V if you need it.

You need to do some research before you modify to get it correct the first go around. <a href="http://www.madelectrical.com/" target="_blank">-Here-</a> is your first stop.
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Old 04-05-2003, 08:00 AM
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If you click on the 'electrical tech' page of that link kultulz gave you this line is written...
[quote]If the average output from the alternator does not keep up with electrical system power use, then the battery falls to discharged condition, and system voltage falls below acceptable level. <hr></blockquote>
Once again the batteries key job is to start the car, if the alternator is doing its job the battery will stay charged. It is your personal habits that will affect what reserve you need as I stated before. It is not as simple as just saying more accessories=more battery reserve. When you start your car are all your fans already running, lights on, radio/amps cranking? Or do these things come into play after the engine is already running and your alternator is in charge?
[quote]Drivers of old cars were accustomed to the lights dimming at idle, or the turn signals blinking slower–it was simply the result of low voltage when the alternator did not keep up. The newer designs of alternators can produce a lot more current at low RPM, even when the gross output rating is nearly the same with the old model. <hr></blockquote>
This was also in that same link. It goes right back to what I already said. You're habits play a big role in answering your question. If you idle alot at shows "This is kind of a show car/strip car" you need to know what your alternator is capable of handling at idle. I have run cars with electric fans, fuel pumps, big Amps and subwoofers, etc., and never needed a second battery. But I also didn't make it a habit to sit there with lights on and tunes blastin' without the car running so the batteries always were well charged. Of course you could always just go and through in the biggest alternator there is and install two batteries and never have to worry, overkill isn't always a bad thing. But you should understand why you're making changes and not just make them.

Oh I'm sorry kultulz, did I but in on your thread?? <img src="graemlins/drool.gif" border="0" alt="[drool]" />

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Old 04-05-2003, 08:30 AM
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ss, You can have a sshop test the Amp draw with a Vat40 tester or similar. Turn on all accesories,run engine 1500 rpm and see how much the draw. I would think 100 amp alt. would be plenty. Even Cadillac with all their acces. use 100 amp. As far as the battery, Don't use a Deep cycle as another post says. Deep cycle are designed for the motor home second battery to run low amp lights,water pump, toilet pumps. Deep cycles take a long time to recharge at a low charge rate and not designed for heavy starter load.If you put in 2 batteries you just increase the capacity making twice the amp available for starting and before running dead. Thats why deisels have 2 batteries they take more to crank. I would'nt think you would want the weight in a drag car.2 also takes twice as long to recharge.
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Old 04-05-2003, 10:01 AM
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[quote]Oh I'm sorry kultulz, did I but in on your thread??<hr></blockquote>

Oh...It's OK Ron...At least you didn't throw a tantrum this go around. Meds kick in finally?
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Old 04-05-2003, 02:46 PM
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[quote]Originally posted by KULTULZ:
<strong>

Oh...It's OK Ron...At least you didn't throw a tantrum this go around. Meds kick in finally? </strong><hr></blockquote>

Well you know I'm running out of people to kill so they got me pumped up on Thorozine for a while. Good thing is now I have plenty of time to correct all your mistakes. <img src="graemlins/drool.gif" border="0" alt="[drool]" /> <img src="graemlins/drool.gif" border="0" alt="[drool]" />


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Old 04-05-2003, 02:50 PM
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[quote]Good thing is now I have plenty of time to correct all your mistakes.<hr></blockquote>

It seems the only mistake I seem to make here is replying to your childish remarks. Maybe if you ignore me, I can spend more time ignoring you.

Gee...I feel some what left out this last post...no MORON, IDIOT or OLD MAN? I guess you have good days, and then some bad days...
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Old 04-05-2003, 02:53 PM
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[quote]Deep cycle are designed for the motor home second battery to run low amp lights,water pump, toilet pumps. Deep cycles take a long time to recharge at a low charge rate and not designed for heavy starter load.<hr></blockquote>

What is your theory here Ron? Funny FORD uses 130A alternators and deep cycle batteries on performance and police packages, but it is only for motorhomes according to this post.
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Old 04-05-2003, 03:00 PM
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[quote]Originally posted by KULTULZ:
<strong>

Gee...I feel some what left out this last post...no MORON, IDIOT or OLD MAN? I guess you have good days, and then some bad days...</strong><hr></blockquote>

Ok, how's this. Only a moron would use a deep cycle marine battery in a car. Absolutely no logical reason for it as snkbyt pointed out. How about this, only an idiot would suggest how to modify someones car without even asking how the car is most commonly used to determine the best course of action. Now let me go, the Thorozine is starting to wear off. <img src="graemlins/sweat.gif" border="0" alt="[sweat]" />

Feel better now??
...sheesh...

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Old 04-05-2003, 03:05 PM
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[quote]Originally posted by KULTULZ:
<strong>

What is your theory here Ron? Funny FORD uses 130A alternators and deep cycle batteries on performance and police packages, but it is only for motorhomes according to this post.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Funny in all the years I spent working at Ford I never saw a single Crown Viv police car with a deep cycle battery and in twenty years fixin' cars for a living have never worked anywhere that installed deep cycle batteries in cars. I would like to see some of these immaginary cars of yours.

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Old 04-05-2003, 04:00 PM
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huKT oN fonIX...wErx 4 mee!

[quote]Only a moron would use a deep cycle marine battery in a car.<hr></blockquote>

Uh...Ron...Exactly where did I say a marine battery? I said a large capacity reserve battery...such as a MOTORCRAFT BT-850.

I swear...where you come up with some of your theories I will never know. Do you ever read something thoroughly or does just the slightest thing set you off?

The man explained what he was doing with the car. It is still there. Re-read it and don't move your lips ths time. It must be throwing off your timing.

How are things up there in Hicksville? You wouldn't recognize a Police Package if it stared you in the face.
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Old 04-05-2003, 04:24 PM
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dmorris said it right.

use a high output alternator (130+) to power your accessories with the car running. the alternator can be as large as you want, as long as it's 12-14v.

if you're not getting enough current at idle, i've seen some people shave down the pulley on the alternator to increase RPM. know what you're doing before you try this. it will void your warranty.

an extra battery or two will only help you at tailgate parties when the stereo is blastin' with engine off. extra batteries also slow you down at the strip.

if you are running an extremely large set-up, or your accessories pull a LOT of current, consider a large stiffening capacitor or a group of them. stiffening caps can store hundreds of amps of current, and can make it easier on your alternator when your stereo demands a quick high-current draw. if large enough, stiffening caps can keep your headlights from dimming to the beat of your music.

[ April 05, 2003: Message edited by: 98rocket ]</p>
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