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Posted on Sunday, 09 June, 2013 - 10:59:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Today a mate brought his morris minor 1969 round because he has a charging problem.

The battery fitted has a charge window which never shows a full charge so he fitted an alternator kit which has made things worse.

The car always starts and cranks fine.

The battery is a calcium lead acid battery

These batteries will not charge fully unless the regulator is turned up to 15 volts.

Which means that the life of the battery will be shortened because it always part discharged which kills more car batteries then anything else.

SO we refitted the dynamo and tweeked the regulator to 15volts.

If he goes back to the older type battery then
it will overcharge.

He says he likes the more power bit because the indicators work better.

I would have fitted a normal battery and alternator kit. Because I think he going to burn up the regulator

So do check what battery you are fitting.

I am on lead acid because

1 The shadow regulator can't really be reset
2 My big charger would probaly damage a calcium battery

Some cars such as the ford focus MUST have a calcium battery otherwise the alernator will cook the battery and probaly upset the electronics.

A friend who is switched on to modern car electronics says that dodgy batteries on modern stuff will cause many problems which engine management because some systems will turn off under cranking causing the ECU to forget learned memory.

He uses a meter to test bateries any sign of weakness and he replaces if the customer says no, the job stops.

Also engine earthing is so important to check because starter motor load can rot earthing straps away,so he often fits one to the starter motor mounting bolts and chassis ground

I think the capacity of 12 volt car systems has been pushed to the limits.

24/28 volt system as found on buses are much better everything works so much better.

Bus drivers leave engines off full lights on for hour and the starter flys in engine goes half a turn and fires. So reliable.

Also at work our Volvo tractor unit has electric windows which go at the same speed engine off or running 24 volt system. Smashing engine as well 400 bhp at 2000 rpm and 900ft/lb
The limiter cuts in at 55mph but the tractor unit on its own is faster than my Shadow(to 55 that is ). Not quite as smooth though.

(Message approved by david_gore)
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Jan Forrest
Grand Master
Username: got_one

Post Number: 480
Registered: 1-2008
Posted on Sunday, 09 June, 2013 - 19:41:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Don't forget that virtually all public service and haulage vehicles use diesel engines. These motors in the larger sizes required to haul many tons around the countryside need so much more effort to turn over - especially from cold - that 24+ volts becomes necessary rather than merely preferable.

Conversely many pre-war cars still on the road today may not have been upgraded from the original 6 volt electrics and yet manage to soldier on for another year. Admittedly more than a few owners have gutted an old 6 volt battery to fill it with a modern 12 volt one and swapped out the generator for a higher voltage one that is visually identical. With luck this may be missed by the concours judges.

By the way: I fitted a Calcium/Calcium battery to my Shadow over a year ago as they exhibit superior current holding capacities in sub-zero conditions. It's now only me that suffers from cold starting problems in those kinds of weather condition!
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Posted on Thursday, 13 June, 2013 - 05:51:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Interesting that you have a calium/calcium battery fitted. I shall do more research into this because my present battery is now 4 years old and WILL fail anytime soon.

Unipart once offered lifetime guarantee batteries
but the garantee lasted only till you sold the car.Most cars are sold after 3 years so thye thought this was a winner.

Unfortunately the old car ensthusiast brought them in their droves. And they keep cars forever.

I think unipart got taken over by partco.

Earthing straps

if a digit ammeter is connected between battery earth and the engine.

Crank engine while watching the meter

If the earth of the engine is good no amps will flow and meter will read zero
Any resistance in the earth of the engine will show as a flow of amps and the meter will show a quantity of amps

a reading of as little as 0.1amps is a fault

my car is zero

I remember well 6 volt systems and I noticed the starting handle just in case.

MY father used to crank the engine by hand in cold weather then go for the starter button.

6 volt system require the system to be very well maintanined

(Message approved by david_gore)