Caught the Bug
Anyone set up a dual alternator on a Chevy 350/383? If so, which mount - bought or built?
Well, as my wife says about shopping - "It's never a question of need - it's want." Actually there's a couple reasons. Redundancy is one, convenience is another. There are a number of electrical components on my jeep besides the basics of fuel pumps, engine fans, lights, etc. There's a Luna fridge/freezer, my espresso maker (yes), FLIR, Lowrance, radios, SAT phone, and a large inverter to power cameras and battery chargers. My dual batteries and single alternator system handles the load, it's more about not having to stop what we're doing to change one if/when it goes out. I can keep going and change it at a more convenient time. It's sort of like my redundant fuel pumps - if I'm going to carry them as spares - I might as well mount them. I don't have to allocate space for them somewhere on the jeep.Sorry, can't help you there but I am curious as to why you need a dual alternator setup.
Thanks, but I think you missed my reason - it's not about output, it's about not having to stop and change one. Plus, if I'm going to carry it as a spare - I might as well mount it - like I did the fuel pumps.Might be easier to just go with a dual battery setup and larger alternator...
Good points, thanks for taking the time to respond.I don't see a big advantage of having two. The most common reason for having two isn't redundancy its because manufacturers couldn't fit a larger single unit.
It's not hard to swap an alternator.
Carrying a brand new spar is reasonably easy.
Alternators don't normally randomly die completely.
Unless you add multiple voltmeters you won't know if one alternator is dead.
Every second your not using the energy from the second alt it's would only be wearing itself out and consuming fuel.
If the 2nd alts failure mode is a bearing then having two won't help anyway.
I agree with Brute. Maybe a HO alternator from Mean-Green would work for you.
Not disagreeing - but it has to be the correct bolt pattern for the mount; and sadly, parts houses aren't stocking parts like they used to.Right... also an alternator for a SBC can be bought at any local auto parts store and swapped in about 20 min.
I get it... being on the trail and that happening would suck... But I'd just carry a spare that's ready for your set up and a fast swap. Plus it eliminates the need for custom brackets, belts, wiring etc... Funny thing is you'll probably never need it, because you have it. LolThe
Not disagreeing - but it has to be the correct bolt pattern for the mount; and sadly, parts houses aren't stocking parts like they used to.
Thanks for the input guys, but that's not the situation I'm talking about. I like the failure rate of one in 20 years; I don't know that I've ever had one fail - until this one, and it was installed new 2 years ago.
It's not a question of carrying a spare or driving to town to buy a spare - I have plenty spares. I was just trying to come up with a way to avoid having to stop and change one while the jeep was working. If I'm just cruising or running a trail, stopping to change an alt is no big deal.
I'm hoping this failure was a fluke and it doesn't happen again, at least not for awhile.
This, I had the original one in my JK fail at 6 years, but 4 of those the Jeep lived in Puerto Rico where I mudded and forded silty water more than most members here. I think you are overthinking it.
Napa Valley CANapa Valley AK or Napa Valley Ca lol?
Why have two and whytf would you even consider carrying a spare? It’s not a hard part to buy or replace if it fails.
Yes - and thanks for the suggestion. I have a smaller version, but we are looking to increase capacity. We are replacing the inverter with a higher output as well. The cameramen carry extra batteries, but the ability to charge them is a definite plus.Thoughts on a battery power station like Jackery 1000 or similar? Charges while driving and can run a fridge for a few days on a charge.
In the late '80s I had an alternator start to fail in my CJ-5 while in Canyon Lands. It was really hard to find another. We encountered a kind couple who lead us to an unmarked warehouse and sold us an alternator at a good price. They even helped me install it when they noticed how deeply my tools were buried.Right... also an alternator for a SBC can be bought at any local auto parts store and swapped in about 20 min.
Bummer. Do you carry a spare now?In the late '80s I had an alternator start to fail in my CJ-5 while in Canyon Lands. It was really hard to find another. We encountered a kind couple who lead us to an unmarked warehouse and sold us an alternator at a good price. They even helped me install it when they noticed how deeply my tools were buried.
Unfortunately this new alternator had a bad regulator. While we were between nowhere and nowhere in northern New Mexico, it was like a giant hand stopped the jeep. After ten minutes or so it just magically fired up and we reached civilization. Later on the giant hand stopped me on IH-10 in a bad place. Luckily it just fired up not long after a kind police officer called for a tow-truck.
I eventually realized that the alternator was sometimes producing far too much voltage and it fried my ignition module.
Sometimes it is not as easy to find something as trivial as an alternator because there is no convenient store and no one to help.