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Old 09-24-2009, 10:36 AM
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single wire alternator

I have a question with a single wire alternator. If I just connect the battery wire to the battery lug on the alternator and don't do anything else. When I get the RPM's of the motor up, will the battery begin to charge 13volts plus or do I have do something else to excite the voltage regulator. Like run a line from the #2 terminal on the alternator to the battery lug. Thanks

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Old 09-24-2009, 10:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by my oldcar
I have a question with a single wire alternator. If I just connect the battery wire to the battery lug on the alternator and don't do anything else. When I get the RPM's of the motor up, will the battery begin to charge 13volts plus or do I have do something else to excite the voltage regulator. Like run a line from the #2 terminal on the alternator to the battery lug. Thanks

That's it!!! One wire - no more.

Dave W
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Old 09-24-2009, 10:48 AM
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Gee thanks, that was fast. It's hard to beleive that 1 wire will do the job. So don't bother connecting the wire to the #2 post. Thanks alot.
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Old 09-26-2009, 07:19 AM
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One wire alternators are self-exciting at about 1500 rpms. You have to rev it up once to get it to start charging, but it will keep charging after that first time. If you want it to excite without that revving the first time, you have to give switched power to that terminal.
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:36 PM
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If You Really Wanted To Get Fancy, You Can Add A Ground Wire!
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h0trod389
If You Really Wanted To Get Fancy, You Can Add A Ground Wire!
WHY? The alternator frame is the ground - and it's attached via several bolts through a usually pretty generous bracket to the engine - which is part of the main chassis ground. A ground wire defeats the purpose to unclutter the engine compartment of having a single wire alternator.

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Old 09-30-2009, 08:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irelands child
WHY? The alternator frame is the ground - and it's attached via several bolts through a usually pretty generous bracket to the engine - which is part of the main chassis ground. A ground wire defeats the purpose to unclutter the engine compartment of having a single wire alternator.

Dave W
then why does delco make a boss on the back of the alternator for a ground wire?
of course you dont need it... but the boss is there....
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:23 PM
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single wire alternator

single wire is good BUT engine block MUST have a HEAVY cable earth . otherwise starting current will take any path it can find back to the battery & usually the only metal contact with the body is the accelerator linkages ,choke cable( if fitted) & gear selector ( if not bushed). Its not the best place but that bush on the alternator does gaurantee the integrity of that circuit. Best place is an earth cable the same size as the Positive from the starter mount bolt direct to the battery AND then a same size cable to the body so that lights and sound also work,
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Old 02-18-2010, 07:10 PM
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Thinking about the generous brackets, I would point out that the motor is isolated from ground because of the rubber motor mounts, not to forget the transmission also has rubber.

A one wire alternator is for specific types of charging system, tractors, law mowers, boats, that type.
As to what is the most efficient method the three wire is the application. I deferrer to the MAD electric site it makes the case and is explained very well, ends the argument one wire ..... three wire. There are may reason that the three wire is the right configuration, and that site completely explains the various reasons..

I personally have never read the resistance of the two ground circuits, block ground verses bracket ground but common sense tells me that there would more resistance using the latter...

For the price of a ground strap and the simplicity of the connection, what is the point ?

Add the wire to the block and be done with it .
Is the battery in the engine bay? If in the truck even more reason to add a block connection to ground.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:07 AM
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I have to agree with the ground situation. The normal aluminum oxide that forms on aluminum is a very good insulator. Anodizing is even better. So it is a good idea to use the ground lug. Also a very good idae to use a heavy flexible ground from the motor to the chassis. I use a #2 welding cable untill I can find a nice braided line. I use the dame from the chassis to the battery.
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Old 02-19-2010, 07:55 AM
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There is actually a TSB out on the CS130 alternators. The early ones did not have a bracket to the rear frame (which is what that boss is really for) and galvanic corrosion between the aluminum housing and the iron field pole would prevent the return path and eventually lead to the regulator going bad. I went through three CS130s (one a year) on the second wife's car until I found the TSB. Put in the ground wire and never had a problem after that.

Of course, she moved out shortly after that so LOTS of my problems went away...
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe_padavano
Of course, she moved out shortly after that so LOTS of my problems went away...
I know what you mean Joe. It's pretty hard to argue or have problems with yourself.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:08 PM
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Ground wire is a good idea, especially if the bracket is made out of aluminum.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:22 PM
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In my time I have actually repaired two older style Ford alternators simply by adding a ground strap from the alternator stud to the engine block.
To be sure, you'd think being bolted up to metal brackets bolted to the engine would be enough. But in at least two cases it wasn't. The galvanic corrosion thing sounds to be a good reason why the the otherwise healthy alternators I worked on quit functioning.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:43 PM
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I agree on the MAD electrical website.. I followed their recomendations, and my charging system works just AWESOME! I had an 80am 12SI type alternator at the time, and now I'm using a 110A CS130 that came out of my 1989 olds cutlass sierra after it got wrecked my drunk neighbor..
(it's now in my 1972 Monte Carlo)

it's wired as a 3 wire, with all the wires going to back to a single distribution point. I can have front and rear blower fans, my lights, wipers, and 1,500w stereo crankin away at 750rpm idle and it will happily charge 13.8v on a single v-belt setup.

This is a picture i took just after the swap.. sorry the rest of the engine bay is such a mess...

http://home.comcast.net/~kc8oye/Engine/DSC02407.JPG
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