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Thread: 1 wire Alternator, for a 63 Avanti

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    1 wire Alternator, for a 63 Avanti

    I am looking for a 1 wire Alternator that will fit in my Avanti, I have seen a few chats talking about them but I haven't see a part number listed, I tried on AOAI Forum but there was little information, the 1 response I got was for a 3 wire system. If anyone has preformed this modification I would appreciate some more information

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    1951 Custom
    1958 Packard Hawk < resto project
    1962 Champ
    1963 Standard R1 4 speed
    1963 Avanti R1
    1963 GT Hawk R2 4 speed
    2006 Avanti Convertible

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    You have to make a new bracket and do a little re-wiring. You can get a chrome 1 wire for half what they are asking to rebuild your old, low amperage presto junk. If you use the search function you will find that SBC Tom did a thread on that and has a few pics of the bracket he made. I made mine out of Stainless Steel. A one day job if you have the tools.

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    I do not have the information in front of me right now, but someone else may. Three or four years ago there was a detailed article in Avanti Magazine on how to do it, including a part number for the Alternator. It was an alternator from a Japanese car. It was an easy installation. If no one else comes up with the info, let me know and I will find it. I ordered the alternator from Rock Auto.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan.Gundry View Post
    I do not have the information in front of me right now, but someone else may. Three or four years ago there was a detailed article in Avanti Magazine on how to do it, including a part number for the Alternator. It was an alternator from a Japanese car. It was an easy installation. If no one else comes up with the info, let me know and I will find it. I ordered the alternator from Rock Auto.
    That would be very helpful Stan, I hope you can find it.

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    It's the alternator to a Toyota Tercel. Fits perfectly and you should be happy with the results. If you have any questions, get in touch with Kenny Durkee (DRrotor) on the forum.
    "Every man I meet on the street is superior to me in some respect, and from that I can learn."
    R.W. Emerson

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    Pretty simple actually.

    Pick an alternator of your liking. Try Summit or Jegs for MANY to choose from. Here's one -
    https://www.summitracing.com/parts/pwm-474011

    Shows serpentine pulley, but says "V" belt in the information section. Power Master is a good brand, been around a long time.
    Verify, but 180 (opposite) mounting tabs should work best.
    Any alternator will be usable since you are going to a one wire. That is, a GM, Ford or Chrysler may be used.
    A 130 or 140 amp would be a minimum choice to me. Higher is fine, lower, not so much.

    A #10 (5ft. long or shorter) or #8 (over 5ft.) gauge wire from the alternator straight to the battery or to the battery terminal on the starter.

    Your "alt" light will not work with a normal 1 wire. Maybe there is a way that someone else knows of that can help with that.

    Mike

    Yep, had the wire size backward..!
    Thanks ben.
    Last edited by Mike Van Veghten; 03-07-2019 at 08:37 PM.

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    President Member bensherb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Van Veghten View Post
    Pretty simple actually.

    A #8 (5ft. long or shorter) or #10 (over 5ft.) gauge wire from the alternator straight to the battery or to the battery terminal on the starter.

    Mike
    I think you have your wire gauges backward. Long run = heavier wire (8ga), short run lighter wire (10ga). 8 gauge is the better choice either way.

    A one wire GM alternator can be had for $63 from wal-mart https://www.walmart.com/ip/NEW-ONE-W...iABEgI4KvD_BwE or several other places, the one wire goes to battery; wireing done. Shouldn't be too tough to adapt to whatever bracket you have for old alt or gen.

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    "A 130 or 140 amp would be a minimum choice to me. Higher is fine, lower, not so much."

    How many Studebakers on the road today need that output?

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    I have used a 60amp 1 wire delco for several years. The bracket needed some mods. I do not the wiring can handle much more and it seems to be plenty. This is in my 64 A/C Avanti. As has been mentioned, you need to get the rpm up so it will energize.
    78 Avanti RQB 2792
    64 Avanti R1 R5408
    63 Avanti R1 R4551
    63 Avanti R1 R2281
    62 GT Hawk V15949
    56 GH 6032504
    56 GH 6032588
    55 Speedster 7160047
    55 Speedster 7165279

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    President Member bensherb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fastjohnll View Post
    "A 130 or 140 amp would be a minimum choice to me. Higher is fine, lower, not so much."

    How many Studebakers on the road today need that output?
    If EVERYTHING in my GT were running at the same time it couldn't draw even the 40 amps. (yes, I've measured the requirements of every electrical circuit in the car.)

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    bensherb and others:
    But with a badly discharged battery you could send the full output of an alternator or generator through the ammeter and its wiring that was originally designed for a maximum of 35 or 40 amps. I smell smoke!! I have spent the last 50 years trying to keep the smoke inside the wires and not letting it out.

    Ron

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Strasser View Post
    bensherb and others:
    But with a badly discharged battery you could send the full output of an alternator or generator through the ammeter and its wiring that was originally designed for a maximum of 35 or 40 amps. I smell smoke!! I have spent the last 50 years trying to keep the smoke inside the wires and not letting it out.

    Ron
    Agreed, no need for a huge Gen/Alt.
    Sombody let the smoke out of the wires in my GT before I got it! Everything worked fine, but when I got under the dash to replace the oil gauge tube (the first time) I found ALL the wires coming through the firewall had their insulation burned away from the firewall to the dash. I built a new wiring harness, added a 12 circuit fuse box and reduced circuit load as much as possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Strasser View Post
    bensherb and others:
    But with a badly discharged battery you could send the full output of an alternator or generator through the ammeter and its wiring that was originally designed for a maximum of 35 or 40 amps. I smell smoke!! I have spent the last 50 years trying to keep the smoke inside the wires and not letting it out.

    Ron

    I installed a Toyota 1-wire in my Avanti at least 4 years ago. It looked almost identical sitting beside the original. The fellow at the auto electric store who picked it didn't even ask what it was from. They are so common he recognised it right away. I had to change the pulley but other than that it fit perfectly. I managed a bit of wiring magic at the old regulator so it almost looks like it is still functional. I only needed to make a short jumper and install it on the alternator to get it functional. It goes into charging mode right away every time I start the car, no need to rev it up. I have had to jump start it a couple of times with a fully discharged battery, my bad, and it pushes the amp gauge needle hard right for a few seconds but it has never shown stress, burned up and smoking wires. And I was told it is a 60 amp output. I wouldn't go higher than that without fully rewiring the charge circuits.

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    Alan I have enjoyed all your posts over the years:-).....but to call the OEM alt "junk"....puzzles me? I have had to rebuild my ALE 5003 OEM unit one time since 1966, the unit puts out 40 amps, I have a/c and FM radio, I have never had an occasion where I needed more "juice". Another thing, to retrofit a new high output unit with upward of 100 amps, and not consider that the cars wiring has been on the car since '63 or '64 and it's ampacity rating, no where near what would be needed to "carry" the additional amperage. I would appreciate your thoughts. Thanks in advance.
    Quote Originally Posted by Alan View Post
    You have to make a new bracket and do a little re-wiring. You can get a chrome 1 wire for half what they are asking to rebuild your old, low amperage presto junk. If you use the search function you will find that SBC Tom did a thread on that and has a few pics of the bracket he made. I made mine out of Stainless Steel. A one day job if you have the tools.

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    Hawklover, The phrase Presto-junk came about years ago with the Avanti distributors. Sort of carried over to the alternators. The last Avanti alternator I tried to get rebuilt was going to cost me more than $200 and the parts to rebuild it was taking me too much time and effort to get. I bought a chrome 1 wire for $85 and never looked back.

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    I occasionally have Prestolite alternators rebuilt locally, and unless they need the rotor rewound, they don’t cost much. Even with a rewound rotor it is about $100.00.
    And, personally, I love Prestolite distributors, also. When rebuilt with the improved bronze bushed centrifical weights they perform very well. (I remove those bulky window Delco distributors from my ‘61 Lark V-8 engines and install rebuilt Prestolites, counter to some of the thinking on this forum.)

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    Thank you for the education:-)
    Quote Originally Posted by Alan View Post
    Hawklover, The phrase Presto-junk came about years ago with the Avanti distributors. Sort of carried over to the alternators. The last Avanti alternator I tried to get rebuilt was going to cost me more than $200 and the parts to rebuild it was taking me too much time and effort to get. I bought a chrome 1 wire for $85 and never looked back.

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    I have to say that over 20 years ago I rebuilt the Prestolite on my Avanti.......I followed the suggestion of my MoPar bud and installed bronze bushed weights, and a breaker plate that is comprised of roller bearings below the plate. Never had a problem...I oil the felt under the rotor and put a few drops of oil in the side cup oiler(sp) once per year.
    Quote Originally Posted by Studebakercenteroforegon View Post
    I occasionally have Prestolite alternators rebuilt locally, and unless they need the rotor rewound, they don’t cost much. Even with a rewound rotor it is about $100.00.
    And, personally, I love Prestolite distributors, also. When rebuilt with the improved bronze bushed centrifical weights they perform very well. (I remove those bulky window Delco distributors from my ‘61 Lark V-8 engines and install rebuilt Prestolites, counter to some of the thinking on this forum.)

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    All parts are purpose built. Since I did a lot of Drag Racing, I could not get a good tune with the Presto because of the vacuum advance. I have rebuilt a number of Prestos, preferably the 2 point R2 style. The first Chrysler conversion I did with the magnetic pickup quit on me in less than 500 miles. After I took it out and put it on the shelf, I put a Mallory YL dual point in it. Later to check and see what happened on the Chrysler unit, I found that the wire on the pickup coil broke right inside of the pickup. Freak thing but didn't help my love for the Prestos.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Avantifan1 View Post
    I am looking for a 1 wire Alternator that will fit in my Avanti, I have seen a few chats talking about them but I haven't see a part number listed, I tried on AOAI Forum but there was little information, the 1 response I got was for a 3 wire system. If anyone has preformed this modification I would appreciate some more information
    In answer to my own question, I finally found the alternator I wanted, of course nothing ever goes right, I ordered a 63Amp and ended up with a 94Amp, it will definitely handle the electric A/C I plan on installing. It is working well, we didn't wire it to work with the amp gauge, the car already had a volt meter in it so we just wired that up instead.
    The alternator I bought is Part number 8903N-94A it is a Marine Alternator if you google it nice photo's are available, there was no modification necessary, 1 wire self exciting, worked perfect for my application. I haven't decided if I am going to keep the old distributor and alternator or put them up for sale.

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    If you plan on going back to original, I would keep them. They are getting harder to find.
    78 Avanti RQB 2792
    64 Avanti R1 R5408
    63 Avanti R1 R4551
    63 Avanti R1 R2281
    62 GT Hawk V15949
    56 GH 6032504
    56 GH 6032588
    55 Speedster 7160047
    55 Speedster 7165279

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    8903N-94A Looks like your basic '75 GM alternator with a weird upper (adjustable side) mount, not significantly different from the '75 Chevelle one I've been using for decades that recently jumped from $38 to $63.

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    This one ranges from $80 - 120. My original Alt. had two ears on top, the new one has a continuous flange with tapped holes on both ends with the same spacing as the original R2 Alt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Avantifan1 View Post
    This one ranges from $80 - 120. My original Alt. had two ears on top, the new one has a continuous flange with tapped holes on both ends with the same spacing as the original R2 Alt.
    I forgot about the two ears. I suppose if you had a mind to you could cut the center from the replacement making it into two ears , to keep them guessing! Original appearance is very important to some; I'm not one of them, but I do like replacement/upgrades to look appropriate to its surroundings. I know those original two ear units are unique and special, especially important to someone attempting a 100 point restoration, be sure to keep track of it.

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    I'm not trying to hijack this thread but yesterday I had a real surprise under the hood of my '48 Starlight Coupe. Tucked away down low is a 6 VOLT ALTERNATOR obviously upgraded by Gerry in Tuscon. How could I have missed that? This age thing is a real PITA.
    Bill

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    I bought a GM One wire, 105 amp alternator and it fit in stock bracket by using some spacers. Original Studie alternates was a little wider mounting point than new one. Easiest conversion there is.

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