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-   1958 To 1960 Squarebirds - General Technical Discussion (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=14)
-   -   voltage regulator recommendation? (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=21998)

JohnG 09-24-2017 11:19 PM

I did polarize it. Worked fine for a week then ceased. Been
on the shelf for about 10 years. Sometime I will dig into it and see what failed.

Points on new units still need to be cleaned, just as ignition points do. A business card usually does the trick.

simplyconnected 09-25-2017 05:34 AM


Originally Posted by JohnG (Post 111248)
...Points on new units still need to be cleaned, just as ignition points do. A business card usually does the trick.

I'm a little more aggressive with the abrasive. I use 170-200 grit to knock down any peaks and to make the contacts conform to each other. All it takes is a few swipes, up and down for both sides of the contacts.

I'm posting the regulator that Marcelo sent to me from his '60 T-bird. I went through the contacts. This one is made by Echlin, a very good name in automotive electrics (and made in USA).

John, to 'prove' the generator, pull the field wire off the regulator and apply +12 to that wire. You should have a volt meter on your battery so you can see the voltage climb. Bump the rpms up to 1,200 or so. Your generator should have no problem outputting 13.5-14 volts, shown on the meter. When you get there, re-connect the field wire back to the regulator. If you don't get 14 volts, your generator is suspect. - Dave

JohnG 09-25-2017 08:59 AM

thanks . . . good test . . .

have seen the generator put out 14.2 volts so not worried about that at this point in time.

business cards: new points only. Gets any sheen or oxidation off.

Joe Johnston 09-25-2017 09:24 AM

As an option (and with no intent to sidetrack this thread), I have seen these original voltage regulators modified with new electronic internals. Use the old cover and it looks original. I have not done this as my 63 still has the original style regulator and alt.

JohnG 09-30-2017 03:11 PM

I spent some time today with the charging system (raining).

My original problem was voltage too low at road speed with high beams on. Down around 12.2.

I adjusted the point gap by the "Arm" post after cleaning. Basically closed the gap a little.

Trial and error, for anyone trying this. A little change produces significant changes in voltage levels. Easy to overshoot the mark.

One other thing: take voltage readings with the cover ON. Removing it changes the readings significantly, due perhaps to a magnetic field associated with the cover.

Bottom line: I now have 13.4 volts at road speed with the high beams on, 14.2 or so with them off. Much better situation. I live in the country on a wooded road so headlights are important.

That done, checked out the Brand X new 1974 regulator mentioned earlier. Dead in spite of all efforts at revival. Go figure.


JohnG 11-12-2017 12:50 PM

Am reporting back on two non functioning regulators.

#1: a member generously sent me an older , used one which I hoped to have as a backup. Unfortunately it was DOA.

But, along with the information provided in this thread, it provided a test case to figure out just what was wrong with it.

The diagram earlier reveals only 5 components: 2 resistors and 3 relays. Not bad to check out. They all checked out correctly.

Next: the connections between components. The connection between the Alternator post and the lead to the activation relay occurs at a copper piece rivetted on one side and soldered on the other side.

The rivet showed some resistance inspite of metal to metal appearance. I soldered the two pieces together and installed it. Seems to work fine now. Could use some fine tuning but I got over 13.5 volts with the engine revved up a bit. Had nothing before.

#2: This was the Brand X regulator I bought years ago and which functioned for a couple days once. Made 1974. Took the cover off and took a careful look at the points associated with each relay. The ones associated with the activiation relay were almost totally misaligned. In other words the upper point beside the lower one rather than above it. Perhaps able to touch just a tiny bit with some luck. ( I have photos of both regulators but my files are too big to upload here). So it was simply never assembled properly, or looked at once it was assembled. I am also guilty of assuming it was put together properly. Don't take simple things for granted! The goal is to bend things into place and get it to work correctly.

Overall moral: these things are pretty simple and with the diagram earlier and a multimeter (and eyes) one can probably debug them and save them from getting tossed.

John G

simplyconnected 11-12-2017 10:22 PM

Good man, John. #1 and #2 both work as they should thanks to your troubleshooting and repair! Glad it all worked out for you. - Dave

Dan Leavens 11-13-2017 08:19 AM

Look at you go Mr. G:D

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