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Old 01-01-2016, 14:58   #1
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Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

I thought I would share how to connect a Mastervolt Alpha Pro Alternator Regulator to a Volvo Penta with MDI electrical control system.

The internal regulation of the alternator needs to be removed and two field wire connections added.

An additional Oil Pressure switch ( Normally Open ) needs to be added to the Volvo Penta to provide a signal to the MDI when the engine is running. Without this the MDI will give alarms. I needed to add an extension to fit the Oil Pressure Switch.

The temperature sensor should be strapped to the alternator housing and connected to the Mastervolt Alpha Pro. I have a Mastervolt Shunt that has a temperature sensor on the batteries. This enables the Mastervolt system to monitor both the alternator and battery temperatures.

This set up has worked really well for me.

Attached are wiring diagrams and photos of the set up.

Hope this is of assistance
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Old 02-01-2016, 01:57   #2
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Re: Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

Good setup.
I also have an Dual setup with the Mastervolt Alpha Pro II combined with Balmar AT200 and the Balmar 60-150-sr-ig.

Many alternators are setup to be regulated on the Postive+ side.
The Alpha Pro II is regulating the alternator from the Negative- side.
But it is often easy to modify the alternator from + reg to - reg.

The Alpha Pro II is also great for LIFEPO4, as it can be configures just the way you want using an USB interface.

You know the yello wire is for the "charge lamp". I wounder if you can connect thus to the MDI instead of an relay. That way you get an error message when the Alpha Pro II is given an error.

Also I recommend connecting the white wire to the W output of the alternator.
Then the Alpha Pro II can read the RPM of the engine. This is useful if you have an really large alternator and what to limit the output on low RPM.

The REG ON is also the SENSE wire. Its important that no other load is connected to this wire. I found that even if you have an Mastershunt connected, it still uses the reading on the sens wire. I wrote to Mastervolt asking about this, but never got an reply.

In my 1000AH Lifepo4 setup i let the BMS control the REG on signal
So in an high voltage event, it will not only disconnect the battery, it will safely shut down the alternators also turning of the regulators.

When it comes to the temp sensor on the alternator, i found it difficult to get an correct reading using the Mastervolt sensor. The alternator would reach 120`C (using an handheld IR meeter) and the Alpha Pro II would only read about 85`C. Dont understand why they put an rubber layer around the sensor.

Anyway of the alternator is running to hot, especially in an LIFEPO4 setup then you can reduce the output using the "small engine" mode.
I configured it to give maximum output at 5500 RPM. Of course this will never happen so the output is permanently limited. I get about 250A out of 350A in this way, at 2300 RPM.


Using an Masterbus->NMEA2000 interface you can send all kinds of information to your display.

Volt Batt 1 (service)
Amp Batt 1 (service)
SOC Batt 1 (service)
Temp Alt 1
Field curr Alt 1

Volt Batt 2 (Start)
Amp Batt 2 (Start)
SOC Batt 2 (Start)
Temp Alt 2
Field curr Alt 2
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:24   #3
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Re: Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

Quote:
Originally Posted by Masterplan View Post
I thought I would share how to connect a Mastervolt Alpha Pro Alternator Regulator to a Volvo Penta with MDI electrical control system.

The internal regulation of the alternator needs to be removed and two field wire connections added.

An additional Oil Pressure switch ( Normally Open ) needs to be added to the Volvo Penta to provide a signal to the MDI when the engine is running. Without this the MDI will give alarms. I needed to add an extension to fit the Oil Pressure Switch.

The temperature sensor should be strapped to the alternator housing and connected to the Mastervolt Alpha Pro. I have a Mastervolt Shunt that has a temperature sensor on the batteries. This enables the Mastervolt system to monitor both the alternator and battery temperatures.

This set up has worked really well for me.

Attached are wiring diagrams and photos of the set up.

Hope this is of assistance
Many thanks for that. Very interesting as I was thinking about the same setup. One question I have, from your experience do you think the alternator manages to keep up high charging currents for extended periods without the temperature circuit dialling the alternator down because of overheating of the alternator. I'm wondering because the alternator is just a standard automotive alternator that may not have been designed to handle those loads for long periods of time.
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:33   #4
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Re: Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

Is it me or does it look like the isolation on the internal wires have been a bit hot here..?
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Old 12-09-2016, 02:03   #5
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Re: Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

Quote:
Originally Posted by offpist View Post
Good setup.
I also have an Dual setup with the Mastervolt Alpha Pro II combined with Balmar AT200 and the Balmar 60-150-sr-ig.

Many alternators are setup to be regulated on the Postive+ side.
The Alpha Pro II is regulating the alternator from the Negative- side.
But it is often easy to modify the alternator from + reg to - reg.

The Alpha Pro II is also great for LIFEPO4, as it can be configures just the way you want using an USB interface.

You know the yello wire is for the "charge lamp". I wounder if you can connect thus to the MDI instead of an relay. That way you get an error message when the Alpha Pro II is given an error.

Also I recommend connecting the white wire to the W output of the alternator.
Then the Alpha Pro II can read the RPM of the engine. This is useful if you have an really large alternator and what to limit the output on low RPM.

The REG ON is also the SENSE wire. Its important that no other load is connected to this wire. I found that even if you have an Mastershunt connected, it still uses the reading on the sens wire. I wrote to Mastervolt asking about this, but never got an reply.

In my 1000AH Lifepo4 setup i let the BMS control the REG on signal
So in an high voltage event, it will not only disconnect the battery, it will safely shut down the alternators also turning of the regulators.

When it comes to the temp sensor on the alternator, i found it difficult to get an correct reading using the Mastervolt sensor. The alternator would reach 120`C (using an handheld IR meeter) and the Alpha Pro II would only read about 85`C. Dont understand why they put an rubber layer around the sensor.

Anyway of the alternator is running to hot, especially in an LIFEPO4 setup then you can reduce the output using the "small engine" mode.
I configured it to give maximum output at 5500 RPM. Of course this will never happen so the output is permanently limited. I get about 250A out of 350A in this way, at 2300 RPM.


Using an Masterbus->NMEA2000 interface you can send all kinds of information to your display.

Volt Batt 1 (service)
Amp Batt 1 (service)
SOC Batt 1 (service)
Temp Alt 1
Field curr Alt 1

Volt Batt 2 (Start)
Amp Batt 2 (Start)
SOC Batt 2 (Start)
Temp Alt 2
Field curr Alt 2


How do you use your Alphapro N-type on your p-type alternator?? What kind of modification you need to do? Thanks
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Old 16-09-2016, 09:00   #6
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Re: Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nouv-vague View Post
How do you use your Alphapro N-type on your p-type alternator?? What kind of modification you need to do? Thanks
Mastervolt confirmed me that all recent alpha pro (in plastic case) are P-Type... so i am back to square 1... I do not have enough current (the Voltage is OK) to trigger my alternator while a much cheaper regulator (Balmar BRS-2T) does the job... Is there another cause possible than the regulator is defect (brand new)? How can I check if it is really the regulator?
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Old 17-09-2016, 01:17   #7
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Re: Volvo Penta Alternator Regulation By Mastervolt Alpha Pro II

Any P type alternator can probably be converted to N type easy.
I have only done two different Balmar and one Hitachi.

One of the brushes is connected to ground now, and you move it to positive instead. If you do not understand any of this, its better to get some help.
An alternator service store should be able to do this for an low price.
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