Alternator Question - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 4th, 06, 05:10 PM Thread Starter
 
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Alternator Question

First of all I'd like to say hello everyone, I'm new!

I have a '92 Camaro RS with a V8 305. I want to run my two 12" subs with a 3,000 watt amp (big boom boom). The problem is I've already gone through 2 alternators lol . I was wondering if you guys could help me find a very high output alternator or tell me how much juice this car can handle. I also have a 900 watt amp I could hook up if I must but the subs really love the extra kick. Any advice or comments are much appreciated!

Thanks,
James
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 4th, 06, 06:29 PM
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Re: Alternator Question

A Watt is a measure of power. There are 720 Watts in a horse power so converting your 3000 Watt Amp into the number of horses it is going to take to drive it yields 4.166 horses subtracted from the rear wheels. Watts are also related to Amperes by the relationship known as PIE, or Volts times Amps equal Watts.

So doing the math we see that for the average 14 volt automotive system (only the battery puts out 12 volts) you will need 214.29 more Amps than you currently have coming out of your factory installed O.E.M. 72 Amp alternator for a total of 286 Amps. I went on line to AutoZone and DAP's site but they don't stock one that size. The 190 Amp alternator in my 9C1 police car requires a special bracket to bolt it to the engine. They (the oversized medium truck alternators) are available new from Delco offered in up to 250 Watts per alternator which means you will have to figure out how to mount two of them on your engine.

Luck would have it that Home Depot is running a special on Home Generators. Unfortunately it is only the 2,700 Watt 5 horse Honda version. You may have to spring for a 7 horse Wisconsin which puts out 3,500 Watts. You will need a utility trailer from Sears and six industrial strength 12 Volt diode rectifiers to convert the A/C power to DC. The good news is with the extra 500 Watts of power left over you can run some neon lights.

Larger Dave the retired engineer.

Last edited by Larger Dave; Jan 6th, 06 at 01:41 PM.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 4th, 06, 07:26 PM
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Re: Alternator Question

I've seen dual alternator setups on competition audio cars.

Scott from NJ. Stay thirsty, my friends


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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 4th, 06, 08:48 PM
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Re: Alternator Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larger Dave

Luck would have it that Home Depot is running a special on Home Generators. Unfortunately it is only the 2,700 Watt 5 horse Honda version. You may have to spring for a 7 horse Wisconsin which puts out 3,500 Watts. You will need a utility trailer from Sears and six industrial strength 12 Volt diode rectifiers to convert the A/C power to DC. The good news is with the extra 500 Watts of power left over you can run some neon lights.

Larger Dave the retired engineer.
That Dave is a funny guy

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 4th, 06, 10:13 PM
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Re: Alternator Question

And to add insult to injury, that 3000 watts is audio power. It will take nearly 1.5 times that amount of DC power to maintain that level of audio power. But in reality, that 3000 watts is peak power. RMS power will be much lower so it isn't likely that a Honda generator will be necessary.

I couldn't tell you what the RMS power rating is, depends on your music listening. Do you listen to Eddie VanHalen play erruption over and over or do you mix it up with a little boom boom. Almost have to measure it to be sure.

The only thing I can say is get the biggest and most efficient you can. CS140 is the only thing I can think of from my limited experience with high power alternators. Keep it cool with a good cooling fan behind the pulley. Reduce losses where you can by using quality wire of adequate guage. Two batteries might be a good idea - one in the front and one in the rear to keep lead lengths really short. A second battery is bettery than any Farad capacitor you can buy for the same price.

A little tip...fuse both the hot and ground and run the connections straight to the battery. This is so a bad ground doesn't find a serogate ground through your new amp. Worst case - the starter might hitch a ride on your ground and fry the amp's internal PC board foil. The fuse will pop (say 60 amp) instead.

Dave
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 5th, 06, 01:31 AM
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Re: Alternator Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by clwilcox33
That Dave is a funny guy
I agree.
Although the way he was referring to "watts/rear wheel hp" that he was heading in another direction.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larger Dave
There are 720 Watts in a horse power so converting your 3000 Watt Amp into the number of horses it is going to take to drive it yields 4.166 horses subtracted from the rear wheels.
I thought he was going to suggest one of those old wheel generators for bicycle head lights. You know the one that clamped to the frame and had a wheel that road on the rear tire to power the light. (Long before the time of LCD's.)

Seriously though. I believe your best bet is a 2 alternator set up, and a second battery. Take a look at this. http://caraudiomag.com/technical/0206cae_alternator/

Good Luck and Welcome!


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 5th, 06, 01:32 AM
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Re: Alternator Question

give these guys a look, they should be able to help you out
www.4alterstart.com
they have up to 275 amp alternators

and like they said more batteries, i recomend optima yellow tops
and good wires and better grouinds
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 7th, 06, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Alternator Question

Awesome, thank you for your replies. The amp is 1,000w rms and I'm going to try the two alternator setup (hope they fit) and I'm adding another optima in the trunk. I bought two 180amp alternators off ebay yesterday. I also found a car stereo forum that had alot of people running WAY more than I am in camaro's so I guess there is hope.

As soon as the parts come in I'll give ya'll a hoot and tell ya how it goes.


Thanks again,
James
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old Jan 7th, 06, 06:20 PM
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Re: Alternator Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by JAG84
...The amp is 1,000w rms...
Keep in mind that 1000W rms rating is the rms power of the amp at near the clipping point with 1Khz tone running through it. In reality, two things will make your rms power draw from the battery much lower.

First, the amp will only demand that much power on the peaks. So the bass drum bump bump bump might pull it up to 1000 W, but only at 1 second intervals. Eddie Van Halen's erruption would exersice the mids quite a bit, but I doubt your ears could handle 1000 W of midrange.

The other factor at play is that you most likely won't be running the amp at full output continuously - even though it is rated for that use. It's kind of like having a blown 502 as a street driver. Under most cases, you manage to keep it within the speed limit, although you might occationally run a 1/4 mile. Does that make sense?

If you decide to go for a 2 alternator setup, there is still value in a dual battery setup with the second battery located near the amps (in the trunk). I'd try 2 batteries first and see if you alternator can hang with it, before investing in a dual alternator setup.

Dave
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