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It's been 5 years since I re-wired an 82 C10 pickup, but here are my best recollections:

The wires on the firewall block are probably like this:

Left side: Originates on the starter's BAT terminal and runs through a fusible link.
Right side: Large wire feeds fuse panel, small wire goes to alternator sense terminal. (This is where the regulator looks for 14.2 volts.)
The metal strap is just a way to connect the 3 wires.

On my 82 C10, there was a second large wire (metric, but around 11 gauge) running from starter BAT terminal thru a second fusible link to the fuse panel. So there' plenty of current capacity to the fuse panel -- two 11 gauge wires vs. one 12 gauge wire on older trucks. This wire did not go to the firewall terminal block, but, as I recall was in a bundle lower on the firewall.

I don't remember how the OE charge wire (alternator to battery) was connected, but it sounds like you have a bad connection. I'm not sure if there was a fusible link in that wire.
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