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Thread: So you want to do the 3G alternator upgrade README

  1. #41
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    I need to add one. My car has never had a battery to body ground. Might be why the interior voltage is a bit low.

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  2. #42
    No mean-spiritedness here. IPreferDIY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IPreferDIY View Post
    +1 for beefing up the body ground. All of the various grounds in your car depend on that one ground connection. ...
    I just realized I overstated that. The negative battery cable obviously goes somewhere, so there's a ground point somewhere. But with all kinds of stuff using the body as a ground, you want to beef up the body ground pathway.

    2000 Grand Marquis LS HPP, a hand-me-down in 2008 with 128,000 km; 175,000 km as of July 2014
    mods: air filter box "tuba" (in place of the "trumpet"), headlight relay harness, J-mod (around 186,350 km), 70mm throttle body, NKL4 PCM (from a 2000 CVPI, nothing great there apart from highway cruising), KYB Gas-A-Just shocks (after >202,000 km on originals)

  3. #43
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Thanks fellas!

    The amp is a JBL GTO-5EZ, but since the box is too small for the sub I've got the gain at about 75%. I did notice that the sub hits harder with the new alternator and after reading through some reviews for NVX's 1 farrod capacitor it should help even more. They also said wiring up the cap to the items experiencing the shortage works too. What do you guys say? First things I'll do are add a 4 gauge wire from the battery to core support and put a yellow top optima battery in. I'll look into the sticky for the headlight relay mod too. Alternator is cool though, blinkers don't slow down, headlights seem brighter, bet my defrost will work better now too.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
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  4. #44
    Beater gonna beat sly's Avatar
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    +1 start with the ground cable. if that sorts it, then you're done.

  5. #45
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delay here but this past weekend I finally got done with everything electrical upgrade related..

    Even after I upgraded to a 3G alternator I was still experiencing headlight wincing/flickering whenever the bass hits with my car. I first upgraded the ground from the core support to the battery with very nice welding cable, stuff is as thick as a battery cable. This made zero difference with the wincing. Then came the yellow top Optima battery. Zero fucks difference that made. This past weekend I finally installed NVX's one farrod capacitor. They recommended 18" or less of cable between the cap & the amp. Not really possible unless I want the cap rubbing the spare tire with where my amp is at (Right where the factory premium/JBL amp would mount) So I compromised a bit by mounting the cap right on the bracket for the trunk, fits perfect there and there's even two holes for cable ties to support it & a tab to keep it from sliding. I'd say I have 24-28" of cable length.. Anyway, the capacitor doesn't seem to make much of a difference either. When I'm cruising it's up to 70% better as the wincing is very minimal but at idle or heavy bass the dimming is just as bad. For quick bass hits it's fine, but beyond that the cap 'drains' and it's as if I need one that's 10x larger. Of course after I bought & installed it I see everyone else says they don't do anything anyway - problem comes right after they supply the power to the amp, now the cap will need to take power to charge itself back up, power that is needed by the amp. Bass seems a bit weaker than it was, too.

    Sigh.. I should've never bothered beyond the factory set-up. Can't listen to the radio loud because it seems to fudge with the computer, thing ends up idling funny for awhile and damn near stalls out when slowing down sometimes. Never did that before this audio shit. But nooooo, I just had to have audio... FML. Seems the only way to solve my problem would be to run another battery that is dedicated to the audio crap but then that's a whole other can of worms I don't want to open. What a waste of money. What kind of damage might I cause running it like this?
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  6. #46
    No mean-spiritedness here. IPreferDIY's Avatar
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    One possibility that comes to mind is that maybe your 3G is only a 95A one. I have no idea how to tell the difference, but I suppose someone had to raise this possibility. Edit: I just had a look at Google images and I guess it would be obvious, but ...

    The only other possibility that comes to mind is that there's something wonky in your electrical system. I would have no idea where to go from here.

    What size fuse do you have on your sub amp?
    Last edited by IPreferDIY; 11-23-2015 at 09:12 PM.

    2000 Grand Marquis LS HPP, a hand-me-down in 2008 with 128,000 km; 175,000 km as of July 2014
    mods: air filter box "tuba" (in place of the "trumpet"), headlight relay harness, J-mod (around 186,350 km), 70mm throttle body, NKL4 PCM (from a 2000 CVPI, nothing great there apart from highway cruising), KYB Gas-A-Just shocks (after >202,000 km on originals)

  7. #47
    Beater gonna beat sly's Avatar
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    Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein
    rides: 93 Crown Vic LX (The Red Velvet Cake), 2000 Crown Vic base model (Sandy), 2003 Expedition (the vacation beast)
    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73
    ... and it should all work like magic and unicorns and stuff.
    Quote Originally Posted by dmccaig
    Overhead, some poor bastards are flying in airplanes.

  8. #48
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    The amp has a 175 amp fuse on it IIRC. Amp itself is a JBL GTO-5EZ, it's not a ground pounder by any means lol! Never thought I'd have any problems with any of it but this is me! Based on sly's pic I've got a 130 amper. Maybe the ground for the amp sucks, it is just a 1/4 screw and those star type washers going into an area just to the right of the amp. I didn't do the install, CarTunes did. If I should make another thread for this I will, I don't mean to pollute the 3G thread with this stuff, just figured I'd post it all in here since that's why I originally did the swap.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
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  9. #49
    GMN Regular HiFiMerc's Avatar
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    I've done the 3g upgrade in my '90 and my dads '91. The one in my dads car cares not if everything is running. No dimming, ever. The on in my '90, will still see occasional slight dimming under heavy loads. Not sure why. The 130 amp one in my '92 will dim slightly when the stereo is about maxed. Meh.
    1990 MGM: $50 E7 heads, HO cam, Holley SysteMAX lower intake, HO upper intake with an Explorer TB. LSC ECM. Lincoln logs into stock dual exhaust. K&N drop in air filter. Wide ratio AOD, 2400 converter with a 3.08 one tire fire out back. Car is less slow now. Then there's the '92 Beater. Dual 2.25" exhaust with shiny tips. Rumbles nice. Super slow. Burns oil too.

  10. #50
    No mean-spiritedness here. IPreferDIY's Avatar
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    It looks like the JBL GTO-5EZ puts out a maximum total of 1075W and has three 30A fuses. I doubt you'd be maxing out all of the fuses with bass hits in multi-channel use, but I really don't know. Your headlights would presumably be no more than 20A. I'm not sure how much current everything else would be drawing. Do you get the dimming at highway speeds? AFAIK, the 130A rating is for a certain RPM, so pounding your bass at a red light might be a bit much for it.
    Last edited by IPreferDIY; 11-24-2015 at 10:35 AM.

    2000 Grand Marquis LS HPP, a hand-me-down in 2008 with 128,000 km; 175,000 km as of July 2014
    mods: air filter box "tuba" (in place of the "trumpet"), headlight relay harness, J-mod (around 186,350 km), 70mm throttle body, NKL4 PCM (from a 2000 CVPI, nothing great there apart from highway cruising), KYB Gas-A-Just shocks (after >202,000 km on originals)

  11. #51
    Beater gonna beat sly's Avatar
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    ok yeah... your amp is just a little more then mine and I didn't nead any capacitor for it and I only get mild dimming (re: barely noticeable) with full load AND pounding. (AC, lights, night time, etc)

    I also have headlight relay mods on all my cars too... so that's something. The dash dims in the 88 a bit, but it also does that with the blinkers... so I chalk that up to the weak wiring in the dash. The 93 gives zero cares and works great. But then they were optioned with 130A alternators for the fleet packs and had the basic wiring for it already. Just a headlight relay mod on that one.

    If the charge cable on your alternator is at least 4 gauge, then you should have no issues. And as long as your amp power wire is 4 gauge (power and ground cables), you should be fine. A good ring terminal on that 1/4 bolt should work fine. If it's a sheet metal screw, you may need to replace it with a bolt and nut to make sure it stays good and tight with all the good vibrations.

    Though, considering that your amp has a peak current draw of 100A, you may need a bigger alternator for the real good head shaker tunes.

    Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein
    rides: 93 Crown Vic LX (The Red Velvet Cake), 2000 Crown Vic base model (Sandy), 2003 Expedition (the vacation beast)
    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73
    ... and it should all work like magic and unicorns and stuff.
    Quote Originally Posted by dmccaig
    Overhead, some poor bastards are flying in airplanes.

  12. #52
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    The car used to dim all the time, even at highway speeds, so bad you could see the lights dim down and the dash lights dim. With the capacitor (I did that install myself, woo!) installed any time the thing is above idle I don't seem to have much a problem at all, very slight wincing at the heaviest stuff, and by heavy I mean like Enter Sandman by Metallica or something, I'm not a hip-skippity-hop guy at all. Capacitor made a big difference at speed for sure. At idle, it sort of works. For quick bass hits from a kick drum or something it doesn't wince much at all but the buzzy buzz of a bass guitar or something seems to wipe Mr. Capacitor out and once he's out the dimming happens until the song gets off the bass.

    Headlight relay mod... VCV mentioned something about it and said something about a kit that might be plug and play for boxes, any truth to this? Is there a sticky I could search for? I guess my big concern is just the ECM, I don't want to fudge it up and I'm a little worried that I might. If you guys say there's no issue then cool, load off my shoulders. I once had a Grand Am with a four channel amp (that's now in the Fury) and I was jamming out to some AC/DC (Can I sit next to you, girl?) when the stereo just dropped out and the ABS light popped on. ABS module took a dump and in that car they're somehow tied into the stereo... Replaced that and didn't have a problem but you can see where my worries are stemming from...

    Charge cable is indeed 4 gauge, well came from a 3G equipped early/mid 90's Continental. Goes straight from alt to battery with no other modifications and wire is free of corrosion, all terminals were cleaned up and stuff. I.. I... I'm still using the original charge wires, or should I say they're still connected to the alternator along with the 4 gauge wire. I used one ring terminal to connect both to it along with the 4g cable. Guess that could be causing it, I didn't see the issue but I couldn't figure out parallel resistances until the other day either. I think you're on to something with that ground, it is just a sheet metal screw and when I was back there I didn't get it tight for fear of stripping it out. That's all on car tunes though, although I might just fix it myself as I'm never satisfied when other people work on my garbage.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  13. #53
    No mean-spiritedness here. IPreferDIY's Avatar
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    Using two charge wires instead of one shouldn't be a problem if they start at the same point and end at the same point without any funny stuff in between. That's basically the same as using one bigger wire. Definitely fix the body ground. I'd never use a stupid sheet metal screw for a ground point. If there's an existing bolt nearby that you can use, great. Otherwise, use a bolt and nut (and washers if needed). You might want to sand down any paint for a better metal-to-metal connection.

    2000 Grand Marquis LS HPP, a hand-me-down in 2008 with 128,000 km; 175,000 km as of July 2014
    mods: air filter box "tuba" (in place of the "trumpet"), headlight relay harness, J-mod (around 186,350 km), 70mm throttle body, NKL4 PCM (from a 2000 CVPI, nothing great there apart from highway cruising), KYB Gas-A-Just shocks (after >202,000 km on originals)

  14. #54

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    Has anybody found a fix for the constant belt squeal associated with the upgrade. The mass of the rotor to turn is greater due to the larger size and the belt deflection is minimal so at higher rpms you start burning your belt. Once i built my 4r70w aod this has become a problem. these alternators on serpentine drive belt cars dont have this problem as the belt wraps more of the pulley. if you change to serpentine belt config then something has to be done with a/c setup.Does anyone have a belt adjustment to put more belt on the pulley to prevent the burning squeal?

  15. #55
    Member BlackVic_P71's Avatar
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    Never had belt issues with my original engine, or the Mustang belt setup I have now.
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  16. #56
    Beater gonna beat sly's Avatar
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    I have a small squeak on initial startup, but it's from my power steering pump's resistance, not my alternator.

    Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein
    rides: 93 Crown Vic LX (The Red Velvet Cake), 2000 Crown Vic base model (Sandy), 2003 Expedition (the vacation beast)
    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73
    ... and it should all work like magic and unicorns and stuff.
    Quote Originally Posted by dmccaig
    Overhead, some poor bastards are flying in airplanes.

  17. #57
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    I would possibly try a different belt. When I put the 3G on a '87, I had to put on a K060515 belt, or one that was about 51.5" long since I couldn't get the regular one on. The replacement fit well and once properly tensioned, doesn't make any noise.

    Your alternator isn't binding or making any bearing noise, is it? I could imagine one that is not turning freely could easily eat a belt.

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  18. #58
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    No squeals here with the upgrade.
    ~David~

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    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  19. #59
    GMN Regular HiFiMerc's Avatar
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    Mine squeeks a just a bit at start up. I am running a smaller pulley on it though, that might be why.

  20. #60

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    HiFiMerc / Sly, I had the same issue on startup with mine also and could live with that. Once the rotor speed catches up with the belt it stops. I went a lot smaller on the belt and never could lose that first little squeal on startup. My transmission 2/3 accumulator shattered and burned up forward clutches trying to get car home so I rebuilt it. Seeing I installed a 5.0 H.O. last motor i decided to put 4r70w internals in trans. Its a lot better performance and throttle response but the alt belt stays squealing with the higher rpms. I rather not swap alternators back so if there is no easy mod or bracket to refit i will just change the planetary etc back to AOD.

    Black_vic p71 ,Is mustang serpentine like MK7 if so what did you do to keep a/c working without a lot of fuss????

    Thanks

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