GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)


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RoadRogue
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GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby RoadRogue » Sun Oct 28, 2012 8:45 pm



This is not originally my idea, I have seen Alternators grafted onto many different vehicles over the years.I was not happy with the limited electrical power of the stock charging system of my 82 GL1100 Aspencade. When I realized the limitations of the GL1100 charging system I went looking for ideas. I did a little searching of the internet for info, I found several references to the “poorboy” kit. I wanted to know what it looked like so that I might be able to build my own. At the time I just gathered the info I needed and build what I thought might work without keeping track of where I got the info or who’s idea it was. After all I was only going to build the one for myself.
Don “Poorboy” Pigott came up with a kit that fit the GL1200 , this kit does not work with the GL1100. Some of the info I got was from Dan Filipi over at Naked Goldwings.com , who did this to his 83 GL1100. My thanks go out to these two men for their pioneering efforts.

I first wrote this how to for another forum back in June of 2010, it was well received over there with over 13,000 hits in just two short years. I have had requests to repost it here as well so here goes. I have rewritten it to make things a little clearer and to include the improvements I have made to my first design, and to give the proper credit to those that supplied me with their ideas that I was all too happy to make use of.
Call this conversion whatever you want to, there have been many hands involved to bring it to the state it is in now. This is the story of how I installed a car Alternator on my 82 GL1100.
This is not a guaranteed step by step how to (insert standard “cover my butt” legal disclaimer here) this is just what I did to my bike and it works VERY well.
There are several alternators that people have used with good success. This article will deal with the one I used. Other alternators may fit the measurements that I used for the brackets that I made, you will have to be the judge of that if you use any other alternator yourself.
I used the alternator from a 1988 Pontiac Firefly 1.0 liter Turbo, same as the Chevy Sprint 1.0 liter turbo .

This alternator measures 100mm or 4” in diameter, and 130mm or 5-1/8” from front of pulley to the rear. It is a Nippondenso unit. Lester No 14684
Notice the rear foot is just stamped steel and is bolted in place, unbolt and discard the rear foot.

This way you don’t have to cut the rear foot off like you do with the Geo Metro (the rear foot must be removed to clear the carbs.

Step one:
Strip your bike to this level


Pull the timing covers and remove the crank bolt, this bolt will be replaced with a longer one later. You need to grind the grade stamp off the head of the bolt. I placed the threads of this bolt in my drill press and spun it to mark the center using a 1/8” drill bit held by hand. All you need is a mark in the steel so that you can center punch it after. Using a ¼ “ drill bit drill the center punch mark about ¾” deep making sure you keep the bolt square and plumb to the drill bit.
Reinstall the crank bolt. This will be a guide for the pilot bit of the Holesaw, reinstall the timing covers with the rubber gaskets. Make sure you cut the gasket over the end of the crank and tug it out of the way for now. It will be trimmed to a better fit later.
You may need to make a small notch in the timing cover directly over the center of the crank bolt to clear the pilot bit of the Holesaw in the next step. If the bit cant turn freely it will grab the timing covers and shift them causing an ugly scar on the soft aluminum timing cover or on the softer fingers in the immediate vicinity.

I used a 1 3/8” bimetal Holesaw, medium speed and light pressure, use cutting fluid if you have it.

Below is the 1 3/8” hole in the timing covers centered perfectly over the end of the crankshaft.

Notice the rubber gaskets that you split and tugged out of the way earlier, you can now remove the timing covers and clean up the mess you made, trim the rubbers to the edge of the new hole.( Yes I did clean up all those aluminum chips before I put it back together. ) Remove the drilled crank bolt and save it for when you help your buddy do this conversion. You will need to get a new longer bolt to replace it with. Find a bolt that is 12mmX 60mm long with the same pitch. Do not install unless you are ready to put the new pulley on yet.
You ideally want a 2:1crank to alternator pulley ratio. If you can find a 1.75” alt pulley then you can use a 3.5” crank pulley. To my mind this is the prefered sizing, that way the crank pulley doesn’t block or interfere with the inside bolt of the timing cover. I am using a 4” crank pulley and a 2” alt. pulley for now.
Here is what you need if you have a lathe or a good machinist nearby. This drawing was made by Joe Wiggins for Dan Filipi, I helped myself to it from the internet.

Here is a cheaper alternative for the crank pulley and the one I am using.
I found a 4" pulley in the auto wrecking yard that is a good choice if you are going to make your own crank pulley instead of having a machinist cut on for you. It is the power steering pump pulley from a 1989 Honda Prelude. Its easy to get to on left hand side of the engine right on top, held on with a left hand thread bolt. 12mm center hole already there. Its a 4 groove not a 3 groove (but its a genuine Mother Honda part ) I mounted it on my crank with a 1"thick spacer I cut from a block of aluminum I had at home using a 1-5/8 holesaw.As long as there is a close clearance between the spacer and the hole in the timing cover, say .020” you should be good.


I very carefully drilled the pulley, spacer and timing gear to accept a pair of 3/16"x1-1/2" rollpins to act as the key way to prevent any chance of pulley slip (not that it was ever a problem in the past).

This Picture shows a 2 inch crank pulley showing the roll pins installed, if you use a 3-1/2” pulley it wont interfere with the cover bolt you see in this pic. When I used the 4” pulley I had to grind the hex head off this bolt and cut a slot in it for a simple screw driver.

OK you have your new crank pulley temporarily installed. Its time to make your alternator mounting bracket. This is the part that took me the longest to fabricate and get the measurements just right. When you strip the bike down to start this build you will come across the top motor mounts behind the tin heat shield in front of the carbs, you want the left one to use as a pattern, dont forget to make the "dowels" in the new piece. Materials list: about 8 inches of 3 X 1/4 inch flat bar stock about 2 inches of 9/16 inch tube for dowels. I used a Zip disc to cut mine out

Here's the pattern

That’s 5/8” up and 1 3/8 over

Heres a look at them fitted up.


Now its time to fit things up and butcher the tin. New motor mount first then the heat shield tin. For the pivot bolt I used a 10mm X about 3-1/2". 3/8 will work but the 10mm bolt is a better fit. Weld bolt head to new bracket, use a spacer and nut to pull the bolt tight and square to the bracket once you establish the proper length bolt. Do not use "Allthread" rod except for the mock up stage. Adjust spacer so that crank pulley and Alternator pulley are perfectly in line

Another view showing clearance to the carbs


time to butcher the tin, go slow and take little bits. The alternator needs to move a fair bit so have your belt handy, I used a Dayco Polycog #5030280 . Cut just enough tin away to allow the belt to be rolled onto the pulley.


Dont forget to unplug the voltage regulator, this can be plugged back in to use the stock system in case of an Alternator failure/belt breakage in the middle of nowhere.
If you already have a cooked stator you still need to unplug this.


The fan shroud needs to be trimmed.


To position the rad properly I spaced the bottom out 3/4".Longer bolts needed here. Use the same rad hose but rotate it slightly to get the best fit, leave hoses off for now. Others have reported to me that they have used a spacer to move the water pump cover out ¾” to 1” can be found at an auto parts supplier for a small block Chevy thermostat housing

Next you need to modify the fan shroud where the fan itself mounts. Some people have gone with a pusher fan from the front but I thought that ruined the look of the bike. I prefer the clean look of the fan hidden behind the rad.

This is how the stock fan support looks,


you need to modify it to look like the next pic.

The missing leg has never been a problem the mount is stiff enough not to flex when the fan comes on. This next pic shows a stock rad fan mount and the one after shows how I modified it to swing it up and to the right. This will give enough room for the 4" pulley to clear the fan shroud.



The upper mount where it bolts to the rad is left unchanged, the other two are cut off and discarded (you will make new ones later). Leaving the one upper mount bolt in loose, I then rotated the fan mount shroud to the right until it hit the rad cap filler neck. Cut the flat flange to give more clearance and swing it as far right as possible. This is where you will make new mounting tabs for the ones you cut off earlier (these are the tabs to mount the fan shroud to the rad, not the one from the center to the 8 o'clock position that you cut out much earlier and really doesnt need to be replaced the mount is stiff enough to resits flexing when the fan comes on). I made my new mount tabs from 16 guage sheet metal with a reinforcing break down the center to keep it stiff.


Upper mount/adjuster for the alternator, here is the new bolt on tensioner mount, it clamps straight to the frame so you can eliminate the stress on the fairing support and the need to weld it on.

The orange clamp is a ring hanger for 1" pipe, can be found at most any plumbing supply house/big hardware store. This one is epoxy coated, can be had in galvanized as well. I drilled and tapped it for a 5/16 allen head cap screw. the rod is 3/8 redi-rod or all-thread bent around a curve to match the swing of the alternator ( I used the edge of a worn out brake rotor and a vise to form it).


Here it is installed, note location on frame rail near the front of the tin heat shield (rubber missing from photo) this just allows the shelter/false tank to miss the adjuster when remounted.




I did cut a little off the edge of the fan blade to give clearance to the new belt, doesn’t seem to bother the cooling at all. I used tin snips to cut about ¼” and smoothed the edge with sand paper.


Last bit of butchering to do..... The lower fairing mounts need to be cut like this and then reversed left for right because you have moved the rad bottom out 3/4". This mod solves that problem.

trim them both to look like the one on the left of the photo. File smooth and paint black.
Installed they should look like this

Once you put it all back together you will notice that you dont have to modify the plastic at all. It does touch the alternator but only just.



Wiring is simple There are only 2 wires I used, heavy guage from alternator output to inline blade type fuse holder and then to battery positive.

I have a 60 amp self resetting circuit breaker that hasn’t given me any problems. The 2 wires coming out of the green plug in on the back of the alternator I used the one marked " I " or " IGN " to the ACC terminal on the fuse panel. The other wire is for the idiot light on the cars dash to let you know its not charging. I didn’t use this because I have a volt meter to keep track of this.
Check your work and fire it up. You should have 14.xx volts at idle and 14.x+ above 1500RPM. You now have 55amps of power to run LOTS of stuff.

I have run my original conversion for over two years and more than 30,000miles without any problems at all, I did make a few minor modifications to my original install only because I found a better way to do something. Each of those mods has been included in this article.

Grafting an alternator onto an engine that didn’t come with it is a very old idea , however grafting one to a GoldWing is generally called a Poorboy conversion. Donald J(Poorboy) Pigott makes and sells a kit for the 1200. Here is Dons Webpage http://home.comcast.net/~rkekeis/Alt...alternator.htm

Another source of info I had for my version of this conversion was Dan Filipi , his web page I must have stolen some ideas from can be found at http://filipi.com/alternator/alternator/.
I made my own based on these ideas to fit the 1100.With a few modifications of my own.I think it works very well indeed
Feel free to use my info for yourself, if you make improvements please let us all know. Got to keep these old girls running for years to come. 8-)

I did use their basic ideas and made what I see as a few improvements on the design that make it fit the GL1100 better.


Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby WingAdmin » Sun Oct 28, 2012 9:57 pm

This is fantastic Todd, thanks so much for taking the time to post it here. I know many people have asked about this - it's much easier when someone else has done it first. :) I think after reading this, if I still had my 1100, I'd definitely be doing this to it, as lack of power was always a problem for me.

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RoadRogue
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby RoadRogue » Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:00 pm

My pleasure WingAdmin. I am glad to help out whenever possible. 8-)
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

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littlebeaver
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby littlebeaver » Mon Oct 29, 2012 12:41 am

Yep I was so very surprised that Mr. Gadget himself [admin.] wasn't all over this like white on rice when he had his 82, I read Don's modification years ago on another site and my ears perked up then but I let it go, then Todd became a friend and I guess he saw that I love fabracating junk or I like trying to anyway and he sent me an e-mail and said Beave this is right up you're alley and he did a write up on another site, Well this other site really upset me when they changed the format and along with their change they freakin removed all of Todd's hard work [photographs], I happened to get the Sprint alt. which is the same one Todd has mentioned above but it's used for 40 bones...This guy made my mod. flippen simple, He has credited the right people he is not out to take anything from anyone but merely to help and I gotta say I am very thankful because this mod has been the coolest thing I have ever done to my cycle, I worry no more about my charging system the alt. has a built in regulator so hooking it up is fairly easy... Admin. knows and Virgil knows the crap I started having with my charging system and I followed their instructions but my stator simply just quit producing the juice it needed... It has perfect timing for this mod....Prefect...I am sure that our Admin. here will not remove you're photo's Todd...That won't happen here...I have rode my bike to KC and back from SA Tx. and to the coast and all over the hill country with this mod in place and I love it, I haven't even had to adjust the belts tension yet. People are blown away when they see it in place and after I explain to them that the bike has alot more electric power now, they start looking down toward the crank to see what they can see and I usually end up pulling the cover off so they get a good look...There are members on other sites and this one that have done this mod. with no ill effects...Thanks again Mr. Todd,[ RoadRogue], I know I bugged the hell out of you to post it here and I often wondered why you didn't in the first place but it's here now, I know that this can be done on a 1000 as well, how cool is that...I'm not sure what the 1500's electrial system produces or even the 1800's but I now have 55 amps of power, 14 volts at idle just like a vehicle...4" to 2".... :D

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby littlebeaver » Fri Nov 09, 2012 4:13 am

I made this youtube video for ya..With notes and all...

thanks again Todd...

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby RoadRogue » Sun Nov 11, 2012 4:46 pm

Nice Video Beave, 14.36 volts at idle thats exactly what I get with mine here too. We all know that the stock system cant even come close to this, in fact mine used to discharge at idle when it was stock. With the conversion it still charges with everything turned on including driving lights,heated vest and grips, stereo blasting and the fan running. 8-)
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:40 pm

Hi,
Just wanted to add if you are looking for a M12 x 1.25 x 60mm bolt needed for this conversion 80 to 83 GL1100 and can't find one. Give this place a call. Even though I only really needed one bolt they drove 12 miles to my work to deliver it for FREE. I'm sure they would charge you a reasonable price to ship it. They told me it would be $2.00 for a 60mm length and a 50mm length then ended up just giving them to me?

I don't work for these people and don't have any connection to the business. I was flat out blown away!

Here is there link:
http://www.primefasteners.com

If that didn't work here is their info..........this business is in a 100,000 square foot building.

Prime Industrial Fasteners
(989) 496-0600 primefasteners.com
2425 Schuette Rd, Midland, MI 48642

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wingit11
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby wingit11 » Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:57 am

Thanks Todd. I will have to file this away for future reference. If/when mine dies I will convert over to this system. So far my 83 has had no problem over the last 19 years I have owned it. I think what has saved me is having a digital volt meter on the bike. Twice now I have noticed a drop in voltage and check the stator connection and repaired it before any damage to the stator.

Larry

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby littlebeaver » Fri Dec 07, 2012 4:57 pm

Hey Todd I got a another alternator in the mail today, almost looks new man, for $60 on Ebay..Free shipping too...Cool 55 amps just like the other one..It's Denso too..Here are some photo's..

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby RoadRogue » Fri Dec 07, 2012 8:48 pm

Good score there Beave, it looks just like mine, even if it is the wrong colour :lol: . Now the question that springs to mind is, Did you buy another 1100 and are getting ready to do another conversion, or are you putting together a complete kit? :o :lol: Maybe just trying to corner the market on these alternators?
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby littlebeaver » Fri Dec 07, 2012 9:28 pm

RoadRogue wrote:Good score there Beave, it looks just like mine, even if it is the wrong colour :lol: . Now the question that springs to mind is, Did you buy another 1100 and are getting ready to do another conversion, or are you putting together a complete kit? :o :lol: Maybe just trying to corner the market on these alternators?

I got it to have an extra in my bag, my stator is shot so that's no longer my backup.. :D

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:44 pm

Hi all,

Just ringing in that I'm in the process of doing the Poorboy conversion.

Gathering parts at the moment Geo 45 amp alternator (can be had pretty cheap on eBay if your patient-mine was just under 40 bucks delivered not bad for a remanufactured with no core. Also bought the original plug for the wiring for 19.00.

I took the alternator 4 rib 2" pulley to a machine shop and have decided to have a 3" pulley made for the crank. At highway speed 5250 rpms the alternator should spin at 8k. Some have gone with a 4" to get a good charge at idle but I worry about the alternator spinning at 10k, but that's just me. I'm having it cut from rolled steel. If the owner is interested I'll post the shop info and prices.

I really don't have a stator issue either but want to be a head of the game as my last road trip was 18 hrs one way. I'll post progress. Can't thank those who have posted on this site enough-like I said why buy a manual when u can research and talk to people here.

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby littlebeaver » Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:49 pm

I'm glad you got you're ducks in a roll, I think the 1500 have like 40 amps of power thru the alt. but I don't know for sure...Can someone confirm that please..If that's the case then you should have plenty of juice for stuff, I have no idea what a 3" pulley will do at idle, as long as it's over 12 volts with everything on, you should be in great shape..

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:16 pm

I'm following these instructions and I couldn't be happier! Just got a pulley made 3", steel and have just installed the pulley. Thanks a ton fellas!!!

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:20 pm

Cutting the timing covers is a snap using the old bolt as a guide and a hole saw!
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:24 pm

If you go with a 3" pulley u won't have a clearance issue with the timing cover bolt.
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:26 pm

This is where I stopped because I just couldn't believe how good thing were coming out!
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:06 pm

My apologizes for the upside down pics...........says volumes some would say.

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Chromepaul » Fri Feb 01, 2013 1:55 pm

Greetings!
I really appreciate the great how-to on this subject; it explains the process very clearly. I have an '83 Aspencade that I've been riding since I bought it new and had wondered for years about how to increase the output. I considered installing a higher output stator (I did so with an '81 GL500 & '83 GL650 that I owned) to better supply my light bar, heated grips, aux driving lights, trailer, etc., but the thought of pulling the engine on my GoldWing to do so gave me nightmaresjust thinking about it! Long story short, I cheated: I swapped out every light on my bike--except the headlight & aux driving lights--for LEDs. They work great, it lowered the wattage demand for the whole system and it was a whole lot easier and quicker than the major surgery I was contemplating.

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby RoadRogue » Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:42 pm

I started looking for more watts on my 1100 too. I started out by switching to LED bulbs and it did make a difference, It let me add a set of driving lights. Iwanted to plug in my heated vest, heated grips and driving lights. Then there is the demands of the trailer too. LED's alone just wouldnt cut it so I went with this conversion. It all depends on your need for power to run the farkles you have.

Little Beaver supplied me with a much better drawing for the pulley and has given me permission to share it with all of you 8-)
Little Beaver's drawing
Little Beaver's drawing
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby RoadRogue » Sun Feb 17, 2013 6:14 pm

Heres some info on the connections on the back of the Alternator I used. 8-)
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

larryakruse
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby larryakruse » Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:09 pm

This is my conversion on a 79 1000.
http://goldwingdocs.com/UserPictures/la ... fitte_1231

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Carolina Drifter » Fri Mar 01, 2013 4:48 pm

I thought this was great does anyone know if it can b modified for the gl1000

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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:56 am

Just finished up my bottom bracket thanks for the diagram. This was easy!
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Re: GL1100 alternator conversion (how I did mine)

Postby Joecop » Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:05 pm

Alternator in position. Now I have to track down a belt and weld the top bracket on :D
Sorry the left side of the picture is supposed to be the top.
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