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Generator to Altenator


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I read someplace that a generator was modified to have altenator inside components and yet retain the original generator appearance. I would like to do this for my 1956 Olds 324 engine. Does anyone know about this modification and how I might get this done?

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You will read a lot of remarkable stuff in auto buff magazines. It is a free country - we are all free to publish whatever nonsence makes us feel good.

Fact is, the stock Delco standard 12 volt generator on your car now, has a smaller "case" diameter than the alternators I am aware of. Those generators and regulators were reliable - I am not clear why you would want to modify that portion of your car. If they need servicing, try HEMMINGS MOTOR NEWS - you will find any number of places that can help you get your charging system back to its old reliable self.

If you for some reason WANT the superior low rpm charging characteristics of an alternator, I recommend the "small case" Delco alternator used up thru the mid 1980's thru-out the General motors product line. It has its own internal regulation, and being only slightly larger in diameter than the generator now on your car, should be fairly easy to mount.

Let us know what you decide to do..!

Pete Hartmann

Big Springs, AZ

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Hey...J446...you are RIGHT...now why didn't I think of that....I will be right back...going down to my local auto parts store and have em order me one of the smaller diameter generator drive pulleys......( Dosn't EVERY AutoZone or Pep Boys carry an "options" catalouge for Packard V-12's...? )

Pete Hartmann

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I also made a 240MPH Speedo for my Lola by taking an Autometer 120MPH Speedo, silk screening a 240 MPH face and using an in line 2 to 1 drive. This winter I'm going to try and overgear the odo so it reads properly as well with the 2 to 1 gear.

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In the odd shot that somebody manages to find a smaller pulley to fit a generator, I'd strongly reccommend against doing it. The bearings may not be able to take the extra rpm at higher revs or during highway cruising. Also (but less likely) the ballast resistor could overheat under those conditions if it's subjected to too much current.

For most applications the old generator systems should work just fine. Unless you're planning to seriously add to the car's current draw (i.e. How big are your woofers???) <span style="font-style: italic">and</span> use your car in mainly stationary/idling circumstances, this modification is probably asking for more problems than it could ever solve.

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Dave

When these cars raced they ran at 6500rpm for 8 miles at LeMans, on the Mulseane Strait lap after lap for 24 hours. On the street they adverage much lower rpms. On the street they also have electric radiator fans which use a lot electricity. I've used smaller pulleys for years without any problems. I've also used pulley size to increase water flo via over speeding the water pump. I've revved these engines to 7000 for brief periods without any problems.

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The latest generators used on Buick A/C models used a very small pulley,ball-bearings on both ends and an armature that would withstand lots of revs. If you still want to put an alternator INSIDE a generator,I have the address of an outfit that puts a Kamikazi alternator inside a Ford generator.Being in the Auto-Electric business,I highly recommend you stick with DELCO.

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The original inquiry was to put an alternator inside a generator. Electro-Tech puts out a similar unit that goes into a Ford generator. Try Electro-Tech,2616 211th Ave E, Sumner WA 98390 (206)862 2267

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Having been in this field for over 60 years,I highly recommend units made by G M or Ford.They have served me well all these years. A 62 A/C equipped large car from G M has a very small pulley, ball- bearings at both ends,and an armature designed to withstand extreme RPM's.It would serve you very well.Be sure to use the regulator listed for that application.

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Thank you all for the info. The reason I asked how or where to get a custom fit alternator into my generator housing was there really is no place to mount the later model alternator since the bracket is part of the exhaust manifold on my 1956 Olds 324 engine and I wanted to kept the period look.I realize I could use spacers for the shorter alt. but .. I also want to use new instruments in my street rod 1935 Chevy Sedan and need AC current. Right?

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Opps, forgot. Iwent thru my past issues to find when I first saw this installation in Street Rodder magazine. It was Feb. 2000 pgs. 164-166 on Dick Metz's ( Gilford, New Hampshire ) 1932 Ford roadster.

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"Need AC current"? Huh? While an alternator produces AC internally everything goes through a bridge diode set that converts it to DC before it leaves the unit. The main advantage of an alternator over a generator is simply more output at idle. Since alternators are used on new cars with much higher electrical power needs, it is also easier to get a high output alternator than a high output generator.

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Just make life easy for yourself, get a DELCO generator from a GM big car that came with A/C.Be sure to use the DELCO regulator recommended for that application.I repaired my first generator in 1935,and am still doing them today. Have one for a 1916 Lexington on my bench today.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have been in the electrical rebuilding industry for over 20 years and have built many custom units for street rods and antique autos.There is a company that offers a alternator to replace the ford generator in its original mounting, however it looks nothing like the generator.A smaller pully is a great idea for lower rpm amperage.As for the need for an AC current, the only thing I can imagine would use this would be a tach. Any GM or Ford alternator will supply this through the relay (GM) or stator (Ford) terminal.I do not know if it is possible to build an alternator into a generator case (cost effectivley),but I will check into it and let you know.

Tom

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