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Generators In this forum we will try to answer any of your questions about the different model generators that can be found on Blue Bird coach's.

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  #1  
Old 07-31-2018
FiremanTX FiremanTX is offline
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Join Date: May 2018
Location: La Vernia
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Smile Another Perkins/Kohler Replacement Story

Well, we purchased our first Bird the week of July 4th. She’s got a few issues, but good bones and we’re excited to give her a good home. When we purchased the unit, we were told that the generator smoked badly, seemed to stumble, but that it had recently quit running all together. According to the hour meter, the generator had just over 1000 hours on it, so I doubted seriously that it was a mechanical failure.

It was a piece of cake to get the old Perkins running like a top. Come to find out two O-rings were improperly installed on the fuel filters so the engine was both sucking air and starving for fuel. Unfortunately, even with the Perkins running well, the Kohler generator wasn’t putting out any juice. I accepted my fate and made the drive from Denver, CO to San Antonio, TX without any semblance of air conditioning. Once home, I began to diagnose the generator – ****, an open winding on the stator. This is going to get expensive...

Having it rewound would be cost prohibitive and I’d still be left with a 34 year old unit, so the search began to find a new generator to mount to the rear of the old Perkins. With the wealth of knowledge available on the WOG, I settled on a Central Georgia Generator. I went ahead and ordered a single bearing, single-phase, 16.5kW brushless unit. Shipped to my door it cost just a few hundred dollars more than the cost of repairing the old Kohler. For those who are thinking of doing the same, my Perkins had an SAE 4 bellhousing and an SAE 7.5 flywheel. I ordered the generator on Monday and it arrived just two short days later.

Puling the PT’s generator tray was a simple task. I drained the cooling system, disconnected the batteries (both house and generator), disconnected the fuel lines, removed the pin on the hydraulic ram, removed the bottom plate on the generator tray, and rolled my motorcycle jack into position. Using a couple of pieces of 4x4 timber I used the motorcycle jack to take the weight of the tray and then slowly rolled the unit out disconnecting wires as necessary. The motorcycle jack worked perfectly, and I used a few more pieces of 4x4 wood cribbing to build a platform to rest the unit on while I made the repairs.

Disassembly was fairly easy but keeping all the wiring straight can be a challenge. To aid the process of identifying each wire in the control box, I made up a MS Word document that prints on Avery 5466 mailing labels. Simply print a couple pages of labels, break out the scissors, cut and label away. They aren’t waterproof and won’t last the life of the generator, but they are inexpensive and perfect for what I needed to accomplish. I’ve attached the template if anyone would like to use it for their project.

I've also attached a couple of pictures of the removal - look at all the crud on the bottom of the generator tray - it's a borderline HAZMAT spill!

More to come as the swap progresses...
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File Type: doc Wire Labels 2.doc (38.5 KB, 28 views)
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Colin & Abbie
La Vernia, TX
1984 PT-40 - 6V92

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  #2  
Old 07-31-2018
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irmagoo irmagoo is offline
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good read colin
clean up is always a bear on a job like this,,,,
thanks for sharing
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even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in awhile
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  #3  
Old 07-31-2018
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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Your the man~!
Thanks for the pics,if you need help,just call!
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  #4  
Old 08-01-2018
oldmansax oldmansax is offline
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I am in the process of doing the same thing. I took the whole engine/generator assembly out of the carrier so I could insulate it and under the bus as well. I had to power wash the carrier and paint it. I have removed the rear mounts, lowered them and am going to re-weld them to the carrier when I feel better.

TOM
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  #5  
Old 08-07-2018
FiremanTX FiremanTX is offline
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Default Generator Install

Eager to get started with the new generator install, I opened the crate to admire my purchase when horror struck… The SAE 4 bell housing has 12 bolt holes and the generator only has 8, what the heck?!? I rechecked all of my measurements and they were all spot on. I called Central Georgia Generator (CGG) and told them that I thought that I had received an improper bell housing due to the mismatch in bolt holes. Here’s where I show my newbie card… They transferred me to a technician who explained the following:
The old Kohler was a pancake style generator head, it is round in shape which allows the use of all 12 bell housing bolts. The new generator is hexagonal in shape and therefore only uses 8 bell housing bolts to mount it to the engine. This concerned me, but he reassured me that after 50 years of working on generators, he had never had an issue with this and that Stamford and others use the same hexagonal design with only 8 bolts. He gave me a few additional pointers such as:

• Make sure to clean the flywheel and generator mating surfaces to remove any contaminants (I used brake parts cleaner and a scotch bright pad)
• Use two studs in the flywheel (only hand tight) to help align everything during assembly
• Once mated, spin the unit a couple of full revolutions using the crankshaft pully bolt to help ensure that everything is mated fully and to ensure free rotation of the unit
• Use blue Loctite on the flywheel bolts and torque them to 15ftlbs in three steps (5, 10, 15) using a star pattern (just like with lug nuts)
• Torque the bell housing bolts to 55ftlbs in three steps (15, 35, 55) using the same star pattern
• Take your time and do not drop the flywheel bolts – they are nearly impossible to recover without taking the generator off
The support I received from CGG was outstanding. Their willingness to walk a newbie through the install process was much appreciated. Their shipping was incredibly fast, the ordering process was seamless, and the product seems to be well built with easy to service parts such as the voltage regulator.

Installation was straightforward. I mounted the generator to the engine, extended the fuel lines that go into the fuel block to clear the wider generator head, and modified the old Kohler mounts so that they attached to the side of the Perkin’s bell housing rather than the rear of it. This allowed me to use the same mounts with only a moderate modification to the brackets. With everything bolted together it was time to begin the process of rebuilding the control box…
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La Vernia, TX
1984 PT-40 - 6V92

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  #6  
Old 08-07-2018
FiremanTX FiremanTX is offline
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Default The Brains...

There’s tons of room in the new generator’s electrical box as it only contains a single terminal block and the voltage regulator. I decided to transplant all of the Kohler’s control box components into the new generator’s electrical box. I installed all new relays, sockets, circuit breakers and transplanted the old terminal block and switches. Once I had the components roughed in I began cutting and splicing the new wiring. After a few hours of measuring, cutting, drilling and a few choice words, the new control box looks pretty good. Maybe not quite factory quality, but certainly serviceable and I’m happy with the results…

Here are the new parts that I installed and links to purchase each:
3 – relays with sockets (link: http://a.co/9RdZ81F)
1 – Ice Cube Relay (link: https://www.digikey.com/short/jrww23)
1 – Socket for Ice Cube Relay (link: https://www.digikey.com/short/jrwwwj)
1 – 10-amp resettable circuit breaker (link: https://www.digikey.com/short/jrwww0)
1 – 6 screw terminal block (link: https://www.digikey.com/short/jrwwn2)
1 – Double pole 50 amp circuit breaker (link: https://tinyurl.com/y7vj2wfy)
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1984 PT-40 - 6V92

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  #7  
Old 08-07-2018
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John Wyatt – Administrator/Moderator
 
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Great job and a very helpful write-up!
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