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Old 05-16-2014, 06:35 PM   #1
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high amp alternator for Perkins 4-154

Can someone point me to the correct BalMar or equivalent high amperage alternator that will bolt on the Perkins 4-154? I have the standard 45 amp 12VDC alternators on the boat now. I'd like at least 70 amps without having to change the belt style. Can someone give me the correct model and part numbers for a drop in high amperage 12VDC alternator to replace the factory unit. I plan on using the smart controller and temperature monitor as well.
The vessel is a 1976 Gulfstar 36' Mark II.
Thanks,
Bill
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Old 05-16-2014, 06:58 PM   #2
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As a Balmar alternative - For the past decade or so Perkins Sabre has used Prestolite as standard issue. Mine are 90 amp 12V units and have been trouble free. Last time I looked lots of Prestolite choices at very good prices. They've been in business for over 100 years.
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Old 05-16-2014, 07:24 PM   #3
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Do you have a model number for the Prestolite alternator that you are using?
Thanks for the advice.
Bill
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Old 05-16-2014, 07:43 PM   #4
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BillyIII, I'm not sure about your 4.154, but here are some links that might help.

http://balmar.net/PDF/seven-series-alternators.pdf

http://balmar.net/PDF/2010-Balmar-al...manual-web.pdf

Mine uses the 2 inch spindle Delco style as described here on page 4.

http://balmar.net/2012-PRODUCT-GUIDE-WEB.pdf

I have a 7 series still sitting in its box (I believe it's the 712-110) with the MC-614 external smart regulator to install on mine. It requires a 1/2 inch belt width. If your belt is 3/8 inch, there's a 712-80, rated at 80A.

Have you considered having your existing alternator rewired to increase its output to 75A and skipping the external regulator?
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Old 05-16-2014, 07:48 PM   #5
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Thanks for the information Al. I'll look at the links and way various options.
I don't know the size belts on the current 4-154's. Looks like I better find out. I would prefer the 3 stage charge controllers because one engine will be charging a larger AGM battery bank.
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:01 PM   #6
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Here's what I've got on there now.



Here's what I'll mount.



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Old 05-16-2014, 09:00 PM   #7
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Thanks Al it looks like the standard mount is the 2" foot is that correct?
Thanks,
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Old 05-16-2014, 09:52 PM   #8
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Billy, I think so, but I don't have the experience to know it. According to Balmar, the 2 inch single foot Delco style is a Perkins compatible model. But I know very little about alternators...so little that I'm still staring at this alternator in its box instead of installing it on my boat! I'm thinking I'll need a professional to help me install this thing right the first time.
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Old 05-16-2014, 10:15 PM   #9
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I am also asking for assistance Al, my Tach signals come off the alternators on my Gulfstar 4-154 Perkins diesels.
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Old 05-17-2014, 06:33 AM   #10
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In most cases changing the Alt is a R&R task .

The same wires go to the same terminals , although in a few cases the output wire will need replacing with a more robust (thicker) wire .

If having a local assist be sure the field current is wired thru the small posts on the rear of your rotary switch.

This will save the alt if somehow the batts are turned OFF while the engine is ON.
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Old 05-21-2014, 07:44 PM   #11
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In most cases changing the Alt is a R&R task .

The same wires go to the same terminals , although in a few cases the output wire will need replacing with a more robust (thicker) wire .

If having a local assist be sure the field current is wired thru the small posts on the rear of your rotary switch.

This will save the alt if somehow the batts are turned OFF while the engine is ON.
In my case the wire is sized for the standard 45 amp alternators. I'm not sure if it's much larger than a #8. That's fairly small I'm used to seeing at a minimum #1 coming from the alternator. I always go a couple of sizes up figuring any heat lost in wire is lost voltage or current to the devices it feeds. I tend to go overboard with sizing my DC wiring. I'm hoping to get 70 amp alternators to replace the 45 amp standard units the boat's currently equipped with.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:35 PM   #12
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As a newbie may I respectfully make the following suggestion based on my own experience.
The maximum size of alternator for a single belt 'V' pulley is 110 amp and a 4 stage alternator controller is the best for increasing efficiency and prolonging your battery life.
I would recommend that you contact Advercusa.com for all the latest technical details on battery charging and management as the pace of change is rapid, many systems have been 'modified' by previous owners and if your going to change the alternator why not go the whole hog and do the job right ?
Draw a wiring diagram, laminate it and put it in your service file as we tend to forget specs over time and it's nice to have it in a waterproof/wipe clean covering in case you ever need to 'get down and dirty' another time.
I have no connection with this company other than being a satisfied user for 20 years.
Just as an aside, Prestolite and Balmar alternators spares in Europe are as rare as rocking horse manure so anyone planning to cruise Europe needs to take a replacement. Bosch and Valeo spares are freely available anywhere.
Time spent on reconnaissance is never wasted.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:39 PM   #13
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You've gotten a lot of guess's here, but just call Balmar and they will tell you all your options for your exact engine. I've installed several Balmar's on several Perkins engines. I think the last one I did was on that model engine, but don't remember for sure. You should be able to put at least an 80 amp, if not 100. I've done several 100 amp models on a single 1/2" belt. They sell kits with alt, regulator, bat and alt temp sensors as some savings. Call them at 360-435-6100. Try to talk to Steve or Dale if you can.
This will NOT be a plug and play. You'll need to upgrade both the positive and negative cable to the alternator. Most of the Balmars are Isolated Grounds, so you need to run a size matching ground wire. For a 100 amp model, if the run isn't over a few feet, #2 cable will more than likely be large enough. The stock cables are almost always too small.
Disclaimer, I do work for a service company that is a dealer for Balmar, as well as others. I've installed lots of alternators, and I have Balmar on my own boat.
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:16 AM   #14
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The KEY to getting better boat charging is the Voltage regulator .

A fantastic output alt with a std car/truck boat/ engine V reg will do little better than stock.

The first improvement might simply be to replace the V reg for an intelligent unit.
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:30 AM   #15
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I thought I had previously mentioned the need for a multi-stage smart regulator? The reason I'd like to pick 70 amps over anything higher, less strain on the V belt and there would be no need to modify the V belt system. I'm looking for modest smart charging from each engine. Possibly using a "center fielder" to combine both engines alternators if needed.
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Old 05-22-2014, 06:36 PM   #16
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The Balmar regulator will let you "detune" the alternator, and there is very little cost difference in an 80 vs a 100 amp model. You can set it up to put any output from something like 20% to 100%. My advice would be to buy the 100 amp model, and if it seems hard on the belt, detune it to 70 or 80%.
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Old 05-22-2014, 06:39 PM   #17
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The Balmar regulator will let you "detune" the alternator, and there is very little cost difference in an 80 vs a 100 amp model. You can set it up to put any output from something like 20% to 100%. My advice would be to buy the 100 amp model, and if it seems hard on the belt, detune it to 70 or 80%.
Great idea, now I just need the part numbers for my Perkins 4.154M I'll need the smart regulator and alternator part numbers.
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Old 05-22-2014, 06:41 PM   #18
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Just call Balmar, and they will tell you the individual numbers and the kit number for what you need. Then you can shop around for the best price.
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Old 05-22-2014, 10:07 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hodges View Post
The Balmar regulator will let you "detune" the alternator, and there is very little cost difference in an 80 vs a 100 amp model. You can set it up to put any output from something like 20% to 100%. My advice would be to buy the 100 amp model, and if it seems hard on the belt, detune it to 70 or 80%.
Good advice! You'll need to know your belt size to know what to expect from that alternator.
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Old 05-22-2014, 10:44 PM   #20
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Great advice the belts were just replaced during the engine maintenance I had done prior to the sea trial or purchase. The boat sat for 4 years and I didn't want to ruin perfectly good motors from sitting. I also had the fuel polished and the tank cleaned. The fuel ended up being so bad it was evacuated disposed of and the boat now has 50 or so gallons in it's diesel tank. Impellers were also changed on all 3 engines (the 3rd being the genset). I have a unique Westerbeke the AC power is only 4.4kw AC but it has a 50 amp 12VDC alternator on it as well. This will make a good back up charging source if I properly wire it to a high current ACR and route it through a 4 position BlueSea battery switch. I'll upgrade the wiring size on the alternators.
I will get the belt size and contact BalMar for the high amp alternator and the external charge controller.
Thanks,
Bill
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