'69 Camaro Voltage Regulator Problems - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old May 13th, 01, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
 
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I have recently finished a frame-off restoration of a '69 Camaro SS 396 with air conditioning.
I've replaced the Delco external voltage regulator 3 times in the last 500 miles or so. In the process I've had the rebuilt 61amp alternator checked by 2 different parts houses and it always checks out well -- around 13.7 volts if I recall correctly. All grounds are attached as factory and I've double checked that the motor is grounded to the body and radiator support. When a voltage regulator fails the electrical system goes into an overcharging condition as seen on the ammeter gage in the console (and as checked with multimeter). One thing that does seem odd is that the alternator seems to get very warm (relative to the alternator on my other '69 Camaro) even without a/c, blower motor or lights on -- with the regulator working fine. I'm thinking of just replacing both the alternator and the regulator with new parts and giving it another try. If anyone has experienced this or has any opther ideas I would appreciate it.

Dan
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old May 14th, 01, 02:16 AM
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13.7 seems low. Also, the regulator failing 3 times seems odd. I had weird overcharging problems with a 61 amp alternator and went to a single wire from Summit. Perfect. It puts out 14.5 volts which is more typical, I believe.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old May 14th, 01, 03:46 AM
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I would change battery before doing anything else. May have a shorted cell causing overheat due to demanding high current for charging.

Check regulator cover to see if cover is screwed on or riveted on. Either way, the voltage is adjustable. Let reg come up to temperature, along with battery. Measure charging voltage, 13.7 is good, however, one can adjust the spring tension to increase the volts. If you find a screw, then turn CW to increase volts to 14.2 at battery. If no screw, turn off car, disconnect battery so as not to create sparks, use pliers to adjust the spring tension, adjust the base tab to increase volts(lengthen spring). Recover, reconnect battery, restart and measure volts.

Depending upon amount of charging, a screwdriver laid against the rear bearing of alternator, you will feel a magnetic field, stronger field = more current.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old May 14th, 01, 11:17 AM
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How about looking at the capacitor that goes near the regulator? Maybe the contacts are (welded or arched). The capacitor helps prevent arching if I'm not mistaken.

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old May 14th, 01, 06:00 PM Thread Starter
 
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I believe I have already switched batteries at least once with my other '69 Camaro, but I'll try it again to confirm. You mentioned a possible shorted cell -- is there a way to check this?
All the new regulators I have bought (and now failed) do not have a screw adjustment but I do follow what you said regarding how to adjust it. If it's of any interest all of my failed regulators check 64 ohms across terminals F&2 whereas the good one in my other car checks 45 ohms -- all other contacts have identical resistances for both the failed and good regulators. One thing I did not mention initially is that the regulator gets very warm along with the alternator -- this is not the case with my other car.
I assume that when you suggest raising the voltage setting the logic is to simply decrease current draw.
I'll give your advice a try.
Thanks,
Dan
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Everett#2390:
I would change battery before doing anything else. May have a shorted cell causing overheat due to demanding high current for charging.

Check regulator cover to see if cover is screwed on or riveted on. Either way, the voltage is adjustable. Let reg come up to temperature, along with battery. Measure charging voltage, 13.7 is good, however, one can adjust the spring tension to increase the volts. If you find a screw, then turn CW to increase volts to 14.2 at battery. If no screw, turn off car, disconnect battery so as not to create sparks, use pliers to adjust the spring tension, adjust the base tab to increase volts(lengthen spring). Recover, reconnect battery, restart and measure volts.

Depending upon amount of charging, a screwdriver laid against the rear bearing of alternator, you will feel a magnetic field, stronger field = more current.

Everett 68/350/PG/11.90/115mph
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old May 14th, 01, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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The contacts on all the failed regultors look good. The capacitor is an interesting point but I don't know how to check it nor is it available new GM. Maybe I'll try another used one. Thanks.
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by mrdani:
I believe I have already switched batteries at least once with my other '69 Camaro, but I'll try it again to confirm. You mentioned a possible shorted cell -- is there a way to check this?
All the new regulators I have bought (and now failed) do not have a screw adjustment but I do follow what you said regarding how to adjust it. If it's of any interest all of my failed regulators check 64 ohms across terminals F&2 whereas the good one in my other car checks 45 ohms -- all other contacts have identical resistances for both the failed and good regulators. One thing I did not mention initially is that the regulator gets very warm along with the alternator -- this is not the case with my other car.
I assume that when you suggest raising the voltage setting the logic is to simply decrease current draw.
I'll give your advice a try.
Thanks,
Dan
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

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