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Electrical Discussion of preventative/corrective maintenance and other technical issues regarding your coach's electrical system.

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  #1  
Old 06-13-2013
cire cire is offline
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Default Multiple failures of Delco 50DN alternator.

My Delco Remy 50DN alternator has failed again. The previous owner replaced the alternator for some reason before I bought the coach at 30k miles. I had to replace the alternator at 40k. It failed again at about 50k. Now I have another failure at 105k. Does anyone have any experience with multiple failures with their 50DN?

I currently plan to take the alternator to a local motor shop in Fort Wayne, IN, which is close to where we are staying for the rest of the month. I have a concern about letting some shop learn how to rebuild a 50DN on my alternator. If anyone knows of a shop that might be expert on the 50DN, I'd appreciate knowing about it.
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  #2  
Old 06-13-2013
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sfedeli sfedeli is offline
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Eric- There is a shop in Harrisburg, PA called Fleet Electric that does a great job. I know it's a ways from you, but if you plan to be in the Northeast anytime, you are welcome to spend a night or two in the Robin's nest while it is rebuilt.

Given the repeated failures, I am tempted to say that something is amiss with the ground strap or cabling connections on the coach. Loose nut on the charge ammeter shunt? Corrosion on the copper bus bars?
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  #3  
Old 06-13-2013
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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I would like to know what failed in all of them.
Rebuilt alternators and starters scare me.
Most of the parts used these days are made in china.
Also,there was an oil line issue with the 50DN,theres an upgrade for it.
Bigger lines or fittings or something.

So,what failed in them?
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Old 06-13-2013
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There is a place around Detroit called Kirks Automotive that specializes in these alternators. They are a NAPA dealer and do alternators for several types of buses and trucks. I bought one from them and even went up and took the core back to them. They give a one year warranty and I have had this one for about a year, so far so good. I had mine shipped to me and got it within a couple days. You can give them a call they were great to deal with and really seem like they know what they are doing.
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  #5  
Old 06-13-2013
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Kirksauto.com is the website.
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Old 06-13-2013
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Birtles has a new one for sale.
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  #7  
Old 06-13-2013
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isp2952 isp2952 is online now
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Eric,
I can't help you with a place to take the alternator to, but I live close to Ft. Wayne and if you need anything let me know. I'm retired and not that busy that I can't jump in the car and bring my tools. I'm a good gofer.
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  #8  
Old 06-13-2013
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sold
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  #9  
Old 06-14-2013
cire cire is offline
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Default Follow up #1

I am not sure what happened to the first two 50DN failures. On the third failure I took it to a shop where they found there was a phenolic board within the alternator that had cracked. (More importantly they found that Detroit Diesel in Las Vegas had installed a 24 volt alternator!!!!) DD diesel in Las Vegas replaced the alternator and did some major maintenance at no charge to make the problem right. It was just before my discovering the failure that I installed a 3 step "Ample Power" voltage regulator.

I don't know what has happened in my most recent failure. I hope to have the 50DN taken apart and evaluated. I'll let you know what they find. Shane Fedeli suggested a ground strap. It would be easy enough to add a grounding strap to the alternator although the direct bolt up to the engine suggests that grounding is probably not the problem. The rest of the electrical connections look to be secure.

Tomorrow I'll give Kirks Automotive and some local shops a call to decide who is going to preform the autopsy.

Eric, currently near Fort Wayne, IN
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Last edited by cire; 06-14-2013 at 12:49 AM.
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  #10  
Old 06-14-2013
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FWIW: I have replaced Delco alternators with Leese Neville products; they seem to last as long and are much more reasonably priced; have bought LN units for under $200 vs. well over $300 for Delco.
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