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gretsch

Starter-Gen, Chapter II—Wonderboy 700 Won’t Charge

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Dutch
Peter, I must admit I didn't read your entire post. However, if you have 17 volts at the S/G with the "F" terminal grounded, yet only 12 volts or less at the battery, that indicates the S/G is working. The problem must be between the S/G and the battery. Check and eliminate 1)Regulator 2)Wiring / terminals 3)Ammeter 4)Ignition switch Well, got to go now. I'm in the middle of reading War & Peace.

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gretsch
Hey all: (And most particularly, Al!) All of this relates to my 1960 Model 700, repowered w/ an 8hp. Brigs. I have NO SOLENOID, NO EXTERNAL COIL, NO AMMETER AND NO "CHARGING" LIGHT. The points are external. The tractor’s Mfr. no. is 990168, and the ser. no. is 6208. THE PROBLEM--NO CHARGING The Drive End ball bearing was the sole reason my S-G seized. Last night, after reassy. w/ a new bearing from Sandy Lake, I was able to start the tractor using the S-G--no problem. However, it will not charge. I show b/w 10.5 and 12.0 volts at the battery, at WOT, with an analog meter. However, when grounding the S-G’s Field terminal and checking voltage, using the + lead of the meter on the “A” term. of the S-G, and grounding the “--“ terminal of the meter as well, I get 17 volts at WOT. I have tried what I am confident I understand, using Big Al's articles, and I am at am impasse. FIRST, WHAT I DO KNOW: I have a new garden tractor battery, showing b/w 10.5 and 12.0 volts, depending on how long it’s been since I cranked the S-G over. It would be higher, but I have done a lot of starting, and no recharging. THE STARTER-GENERATOR (S-G) It is a long-frame S-G. Over 7” long. The part no. for the S-G is one that Sandy Lake indicated they had not seen on this model tractor, but it looks just like all the others, to me. The part no. is 1101945 OJ2. The S-G has only two terminals, one marked “A” and one marked “F.” I did Al’s Ohm test, and I get 6.5 – 9.5 Ohms, w/ meter set to “x 1” range in Ohms, w/ S-G disconnected from everything. The Ohms seem to vary for no reason, w/ the engine off, but the S-G was very hot…. I am supposed to have 7-15 Ohms b/w the A and F terminals, and because I do, I did not proceed with the diagnostic tests which require removal of the armature. It seems that putting out 17 volts and having proper resistance indicate that the S-G is ok. The brushes and commutator look good, the latter being nicely undercut and seemingly round and unscored. THE WIRING: I have only two wires that attach to the battery, both fat wires. The first goes between the negative side of the batt. and the tractor frame. The second goes from the positive side of the battery to the “upper” post on the pushbutton starter button mounted on the dash. On this upper post is also the smaller “batt” wire from the “batt” term. of the reg. I have the wires connected correctly, per page 3 of the Koehler manual sent to me earlier, linked below, per the diagram marked “WITHOUT SOLENOID,” except that that diagram also shows an external coil ignition, which I don’t have. Otherwise, my wiring is consistent—the differences between my tractor and the “NONsolenoid diagram” are: 1) my “Load” terminal on the reg. has no wire to it, and 2) I have only a kill wire to my key switch. I have the heavy wire from the top of the starter button running to the “A” term. on the S-G. The URL's to all four pages of the Koehler manual are reproduced below, in the text, but I could not link all of them. (Thanks Brent, for supplying these--they HAVE been a big help!) Could I have the wires on the S-G reversed from what they should be? I failed to tag them, but they also look like the positions they naturally fall to are where I connected them. The wire from the “batt” term. of the reg. goes to the TOP of the starting switch on the dash. This wire has continuity between the “batt” term. of the reg. and the starter switch, so the wire and connections are good. I cleaned all the connections except these two on the Starter Button, and the one to the ignition key, which I believe is only a magneto ground, and it does kill the engine. A very heavy wire goes from the bottom post of the Starter Button to the "A" term. of the S-G. THE CONNECTIONS: Please ee an excerpt of a comment Al wrote, below, sevaral years ago, below, as I have a question about it: >>>>>>>>>>>>>Excerpt of Al Eden, 7/12/1999>>>>>>>>>> "You can check the SG unit by hooking a voltmeter to the A terminal and grounding the F terminal. the voltage chould come up to 13 to 14 volts with the engine wide open. If it goes to 15.5 or more the regulator is not connecting it to the battery as these units don't have the capability of going that high into a battery unless it is sulfatated and doesn,t take a charge. If the SG puts out OK you probably have a regulator problem. The A term of the starter gen goes to the arm or gen terminal of the regulator, the F term. to the f or fld. term of the reg. and the Batt or b term of the reg goes to the Battery. Do not get confused by the big Selenoid lead to the Arm term. of SG That puts 12v to the armature to start the unit only and is not involved when the uint is running and charging. If your red light is on it either is not charging or the wire from the light is shorted to ground or not going to where it is supposed to go. Good luck and if you have any questions ask and we'l try to explain them. Al" >>>>>>>>>>>>>End of Excerpt>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Al: Specifically, I read this sentence (“The A term of the starter gen goes to the arm or gen terminal of the regulator…”) as meaning that the A term. of the S-G gets hooked to the terminal UNDER THE REG., from which a wire runs out to the S-G. Is this correct? The last thing from the paragraph, above, that I want to double check is: (“…..and the Batt or b term of the reg goes to the Battery.") As I stated, my reg’s. “batt” term. goes to the upper term. of the Starter Button, and not to the battery itself. Is this correct? Now, just as an experiement, I jumped the reg.’s “Batt” term. to the "+" side of the battery itself—no spark, no charge. Then I did the same to the neg. side of the battery itself—big spark, jumper almost melted, but no charge. I does not appear that any wires are missing. Should there be THREE wires to my battery posts, or just the two fat ones I already have? RE: THE REGUALTOR It is a TWO-pole regulator, even though I read that the high-torque, long-frame S-G would normally have a 3 pole reg., and the 2 pole regs. were for the vertical shaft engine, which I don’t have. While the engine is running over ½ throttle, faint arcing is visible between the Upper Contact Points on the Voltage and Current Regulator Unit (the coil on the right side, as you face the S-G). There is no visible sparking at any other point set under the voltage reg. cover. I don’t think the regulator has ever been opened. The seal was complete—when I turned the first cover screw, a rush of 42 year (?) old air (from Detroit? Wisconsin?) was heard, probably because it is 85-90 degrees in NYS now, thus warmer than when the reg. was sealed. How's that for quality? LoL! The regualtor looks pristine inside, clean and virtually no eroded points, other than the deposit referred to below. The regulator has Four terminals…3 on the S-G side of engine, clearly marked “L,” “Batt” and “F”, from left to right. The fourth terminal is UNDER the reg., consistent with the diagram on p. 4 of the links for the Kohler service manual re: servicing this unit. (Yes, I have a Briggs, but the S-G arrangement is apparently identical). That diagram has a note indicating that “Generator (A) Terminal (Not shown, on under side). These links are: http://ourworld.cs.com/Bcbaumer/gen1.jpg http://ourworld.cs.com/Bcbaumer/gen2.jpg http://ourworld.cs.com/Bcbaumer/gen3.jpg http://ourworld.cs.com/Bcbaumer/gen4.jpga The ground strap on the regulator is good. It has continuity between the two terminals it connects, and I jumped the reg. chassis to a ground anyway, and still no charging from the S-G. HOWEVER, the ground strap is on the LEFT end of the reg., when viewed facing the S-G, and not on the RIGHT side, as in Fig. 1 of Al’s “Two Pole” reg. article. Could this be as simple as a reversed photo negative? My reg. looks all original. The ground strap is about an inch long, braided copper, no insulation, soldered at both ends. If I ground the Field Term. on the S-G to the frame, while the eng. is running over ½ throttle, I get the 17 volts I should, per Al Eden’s article from 7/99 on this topic. However, it got TOO HOT TO KEEP MY HAND ON, in just a minute or two of this testing, with the F term. grounded. I was also starting it frequently for the different tests, but it does not crank long. I verified the Air Gap on the Cutout Relay of the Reg. is at .020, which it was. I verified that the Point Opening of the Cutout Relay is at .020, which it was. I found a small deposit on the Armature Air Gap of the Current-Voltage Unit, reducing the gap from the requisite .075” to perhaps half. When removed, the gap was too big, so I got the gap as close to .075” as I could. It’s probably approx. at .065-.070. I did not fool with any of the adjusting screws in the regulator. POLARIZATION: (btw, thanks, Dutch, for cluing me to this!) I have polarized the S-G, per the following, but please read it, as I have a question: "To polarize the generator, simply make a short jumper wire to short between the battery (b or bat) and generator (g or gen) lugs on the cutout relay or voltage regulator. Only a split-second or a spark is required, so simply tap your jumper wire onto the lugs and pull them right back off. Reference: John Deere Fundamentals of Service (FOS): Electrical Systems, Fifth Edition. 1984. Chapter 4, Charging Systems. John Deere Service Training, Dept F, John Deere Road, Moline, IL 61265" Out of desparation, I polarized to the “F” term on the reg., from the batt. term. on the reg., instead of to the "A" term, which did not help the charging at all. It still made no difference—still no charge, so I repolarized back as indicated above. MY POLARIZATION QUESTIONS: WHICH term. are they calling the “generator (g or gen) lugs” on the reg.? To me, this is the 4th, unmarked lug, which is UNDER the regulator. Because I could not reach it, as it is under the reg., I actually made the jump at the other end of this short wire, where it connects to the “A” term. of the S-G. I did this while everything was connected, but engine off. Is this ok? Are you supposed to have the S-G disconnected when polarizing? Al: From p. 5 of your big S-G art., you say "If the voltage at the A terminal is 14.5 - 17 volts when you ground the F terminal, the regulator cut-out secion is probably not connecting the A terminal to the battery." How can I confirm this and what do I do about it? Can I run an additional lead to correct this? Obviously, I am "wired" over this, as I cannot make it charge. Is it possible that the battery, at 10.5 - 12.0 volts, is "full enough" that the reg. won't make the S-G charge? The link to Al's Electrical Articles on SimpletrACtors: http://www.simpletractors.com/service/electrics/electrical_systems.htm I truly appreciate anyone who has the stamina to read this and help me.... :) Peter[A href='http://ourworld.cs.com/Bcbaumer/gen4.jpg']http://ourworld.cs.com/Bcbaumer/gen4.jpg[/a]

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Spyder
Here is a little help, maybe. First, be sure the generator is polarized correctly, per the procedure. This is necessary so the battery and the generator work together, not opposing polarity. You must have a complete electrical path from the B terminal back to the battery. If there is a fuse in the circuit, check it carefully with an ohmeter. The cutout relay inside the regulator has to close so that electrical voltage will be on the B terminal in order to charge the battery. If the relay is not closing for some reason, you will not get charging voltage at the B terminal. You should clean all the contact within the regulator. This should be done carefulle with 1000 grit sandpaper then polished with plain white paper. If some contact is stuck or doesn't work, then the regulator may have to be replaced. If all else fails call Pat House at Delco-Remy America Technical Support. Phone 800 372 0222. Ask for bulletin IMG-150. This is a detailed guide on how to evaluate the electrical system properly. I found Pat to be extremely helpful and quite knowledgable. Good luck on your endeavor. Dave

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MPH
Dave: Hey--thanks for the Delco Bulletin info...that sounds like a good thing for me anyway. And I'm gonna see if I can "trip" the cutout relay manually, and get charge. UCD-the terminals are "jake," one's actually new with a new battery as well. But I wish they were...that'd be a good deal at this point. :) Peter

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Dutch
Peter, I've read Al Eden's articles, and they're excellent explaining in detail a rather complex subject. The regulator contains relay coils that open and close points. Once you understand how a regualtor is supposed to work, you will be able to test it. Coils can develop either open or shorted wires. Points can oxidize. Springs can become weak or break. When you ground the S/G "F" terminal, you are bypassing the regulator. Just don't make the very common mistake that many do when trouble-shooting. Changing more than one variable at a time. Hook a voltage meter across the battery and leave it there during all tests. If the voltage increases when you "jump" the S/G "F" terminal to ground, you probably have a non-functioning regulator. If the voltage doesn't increase, you have other problems that must be corrected. Here's a link to polarizing. [A href='http://web.utk.edu/~tprather/FoothillsTractorClub/TechTips/PolarizeGenerator.html']http://web.utk.edu/~tprather/FoothillsTractorClub/TechTips/PolarizeGenerator.html[/a]

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HubbardRA
I am not as familiar with these units as these other guys are, but I will tell you about the problems I had. One of mine quit charging. First thing I found with some probing was a break in the coil wire of the cut-out relay. Couldn't solder it, so I used a crimp connector. After that it would charge if I closed this relay with an insulated screwdriver while the engine was running. This is a self-energizing relay. It would stay closed until the battery was charged, then it would open, and stay open. I was using a volt gage, not an ammeter, and could watch the voltage rise till it opened, then slowly decrease from the load of the coil ignition. This was all while mowing, since this happens slowly. To make it charge again, I had to manually close the relay. This is the one on the left as you are looking at the screw terminal side of the regulator. I finally figured out why it would not re-close on it's own. There is a resistor mounted underneath the regulator through which current flows to create the sensing load for the voltage regulator. I found that this was broken by measuring continuity across it. I manually closed this relay every time I started the tractor for a couple of years, then finally replaced the regulator with one that I borrowed fron a Sears tractor. It is still working today, fifteen years later. Rod H.

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Al
Hi, If you are getting 17 volts at the A terminal with the F terminal grounded the starter Gen. [SG] unit it is charging. The A terminal goes to the Gen or Arm terminal of the regulator. The F terminal of the SG goes to the F or Field terminal of the regulator. The Batt terminal of the regulator Must get to the battery. This is happening if your wire from the regulator goes to the battery cable on the Push Starter Switch. [Be sure it is connected to the cable from the battery and not the cable to the SG unit A terminal]. Some where either at the SG unit or the Start switch there must be a wire that goes to the A or Gen term of the regulator. It doesn't matter which end of the cable it is connected to as long as it gets to the cable that goes to the A term. There is NO connection to the L terminal of the regulator. That was used as an option for lights, [in other applications] so the lights got fed nearer the generator instead of the juice going through all of the wire to the battery and back out. Really an insignificant deal. If you put your voltmeter [vm] across the battery and with the engine reved up the battery measures 12 volts or less and you use a jumper wire from the A term of the SG to the battery and you ground the f terminal of the SG the battery voltage should come up. If you are getting 17 at the A term of SG with F grounded, the SG is NOT getting connected to the battery or this would drop to about 14 and the batt would come up to 14 volts. I think you have a bad regulator. Also if you connected 12v to the F terminal of the regulator, It will probably never charge again. Most likely one of the internal connectrions has been destoryed. This why very few places accept returns of electrical parts. One wrong spark and gone. We stock these regulators and all of the parts for starter generators. Giv us a call at 1-800-462-2218. I am still at the house days, but they can call me and have me pick up that line or call you back. Good luck, Al Eden

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dymondclay
Okay! Now it’s charging, like 13-13.5 v. at the battery, and the same at the A terminal of the SG, when not grounding the F term of the SG. But I have a new problem: THE PROBLEM is: It runs very hot. After 10-15 min. at ¾ throttle, the SG is too hot to keep my hand on for a full 5 sec. This doesn’t seem normal to me. Is it? I will run the SG totally disconnected, electrically, for a similar time and speed, once it cools, just to “rule out” any bearing/mechanical issues, but I’m confident it’s not that—the SG spins freely on one new and one (original?) bearing. UCD: I don’t know why it’s charging, but I checked what you said--the continuity of the resistor under the Voltage/Current regulator. Initially I got none, but it is somewhat corroded, inside the “spring” or winding, only, and now I have continuity. However, this resistor is under Voltage/Current reg. coil, not under the Cutout Unit—perhaps mine is different from yours? I have a 2 pole regulator, some had a three pole, i.e., three separate spools of windings, whereas mine has only two…) and it IS charging. . I fiddled with all the contacts again, while it was running—perhaps this caused it to start charging? Dutch: Thanks—your comment got me to try to see the whole arrangement as a “system,” and this helped. Al: Thanks for holding my hand on the wiring connections. I had them right, but you removed all doubt. Since all three of the connector tabs on the SIDE of the reg. are labled clearly (“L,” “Batt” and “F”) the only confusion I had stemmed from the fact that the “A” or “Gen” term. of the regulator is not labeled, and is underneath the reg. All the rest are on the side, and because they are labled, by process of elimination, the A term. of the SG HAS to go to the unmarked term. under the reg., as it’s the only one left, because I can’t hook it to the only other unused one, which is clearly labeled “L”. I did have it hooked up this way, I just wasn’t sure it was right. Also, the wiring is as you stated…the batt. term. of the reg. IS getting back to the actual battery, by virtue of being on the upper post of the Push Starter Switch. And it’s on this post with the fat positive battery cable, and not on the lower post, which runs the fat lead to the A term. of the SG. IF the heat is excessive, as I’m sure it must be, can it be that I still have not polarized it correctly? If so, would I see 24+ volts anywhere, so I could confirm this? The highest readings I’ve gotten were the 17 volts. off of the A term., when grounding the F term, of the SG, as I discussed earlier. Where can I confirm, voltagewise, that the polarity is reversed? I understand this can cause overheating. Also, I don’t think the overheating is being caused by the SG running “fully fielded,” like it does when grounding the F term. on the SG, for the following reason: The engine needs carb work and, even at ¾ throttle, it “hunts the governor” unless I’m a) under a load, e.g., climbing a hill in 3rd gear, or b) I ground the F term. of the SG. In both of these cases the engine smooths right out, so I’m assuming this (grounding the F term. of the SG, i.e., running “fully fielded”) is a noticable load on the engine, like when the tractor is climbing a hill in 3rd gear. Well, when I’m getting my 13.5 v. at the battery, it is NOT running smoothly, like when under a load, e.g., with the SG fully fielded. So I don’t think the SG is simply “working hard” to put 13.5 v. into my brand new battery, which I trickle charged since the last round. I think it’s cutting in and out, like it should, and I see the upper contacts on the Current/Voltage reg. pole are vibrating and sparking slightly, all the time. The following quote is verbatim from the John Deere polarizing instructions: “To polarize the generator, simply make a short jumper wire to short between the battery (b or bat) and generator (g or gen) lugs on the cutout relay or voltage regulator. Only a split-second or a spark is required, so simply tap your jumper wire onto the lugs and pull them right back off.” Now, when I did this, since I can’t easily reach the “A” or gen. terminal underneath the regulator, as I said, I jumped it where the wire from this term. goes to the A term. of the SG. I attempted to polarize when all wires were connected. Is this correct? Could it have made any possible difference that I make the arc on top of the SG, and not at the terminal underneath the regulator? How hot do these bad boys run, anyway? I can’t believe that it being so hot I can’t leave my hand on it for 5 sec. is normal? Thanks again….we’re getting there! Sincerely, Peter

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dlcentral
Update: I confirmed the high heat is not being caused by anything mechanical. I ran it 3/4 throttle for 15 min., with the SG completely disconnected, electrically, and the SG was MUCH cooler, like barely above body temp. I eagerly await anyone's ideas on this, and most particularly, the Wizard Al's....

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tmerideth
Al: I'm not sure you had read posts 8 and 9, above, which give new info, but I know that it's not either bushing--both ball bearings are good, and it does not generate heat when running electrically unhooked--please see above. Re: 2.b) I verified this wire is not grounded b/w SG and reg. Re: 2a) If the "field winding is shorted to ground inside the SG," I wouldn't get the 13+ volts I get at the battery, right? Re 1. I have a two pole reg., but I saw an earlier reference indicating the long SG should have a 3 pole reg. As I have a two pole, I wonder if this would be wrong, and make it run hot? Please see the #8 post, above, as I really wonder if it's polarized correctly? Thanks again. I really appreciate it--I'd hate to burn this unit up when it's in excellent shape and putting out 17 volts. Peter

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