[C38] Universal 5424 Charging problems

D McC cat38skip at yahoo.com
Sun Oct 9 14:37:54 EDT 2005

Afew years ago I looked into the marine vs auto
alternator differences and it seems that there are 2
primary differences. There is a spark arrestor screen
in the marine units. This is of little use to those of
us with diesel motors. Also the marine units usually
have a nice powder coat paint job. I am not sure that
these 2 additions are worth the extra hundreds of
dollars. The various alternator cases, mounts and
internal regulators are exactly the same. External
regulators may be marinized with plastic coatings on
circuits to protect against moisture. I agree with the
posting to get a copy of Nigel Calders' book and test
your charging circuit. 

Fair Winds,
SV Pretty Lady
C38 #148

--- empty <empty1 at ntlworld.com> wrote:

> Rob,
> The Goose has the original universal deisel, and her
> alternator was in need
> of replacement in October 2004 after being laid up
> in St Pete. The one the
> boat yard used to replace it is rated at 70amps and
> cost about $90. A friend
> has a C&C 40 with a universal deisel. When his
> alternator failed in Michigan
> he took it to the local NAPA auto part store. The
> found the equivalent
> compatible replacement in their catalogue and
> delivered it to the boat next
> day. I seem to remember it cost about $100 or so. He
> then sent away the
> failed one for rebuilding, which he now keeps as a
> spare.
> If you have a NAPA or similar nearby, that might be
> a good starting point.
> I'm afraid adding the word 'maritime' to a piece of
> equipment is a notorious
> way of hiking the price.Volvo in the UK are famous
> for this. I once had to
> replace my alternator- the 'genuine' volvo part was
> £140. The local auto
> parts supplier looked it up and found all the Volvo
> alternators were made by
> Bosch and Seimens.He supplied it for £48. In other
> words I would have paid
> £92 for a blue cardboard box with Volvo in white
> letters written on it.
> Look forward to seeing you at end of April when we
> bring The Goose up to
> Solomon's Island.
> Mark.
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Rob Cornelsen" <robcornelsen at yahoo.com>
> To: <Listserve at catalina38.org>
> Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2005 3:39 PM
> Subject: [C38] Universal 5424 Charging problems
> Last weekend we decided to use the autopilot to
> steer
> as we powered from the far side of the Bay back into
> Solomon's Island.  As we entered the Patuxent River,
> we switched on our running lights as it was getting
> dark.  By the time, we returned to our slip, the
> battery was completely drained.
> Our Catalina 38 has the original universal 5424
> engine.  I checked the ammeter on the engine panel
> and
> the alternator appears to be putting out zero to two
> amps.  This is well below the 51 amps that it is
> rated
> for.
> I checked on line at Torresen Marine and a new
> alternator is about $500.00 with freight.   This was
> quite a shock since auto parts stores sell
> alternators
> in the $50.00 price range.
> Does anyone know if an auto alternator is compatible
> with the Universal 5424?  In addition, is there
> anything else that I need to check before replacing
> the alternator?
> Thanks,
> Rob Cornelsen
> Catalina 38 #223
> 301/717-8324
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