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Alternator Amp Size Needed #1299959 Thu Feb 21 2019 03:32 AM
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 104
K
kclark2227 Offline OP
Shop Shark
I have a 1954 Chevy 6100 with a 235 Straight 6. I am having to convert from 6 to 12 volt. I was figuring I would need just a standard 10si 63 amp alternator. Is there a way to calculate this. The truck is fully stock. It has a radio (currently doesn't work), a heater, lights of course, adding a trailer brake controller and maybe, just maybe in the future I might add A/C. Would 63 amps be sufficient?

Re: Alternator Amp Size Needed [Re: kclark2227] #1299962 Thu Feb 21 2019 03:39 AM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 19,003
H
Hotrod Lincoln Offline
Boltergeist
That's more than twice the capacity of the average 12 volt generator. 63 amps should have enough charging capacity to support anything you add on later, unless you choose to install a fancy sound system and a bed full of high-wattage speakers.
Jerry


The murder victim was drowned in a bathtub full of Rice Krispies and milk.
The coroner blamed the crime on a cereal killer!

Cringe and wail in fear, Eloi- - - - -we Morlocks are on the hunt!
Re: Alternator Amp Size Needed [Re: kclark2227] #1299971 Thu Feb 21 2019 04:17 AM
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 104
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kclark2227 Offline OP
Shop Shark
I was trying to figure things up on a website for alternators and it kept figuring up like 72 amps. I thought that was way too high.

Re: Alternator Amp Size Needed [Re: kclark2227] #1299974 Thu Feb 21 2019 04:44 AM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 19,003
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Hotrod Lincoln Offline
Boltergeist
The charging system will supply current to meet the electrical needs of the vehicle first, like lights, ignition, heater blower, radio, etc., then whatever capacity is left over will be used for battery charging. For instance- - - -ignition 5 amps, high beam headlights, 15 amps, tail lights/turn signals 10 amps, heater high fan 15 amps, radio 10 amps max- - - -if everything is on at once, that's 55 amps. that would leave 8 amps to charge the battery. More realistically, you'll probably have 20-25 amps accessory draw, and 40 amps or so available for battery charging. Immediately after starting, charge current into the battery will probably be 40 amps, and it will quickly taper off to 10 amps or less as the starting load is replenished. If you want a little overkill, use a 75 amp alternator- - - -the price won't be that much different than a 63, and you'll probably never use the full output.
Jerry


The murder victim was drowned in a bathtub full of Rice Krispies and milk.
The coroner blamed the crime on a cereal killer!

Cringe and wail in fear, Eloi- - - - -we Morlocks are on the hunt!
Re: Alternator Amp Size Needed [Re: kclark2227] #1300108 Fri Feb 22 2019 02:14 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 83
5
59 fleet Offline
Shop Shark
Just as a point of reference, I have a standard 10si unit, I think about 57 or 60 amp capacity. I take regular road trips, 5-10 hours. With AC, headlights, stereo, electric fuel pump, points ignition, cruise control, electric choke, probably some others I can't remember the alternator keeps up with demand. Don't worry about trailer brake controller, it uses very little power except when you are actually braking. The battery will handle those intermittent loads. If you have an electric fan and electric wipers that may require the next level of output. I have been well satisfied with my alternator.


Moderated by  Rusty Rod 

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