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How to add new electrical stuff to an old 24V BJ42

Discussion in 'CA.AB- Rocky Mountain Land Cruiser Association' started by Awl_TEQ, Jul 23, 2015.

  1. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    Or maybe it should say how not to. We'll see.


    So you guys and gals know the drill. Canadian BJ42's are 24V. How cool right? I really used to think so. I mean, yeah it's kinda neat, but with only about 30A to work with how does one add any cool stuff like compressors, fridges, lights or just FM radio? There are any number of ways I suppose.

    For the last couple of years I have been using a solar voltage converter generously donated by Peter to get 12V. More accurately, the solar thingy cuts whatever voltage fed to it by half. It also works both ways and will take your 12V power and charge your 24V system with it. I am current-ly feeding that 12V power to a really nice AGM deep cycle battery from Canadian Tire. It's a good battery. I have TOTALLY killed it numerous times and she takes a charge no problem still. But something in my 12V sub-system is a parasite. Maybe just the loss through the conversion or something. I have left my cheap 600w inverter on a couple of times and it has a known draw even when not in use. Bottom line is I want a better system.

    For a while now I was looking at getting one of these Cooper Bussman Converter . They go on ebay for $100 sometimes used. $350 new. But, as Coastal Kevin pointed out there is a reason the entire case is a heat sink. Prolly has a lot of loss.

    Several people have suggested I just add another alternator and run a dual system. I scoffed at the idea for a long time thinking that the bus converter was the shiznit. It was while explaining to my son about heeding the advice of your elders that I realized I was not doing that very thing. Not that you guys are old but rather, as Jimmi would say "experienced".

    It made sense really. I had already purchased the required pulley and tensioner for a 3B accessory drive when I was building a York compressor system for the now defunct 3BT for the 45. I got it at SOR for the reasonable price of $70. This is the crank pulley and timing cover tensioner that was used for the factory air on an 83/84 40 series. A pretty rare part really. All I needed to do was get an alternator and make a mounting bracket to hold her still.
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    Last edited: Jul 24, 2015
  2. Behemoth60

    Behemoth60

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    What kind of alternator did you select? How many 12v amps?
     
  3. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    To continue...

    So I did just that. During the CCC run a few weeks ago my low range would pop out and could not be kept in even with a ratchet strap. I have also been wanting to swap my good original 3B out and run the repaired motor that blew last year. So I pulled the engine/tranny/t-case out and swapped the motors and rebuilt the t-case with good parts from Georg.

    This is the original combo from this rig. It will be mothballed for an eventual full-on restoration when I'm done wheeling the 42.
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    I had some CAD of the York mounting bracket I had done so I altered that and had one of the guys at the shop laser out some pieces. I bought a 100A alternator and bolted it on. This is not the one wire type because I wanted a sense wire at the battery to ensure full voltage got that far through the harness I will build. Also the one wire type alternator sometimes requires as much as 2000rpm before it triggers the field and makes power. The three wire system the third wire is to trigger the field by supplying 12V in a typical switched power fashion to start the alternator charging right away. I prefer that. The last thing I wanna do is rev up a cold 35 year old diesel to get power flowing to my house battery.

    So, as mentioned above I have been using this real nice AGM deep cycle battery as a house batt. I have been running my National Luna fridge and a 600w inverter from this battery. The inverter is only connected when in use to charge the hand held ham and phone/ ipad with the USB outlet it has. Otherwise I have been only running the refrigerator on the 12V system with an isolation switch to prevent killing the 24V starting system.

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    But I have the great fortune to be associated with great people in the RMLCA and picked up a total of three 110ah telecom batteries. These things are crazy heavy but also hold a lot of reserve. I am going to use two of them in the new 12V system I am building here.

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    Last edited: Jul 25, 2015
  4. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    Peter, as posted below you its a 100A unit I picked up at B&F Auto electric. I have been buying starters, alternators and batteries there for literally 25years.
     
  5. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    I really should get to work before I get busted so I'll summarize what will be done in this thread. I want fog lights, camplights, Ham radio, CB radio, aux gauges, stereo system, navigation, USB charge ports, refrigerator, compressor etc, etc and all the switches to control it all. I do have a plan but am saving up for the stereo and Ham purchase. The rest I already have.
     
  6. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    Yesterday I picked up my 24V alternator from B&F. I dropped it off last week for a rebuild. They did the bearings, brushes and tested the armature etc for leaks. They blasted and cleaned it all up too. So she's ready to go back on the motor and run the stock equipment, winch and the 24V twin compressor. Everything else will be on the new 12V alternator.
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    Also last night I did probably my least favorite job. New U-joints in the front drive shaft. I don't do u-joints often enough to get good at it. Handling a greasy shaft with one hand and trying to push in and out the cups and operate the vise is a bitch. Why am I suddenly aroused?
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  7. cruiserpilot

    cruiserpilot

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    Hey, glad to hear you have luck with the C Tire battery. What size are you using? What battery would you use if you were
    running a winch, fridge, webasto, driving lights, on a second battery, not just the fridge?
     
  8. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    Sorry, didn't read your post fully the first time I saw it. It was the better model unit, I mean it was something over $250 when I bought it. A marine deep cycle AGM unit.

    I'm not sure what size one would need to run all that stuff but I would likely buy the biggest one I could. But you don't want a deep cycle unit for running a winch - they aren't meant to discharge via a high amp draw. Deep cycle batteries are more-betta at long term low draw usage and are able to withstand being drawn down lower and charged back up better than a typical starting battery. Do some research as this is just my own understanding of it.
     
  9. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    Ok, long time no updates. I have been working on bits and pieces here and there. I installed new headlights. I went with the Hella H4 units and standard 60/55w bulbs. I burned out three sealed beam lights in a month and a half and figured I may as well upgrade. The Hellas are quite bright and if I ever want to go bigger wattage I can, though I would likely switch to 24V bulbs and use relays for more juice. I would still use the stock 12V dreaded center tap for the control circuit and full 24V for the lights with bigger wire. That way I would keep the batteries better balanced.

    I also changed my drivers door weather strip from the CCOT "best" to factory because some asshat (read: I did) used old glue and it was falling off. FYI, all those people who swear by the factory gasket are correct. It is better. Given the option I won't buy aftermarket door gaskets again.

    I added some resistors I bought off of ebay to the rear signals. They were acting kinda weird. I expected them not to flash due to the lack of current draw on the LED lights. But they did flash, so I ran with it. But about half the time they would not flash and RPM had something to do with it. It seemed like when the alternator was charging they would flash but at idle they were solid. And sometimes they did flash at idle. Anyway, I got tired of shifting, steering and manually flashing the signals and added a "piece of resistance". Now my signals flash like they should.

    I've nearly got all my electrical pieces for the overhead console. Everything but the head unit and the HAM is in the garage so I'll be working on that.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2015
  10. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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    Overdue Update:

    On our recent trip to Pismo beach I had a battery fail on me on the last morning of the trip. Peter boosted me and I just never shut it off until we got home. The signals wouldn't flash properly and a few other gremlins were going on. We figured it was the dreaded center tap for the headlights killing the one battery. Took me a few months to actually (Maybe!!) figure out what went wrong. I traded the dead battery for a new one on warranty and switched battery locations. Next morning the other battery was dead dead. I then traded that one for a new one on warranty. So on the bright side I had two new batteries. Yay me!!


    I removed the factory center tap for the headlights and provided that circuit with 12V from the house battery.

    I did some diagnostics and came to this slightly weird conclusion. The resistors I had added to the LED rear signals caused the factory old school flasher to overheat and fail in such a way as to provide a short. This was evident when the unit was examined. The flasher has continuous power from the battery. I know that theory has flaws but hear me out. I then removed the resistors from the rear signals and installed a modern non-thermal flasher unit. Everything works and I have no parasitic draw.

    Three days daily driving and all is still good. So I did one of my planned mods and added extra signal and brake LED lights.
     
  11. Awl_TEQ

    Awl_TEQ Supporting Vendor GOLD Star

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