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Author Topic: Alternator question  (Read 1760 times)

geoffbaker

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Alternator question
« on: February 13, 2008, 12:24:02 AM »
While I'm waiting to get my head back I'm going through various systems, replacing filters etc.

I opened up the primary chaincase to have a look, and emptied out a load of very dirty oil.

My question is: I've never seen an alternator so completely soaked in oil. It looks like it has had some wear on the inner plastic plates so it is probably misaligned. Looking on the forums and in the online manual, I see I can take off the alternator for cleaning.

Firstly, is it normal to have a lot of oil on the alternator? This is my first bullet and I'm not sure what the standard is. All I can say is that on the photos others have posted of their alternators, mine is a lot dirtier?

Secondly, if this is unusual, what would cause such a buildup of oil in the crankcase?

Suggestions welcome!


Leonard

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2008, 01:57:15 PM »
  How much oil was in the primary?  It is possible that it was over filled.  There should only be enough to let the chain run in oil (up to the level plug).  If it has been in there a long time it could be quite dirty, but yes, there will be oil on the alternator.  BTW lots of people use ATF, type F in the primary instead of motor oil. 
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dogbone

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2008, 02:33:05 PM »
GB the dirt was clutch pucky, common with lots of miles or major abuse. There are brass feeler guages to set the gap, but I found an aluminum beer can wrapped around the rotor works well.
99 Enfield Bullet 535
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geoffbaker

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2008, 05:38:38 PM »
OK, she's all nice and clean now, reinstalled. I read and followed the beer can shim discussion, and sadly, I am such a snob that I've been drinking beer from bottles. I didn't have any beer cans, so I used an aluminum catfood can instead.

In shimming it in, after I tightened it down, I pulled out the shims. One was pretty tight.

Should i go back and redo, or will there be enough clearance on the tight one that it should be OK?


dogbone

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2008, 07:51:17 PM »
It should be even,maybe you should try Boddingtons pub ale, a far superior can.
99 Enfield Bullet 535
a man isn't drunk,if he can lie on the floor without hanging on

Vince

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2008, 08:18:48 PM »
     These are designed to run in oil. I put a full liter in the electric start models. It doesn't hurt the clutch either. Use a motorcycle specific 20w50. This has additives for the clutch. The non electric start units take 420cc. I found very dirty primary oil in a few units when the transmission grease broke down. The grease migrated through the sleeve on the main shaft to the primary. The oil was dirty gray and sludgy. You should disassemble the right side transmission covers. Clean the transmission  case by scraping out as much of the old grease as  you can. Then use a brush and a pan to wash out the rest. Refill with a tube of Enfield grease-part # Z90055. Fresh grease is red.  Follow your book carefully to readjust the shifting when  reassembling. It's a messy job. Don't wear your Sunday best.

LotusSevenMan

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2008, 12:34:52 AM »
For shimming alternator prior to tightening nuts I use plastic milk container shims as non metallic, perfect fit size wise and if one got left by accident it'd do less damage than a metal one!!!!!!
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geoffbaker

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2008, 01:16:08 AM »
Thanks for the input! I think I'll try the milk container and see how that works.
And Vince, thanks for the thorough answer... I'll dress down for the job!

geoffbaker

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Re: Alternator question
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2008, 08:55:40 PM »
I reset the alternator. This time, I used a paper milk carton (mentioned in the Snidal book) and sure enough, it was perfect. I cut it to fit and had no trouble sliding the alternator on over it and tightening it down. It pulled out easily (being waxed) and when I double checked with a nonmagnetic feeler gauge, it was perfect!

Thanks all.