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Harry Ferguson Tractors Discussion Forum
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Re: Alternator Question

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Author  [Modern View]

08-23-2013 09:59:43

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The story goes that the generator "Generates" electricity. Thusly you can safely remove the cables from the battery. The "Alternator" produces alternating voltage with the diode trio to donvert it to DC voltage. When you disconnect the battery, the alternator goes into "Full field" mode. It tends to generate maximum voltage and amperage due to no reference voltage. This means you can get 27 volts and about 200 amps out of an alternator gone wild. Yes, there us a very good chance you can disconnect the alt and it will continue to run. I did it on my "82 car quite a few years ago. It only cost me $207 for a new ignition module. I watched jiffy jube do it to a custom,ers car a few weeks ago. It survived the ordeal. At what cost? How many little computer boards got the zap of the shortened life? You can do as you desire. Me? I got my $207 education before I found out what happened.

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08-23-2013 13:58:49

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to Bruce(OR), 08-23-2013 09:59:43  
What we're calling an alternator here is just a certain type of generator. In the UK they are all just "dynamos."

The old "generators" on tractors made AC just like the modern day "alternators." The difference is - the old "generators" use brush placement to select just a fraction of the electrical pulses made and send it through the brushes as DC current. Much of the power generator is wasted. Thus the reason why they are big for the low output the make.

A modern day "alternator" type of generator uses all the AC it makes and sends it through full-wave rectifiers so it's all converted into DC. Also the brushes do not carry any of the output power.

The old cars that did not run when the battery got unhooked did so because of the way the mechanical regulators were wired up. It had nothing to do with the old brushed generator itself. The old brushed generators were better able to make DC power all on their own due to residual magnetism. The newer tech "alternators" mostly rely on 12 volts of "exciter" current fed to them to create enough field magnetism to charge. That being said - alternators also have a bit of residual magnetism and some can self-start just like the old generators if spun fast enough.

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08-23-2013 10:14:26

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to Bruce(OR), 08-23-2013 09:59:43  
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I'm not trying to do anything except figure out if my alternator is going bad or if I have my wiring screwed up. I don't understand how my tractor will run and not charge the battery at the same time. That was my question, not if I can unhook something and operate the tractor.

If anyone has a wiring diagram for a TO-20 with a 3 wire alternator, I would appreciate seeing it.

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Jason S.

08-23-2013 11:03:02

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to jcmorgan31, 08-23-2013 10:14:26  
Here is a diagram for a Delco 2 wire on a Ferguson. Most people use a 10Si alternator when they convert them. As far as your problem, is it possible for the tractor to run and not charge the battery? doesn"t take many amps or volts to fire a points distributor. That"s the only draw on the alternator while it"s running unless you have the lights on.

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08-23-2013 12:06:19

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to Jason S., 08-23-2013 11:03:02  
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Thanks to all for the info. I just got back from O'reillys and the old alternator wouldn't run in the tester for 5 seconds before shutting off the machine and issuing a "fail". Bought a new one.

I'll put this one one and see what happens...

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Jason S.

08-23-2013 12:28:17

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to jcmorgan31, 08-23-2013 12:06:19  
So why the pics of the Dearborn 14-15 top link bracket? Are you trying to put one on your Ferguson?

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08-23-2013 12:58:31

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to Jason S., 08-23-2013 12:28:17  
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That was my plan. Will it not fit?

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Jason S.

08-23-2013 13:53:48

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to jcmorgan31, 08-23-2013 12:58:31 long as you have that top link bracket and the lift arm extensions it will fit fine. I have one I use on my TO-20.

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08-23-2013 14:01:49

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to Jason S., 08-23-2013 13:53:48  
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Well, my father mowed with the 14-15 on his TO20 for years without the top link bracket, the extensions or the correct under axle bracket. My father passed away this fall and I inherited all his equipment. I cut the field with it back in June and it was a pain so I started reading and learned about all the missing brackets. So far I've found the correct under axle bracket with the ball socket and the top link bracket. No luck on the extensions yet, but I'm still lookin.

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Jason S.

08-23-2013 15:45:43

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 Re: Alternator Question in reply to jcmorgan31, 08-23-2013 14:01:49  
Most people just make the 8 3/4" extensions. I got lucky and found an original set for mine. I have hooked mine up once without the top link bracket and extensions and it was way harder to hook up than it would be normally, plus I lifted mine up and it jammed the lift and wouldn't come back down. If you have all the parts you can hook that mower up in about 5-10 mins. The biggest thing I have found is to have the left hand side of the mower sitting on a piece of a 2x4 so it is a little higher than the right hand side and take the right hand check chain loose until you have the mower installed and then hook it back up.

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