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praise Bentley

The other day, after driving home, I noticed my voltage was hovering
around 8-10 volts, and my 'battery' light was coming on dimly.

>From past experience, I knew that the 'battery' light was more than an
idiot light.  It is used to determine the cause of charging problems,
and is actually part of the circuit.  On my 'old' Coupe GT, the bulb (or
LED) burnt out, which causes the alternator to not charge.  I thought it
was stupid before, but I actually kinda like the setup now.

<past experience> When I had charging problems on my 'old' Coupe GT
*sniff, poor car*, I checked the Bentley, and the only thing I could
find was this stupid section about diagnosing the 'battery' idiot
light.  I kept on passing it up, looking for the charging section.  'I
don't have a problem with the light, it's the alternator or something! 
Why does it only have this stuff about the light?'

I took it in to my mechanic friend, and the first thing he says is: 
"Does the alternator light come on when you turn the key 'on'?"  "Uh, I
don't think so.  You mean it means something?"  Duh.  I knew the light
'means something', I just didn't think it meant anything when the
engine's not running.  Turns out the thing was burnt out.  Replaced the
bulb (or diode), and everything was hunkey dorey (how the heck do you
spell that?  Never had to before!  What's it mean anyway?!)  No
alternator, regulator, brushes, or battery needed.  Phew!

<back to praise Bentley>

So, when I got around tonite to checking out my current Coupe GT, I knew
to follow that damn Bentley.  Didn't spend 85 bux or so not to!

Procedure was:  Check light with ignition on (engine off), if not lit,
pull off "D+" wire off alternator, and connect to ground.  (Doesn't say
anywhere which wire is "D+", but there's only two, and I'm not taking
the big one and putting it to ground! ;-)  )  It wasn't, so I do it, and
turn the key on again.  It lights!  That means it's only either the
brushes, regulator, or rotor!  Yes!  Wait a minute, that's pretty much
everything. :-/  Hmmm...

So, I pull the regulator off and look at the brushes. 
They're_way_tapered instead of "U" shaped, like they've been dragging on
the rotor by their springs instead of staying firmly in their holders. 
They looked pretty much below tolerance (on the low side, still big as
heck on the high side of the taper).

Just to check, I pull the same device from the 4ksq, put it in, and test
it out.  Everything's back to norm!

So now, I gotta special order from Pep Boys or Kragen a brush set for
about $8, and hope it ain't the regulator too.  Really doubt it,
though.  If it is, I'll be getting that Group 6 external *yeeccch*
Motorcraft regulator upgrade for $125.  I just got my 12" Vega's
reconed, you know.  ;-)

Moral of the story:  Listen to your Bentley.  If you don't have one, get

Well, there it is.  All Audi, so bandwidth-schmandwidth!  ;-P


<^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^Ken Keith^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^>
<  '86 Audi Coupe GT                           >
<      AZEV 16's, ABT, Borla, K&N, Brembo,     >
<      Schrick (waiting for install, or to die of old age!)
<  '94 Saturn SL2                              >
<      16v, 4 wheel disc, ABS, full power,     >
<      ASC automatic sunroof. (4 sale, or drive when idiot lights tell
me to)
<  '85 Audi 4k quattro (not running, even less so now)