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re: quick help? something broke.

Huw Powell <human@nh.ultranet.com> wrote:
> Driving the coupe along and suddenly the brake, battery, and coolant
> temp lights come on.  A quick look at the gauges indicates that all is
> ok - except no charge on the voltmeter.  Just a bad alt output wouldn't
> light the idiot lights, though I'll check it.

> The alternator belt goes from the pulley on the engine to the pulley 
> on the alternator, right?  There isn't one.  Wonder where it went?

You too?  I can't believe this.  This is ridiculous.

I was going to go to bed without mentioning it, but since you brought it 

This morning I noticed someones alternator belt slipping when the light 
turned green.  I thought, "How annoying.  I know that's not my car."

Then later in my trip to work, I hear it briefly again upon takeoff.  I 
think, "Funny, I know all my belts are new and tight."

Then, on the way home from work, things get interesting.  It starts 
squealing even more often.  It seems to be getting worse.  I notice the 
voltage seems to be getting low.  "Hrmph...  This isn't good."

I do the little test where you turn everything possible on and see what 
effect it has on the voltage.  Yep.  My voltage ain't looking too good.

So, I'm on my way to buy stamps at the post office, and the voltage
dropping pretty quickly.  I think, "Dammit!  My regulator's or brushes 
are going out!  I can't even use the one from the 4ksq, because it is
one from the 4ksq!  This sucks!  I can't make it to work tomorrow.  Why 
didn't I get that Group 6 Motorcraft regulator conversion yet?!  Now I 
gotta buy a regulator just for until I get the Group 6 part.  (then I 
think, hey, at least I know it's bad, instead of putting it back on the 
4ksq. plus I don't feel so bad about buying a regular regulator _and_ 
the Group 6 stuff)

So, I try and make it to Checker or someplace.  Then I decide to just go 
home because they might not have it in stock (gee, ya think?).  So, I 
head home.  By the time I get home, the voltage is a sickly 8 volts or 

I get home and pop the hood, and my alternator belt is off the pulley, 
and up against the alternator itself, very slightly smoking from the 
friction.  I think, "That damn thing was so loose it came off!"

Oh well, easy fix.  I leave the hood up to cool off and eat dinner. I 
put on my car clothes and head out.

As I go to tighten the alternator, I find the adjustment bolt is totally 
tight.  It turns out the bracket itself is no longer attached to the 
front of the motor!  The bolt is missing!

I couldn't understand at first, then I realized I must have forgotten to 
tighten that one when I replaced my oil pan gasket last weekend.

So, I pull the bolt from the 4ksq (yet another part to buy later) and 
fix the problem I created (aren't they all).

And if that wasn't enough of a pain in the butt, I _finally_ put the 
bottom radiator shroud on the car last week, after _never_ having 
one on since I bought the car.  Doesn't it just make perfect sense?!

I'm glad you got your mystery solved, Huw.  I once had the same thing 
happen with a Toyota truck.  Only on that thing, the alternator belt 
also turns the radiator fan.  It's a long story, but a ridiculous chain 
of events and my poor judgement ended up seizing a perfectly good motor.

Live and learn...