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Old 11-08-2012, 07:51 PM   #1
chevybuilder18
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Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

Ok well im switching to serpetine and keeping the carb set up. Id like to wire my new alternator up but it has four points vs the old alternator connectors. Ive heard these newer alternators are much more durable and put our more juice but i havent got a clue as to how i can wire it to the older wiring harness. One point is big. And the three other ones are small. I believe the biggest prong is positive lead. Can anyone tell me what the others do?
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Old 11-08-2012, 09:34 PM   #2
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

That newer alternator is likely a CS130. Here's a good write-up on how to swap one into an older GM vehicle: http://novaresource.org/alternator.htm
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:47 PM   #3
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

This site shows how to convert the SI alternator which you should have in the 78 to the CS which is what you should have on the newer engine. The site is for a CS 144 but it is the same for the CS 130. It is pretty simple and straight forward. I hope you kept the new alternator plug which should say P L F S on the plug. You will only use the L and S pins and you will need to wire a resistor inline on the L wire. I don't know which wire on the 78 harness will go to the L pin but it should be the brown wire and the larger wire is probably a red wire that goes to the S pin. Follow the website and you'll be fine.

..........http://temp.corvetteforum.net/c3/zma...ternator01.htm
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:01 PM   #4
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

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Originally Posted by VetteVet View Post
This site shows how to convert the SI alternator which you should have in the 78 to the CS which is what you should have on the newer engine. The site is for a CS 144 but it is the same for the CS 130. It is pretty simple and straight forward. I hope you kept the new alternator plug which should say P L F S on the plug. You will only use the L and S pins and you will need to wire a resistor inline on the L wire. I don't know which wire on the 78 harness will go to the L pin but it should be the brown wire and the larger wire is probably a red wire that goes to the S pin. Follow the website and you'll be fine.

..........http://temp.corvetteforum.net/c3/zma...ternator01.htm
it didnt come with the wiring
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:57 PM   #5
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

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it didnt come with the wiring
You can get the plug for the CS alternator from a number of places ... junkyard, auto parts store, online vendors, etc...

Many places even offer an SI to CS adapter that'll allow you to just plug it in without having to cut the plug off your truck's existing wiring harness. I think that NovaResource link I posted above lists some part numbers for those adapters.
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Old 11-21-2012, 04:22 PM   #6
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

I couldnt find any of the adapter connectors, googled the part numbers and everything. Could you link me the connector with the resistor acdelco model if you can find them? Im just also curious what these four prongs are for biggest is on the left, going right. Those three smaller ones do something
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Old 11-22-2012, 05:38 AM   #7
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

Well i examined my CS130 and i found those letters right there were you plug the connector to. im serious when i say i dont have the connectors. but i did have some old useless coil in cap wiring connectors, had the female for the prongs, had to cut them in half with a knife but, and put them in. one i kept part of the plastic casing on, making it were it wouldnt short out. since the female connectors look like there for bigger prongs i had to break the plastic for the L connector which i wrapped in electrical tape, but the S connector has plastic on it but i still wrapped it for tight fitting on prong and position. for good measures, electrical tape was used to insure no bad luck. so any ways i made the female connectors tighter and narrower so they can fit these prongs. hows that for a free set up? whats next?
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1978 Chevrolet silverado, shortbox stepside currently being swapped IN is a LM7 5300 vortec, 4l80E, factory 4.11s, slammed, a dream ride and coined QUICKSILVER
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Old 11-22-2012, 01:55 PM   #8
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

Read the link I posted in post 3 and follow the directions. The plug is slightly different but the wiring is the same. The large terminal is the S terminal and is the voltage sensing wire. It could be simply looped back to the large terminal on the alternator, but it is more efficient to connect it to the junction block with the main feed wire to the cab and you should also run connector wires from the battery and the large post on the alternator at the same spot. I think I have a picture for that.
The L terminal is the alternator exciter terminal and it normally goes to the no. 1 spot on the SI alternator which you started with. IIRC. If you don't have any wiring then you can run a wire from any key on hot place such as the ign-unfused terminal on the fuse panel to the L terminal on the new CS alternator. You will have to connect a resistor inline with that wire to protect the diodes in the new alternator. This is all documented very well in the post 3 link.

Here is the plug into the CS alternator telling what the wires are for.

Name:  Alternator Pinout.jpg
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Here is what the plug looks like and you should be able to get one at any junkyard if you can find any gm car with the CS alternator.

Name:  cs130dplug.jpg
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here is the wiring for the CS 144 to give you an idea.

Name:  Cs144configure.jpg
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And here is another for the conversion from the SI alternator with the old external voltage regulator in case any viewers want to convert straight to the CS alternator.

Name:  CSAltConversion.jpg
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Size:  30.5 KB
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Old 11-23-2012, 02:31 AM   #9
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

Quote:
Originally Posted by VetteVet View Post
Read the link I posted in post 3 and follow the directions. The plug is slightly different but the wiring is the same. The large terminal is the S terminal and is the voltage sensing wire. It could be simply looped back to the large terminal on the alternator, but it is more efficient to connect it to the junction block with the main feed wire to the cab and you should also run connector wires from the battery and the large post on the alternator at the same spot. I think I have a picture for that.
The L terminal is the alternator exciter terminal and it normally goes to the no. 1 spot on the SI alternator which you started with. IIRC. If you don't have any wiring then you can run a wire from any key on hot place such as the ign-unfused terminal on the fuse panel to the L terminal on the new CS alternator. You will have to connect a resistor inline with that wire to protect the diodes in the new alternator. This is all documented very well in the post 3 link.

Here is the plug into the CS alternator telling what the wires are for.

Attachment 1016101

Here is what the plug looks like and you should be able to get one at any junkyard if you can find any gm car with the CS alternator.

Attachment 1016102

here is the wiring for the CS 144 to give you an idea.

Attachment 1016103

And here is another for the conversion from the SI alternator with the old external voltage regulator in case any viewers want to convert straight to the CS alternator.

Attachment 1016107
Thanks alot man! sweet.. well i know what im doing tomorrow, i will post pics in the build thread
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1978 Chevrolet silverado, shortbox stepside currently being swapped IN is a LM7 5300 vortec, 4l80E, factory 4.11s, slammed, a dream ride and coined QUICKSILVER
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Old 11-26-2012, 12:27 AM   #10
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

Ok so i have alternator and serpentine belt drive all put in place. I also found the CS 130 connector so were good on the connection. in laymans terms could anyone tell me what the S wire does, and the L wire does? if i know what each wire does, ill be able to understand what ive got and where the wires hook up. please no comments saying "it charges the battery" i already know this but i have yet to know what im doing to the electric system
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1978 Chevrolet silverado, shortbox stepside currently being swapped IN is a LM7 5300 vortec, 4l80E, factory 4.11s, slammed, a dream ride and coined QUICKSILVER
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:13 AM   #11
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

Well I pointed this out in the no. 8 post but I'll go over it again.

The L wire is the field exciter wire that goes to the regulator and turns on the alternator field to start the alternator charging sequence. It comes from a Key on voltage source, and must have a resistor inline to protect the diodes in the alternator, and to prevent voltage feed back to the ignition system to allow the engine to shut down when the key is shut off. This wire originates at the ignition switch and is usually run from the firewall block to the external voltage regulator on the stock truck systems until 73 or 74. It is a 16 gauge brown wire and can be used on the internal voltage regulated alternators in the SI series if it is connected to the no. 1 terminal on the alternator. When converting to the CS series alternators this wire can be run to the L terminal and must have at least a 35 ohm 3 watt resistor inline to the L terminal.

The large wire in the plug is the red sensing wire that tells the voltage regulator what the voltage is on the system. It should be connected at a junction of the battery, the alternator, and the rest of the circuits in the system. When the system voltage drops below charging output voltage the regulator will increase field current strength and allow more output from the alternator and when voltage increases too much then the regulator senses the voltage on the S wire and drops field voltage to prevent overcharging the battery and the system circuits.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:51 PM   #12
chevybuilder18
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Re: Retro fitting tbi alternator into 78 chevy pick up

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Originally Posted by VetteVet View Post
Well I pointed this out in the no. 8 post but I'll go over it again.

The L wire is the field exciter wire that goes to the regulator and turns on the alternator field to start the alternator charging sequence. It comes from a Key on voltage source, and must have a resistor inline to protect the diodes in the alternator, and to prevent voltage feed back to the ignition system to allow the engine to shut down when the key is shut off. This wire originates at the ignition switch and is usually run from the firewall block to the external voltage regulator on the stock truck systems until 73 or 74. It is a 16 gauge brown wire and can be used on the internal voltage regulated alternators in the SI series if it is connected to the no. 1 terminal on the alternator. When converting to the CS series alternators this wire can be run to the L terminal and must have at least a 35 ohm 3 watt resistor inline to the L terminal.

The large wire in the plug is the red sensing wire that tells the voltage regulator what the voltage is on the system. It should be connected at a junction of the battery, the alternator, and the rest of the circuits in the system. When the system voltage drops below charging output voltage the regulator will increase field current strength and allow more output from the alternator and when voltage increases too much then the regulator senses the voltage on the S wire and drops field voltage to prevent overcharging the battery and the system circuits.
Thanks vettevet, i now know how to do that now but it took awhile to get the nerves to be sure what i was doing. got everything hooked up. sorry its been the 8th time. just intimadated, alot of complicated stuff, but SI series alternator had this same connection so i thought examining the Older system, would help me hook my new one up. if i didnt hook it up to existing alternator wires like suggested, id probably still have a feed back and the engine wouldnt shut down. anyways i got the serpentine belt drive on, and the alternator rocks
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