• Welcome to the website of the Vincent H.R.D. Owners Club.

    Should you have any questions relating to the Vincent H.R.D. Owners Club, or Vincent H.R.D. motorcycles in general, please contact Graham Smith, Hon. Editor and Webmaster by calling 07977 001 025 or please CLICK HERE.

    You are unrecognised, and therefore, only have VERY restricted access to the many features of this website.

    If you have previously registered to use this forum, you should log in now. CLICK HERE.

    If you have never registered to use this website before, please CLICK HERE.

Misc: Charging Systems Alton Question

vibrac

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
For a long time Alton 'Dynamos' were supplied with a regulator that would slowly discharge the battery when not in use unless there was a switch in the circuit then they started (2017?) to produce 'Dynamos' with a regulator that did not discharge at rest. If I have an early Alton will a new regulator work and also not discharge the battery
 

Marcus Bowden

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Not a problem Tim four wires 2 yellow connecting to Alton 1 red positive 1 black to earth. but always ride with as much as you can using up the power as it saves the regulator trying to dissipate so much heat, when you consider the heat into the grips 60Watt lamp that is now down to 20 watt LED x two on main beam one on dip when Mr Goff finds me a RH dipper reflector & glass.
bananaman.
 

SteveF

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Hmm, that's a very good point about heat dissipation by the regulator as the way it controls the output voltage. Does anyone know of any switching regulators which would avoid this problem?
Cheers - Steve
 

bmetcalf

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I have assumed that a permanent magnet alternator can only regulate output by converting the excess to heat. The car type have a field to modulate to increase or decrease excitation and regulate the voltage. PUB335 should chime in!
 

SteveF

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I did some quick digging and found this: https://www.shindengen.com/products/electro/motorcycle/reg/
where they list something called a "Single-Phase Open Regulator/Rectifier" which looks to be what I'm talking about. Basically it connects and disconnects the alternator output at very high speed to produce a 12 volt average output. A capacitor is used to smooth the otherwise choppy & noisy output.
Never used, No affiliation, Just searched.
Which shows at least somebody provides something. Everyone else I checked, like Podtronics amongst others, are totally silent on exactly how they regulate. Potentially they do the same but who knows.
Shorting is an evil approach in a modern age in my opinion, remember the good old Zener diode on Nortons.
Actually, for those of us running LED lighting, some of the other gadgets they sell look pretty interesting too.

Cheers - Steve
 

Glenliman

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
There has been a lot of discussion of this on the Norton site. In theory, the shorting regs are often viewed as a bad thing.
In practice, they seem to work just fine and last a very long time.
If opting for a Shindengen, beware, there are lots of fake Shindengen regs out there! Also, Shindengen makes both types, switching and shorting regs. Some have purchased the shorting regs thinking it was a switching reg.
Either way they seem to work.
So do the Podtronics regs.

Glen
 
Last edited:

oexing

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
In some previous threads I have suggested an alternative to Podtronics or any other miserable "regulators" that turn a lot of power into heat. I had a typical regulator from motorbike business but that in very short time heated up itself plus the permanent magnet servo motor that I will use for generator on the Vincent. My thinking was to not get a regulator again which cuts all power above 14 V and cannot use whatever may come above that limit when revs exceed 14 V. So my set uses a three phase rectifier at € 5.- and a voltage converter from 48 V to 13.8 V suitable for 280 Watt. This is ca. € 18.- from Aliexpress and I did another generator test with these electronics on a common alternator as installed on China engines or XT/SR 500 and all. Load was three H 4 quartz bulbs at some 200 W and after a 20 minutes run no temperature at the converter at all, no cooling in my workshop . The rectifier needs mounting on a piece of alu I guess, got a little warm with this load. The coils in this generator had 65 degrees C after 20 minutes so no problem here as well. My guess with that generator , it will output 250 Watts, no heat problems with my set, unlike with some systems which need oil cooling in the crank mounted generator by shorting one or two phases - as I found with the primitive typical regulator of first test.

Vic

voltage converter at Aliexpress:
48 V to 13.8 V converter

P1080720.JPG

P1070265.JPG

P1070256.JPG
 

oexing

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Why should it ? I don´t care if the generator does 50 V , would be a pity if it wastes all power by dumping it into heat when exceeding 14 V . So my guess I can get more power out of it when it is able to go a lot higher and in next stage convert it to 13.8 V for battery charging. How the converter does it I don´t know, its the converter´s job. Anyway, heat is NO concern with my setup, neither in the windings nor in the two electronic boxes - at no real costs and so simple to connect.
The square motor above does a lot more power than the Alton, above 200 W at ca. € 70.- with postage. My final finish this week for these on the Vincent engine is below - to look more traditional. Smaller than the Miller dynamo and multiple power at 14 V , no brushes. Got two motors in two lengths, same cross section. The longer type is way more powerful than I´ll ever need. Sorry, no photo of the longer type, same look, just longer.
I´d be interested to hear about connecting the boxes to an Alton and what power they can do, one two three phase does not matter.

Vic
P1080801.JPG


P1080805.JPG
 

Nigel Spaxman

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
There has been a lot of discussion of this on the Norton site. In theory, the shorting regs are often viewed as a bad thing.
In practice, they seem to work just fine and last a very long time.
If opting for a Shindengen, beware, there are lots of fake Shindengen regs out there! Also, Shindengen makes both types, switching and shorting regs. Some have purchased the shorting regs thinking it was a switching reg.
Either way they seem to work.
So do the Podtronics regs.

Glen
Most bikes don't really have a lot of extra electrical power anyway, turning the extra power into heat is not a problem as it is not that much heat. I have a Norton that is still running a Zener Diode that was probably new in 1975. I rode a Triumph for three or four years with no Zener Diode and it was no problem, I just left the headlight on and made sure the battery was topped up with water. I don't know how much an Alton puts out but if it is about 250 watts it is unlikely that it would need to dissipate more than 100 watts into heat very often. That isn't much heat really. The heat goes into a heat sink, not into the windings.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Glenliman

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
. I don't know how much an Alton puts out but if it is about 250 watts it is unlikely that it would need to dissipate more than 100 watts into heat very often. That isn't much heat really. The heat goes into a heat sink, not into the windings.
About 150 watts at 100 mph:)
Maybe it hits max a bit lower, but not much.
At legal speeds there is enough power there, maybe 100 watts, but no great excess. It's enough to keep the Podtronics dryish on a damp day.
But if the heated vest is on along with the headlight on a coil ignition bike, better keep the revs up! 12 watt LED is helping a lot.

Glen
 

John Reynolds

Active Website User
VOC Member
Trispark (Australia) produce a Mosfet switching regulator suitable for use with Alton generators.

https://www.trispark.com.au/mosfet-20-amp-voltage-rectifier-regulator

Although Trispark ignition systems are available in the UK, I could not find a UK supplier for the regulator. Trispark will supply directly and send by airmail (at a cost!) - and then there is the (UK) import duty to pay. The Australian dollar is quite weak at the moment, so the overall cost is not too bad.

Mosfet switching regulators work by switching the output from the generator off and on at a high frequency, the switching rate being controlled by a voltage reference within the unit. Therefore they do not get very hot and they do not generate the electrical 'noise' associated with shunting (=controlled shorting/grounding) regulators.
 

oexing

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
165 Dollars, honestly ?? Now tell me what´s not to like with the converter 48 to 13.8 V plus three phase rectifier at 25 €€ from China ? This set was tested in my workshop at 200 W plus loads for half an hour and no heat problem with all components - or no trust in my words ??? It does not matter at all what kind of generator you hook onto this set, single, two or three phase. You just have it output AC whatever it can and convert in last stage for 13.8 V - simple.

Vic
 

Glenliman

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
The AliExpress unit might be fine or it might be like the unreliable Chinese rec/regs Alton used to supply ten years ago. Same with the Trispark, although there will be some of those out there being used in the real world. Trispark has had problems with failure rate in the past, Norton EI ignitions come to mind
There are thousands of Podtronics out there and they have done millions of miles over a couple of decades now. The failure rate is very low. I just reinstalled a twelve year old unit and I expect it will see me out.
Same with Shindengen if you like the switching idea. There are lots of those in use on modern bikes as well. The MOSFET Shindengen seems to be the go to unit when factory regs fail, as they like to do on 02-07 Triumph Daytonas.
$160 isn't a lot for a fit and forget unit, but the trick is to make sure that you get an authentic Shindengen, not a fake.
Avoid eBay on this!
I keep a tray full of fake NGK plugs just to remind myself of that problem.

Glen
 
Last edited:

oexing

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Well, one can have the idea that anything from China is crap - when not willing to find out wherefrom most electronics come in all sorts of equipment, no matter how famous the brand may be. You bet most electronic devices in Mercedes, BMW, Rolls etc. were not produced in their homeland , that was the case decades ago. Same goes for the computer sitting in front of you - or Shindengen for you, look up their manufacturing places. So no question for me to source anything from anywhere that looks useful and at a good price. Why shouldn´t I when all big companies do just that - for higher profits in their pockets.
My point here actually was to go not for another regulator that cuts voltage and power at 14 V , dump a lot of power into heat sinks in this process that otherwise would be useful for electric power - stupid idea to accept this. So thumbs up for the 48 V converter cum rectifier at € 25.- , tested in my workshop OK with NO heat issue at all for the converter, just the rectifier should sit on a piece of alu I´d say, was a bit warm after half an hour at over 200 W / 13.8 V load. If you got an Alton I´d be interested in getting reports about any power gains with said converter/rectifier kit , at least it is a low cost try at € 25.- .
There was a thread about my mods earlier , see below the link,
"Make your own generator"
there are some links to these servo motors and more like in photos above for those who like a bit of lathe work in times for own creations, the easy way is to get an Alton - plus maybe the converter set. I looked for alternatives to Altons when I read about reports of failed plastic gears in the older versions. This was changed it seems but power is not the same class like with the China brushless motor types in my mods at around € 80.- with express shipping.

Vic
link to Aliexpress brushless motor:
300 W brushless
 

Glenliman

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I don't assume that all the China stuff is crap- it isn't. But it is a crap shoot for quality with those AliExpress items.
For me it's more a case of not wanting to do any more on road charging system experimentation. I went through a melted Miller, 3 versions of the Alton, then a fried Lithium Battery. We were always hundreds of miles from home when failure occured.
The charging system has really been the only weakness that showed up in touring 60,000 on the Vincent. It can really ruin your holiday!
Fortunately we always made it home on the bike somehow.
On one trip we hooked up IV lines from Robert Watson's Woolly Mammoth and transfused electrical power into my Rapide battery.
We never did find a way to do this at speed!
Other times and with other failures I purchased a large lawn tractor battery from Napa, stuffed it in the top box and ran deadloss all the way home. The drill at night was to run an extension cord through the motel bathroom window out to a battery charger to charge up for the next 350 miles.
For a long time I packed the extension cord, spare battery and charger along on every trip as I fully expected the charging system to fail. It did not disappoint!

I've finally stopped doing that as the last version direct drive Alton coupled with Podtronics has been very reliable. So it's a case of finally finding something that works and not wanting to return to old problems. Touring should be fun.
I'll leave the roadside electrical experimentation to others.

Glen
 
Last edited:

LoneStar

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I've deployed several Shindengen MOSFET regulators successfully (not on my Vincent, as it has a dynamo).

Most new units on Ebay are indeed fake, but you can get a used genuine one from a bike that had it specified as original equipment. Salvage yards are filled with crashed bikes with perfectly good regulators; the going rate on Ebay seems to be c. $25.

The Shindengen FH020 (50A rating shunt type, MOSFET) was used on: Kawasaki ZX14R 2012-8 ; Suzuki GSXS1000, GSXS1000F 2016-17; Can Am/Ski Doo part #515177325
 

Latest Forum Threads

Can't Find What You Need?

Buyer Beware: Fake or Real?

Top