[Chrysler300] Fwd: Noel's 300F electrical issues -
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[Chrysler300] Fwd: Noel's 300F electrical issues -

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Begin forwarded message:

From: John Grady <jkg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: August 14, 2016 at 8:28:30 AM EDT
To: cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: Noel's 300F electrical issues -

Sounds highly promising . First description is all normal stuff . VR and wiring is working right . And probably always does, Second issue you note is not that it is "discharging " ( even though factually true) rather it is not charging enough on heavy loads to offset that added load.  Words are very important as true " discharging " happens with key off , kills battery due to leak sitting still. Discharge indication with engine on over 1500 rpm is due to not enough rpm or defect in charge system . Also normal at times ( at idle with headlights on ,or  rainy night defroster / wiper on too ) Headlights  take more than gen makes at idle by themselves especially if other stuff is on too  . So it takes some from the checking account ( battery) . It cannot be headlight switch , but , as odd as it may sound , both of your bad experiences involved night drive ? Plus you upgraded headlights ( that is ok ) but might be higher watts . Also ok but taxes charge system more . 30 A times 12 is 360 watts = all you have as a total max to use running along at higher rpm . 4x35 w ( stock)=  140 w hi beam . Halogen can be up to 50 or 55 . 220 watts still ok . Wipers , heat fan, etc play into this . 100 watts each ? Why Ac gen is larger at35?or 40 . New car alternator today is 60-100 A ( 700-1200watts , plus alternator charges more at idle) 
Why I say odd is that dead battery after night drive but ok in day is exactly what a slipping belt does . Or second , a generator with troubles . ( arcing brushes) . This could all be as simple as a slipping belt ? HAS to be quite tight . Tighter than you might think. It is a classic symptom / syndrome back in the day . Sometimes no noise . It is either that or still a marginal generator , or too long belt ? 
Interested what you find . I had this on a six volt  Packard , went through your dance about 1965 .

 Working right = over about 1000 rpm should show amps at middle or very slight charge , headlights , heat wipers on in  day too ..... letting it idle will show discharge . NOW IMPORTANT = That is 100 % normal . And dimmer lights . Gen going too slow to make 200 + w , battery supplies deficit for a bit . ( why discharge indication) 
A  Good way to check charging is lights brighten up perceptively with rev off idle  .
Hope this helps ! Even slipping belt charges enough in day ... Look for shiny belt and shiny pulley . I believe rough spec is you can deflect only 3/4 " in middle of long span max with thumb . Needs pry bar to be that tight . That you changed it back might have slightly tightened belt .
You are doing great . Understanding it better than fixing it ! Almost ! 
Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 13, 2016, at 11:49 PM, cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx wrote:

So here's the latest on my F's electrical charging issue -
  • This week Michael Burke sent me another generator (Autolite GJC7012A, which John Holst's chart says  fits '56 Chrysler, '60 Imperial, '57-'60 Plymouth and Dodge). I installed it, but stupidly didn't compare the positions of the 'ears' for bolting on. My fan belt was a bit loose, with the generator pivoted to the end of the slotted bracket, so couldn't tighten the belt further. But I hooked up and ran the car. It screeched some, and the ammeter showed the car not charging, just like with my existing generator. Am assuming the ears on this other generator are positioned a bit differently than on my exiting one, causing this loose belt. The generator belt pulley is the same diameter on each of these 2 generators.
    • WIth Michael's generator installed, I tried loosening my P/S pump, to slide off that belt, to replace my generator belt. I couldn't figure out how to loosen that belt, so just retightened the P/S pump, and left the belts as they were.

    • So then I removed Michael's generator and reinstalled my old one. Car was still not charging.

  • Today I drove the car to a cruise night, 45 miles from home, in Morris, IL, all interstate driving. Seemed bizarre, but the ammeter read that the car was charging as it should! I checked the battery when I arrived, and the meter read 12.92, which was similar to the 12.85 fully charged reading I had at home, before heading out! It was charging the entire trip to Morris.

Then, heading home this evening at about 8:30, with headlights on, the ammeter again read discharge! After my 45 mile, 45 minute drive home, I checked the battery again, and it reads about 12.42 - still enough to start the car, but clearly discharging.

Could there be a problem with my headlight switch, that's causing this? A few weeks ago, I noticed the dash lights seemed to be flickering just a little. I have not seen this flickering recur, and there was no flickering tonight. I tried turning the lights off and on a few times, but no effect to the discharging on the ammeter.

I've changed the generator regulator a couple times, and did polarize the ones I installed. I do have one more new regulator, that I can try to install, if you think that may be the problem.

I welcome your thoughts?!?


From: "Mark O" <354hemi@xxxxxxxxx>
To: "noel" <cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tuesday, August 2, 2016 10:41:17 PM
Subject: Re: Noel's 300F electrical issues -

Wish I had a spare minute to come over and assist.  Hope it's the generator.

On Aug 2, 2016 10:17 PM, "Noel Hastalis" <cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Spoke with Michael Burke yesterday. He pulled a generator from a '60 NYer, and was to take it to his local shop today to check it out; then is sending it to me. I replaced the regulator twice, so it's likely not that. I don't know electrical systems, so we'll see. 

Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 2, 2016, at 9:21 PM, Mark O <354hemi@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Hi Noel,

Fascinating stuff.  Any progress?


On Jul 31, 2016 10:57 PM, "Noel Hastalis" <cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Thanks Greg. I'll do this. This shop has been around a long time and has a good reputation. 

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On Jul 31, 2016, at 10:30 PM, Greg Leggatt <ggleggatt@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

In my opinion, there should be nothing about a generator that can't be rebuilt. It depends entirely on the capabilities of the shop!

The only thing I can add is to be sure to take the regulator to the shop at the same time. Skilled shops can precisely "match" the reg. to the gen. I haven't had any of this work done in the last 15 years so a lot will have changed. But, here is some advice given to me many years ago. Carry your gen. into the shop and if the tech doesn't ask for the reg. carry your gen. to another shop!!

I don't suppose there are a lot of other shop choices today!


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On Jul 31, 2016, at 10:35 PM, cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx wrote:

Greg, John and Friends -
I know you're sick of my emails, but here's what I'm seeing -
  1. No spark at all when disconnecting neg battery cable.
  2. Yes, discharge progressively increases > dome light, parking lights, headlights, high beams, heater, high fan on heater. 
  3. Starting engine, ammeter blips a touch to the left, but then right back to the same position - just to the right of 1/4 point.
  4. I pulled the cap of the regulator I replaced, and it looks fine inside. No indication of any burnt points, etc. 
Do you think my generator is rebuildable, or should I trash it? Could it be slightly warped?
In the past 11 years I've owned this 300, the generator first went bad in Sept 2014, as I was driving down to Effeingham, IL to meet Spanky for lunch, and hook up with John B. for our cruise out to Alamogordo. My ammeter went full left about 50 miles north of Spanky's, so I drove to his home. He pulled the generator and had an experienced local shop he often uses rebuild it. The shop owner commented that the generator bearing was really bad. But he rebuilt the generator, we picked it up 2 hours after dropping it off, and reinstalled it. Charging reading was fine. So, up through this past November, I drove the car 11,000 miles with no apparent issues. In January, I took the car for a cruise of about 240 miles round trip to Bloomington, IL, and the ammeter showed discharge about 40% of the way on this trip. I barely made it home, and blew out a muffler a mile from home, as the car did a huge backfire on the expressway exit ramp! Among the work I had done over the winter was another rebuild of the generator - was told that the brushes were almost nonexistent. I've driven the car about 2,500 miles this driving season, until the discharge problem rose up about 3 weeks ago.
I'm not sure how available these generators are, but I'll see if I can locate another one.
I really appreciate your input and patience!

From: "Greg Leggatt" <ggleggatt@xxxxxxxxx>
To: cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: "John Grady" <jkg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Don Verity" <dverity@xxxxxxxxxxx>, "Mark Oberman" <354hemi@xxxxxxxxx>, "Andy Mikonis" <r41hp@xxxxxxxxx>, "john begian" <r2gthawk@xxxxxxxxx>, "Michael & Linda Burke" <c300f@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Sunday, July 31, 2016 8:37:45 PM
Subject: Re: Noel's 300F electrical issues -

Hi Noel,
So, with everything "off", do you get any spark at all when you disconnect the battery? 

With battery connected you should see a small discharge as you open the door and dome lights come on. A little more discharge when you turn ignition switch to on. More if you turn on lights, blower etc.?

When you start the engine does the ammeter jump at all? If not and because this is with a new regulator I would point my finger at the generator. Yeah, I know it was checked out earlier!

Good luck.

Sent from my iPad

On Jul 31, 2016, at 12:05 PM, cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx wrote:

Hi John,
I removed the negative cable battery cutoff switch, and no change, so that's not the problem. I also just replaced the regulator with a new one from Napa, polarized it, and started the car - still no change. I took it for a quick test drive - same discharge.
I have battery now charged to 12.8. When I turn the headlights and heater on, it discharges even more. Bright lights cause even deeper discharge.
A couple years ago, I replaced the headlights with regular halogens from Napa. But have driven thousands of miles with these, so don't see this as the problem?
You mentioned pulling the fuses, one at a time. If I do that, and take a reading with my meter, if there's a bum circuit, will the reading on the meter and ammeter improve to 'normal'? I'll try that now.

Being totally ignorant about the electrical system, you mention 3 relays. I don't know where they are, and how I should listen for open/close.
When I shut the car and leave battery connected, it does not discharge further, if this indicates anything to you, so there doesn't appear to be a drain when the car is off.
Sorry to bug you with all this, but I'm clueless!

From: "John Grady" <jkg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Saturday, July 30, 2016 7:18:38 PM
Subject: Re: Noel's 300F electrical issues -

Just FYI , The battery disconnect can cause this problem and more actually if opened under load . ( engine running) Or not closed tight . They are not a good idea despite widespread use . I understand the why , but I would rather See take off cable once in winter . If that switch opens while running say in error gen has no load , no 12-14v reference , volts can jump way high before VR can act , hurt your radio badly and maybe VR . Called "load dump" by auto EE 's . Huge specific protective system in modern car as that can blow all the computers , radio etc Have had discussions with great unwashed on this , "I do it all the time " ok . 
For real kill switch , hide wire + toggle switch , short out points to ground at point side of coil . Make wire look factory . It would take hours to find . If done right , guy thinks it won't start ( he is right ) ?fuel etc etc he will kill battery trying unless very smart 

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On Jul 30, 2016, at 4:36 PM, cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx wrote:

I just spoke with Greg Leggatt, and forwarded your email to him.
I bought a new VR from Napa today, and will try installing that later. A couple questions -
  1. Is there something in the wiring issue that would cause the VR to stop working?
  2. If I pull the fuses one at a time, if there's a bum circuit, should the charging reading on my meter jump up to the 14.2 or so level that it should be? I always use the negative ground battery disconnect so not sure if the battery is draining from an interior circuit, but not sure.

From: "John Grady" <jkg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Saturday, July 30, 2016 2:22:55 PM
Subject: Re: Noel's 300F electrical issues -

Just quickly right now , Noel , driving, have to separate a drain within car ( ? Possible , but unlikely to do this ) and a drain caused by a defect in charging system . One of the three relays is a cutout , when you stop car it should open ( you can see this . Otherwise battery runs into stopped gen ) complicated to explain quickly , but can get polarized wrong way if generator fails then it sticks shut killing battery but also no charge when running due to first problem of no or intermittant charge ( domino thing) A drain in car with a good charging system( unless major short , like in burn) will still show charge on ammeter . In fact a big charge . So I think something wrong in gen or VR . ( or related wiring ) . No you do not need a harness . Huge job , has probably nothing to do with this . VR wiring and gen wiring are localized under hood . Quickest fix is get another used gen , get good guy to put brushes in it if you want ,new VR check the 2 wires and ground . 95% you will fix it . I know guy said it was good .( smile) 
Wish I was there to help . Try to find old ammeter , put in battery lead see discharge . Now lift batt wire off VR . If leak goes you know where it is . If still leak have to get into car . But good charging system will fill battery up again . It will not allow dimming headlights etc That said check all interior lights . Pull fuses one at time if not VR isuues 

Sent from my iPhone
Pass onto other guys if you want .. On inphone in car 

On Jul 29, 2016, at 8:53 PM, cpaviper@xxxxxxxxxxx wrote:

Don, Greg, John, Michael,
My 300 was doing fine until recently, when it started showing discharge on the ammeter. It was, in fact, discharging, as the lights grew dim as I was driving home from a cruise night about 35 miles away a couple weeks ago. The astradome lighting was flickering a bit, and the headlights seemed to be dim. I pulled into the garage, turned it off, tried starting it, and just heard a couple clicks. The ammeter had been reading discharge several days before that evening's issues.
Yesterday I took the car to the nearby shop that did a lot of mechanical work on it over the winter. We pulled and checked the generator, and it's fine. The battery is good. We replaced the regulator with another one I had, and the car was charging. By the time I got home from my 1/2 hour drive, it was discharging again.
I checked things with my little multimeter this afternoon - battery reading with car running and accessories on is about 12.0. WIth accessories off is about 12.2. I know both of these readings are low. With the car off it was at 12.4; now back at 12.85 with the battery recharged.
I'm not sure how to resolve this. Have never had electrical issues until now. But my fossilized wiring is now 56 years old. Wondering if I need to purchase one of Greg Leggatt's famous wiring harnesses, and find someone who knows how to install it? Or, if this sounds like something that can be resolved more easily?
Do you have any words of wisdom?



Posted by: John Grady <jkg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

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