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Old 22-08-2016, 19:06   #1
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Mis-behaving relay

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Someone may have a solution to this. I'm in the process of isolating my engine so electrically it is above earth. I've had the alternator modified so it is isolated, replaced single wire senders/switches with two wire ones, installed a solenoid for the starter, and ran all earth wires what were using the engine for ground directly to the battery. So except momentarily when the engine is starting there is no electrolysis (steel boat). I used Seabis to find several additional engine-related sources of electrolysis which I can fix. Except one.

I have an external regulator (Balmar ARS-5). Rather than run the ignition wire to the alternator directly through the ignition switch (rightly or wrongly, I was concerned about the amount of current), I used a little auto-type relay. Strangely, the ground for the coil circuit in the relay is going to metal. It is showing electrical continuity with the hull as tested with my multimeter, as well as indicating a critical fault on the Seabis.

The relay case is not grounded. The only thing I can imagine is that it is coming from the positive side of the coil circuit (some kind of reverse current flow?.) Can his be addressed with a diode? Or remove the relay altogether? I hace no idea of the current ratings for the ignition switch or the the ignition wire, but the ignition wire is somewhat heavier than the switch wires.

Thank you, Jim

Thanks, Jim
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Old 22-08-2016, 19:35   #2
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Re: Mis-behaving relay

does that reg have power, ground, and ign? if so the ign will not draw any power. it's just a turn on signal. the power will come from the battery / power wire. through the reg, and out the field wire to the alt.

I'm not sure why you are trying to run ign power to the alt itself. I hope this relay is not on the field wire between alt and reg. the reg will have no control and your alt will either be off or 100% output.
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Old 22-08-2016, 19:53   #3
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Re: Mis-behaving relay

Thanks smac999;

Wiring for regulator:
1.
GROUND INPUT - Connects regulator to system ground via alternator ground terminal. BLACK wire included in Ford style plug.
2.
POWER INPUT - Supplies all power to operate the regulator, and provides a source of sensing voltage for the regulator to control charging output. RED wire included in Ford-style plug.
3.
IGNITION INPUT - Connects to a switched source of battery voltage (to ignition switch or oil pressure switch). BROWN wire in regulator wiring harness.
4.
FIELD OUTPUT - Provides excitation voltage to control the rate of alternator output based on battery voltage. BLUE wire in regulator wiring harness.

It is #3(brown) that is switched on and off by the relay.
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Old 22-08-2016, 20:19   #4
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Re: Mis-behaving relay

just confusing because you said the ign is connected to alt. it's probbaly just connected to alt battery pos post? I would have just called it battery power.

the relay is just a coil which is more or less a short. probably causing issules with your system. I would just remove the relay. the ign wire will draw no power.
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Old 22-08-2016, 21:00   #5
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Re: Mis-behaving relay

I can see why it was confusing. Yes, the ignition goes to the post and the field output comes from inside the alternator.
Thanks, Jim
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