Alternator


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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TAZZ
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Alternator

Postby TAZZ » Mon Aug 11, 2014 12:09 pm



Hi all I have a Alternator shop by my home and I ask if hey can rebuild one off my 40amps to 90amps and they said yes it cost me about 100 dollar and 1yr warranty have any of you rebuild your 40amps to 90amps and want was the results on con on pro :?:



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hugger-4641
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Re: Alternator

Postby hugger-4641 » Mon Aug 11, 2014 2:39 pm

Rebuilding the alternator is fine if all that's wrong is brushes, bearings, or regulator. $100 is reasonable for this, though you can do it yourself for $60 to $80 depending on where you buy the parts. However, a common problem with certain year models of these alternators is the rotor going bad. Specifically, the windings break inside the rotor. Most alternator shops cannot or will not repair this and will charge you for a new rotor, which is another $150 to $250.

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Fatwing Chris
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Re: Alternator

Postby Fatwing Chris » Mon Aug 11, 2014 4:38 pm

For a $100 and a years warr.(and close to you to boot)I'd let them do it.There's nothing mystical about these alts.They're basically a GM alternator so any auto-electric place can do them.

BTW Your's would be one of the ones with the weak windings that go bad.The earlier 1500's had the better alternators.Not sure of the year they changed,but 95 rings a bell.
If I'da known it would last this long,I'da taken better care of it.
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TAZZ
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Re: Alternator

Postby TAZZ » Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:25 pm

Thank I just wanted to up grade my Alternator to 90amps to have more power on the Alternator I have two 40amps they are in good condition 1 is rebuild by Ken Heming and the other is an Hitachi I had to replace my alternator back in 2007 they installed a new Hitachi I still have in the bike. Is it better to go to the 90 amps over the 40 amps. I don't want to sent 300+ dollars on a Compu fire. So what do you guys think 90amps work much better than a 40 amps and yes I have NO Lights bike is ALL stock just have saddle bag LED lights, Headlight Modulator and Back-off XP brake light Flasher that it.

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Re: Alternator

Postby bstig60 » Mon Aug 11, 2014 11:53 pm

Don't mean to pirate your thread. I was told I would have to upgrade my battery if I went to a 90 amp alternator. That sounds nuts to me if the regulator is doing its job. Any thoughts?? I know the new bike I am getting is supposed to have one of those cheapest Chinese alternators, so I am going to try and find a spare. Would one off an early model work on the 99 and if so I would be interested in buying a good 40 amp and having it rebuilt to handle 90 amps.
Bill

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Re: Alternator

Postby hugger-4641 » Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:57 am

You might be correct if you don't add a lot of extras to your electrical system and IF the regulator always does its job, the problem will come when it doesn't. If you already have an AGM type battery, you should be fine. If not, you should go to an AGM before you go with 90 amp alternator.

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TAZZ
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Re: Alternator

Postby TAZZ » Tue Aug 12, 2014 11:22 am

Hugger I always had a AGM battery.

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Re: Alternator

Postby HawkeyeGL1200 » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:27 pm

I'm not really electrically gifted, by any stretch of the imagination, so bear with me here.. how do you upgrade a 40 amp alternator to 90 amps output without changing the windings? It would seem to me the current produced is directly related to the number of wraps in the field windings?? or is it simple as changing the regulator in the alternator?

Sorry to wander off topic
I am wrong as often as I am right concerning what is wrong with someone else' motorcycle without having seen the machine in person. Guessing with limited information, as to the source of the trouble, is sketchy at best.

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Re: Alternator

Postby hugger-4641 » Wed Aug 13, 2014 10:39 am

Without going into a full blown electricity class, yes, the regulating system has more to do with how many amps can safely be drawn from the alternator. The number of turns in the windings has more affect on the voltage produced. The size of the wire in the windings and the ability of the alternator to dissipate heat are factors in how long it will last, but that 40amp alternator could actually produce 300amps, albeit for a short time because something would soon burn out.

Many people are not aware that an alternator is actually a three phase AC generator. If you could check the AC voltage coming directly from the windings, you would probably see 200-400 volts AC depending on the rpm at the time. This AC current is rectified to DC through diodes(bridge rectifier), then the DC current is "regulated" using diodes and transistors to make sure the proper "voltage" is supplied to the battery based on the "amperage" demanded by the rest of the system at any given time.

To make a long story short, the alternator will only supply the amount of amps needed by the system. When that "need" causes more heat than what the alternator's components can sustain, something burns up. Usually the regulator or rectifier goes first because the diodes and transistors are the weak links in the system. However, if you were to put a regulator and rectifier on the alternator that can withstand more, the alternator may not be able to dissipate the heat generated in the windings, in which case the windings give up, or the bearings overheat and they go out.

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Re: Alternator

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:01 am

hugger-4641 wrote: Many people are not aware that an alternator is actually a three phase AC generator. If you could check the AC voltage coming directly from the windings, you would probably see 200-400 volts AC depending on the rpm at the time. This AC current is rectified to DC through diodes(bridge rectifier), then the DC current is "regulated" using diodes and transistors to make sure the proper "voltage" is supplied to the battery based on the "amperage" demanded by the rest of the system at any given time.


You've got a slight mix up there. The system you describe is the stator present in four-cylinder Wings, where the regulation is done after the fact, and the regulator is actually physically separate from the stator. In the GL1500 and GL1800 (and automotive) alternator, the regulation is done a bit differently. In the four-cylinder stator, there are a stationary set of windings, and the engine spins a set of permanent magnets inside the windings to generate power.

In the alternator, there are no permanent magnets. In place of the magnets are another set of windings. The regulator (which is an integral part of the alternator) controls the output of the alternator by altering the amount of voltage present in the field coils. This alters the level of magnetism in the field coils, which alters the amount of power being generated in the windings. Where a permanent magnet stator produces its maximum output of power at all times (relative to engine RPM), an alternator produces only the power required, so it runs cooler and puts less load on the engine. This is why at idle, a permanent magnet stator will never produce enough power to run the bike and charge the battery, whereas an alternator at idle will increase the field winding voltage such that it will produce enough power to do this.

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Re: Alternator

Postby hugger-4641 » Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:27 am

Very good observation and no argument here. I was trying to simplify the explanation a little, but you are correct, the "regulation" on the 1500 alternator is actually done by adjusting the "excitation" voltage supplied to the rotor windings, which in turn adjusts the output of the the field windings. The "rectification" of the AC current to DC is still done basically the same as the permanent magnet stator system. In the case of the alternator system, I would say the "rectification" part of the system is usually what fails first from the heat generated when too much current is demanded. I believe the problem with the rotor windings failing on later year models is due more to mechanical reasons and cheap wire in the windings, not due to heat from current overdraw on the system. Just my opinion of course.

As pertaining to the question from HawkeyeGl1200, I don't know if the OEM "90" amp rotors and field winding assemblies are in fact different than those in the "40" amp, but since the housings, bearings, etc. are the same, I suspect that the only difference is in the rectifier, regulator, and brush assemblies. Of course, in aftermarket alternators like the "Compufire", I'm sure the rotor and stator assemblies are of better construction than the OEM Hitachi's. Maybe someone else can confirm that?




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