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TOPIC: Alternator Wiring?

Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #85834

  • WizardIII
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Just need to be clear on this. I have copies of the owners manual and service manual. Each has a different diagram of the two position switch from the alternator. The OM shows it switching 'between' the yellow and gray wires (with a warning that 'hi' should only be used when current demand is heavy) and the SM shows the switch 'adding' the yellow wire 'to' the gray wire.
I don't have the switch and have connected the y & g wires together at the rectifier.
Yes/No?
Thanks,
WizardIII

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #85935

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Black and gray hooked up to the rectifier gives you about 7 amps for low charging, adding the yellow to the the gray ups the amperage to 15 to 20 for Hi charging. A switch between the yellow and gray gives you the choice of Hi or Low.

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Dick Johnson

1989 16ft Sylvan

'57 Evinrude 18 (finally found a decent one)
'58 Johnson 5.5
'72 Johnson 6.0
'61 Homelite
'64 Johnson 18
'65 Homelite 55
'66 Homelite 55
'68 Bearcat 55 (3)
'70 Bearcat 55 (2)
'71 Bearcat 85 (Sold)

Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #85985

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Yes, that's how the service manual shows the schematic. I'm just curious why the owners manual has the switch choosing the gray 'or' black wire, not tying them together. I've been concerned about a possible over-charging problem and don't want to fry anything. I'm going to put an amp gauge in the 20 amp fuse line to monitor the circuit and maybe go back to the hi-low switch since I have very little drain on the system most of the time.
Thanks

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #85992

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If you have all three alternator wires hooked up and have very little drain chances are it will overcharge. The hi/low switch was an option, engines that didn't have this option had a loose unconnected yellow wire. The third wire increases the amperage. It doesn't make any difference which other alternator wire the yellow is connected to (black or gray) as it is now using all of the alternator coils for full output.

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Dick Johnson

1989 16ft Sylvan

'57 Evinrude 18 (finally found a decent one)
'58 Johnson 5.5
'72 Johnson 6.0
'61 Homelite
'64 Johnson 18
'65 Homelite 55
'66 Homelite 55
'68 Bearcat 55 (3)
'70 Bearcat 55 (2)
'71 Bearcat 85 (Sold)

Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #86215

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I appreciate the info Dick and have decided to add the hi/lo switch to help keep my amps 'regulated'. I'm not a restorer per se but I do like to keep things original if I can.
I have been trolling the usual channels for the hi/lo switch and bracket with no luck so far. Would you have a spare to sell?
Thanks, Steve
Talent, OR.

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #86556

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Going to take another stab at clearing this up in my mind. I'm, hopefully, adding two photo's of the wiring for the two position regulator switch from the OM & SM.
As you can see one has the switch 'adding' the black to the gray and the other chooses 'between' the two.
Any thoughts on this?
I'm still going to add the switch and now see where it was originally mounted on the starter bracket.
Thanks for any info,
Steve - WizardIII
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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #86558

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Well, one came through. Hopefully here is the other.

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 2 months ago #86559

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OK, that didn't work. I'll try smaller images.
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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86755

  • 4stroke
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Steve,
I don't have a bracket, I've made mine. As far as your first diagram, I've never seen that one, all of the diagrams I have show either the voltage regulator or the hi/lo option connecting the black to the gray. Your second diagram is the one shown in the several different diagrams I have. This system is very similar to Honda motorcycles of the early '60's, both systems do not use all the charging coils for lower amperage. On the Honda, where the lights are turned on the unused coils are now in use to help increase amperage when the draw is greater. The Homelite does the same with a manual switch. I'm thinking the first diagram is a misprint and I can see where this is confusing.

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Dick Johnson

1989 16ft Sylvan

'57 Evinrude 18 (finally found a decent one)
'58 Johnson 5.5
'72 Johnson 6.0
'61 Homelite
'64 Johnson 18
'65 Homelite 55
'66 Homelite 55
'68 Bearcat 55 (3)
'70 Bearcat 55 (2)
'71 Bearcat 85 (Sold)

Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86776

  • billr
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There are a few different versions of that drawing.
Some are just plain electrically incorrect.

The bottom line is, there is no OEM regulator except for the first series of motors in 61/62. I think I still have a new in the box regulator etc for one of those.
The hi/lo switch is not necessary.
The late F model, usually the blue blocks, did away with the switch and you just either connected the gray or the black wire to one AC connection on the rectifier, yellow on the other AC connection of course.

Each of those alternator windings is nominal 5-7amps of charge capacity. So with one winding connected to the rectifier, 5-7amp charge rate max.
With the other leg comprised of two windings connected, you have a 10-14amp max charge rate.
If you connect all three windings to the rectifier, then you have nominal 15-21amp charge rate.
The charge rate varies with speed of rotation, strength of magnets in the flywheel if in original configuration with only a rectifier.

Some of the guys on the big houseboats on Lake Shasta use all three windings as they have lots of lights, fans, heaters etc.
However, without a regulator running all three or sometimes even two windings connected it is common to see batteries overcharged and loss of water etc. I've sold a bunch of new alternators to those guys down there.
(crazy stuff happens on that lake, I've had two boats that had the water intake tube corrode through, in freshwater of all places, and all manner of other crazy failures)
So, if you want to install a switch you can but it is not necessary at all and in fact the blue F blocks did without it and you manually just connected either one or two windings direct to the rectifier terminal via a spade connection.
For most boats, you only need one winding connected to maintain your battery in a ready to start the motor condition.
That's what I run on my Bearcat, one winding connected one just wire tied and taped so it cannot short to the block.
No switch to f with, or forget, etc.

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86875

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I run mine with all three connected via Hi/Lo switch. Having had a my battery drained a couple times the first year I ran the engine it's a must for me. The live well pump I'm sure uses the most power of everything I have turned on, then the radios, depth sounder, etc. I am also the majority of the time only turning 500-600 rpm. With the switch I have the option to drop the amperage down when I decide to go cruising. These engines rope start very easy (CCW), don't ask how I know!

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Dick Johnson

1989 16ft Sylvan

'57 Evinrude 18 (finally found a decent one)
'58 Johnson 5.5
'72 Johnson 6.0
'61 Homelite
'64 Johnson 18
'65 Homelite 55
'66 Homelite 55
'68 Bearcat 55 (3)
'70 Bearcat 55 (2)
'71 Bearcat 85 (Sold)

Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86899

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I had the opportunity to rope start mine today, but declined haha.
I ran mine in the evil saltwater again today, where she's been sitting since July.
Darned thing fires right up, idles nice, runs fine. No smoke, no smell. Was a nice run today.

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86907

Didn't use mine last season. Hope to next season. Used daughters pontoon. Powered by a 89 Mariner Classic 45 w/trim and tilt.
Happy Holidays Bill, and thanks for all of your help. PS: Our lake is froze over already.
Elgindave
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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86915

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No kidding Dave, already for some ice fishing in January or so?
You should post a pic of summer boating and winter with the trucks out on the lake so everyone can see the crazy difference in the seasons. I still remember when you first sent me those pics, haha.

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86934

Will do Bill
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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86935

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Sorry to hijack the alternator thread :(

Dave, is that the lake behind you? Pic from last year or right now?
Is that a beer on the seat?

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86958

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I think you are correct. The first image must be a misprint. I have seen that many times with my radio manuals. Although it made more sense to me at first (choosing 1 or 2 coils) I see now that with each coil pumping about 5 amps tying them together gets the max 15 or so amps out.
I'm going install the switch anyway because, well, I just like switches.
Thanks for the input.
Steve

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86959

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BTW, that post was a reply to Dick Johnson.
WizardIII

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86961

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billr wrote:

There are a few different versions of that drawing.
Some are just plain electrically incorrect.

The bottom line is, there is no OEM regulator except for the first series of motors in 61/62. I think I still have a new in the box regulator etc for one of those.
The hi/lo switch is not necessary.
The late F model, usually the blue blocks, did away with the switch and you just either connected the gray or the black wire to one AC connection on the rectifier, yellow on the other AC connection of course.

Each of those alternator windings is nominal 5-7amps of charge capacity. So with one winding connected to the rectifier, 5-7amp charge rate max.
With the other leg comprised of two windings connected, you have a 10-14amp max charge rate.
If you connect all three windings to the rectifier, then you have nominal 15-21amp charge rate.
The charge rate varies with speed of rotation, strength of magnets in the flywheel if in original configuration with only a rectifier.

Some of the guys on the big houseboats on Lake Shasta use all three windings as they have lots of lights, fans, heaters etc.
However, without a regulator running all three or sometimes even two windings connected it is common to see batteries overcharged and loss of water etc. I've sold a bunch of new alternators to those guys down there.
(crazy stuff happens on that lake, I've had two boats that had the water intake tube corrode through, in freshwater of all places, and all manner of other crazy failures)
So, if you want to install a switch you can but it is not necessary at all and in fact the blue F blocks did without it and you manually just connected either one or two windings direct to the rectifier terminal via a spade connection.
For most boats, you only need one winding connected to maintain your battery in a ready to start the motor condition.
That's what I run on my Bearcat, one winding connected one just wire tied and taped so it cannot short to the block.
No switch to f with, or forget, etc.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________

Thanks Bill, I think I've got it. Between you and 4stroke I agree with the misprint and understand that tying all three coils together gets the max amp output. I know I don't need the hi/lo switch but I'm a radio guy and like knobs and switches. Besides, although I'm sure I will always run on low I might want to install that 150 watt stereo to just to add to everyone's enjoyment at the lake.
Interesting trivia about Lake Shasta. Some in Redding refer to it as a cess-pool which may be worse than salt water.

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Re:Alternator Wiring? 4 years 1 month ago #86962

Hi Bill, Yes it is empty. Lake Michigan in the back round. Taken about 8 years ago. It is Lake Michigan in the backround
In the U.P. near my cabin.


I only use two wires from the alternator and it keeps things charged up ok for me. I don't run too many things on the pontoon.

Last photo. view from front porch.
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