Alternator Conversion


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Fri May 13, 2016 11:30 pm



Ok folks if you aren't sick of this subject yet here we go again. My decision is made. I ordered the alternator. I will source what parts I can and fabricate the rest. Stay tuned.




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Rednaxs60
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Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 LTD, 2008 GL1800

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Wed May 18, 2016 5:01 pm

Brian - you are probably going to have to set the fan out about an inch. A fellow who did this mod has used bolt unions to get the extra distance required. Here are a couple of pics showing a bolt union:



Threaded on both ends.

Cheers
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Wed May 18, 2016 6:32 pm

That's not a bad idea Ernest. I was thinking more along the lines of cutting a small piece of 12 mm ID pipe and using it as a collar. All good ideas. It's just a spacer so when I get to that point it will be whatever is simplest and looks good. I think I found some metric studs that will work to shim the rad out.

Hopefully the alternator will arrive this week so I can start on that on Monday.

Meanwhile this compressor is a pain. I disconnected it all and removed it to paint the fairing. I wanted to dry the dessicant. The stubs on the end of the lines broke so Im trying to make new copper air lines

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Wed May 25, 2016 10:28 am

How goes the battle?
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
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Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Wed May 25, 2016 2:30 pm

Alternator arrived yesterday. I hope to start in the next day or two. It looks like it's going to be a pretty easy fit though.

Brian

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Wed May 25, 2016 3:05 pm

Great! What are you doing for a crank pulley and what size?
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Wed May 25, 2016 4:47 pm

Ernest,
I shoukd have a better idea tomorrow. The alternator pulley is 2.5" and it's a vee. I might change it out for a smaller serpentine. I'd like to keep the crank pulley to 4" or less.

It depends on what I can find locally.

Brian

Breiber
Posts: 42
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Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Wed May 25, 2016 4:48 pm

How did your stator work out?

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Wed May 25, 2016 10:51 pm

Have the stator on the bench ready to go back in, but I have taken a trip to Ontario to visit family. Will be back next week.

You probably also know that I am doing a clutch rebuild as well. While I was waiting for the stator and clutch friction plates, I rebuilt the clutch MC and slave, rebuilt the fuel shut off valve (leaked when I turned it to off), and replaced the clutch lines with SS teflon lines from Coast Industrial.

I took the clutch stack out and noticed that the all the steel discs had been overheated to varying degrees with one having been scored around the circumference. I have these on order and will pick them up when I get back.

I am also going to do the "bin the damper" mod where you replace the damper with two steel discs, one at the pressure plate, and one in the stack where the damper was.

Have feelers out to friends and family to make the crank pulley for the alt mod. Will get the bike back together with the new stator, but do intend to do the alt mod in the future when I have all the parts available.

Cheers
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Thu May 26, 2016 9:40 pm

A little progress today. I could do so much more if I could only get more than an hour or two of uninterupted work done but such is life.

I ordered and received a 35 amp GM mini one wire alternator from DB electric. I assume that it is the same size as the one that everyone uses out of the Geo. Either way it looks great and hopefully works as well as it looks. I am a little concerned that I went on the light side and should have gotten the 55 amp version but either way it will still produce more than the stock stator. It came with a industrial style v pulley. I have swapped it out for a 2" 3 rib flat pulley and a matching 2" crank pulley. I also have a 2.5" crank pulley I could use that is a 2.5" I got all 3 pulleys from my local alternator repair shop for $30. A lot of people are hung up on the 2-1 ratio so that the bike will charge at an idle. I believe that Don Pigott is on to something with the one to one ratio. Alternators don't like to spin past 10,000 rpm. It is hard on the internal bearings and who knows what else, bigger pulleys put more unbalanced weight on a crank that was not designed for it, bigger pulleys require more rad/fan modifications. I am going to start with one to one and it is easy to upsize the pulley later.


I have taken a different approach then everyone else. I was able to hang one ear of my alternator off the horn mount. I will have to add a bead of weld and a gusset to the other side to make sure it doesn't move but that won't be hard. I picked up a chromed alternator adjustment bracket for $20 from Lordco (could have paid less for a rusty one at a junk yard) and cut it to fit my application). I had a 29.5" belt on and it barely clears the side cover so I have a 29" coming in tomorrow which will allow me to move the alternator in a bit more. I will drill the timing belt covers tomorrow as well and hopefully spin the alternator early next week. Once I am comfortable with the alignment I will beef up the brackets and I should be ready to hit the road.


Does anyone have any great advice on how to align the belt with the pulleys other than "eyeball"

Cheers,
Brian



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Rednaxs60
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Thu May 26, 2016 9:51 pm

A straight edge of 5/8"X5/8" aluminum angle should give you a decent straight edge to line up the pulleys using the crank pulley as the guide.
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Thu May 26, 2016 10:01 pm

I forgot to mention that this looks like a great install, very ingenious. When you fit the rad, remember to leave room to remove the belt without moving the rad, been mentioned on a few other installs. Good on the pulley change - v-belts need more room to remove. Look forward to the end result.
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Thu May 26, 2016 10:02 pm

Thanks Ernest,

I'll give that a try.

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Fri May 27, 2016 7:16 pm

Well that was wishful thinking. I mounted the pulley and covers today. There's no way I can drive the alternator from the horn bracket. I guess I'm grinding out that fairing mount. Not what I wanted to do but I guess that's what has to happen. I underestimated how far out those steps on the cases protruded.


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Rednaxs60
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Fri May 27, 2016 8:26 pm

What did you use as a spacer?
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Fri May 27, 2016 11:42 pm

That pulley has a small offset so I didn't need much. I used a nut and a washer for a spacer. Not fancy but it works. I could maybe narrow the spacing up a bit but I'm going to leave it for now. The rad only has to tilt out 1/2" as is.

I'm running a 2.5" on the crank and 2" on the alternator. Unfortunately 1 is a 4 rib and the other is a 3. It's all they had. I have 2 - 2" 3 ribs but I need the offset and besides the ratio is better.

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Rednaxs60
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Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
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Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Sat May 28, 2016 7:04 am

Brian - thanks - have seen pics on other threads where there has been a 4 rib pulley on the crank and three rib pulley on the alt. It has worked fine. The serpentine belts allow for this mismatch.

Cheers
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Sat May 28, 2016 7:28 am

Yes, the belt won't care. It will run on the 3 ribs it is aligned with. It's just a housekeeping thing for me. I wish I could have matched them up. At the end of the day nobody will see any of this so as long as it works I guess that is the main thing.

Breiber
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:06 pm
Location: Ladysmith, BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Breiber » Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:56 pm

Well, I took a little break from the bike to focus on some other projects but I finally got back to it a couple of days ago. I ended up pretty much copying the poorboy installation. I still think I was on the right track but I'm just not set up at home to fabricate some of the things I would have liked. I picked up some angle iron and in no time had things installed as per the poorboy system. The alternator is working well and is showing about 14 volts at 2000 rpm. It is only a 35 amp alternator so I'm not sure how well that will work out. I'm happy with my install and my efforts have given me a better understanding of my bike. I have only spent about $200 on my alternator install but I have wasted countless hours. My advice to most would be just buck up and buy the poorboy system. You could be done in a weekend easily.




Now to complete my restoration and get riding.





Happy Riding Everyone,

Brian

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Rednaxs60
Posts: 726
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2015 12:44 pm
Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 LTD, 2008 GL1800

Re: Alternator Conversion

Postby Rednaxs60 » Tue Jun 14, 2016 10:05 am

Good install Brian - always a challenge as every bike is different. I notice on my '85 LTD there is a small coolant hose that I will have to address, may have to relocate. The right timing belt cover inboard bolt is directly behind the pulley so the install of the pulley and covers has to be sequenced as well.

Look forward to seeing it in person.

Bike looking good.

Cheers


"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest


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