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Author Topic:   Re-fitting Sterndrive with New Alternator
potatohead posted 08-25-2008 07:56 AM ET (US)   Profile for potatohead   Send Email to potatohead  
Just rebuilt an older [sterndrive that used an ALPHA I gear case]. It appears the [battery charging] is not working. I proposed to put an alternator on the engine, but my electrician says that it could not be mounted in such a way that the pulleys would line up. Any experience with mounting an alternator would be appeciated. Also, if this is not possible, what are the [difficulties] with repair the [of the battery charging circuit]? I just put the engine back in after removal for rebuild. I see how badly located the stator housing and stator are. Hope I don't have to take it out again if a stator replacement is required.
seahorse posted 08-25-2008 08:18 AM ET (US)     Profile for seahorse  Send Email to seahorse     

It sounds like you have the infamous aluminum 470-488 series MerCruiser inline 4-banger that used the cast iron Ford cylinder head. Here is the company that makes an alternator conversion for it

jimh posted 08-25-2008 10:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
It sounds like your inboard engine used a permanent-magnet alternator. The link given above looks like a good replacement option.
potatohead posted 09-01-2008 09:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for potatohead  Send Email to potatohead     
Dear Seahorse and JimH,
Thanks for the reply. What is "infamous" about this engine?
potatohead posted 09-01-2008 10:44 AM ET (US)     Profile for potatohead  Send Email to potatohead     
Dear Seahorse or JimH,

I have downloaded the manual for the wagner DC-60 alternator.
The alpha-one in my Whaler Revenge is down in an engine compartment. It looks to me like one would have to haul the engine to get at the balancer and do all the other installation work to get this alternator mounted and adjusted. Is that a correct assumption?

Before I get inot doing this, a further question arises. Could it just be that the voltage regulator is bad, and not the stator. IS this plausible, and if so, how does one check for this condition?

If it proves to be a bad stator, is there any other workaround for this problem than the Wagner alternator? I suppose I could always buy a new stator. Is this a good idea, or is going to the alternator the preferred method for a problem such as mine?

seahorse posted 09-01-2008 11:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for seahorse  Send Email to seahorse     
Your best bet is to have a trained professional check out the system if you lack the service manual and the tools needed.

It is common in some installations to have to remove the motor to work on the stator. You can blame the boatbuilder for that.

Call your Merc dealer and ask how much the regulator costs first.

potatohead posted 09-01-2008 04:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for potatohead  Send Email to potatohead     
Thank you. I have a local marine electronics guy coming tomorrow, we have the manual, so can proceed as you suggest.
I am trying to get out ahead of the job so I know what questions to ask.
Thanks again

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