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Old 12-24-2011, 04:40 AM   #16
outfit
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Same principle, different application = $50. Nowhere near as good looking, but hey 15 yrs of sterling work and not a part replaced.
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Old 12-24-2011, 06:56 AM   #17
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I've seen several of these around Cy but they aren't common. There may be several versions, by different people. Don't think any of this is patentable so make your own if you want. The total killer set up. You can also hang the alternator off the side and adjust the belt tension with a movable arm. That's a little easier to do actually just need and old rotor to machine to take a pulley. Also helpful to have an extra front engine cover because you are going to cut it up and you may want to keep the original in original shape.

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Old 12-24-2011, 07:43 AM   #18
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My concern w/ the alt over he engine, is that it's somewhat exposed to the elements. What does all the dust and moisture do tot he alternator? It's going to get inside of it and create havoc??? The bean can may be a little more susceptible to moisture too? I know it has a gasket, but one would want to make sure it's sealed up.
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Old 12-24-2011, 07:44 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disston View Post
I've seen several of these around Cy but they aren't common. There may be several versions, by different people. Don't think any of this is patentable so make your own if you want. The total killer set up. You can also hang the alternator off the side and adjust the belt tension with a movable arm. That's a little easier to do actually just need and old rotor to machine to take a pulley. Also helpful to have an extra front engine cover because you are going to cut it up and you may want to keep the original in original shape.

Charlie
Even if it's patented, any D.I.Y.'er is permitted to copy a patent if they want to.
I'd like to see a picture of the one above with the external alternator with the front cover off. What does it use to drive that pulley?
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Old 12-24-2011, 07:45 AM   #20
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I dont think there's much in harms way inside the alternator... Its pretty much just wires and magnets and they're sealed inside varnish anyway, right? I would think heat is the bigger killer, although there are probably a couple of electrical connections that could stand a good bit of grease to keep the direct contact with the environment at bay.
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Old 12-24-2011, 07:47 AM   #21
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...or you could just realize that you don't need to run enough lighting to make your bike look like a low flying UFO and just settle for one of the more conventional solutions. I say "overkill". Inventive, yes, unique, yes, necessary, no.
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Old 12-24-2011, 08:32 AM   #22
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Even if it's patented, any D.I.Y.'er is permitted to copy a patent if they want to.
I'd like to see a picture of the one above with the external alternator with the front cover off. What does it use to drive that pulley?
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Old 12-24-2011, 08:58 AM   #23
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Ever take a look at a car alternator - all greasy and grungy? They're hanging out there exposed with just a radiator to block the bugs, but not the dust and dirt. No, they're pretty rugged and sitting out in the open won't hurt it a bit.

I've wanted to mount an alternator like Guru's, in front of the starter, using one of those ultra small Mitsubishis - I think that's it. Something like five inches across and six long. It requires some major cutting, and would be noticeable. But it could be done for less than a hundred bucks and from then on would be a breeze to maintain - just a belt and some cleaning. No more diode board hassles, rotors, low charging and on and on. It would be a tight fit, but can be done.
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Old 12-24-2011, 09:20 AM   #24
outfit
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...or you could just realize that you don't need to run enough lighting to make your bike look like a low flying UFO and just settle for one of the more conventional solutions. I say "overkill". Inventive, yes, unique, yes, necessary, no.
Same lighting structure as a car...........make's alot of sense to me.
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Old 12-24-2011, 10:45 AM   #25
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The auto/truck/van/boat alternator version can be done on the cheap, but:
  • It is a monstrosity.
  • Takes too much volume. Plus takes away one driving light light positional placement location.
  • It has to be stressing the the front support bearing if not properly set-up.
  • That open belt is just waiting to take off some fingers.

Now, not raining on the the parade of those using that design but there are alternatives that seem to be so much more technically feasible and cost effective. I base that on including my past of doing my share of bizarre gen->alt conversions and modified alt systems.

As per the application of the $800 kit and its application in sidecar use, unless you're bent on an airhead a low mileage excellent condition K75 can be had for $1500-$2000USD. There are those that hammer the K75, and the K100, as a worthwhile solo machine. Yet when a K75 or K100 is used for sidecar use they make an outstanding choice. The later year models have the high output alternaors and other components ideal for sidecar use.

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Old 12-24-2011, 11:25 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disston View Post
I've seen several of these around Cy but they aren't common. There may be several versions, by different people. Don't think any of this is patentable so make your own if you want. The total killer set up. You can also hang the alternator off the side and adjust the belt tension with a movable arm. That's a little easier to do actually just need and old rotor to machine to take a pulley. Also helpful to have an extra front engine cover because you are going to cut it up and you may want to keep the original in original shape.

Charlie
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Originally Posted by outfit View Post
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wirespokes View Post
I've wanted to mount an alternator like Guru's, in front of the starter, using one of those ultra small Mitsubishis - I think that's it. Something like five inches across and six long. It requires some major cutting, and would be noticeable. But it could be done for less than a hundred bucks and from then on would be a breeze to maintain - just a belt and some cleaning. No more diode board hassles, rotors, low charging and on and on. It would be a tight fit, but can be done.
this could turn into a viable lost cost mod ... take a small automotive alternator (60amps) with internal regulator, then modify original stator with a pulley. add one idler bearing which could hang off alternator to adjust belt tension.

then figure out bypass wiring needed, when diode board is removed. if original stator could be reused, then the one critical component needed $$$ (machined tapered spindle) would be eliminated. rest of components are low tech, fabrication wise.

with a small enough alternator, there is no reason why original front cover could not be used without cutting and/or very minimal alteration. there would be very low torque to front crank/alternator pulley belt.

someone could figure out a CNC component package for say $275 range, you add your own alternator $75 = $350 aprox. conversion cost. end result would overcome a basic weakness of an airhead charging system, which is alternator can only spin same speed as engine.

_cy_ screwed with this post 12-24-2011 at 11:36 AM
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Old 12-24-2011, 01:41 PM   #27
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I've seen this system before and I've been interested in the system for my Airhead but my main concern has always been the actual cost.

So.... Is the final story that we deliver our bike or engine to you and you return it to us two days later with the upgrades installed and working for $800? If thats the case, then this isn't a bad deal at all.

OTOH, if $800 gets me a box of parts and leaves me with things to figure out, parts to modify or have modified and a whole lot of electrical engineering to do, it's just not worth it. I'm not trying to sound like a curmudgeon here but in my experience, "two days estimated installation time" usually works out to being between four days and a week for the average home garage wrench who'll need to consult the instructions 20 times and measure the same number of times before cutting.

At current Nor Cal shop rates ($85 Hr.), hiring someone to spend two days installing this system (If anyone wrenching on Airheads would commit to doing it.), will cost $1496.00 after tax and that makes the conversion cost $2296(!).

Greg: You would be doing us all a favor, if you more clearly spelled out what it's going to take to install your conversion in the average Airhead. Lets say, my 1980 R100. Remember, $800 buys a very expensive Farkle but $2300 puts us solidly into used K-bike territory.

I'm attracted to the idea of the conversion, because aside from gaining what would be "unlimited Airhead electrical power" it would solve several reliability issues that haunt Beemer riders. Add in the fact that it's a kool thing to show off and it's a clear winner for those with somewhat deep pockets.
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Old 12-24-2011, 04:08 PM   #28
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Old 12-24-2011, 04:31 PM   #29
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somebody dug deep to pull up this old thread.
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Old 12-24-2011, 05:07 PM   #30
_cy_
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Originally Posted by datchew View Post
somebody dug deep to pull up this old thread.
that would be me... Greg's Australian 800 watt alternator is the slickest and priciest solution.
at $800 small wonder adoption has been a bit slow. from what I can tell very few units has made it to the US.

there is no reason one cannot use stock rotor slightly modded to drive a belt. hardware to mount a small alternator with internal regulator, an idler pulley and a way to bypass diode board.

be interesting to find out if copper brush conductor could be used to drive a flat belt without mod.
lots of automotive alternators and idler pulley combo's out there.

don't know if it's possible, but sure be cool to do this mod with little to no custom CNC parts.

does anyone have any dead airhead rotors that they can send me?

_cy_ screwed with this post 12-25-2011 at 07:05 AM
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