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Author Topic: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.  (Read 2004 times)

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Stu Jackson

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2022, 12:54:28 PM »


  Thanks Jon
  All the little bits of advice here helps me to piece together the best plan possible. Stu mentioned the MC-618 that maybe the latest upgrade of the MC-614 from Balmar. I willfind that out when I go to order my regulator. If anyone has a catalog number or links to the Leece Neville 90 or 105 Alternator that would be great, if not I will bang away till I get through all this. I know when I get done with all this I will have an awesome boat.

https://balmar.net/multi-stage-regulators/  has the features for their regulators which I figure you'd want to know before you order.  The 618 has additional features from the 614 that you may not need or want to pay for.  Up to you.

If you are choosing between a 90a or 105A alternator and the cost isn't too different, get the larger one because it will run cooler at any given load.

You mentioned disconnecting your alternator.  You should disable it by disconnecting the excite wire, not the alternator output.

When ordering material like this, the telephone could be your friend, rather than just internet viewing or emails.  There are two very helpful fellows named Bob at ASE.  Ask for Bob who knows alternators and the Bob that answers the phone will switch you over to the other Bob. :D
« Last Edit: March 06, 2022, 04:20:00 PM by Stu Jackson »
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Catalina007

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #31 on: March 07, 2022, 08:24:00 AM »

007–I think your “stay away from Catalina Direct” is pretty harsh. Yes, many items are higher priced, but not all and some provide a very convenient solution for boats. Also, their customer service is pretty good.

Their customer services is pretty horrible.  They start out answering the phone with a recording that says we're busy keep trying.  And for some bizarre reason will not respond to emails for their 'free' technical support   
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Noah

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #32 on: March 07, 2022, 08:31:16 AM »

Been awhile since bought from them, but generally have had a positive experience. These trying have changed/impacted a lot of businesses. Hopefully it is not a permanent situation.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2022, 09:11:20 AM by Noah »
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waughoo

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #33 on: March 07, 2022, 08:43:49 AM »

I have always had possitive experiences.  Part of my calculus when considering their prices is the research and data they have amassed about our boats.  That is worth something to me so I don't have to reinvent the wheel.  I don't always buy from them, bilut have plans to buy their replacement cockpit storage box trims in the coming months.
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SV Sand Pebble

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #34 on: March 08, 2022, 05:22:48 PM »

[quote author=SV Sand Pebble

If you are choosing between a 90a or 105A alternator and the cost isn't too different, get the larger one because it will run cooler at any given load.

You mentioned disconnecting your alternator.  You should disable it by disconnecting the excite wire, not the alternator output.

When ordering material like this, the telephone could be your friend, rather than just internet viewing or emails.  There are two very helpful fellows named Bob at ASE.  Ask for Bob who knows alternators and the Bob that answers the phone will switch you over to the other Bob. :D 

  Response to Stu and all.
 Hello friends, Its been an up hill battle. Remember I ordered the clone from Catalina direct, the 105 amp alternator not knowing it was a clone? It was suppose to be on back order 5 weeks yet when I called to cancel it had already shipped. I ended up as Stu suggested talking to Bob at ASE and he said by the looks of things it's not a bad clone yet after he looked over everything he could not find that it was marine rated or UL listed. He said it was my boat yet for him and his boat he would rather buy the OEM marine rated part then the unknown. So I canceled my CD order, the girl there said they also have the Leece Neville available for like $750.00 I'm sure she'd not think that through. Bob asked me to check and measure the foot of my old alternator when I get to my boat tomorrow and then he and I could get together and order me the right thing I need, the right setup for my L-N 8MR2401UA. Tomorrow I will also talk to Bob about possible options for an external regulator connection of some sort. If not for now I will feed my new starter led acid windless battery with the alternator then feed my house bank with my already owned Victron 30 amp DC to DC charger offering my alternator protection and my house bank slow yet low amperage charging. I had the DC to DC charger for my house bank to charge my starter battery but for now it will keep me maybe from burning up my alternator and belts to I come up with a better option. Tomorrow I will have to add a separate charge wire directly to my starter battery, its located do to my new windless install under the bow side of the salon table, wire sized appropriately. I just learned from reading last night not to use the starter positive as the charge wire coming from the alternator. I will get through this Lol.
  As always thank you all for your support and anyone passing through Alamitos bay Long Beach California stop by dock 17 slip #48 for a beer if after five or a coffee anytime. A note: everything I have installed is so one day I can quickly drop in lithium house bank batteries if I so choose to. All just by changing programmable settings.

  I will at some point get better at posting here 😀

  George SV Sand Pebble georgelanroh@gmail.com



« Last Edit: March 10, 2022, 08:49:17 AM by Stu Jackson »
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KWKloeber

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #35 on: March 08, 2022, 06:50:00 PM »

S/V SP


Tell 'em you need a drop in replacement for an 8MR2049K alt.



Your OEM (and mounting bracket) is a 2" foot, the 8MR2401UA has a 1" foot so you'll need a spacer from ASE.

As I suggested you might ask if there's a 105a model w/ external V sense (which will help you if you use this Alt until you get the Balmer hooked up.)  The Prestolite 105a 110-634 has external sense.  YBYC

Quote from: Stu Jackson

You mentioned disconnecting your alternator.  You should disable it by disconnecting the excite wire, not the alternator output.


OK for the OEM alt -- note that the 105a 8MR2401UA is internally (self) excited and so S/V SP you won't use the purple wire in the engine harness.

Quote from: SV Sand Pebble

but for now it will keep me maybe from burning up my alternator and belts to I come up with a better option.


You checked your energy usage and it's very low (during 5 hrs of sailing I believe you said?)  So why are you concerned about burning up the new alternator before the Balmer is installed?   

PS: running the charge wire to the bank is an OPTION, not the only option.
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SV Sand Pebble

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #36 on: March 08, 2022, 08:42:08 PM »

S/V SP


Tell 'em you need a drop in replacement for an 8MR2049K alt.



Your OEM (and mounting bracket) is a 2" foot, the 8MR2401UA has a 1" foot so you'll need a spacer from ASE.

As I suggested you might ask if there's a 105a model w/ external V sense (which will help you if you use this Alt until you get the Balmer hooked up.)  The Prestolite 105a 110-634 has external sense.  YBYC

Quote from: Stu Jackson

You mentioned disconnecting your alternator.  You should disable it by disconnecting the excite wire, not the alternator output.


OK for the OEM alt -- note that the 105a 8MR2401UA is internally (self) excited and so S/V SP you won't use the purple wire in the engine harness.

Quote from: SV Sand Pebble

but for now it will keep me maybe from burning up my alternator and belts to I come up with a better option.


You checked your energy usage and it's very low (during 5 hrs of sailing I believe you said?)  So why are you concerned about burning up the new alternator before the Balmer is installed?   

PS: running the charge wire to the bank is an OPTION, not the only option.

  As I talk to Bob tomorrow I will have a print out of the things you mentioned here today. You have mentioned about an external voltage sense wire being a good thing and I read a little bit about that last night. Getting an accurate reading from the battery sounds logical and great but don't you have a voltage drop possible on the sense wire just like the starter wire which on my boat is size #1 now. I size the starter wire not to have voltage drop.are you saying that it maybe OK to use the starter feed wire as my alternator charging wire? I normally work with 480/240/120 volt and voltage drop does not come into play till often 200 feet or more. So how critical it is to maintain voltage when working with 12 volts is new to me yet I totally understand, one volt is everything, literally.
  Yes my boat took very little for a 5 hour day sail yet I don't know how long it's going to take to solve this problem. Summer is upon us and local islands await. Worst comes and I carry a 2000 watt gas generator and my 120 volt charging system is two 30 amp Victron smart chargers, one is a single battery charger tied only to my house bank, the second 30 amp charger is a 3 battery charger dividing up that 30 amps between the demand of both my house bank and my starter battery so I think I can charge pretty quick that way if needed.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2022, 08:44:21 PM by SV Sand Pebble »
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KWKloeber

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #37 on: March 08, 2022, 10:44:03 PM »


Getting an accurate reading from the battery sounds logical and great but don't you have a voltage drop possible on the sense wire


The sense wire carries only milliamps current so there's no measurable V loss (just like you can use a tiny gauge wire to a V meter to measure 480 VAC on a 20 amp motor (there's "no" current flowing in the sense wires.)


Quote

are you saying that it maybe OK to use the starter feed wire as my alternator charging wire?

So how critical it is to maintain voltage when working with 12 volts is new to me yet I totally understand, one volt is everything, literally.


Yep, you're right it's very important to minimize DC V loss (depending of course on the purpose of the circuit.) 
My point was that a blanket statement that one cannot use the starter feed to charge the battery is not so for every owner/every boat.  There's thousands of Catalinas out there with that setup that work just fine.  It may be the best for you use and charging set up, but....  there's many ways to skin a Catalina.

Quote

Yes my boat took very little for a 5 hour day sail yet I don't know how long it's going to take to solve this problem.

Summer is upon us and local islands await. Worst comes and I carry a 2000 watt gas generator and my 120 volt charging system is two 30 amp Victron smart chargers, one is a single battery charger tied only to my house bank, the second 30 amp charger is a 3 battery charger dividing up that 30 amps between the demand of both my house bank and my starter battery so I think I can charge pretty quick that way if needed.


So if you are going to drastically increase your energy usage then, yes, you will push more out of the alt trying to replenish that greater usage (amp hours) and your alt *could* run hotter, depending on the difference.  But if you are using about the same amt of energy then you are not going to overheat the new alt.  You would have to drastically increase usage moving from 51a to a 105a to eat up belts.  How hard the alt works doesn't depend on the size/rating of the alt or size of the bank -- how hard it works depends on the energy it needs to replace.   A 105a will run cooler if doing the same work as the OEM 51a alt. 

Water flow Battery current 101-
Look at it this way -- you have a full 5-gal bucket (your old battery) and a full bathtub (your new bank) and take a gallon of water from each.  It doesn't matter the size of the container -- it still takes only one gallon, no more no less, to replace one gallon. 

Battery resistance determines the charge amperage -- not the size of the alternator.  So if you use a funnel (restricts the flow) to replace one gallon of water it doesn't matter whether you run a 3/8" hose or a 3/4" hose to the funnel.   The funnel (i.e., battery resistance) still controls the water flow (i.e., the charging current,) not whether it's a 3/4" hose (105 amp alt) or the 3/8" hose (51 amp alt) filling the funnel.
However, if you use a larger funnel (have a more depleted battery bank = lower resistance) the water flow (charge current) will increase proportionally (unless/until you reach the limit of the 3/8" hose (51 amp) or the 3/4" hose (105 amp.)

(In college the hydraulics profs always tried to tell us water is JUST like electricity -- and the EE profs said electricity is JUST like water.  We never bought into either of those ideas.)
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SV Sand Pebble

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #38 on: March 09, 2022, 05:17:08 AM »


Getting an accurate reading from the battery sounds logical and great but don't you have a voltage drop possible on the sense wire


The sense wire carries only milliamps current so there's no measurable V loss (just like you can use a tiny gauge wire to a V meter to measure 480 VAC on a 20 amp motor (there's "no" current flowing in the sense wires.)


Quote

are you saying that it maybe OK to use the starter feed wire as my alternator charging wire?

So how critical it is to maintain voltage when working with 12 volts is new to me yet I totally understand, one volt is everything, literally.


Yep, you're right it's very important to minimize DC V loss (depending of course on the purpose of the circuit.) 
My point was that a blanket statement that one cannot use the starter feed to charge the battery is not so for every owner/every boat.  There's thousands of Catalinas out there with that setup that work just fine.  It may be the best for you use and charging set up, but....  there's many ways to skin a Catalina.

Quote

Yes my boat took very little for a 5 hour day sail yet I don't know how long it's going to take to solve this problem.

Summer is upon us and local islands await. Worst comes and I carry a 2000 watt gas generator and my 120 volt charging system is two 30 amp Victron smart chargers, one is a single battery charger tied only to my house bank, the second 30 amp charger is a 3 battery charger dividing up that 30 amps between the demand of both my house bank and my starter battery so I think I can charge pretty quick that way if needed.


So if you are going to drastically increase your energy usage then, yes, you will push more out of the alt trying to replenish that greater usage (amp hours) and your alt *could* run hotter, depending on the difference.  But if you are using about the same amt of energy then you are not going to overheat the new alt.  You would have to drastically increase usage moving from 51a to a 105a to eat up belts.  How hard the alt works doesn't depend on the size/rating of the alt or size of the bank -- how hard it works depends on the energy it needs to replace.   A 105a will run cooler if doing the same work as the OEM 51a alt. 

Water flow Battery current 101-
Look at it this way -- you have a full 5-gal bucket (your old battery) and a full bathtub (your new bank) and take a gallon of water from each.  It doesn't matter the size of the container -- it still takes only one gallon, no more no less, to replace one gallon. 

Battery resistance determines the charge amperage -- not the size of the alternator.  So if you use a funnel (restricts the flow) to replace one gallon of water it doesn't matter whether you run a 3/8" hose or a 3/4" hose to the funnel.   The funnel (i.e., battery resistance) still controls the water flow (i.e., the charging current,) not whether it's a 3/4" hose (105 amp alt) or the 3/8" hose (51 amp alt) filling the funnel.
However, if you use a larger funnel (have a more depleted battery bank = lower resistance) the water flow (charge current) will increase proportionally (unless/until you reach the limit of the 3/8" hose (51 amp) or the 3/4" hose (105 amp.)

(In college the hydraulics profs always tried to tell us water is JUST like electricity -- and the EE profs said electricity is JUST like water.  We never bought into either of those ideas.)

  Thank you for putting all the above in such a clear and easy way to understand, one day I will pass it along, pay it forward. My old father rest in peace use to explain thing that way. You know what? Rest in peace? I have always hated that expression, I know a loved one in pain we want them to rest from that, yet my father, my best friend, I want him to be raising a good time the old scotchman. He use to explain things by using the example of water also whether that be electricity, air lines or even vacuum systems. As I think you know as most do here, boat work and upgrades are fought with frustration, pain, cuts and bruises. Yet by some magic miracle like a few extra feet of waterline a boat completely gets so much bigger, we end up celebrating our pain and suffering by sharing our success with our fellow sailors. And with that forgetting why we have band aids all over our arms. In the end I would trade it for nothing. Thanks again , I will will post upon completion a note here on where I'm at on my project and what if anything that is holding me back from putting the end of my project to rest and starting the next one. I'm hoping for a solar arch with solar and davits by the end of 2023, I'm 60 and getting tired of my dinghy on deck and lifting my now 3.5 hp outboard up and down to my dinghy. Did I mention an addition to a swim platform? Yes I'm all in, if I knew all this two years ago and had more money  I would of  bought an already upgraded series 5 Catalina. Yet it was not in the cards, what was in the cards was money thank God to slowly funnel in each year allowing me a hands on boat education, the physical activities to keep me both physically and mentally fit and maybe allowing me to live to 80 plus. How do you put a price on that? So I know why we men love our boats beyond the adventure, they keep us healthy and alive.



« Last Edit: March 09, 2022, 05:21:56 AM by SV Sand Pebble »
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Jon W

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #39 on: March 09, 2022, 09:32:21 AM »

One of the rules of boat work is - If you can see it, then you can only touch it with one hand. If you can touch it with two hands, then you can't see it.
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Jon W.
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Admiral_Swellson

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #40 on: March 09, 2022, 09:53:54 AM »

One of the rules of boat work is - If you can see it, then you can only touch it with one hand. If you can touch it with two hands, then you can't see it.

Awesome, the quantum theory of boat work!
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KWKloeber

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #41 on: March 09, 2022, 12:41:41 PM »

S/V SP

I just wanted to pass in that the guy who carries the Wilson Leece Neville remanufactured alternators told me that there’s 3 of the 105a on the shelf if that’s an option for your wallet (considerable saving over a brand new Leece.)
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SV Sand Pebble

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #42 on: March 09, 2022, 07:12:55 PM »

S/V SP

I just wanted to pass in that the guy who carries the Wilson Leece Neville remanufactured alternators told me that there’s 3 of the 105a on the shelf if that’s an option for your wallet (considerable saving over a brand new Leece.)

  I actually ordered the 105 amp unit without the sense wire and ordered the spacer today. Bob at ASE did not want to sell me the unit with the sense wire because he said it was not rated for the marine diesel environment. So I needed closure so I ordered the other unit L-N 8MR2401UA hoping one day I can do more with it. I feel like 150 years old after working on my windless install for half a day. Very little progress working on it myself, I think my 1/4” stainless shelf is a little heavy. I plan on only 100 feet of 5/16 chain and 200 feet of 5/8 3 braid line. I understand 5/16 chain is about 1 pound a foot so 100 feet and my windless should be ok. Hold onto your hat. My Alternator plus spacer and shipping out the door was about an even $300.00.
  I never look back, it’s time to move forward finish these two projects and enjoy the summer.
  Thanks all.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2022, 08:53:34 AM by SV Sand Pebble »
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Jon W

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #43 on: March 10, 2022, 10:43:20 AM »

This may be better as a separate post topic, but sounds like you're asking for feedback.

Regarding your windlass, the size of windlass for your need depends on the windlass manufacturer. When I added mine, I looked at Lewmar and Maxwell. To pick the right windlass, Lewmar said to multipy the total ground tackle by 4. Maxwell said to multiply the total ground tackle by 3.

Your ground tackle is 100 feet of 5/16" G4 HT chain ~ 1.1 lb/foot, plus 200 feet of 5/8" rope ~ .1 lb/ft., plus your anchor weight. Your total ground tackle is ~130 lbs. plus your anchor weight. What anchor do you have? Look up the specs for your windlass and that should answer your question about sizing.
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Jon W.
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SV Sand Pebble

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Re: Alternator upgrade from Catalina direct.
« Reply #44 on: March 10, 2022, 07:48:39 PM »

This may be better as a separate post topic, but sounds like you're asking for feedback.

Regarding your windlass, the size of windlass for your need depends on the windlass manufacturer. When I added mine, I looked at Lewmar and Maxwell. To pick the right windlass, Lewmar said to multipy the total ground tackle by 4. Maxwell said to multiply the total ground tackle by 3.

Your ground tackle is 100 feet of 5/16" G4 HT chain ~ 1.1 lb/foot, plus 200 feet of 5/8" rope ~ .1 lb/ft., plus your anchor weight. Your total ground tackle is ~130 lbs. plus your anchor weight. What anchor do you have? Look up the specs for your windlass and that should answer your question about sizing.

  Hi Jon
  It was just earliar I mentioned one of my projects was a windless install. Your right I should start a new thread. Quickly I was given a real nice windless from a guy who did not know he sheared the key till he bought a new one, he had the new one for a year so he said to me take the old one. It's a Maxwell Vertical both gypsy and drum.
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