Alternator upgrade

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  • #307804
    billnparts
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    @billnparts

    As I had stated in the VA Beach thread, I had begun to upgrade the alternator in the Beast. What I thought would be a 20 minute job snowballed into several days.

    First, the seven foot bolts Ford uses on their front cover and alternators required removing the radiator, which meant removing the grille, which required removing the right side side panel.

    The upgraded alternator ended up having a larger case than the one I removed. That required making changes to the adjustment arm

    I also had to cut away some of the bracing of the radiator support.

    I took the opportunity to modify the radiator mounting holes to raise it up off the steering rack input shaft. It touched, but wasn’t severely rubbing. this was just a good time to adjust it.

     

    After reassembly, the alternator fan was contacting the side panel. There was no way to bring it inwards due to the close proximity between  the battery post on the alternator and the engine oil dipstick tube. So, out comes the wizzer and dremel and we provided clearance.

    We will probably make that hole a bit larger to allow more adjustment of the belt. Once it gets covered I’ll have a generator bump on both sides of the TD.

    Well, I took it for a road test and tried all electrical circuits. With everything on, it was still showing it was charging unlike the older smaller alternator.

    All went well UNTIL the smoke began billowing from under the hood. I was able to duck into my son’s driveway. He lives about a half mile up the hill from me. I was hoping for a coolant leak, but unfortunately, it was electrical.

    It turned out to be the battery feed to the alternator. Turns out that over the last 30 years that circuit had been cut and spliced several times and not with the correct gauge wire. Apparently, never an issue with the lower amp alternator, but the big guy didn’t approve.

    We’ll pick up some heavy wire tomorrow and replace the circuit.

    This time next week I’m supposed to be in VA Beach.

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

    #307847
    billnparts
    Participant

    @billnparts

    We ran a new 8ga cable and everything works just fine. With everything turned on there is no smoke escaping. So on to fixing the hole in the side panel.

    A trip to the local craft store supplied a Styrofoam ball.

    Enlarged the hole to allow clearance for further adjustment if ever needed.

    Cut a section off the ball and shaped it to resemble the bump on the driver side side panel.

    A layer of aluminum foil coated in car wax for the form.

    A couple layers of fiberglass cloth.

    Looks like a winner.

    Now to pull the side panel and glass it in place and repaint.

     

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

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