Last year I started a thread about in-car magnet recharge. My question was: "has anyone had a bad experience doing this?" Several folks said that they had good luck (which is my experience). Some folks postulated that the results would likely be less than optimum, although no one seems to have experienced this.
So, any bad in-car mag recharge stories?
I would be interested in either first-hand or anecdotal stories.
I have not had a bad experience, just a couple of cars that it did not work. I attribute this to a bad coil pack.
Most cars it does help.
I had a redo on my car because I was getting an wrong reading with my compass. I changed the direction I had the car parked to west east and redid it. It ran good on magneto but could not start it on same. I did a whole unit recharge when I had the engine down last winter and can start it on mag. When you do an in car recharge pick one set of instructions and stick with it.
I always hear it can be done "in car" but results in a less effective job. How is that measured? Is it a gut feeling or is there data?
Here's the previous discussion that includes Murray Fahnestock's take on the subject.
Erich, I think Murray may be wrong. I think with enough current the magnets can be saturated, which should do the trick pretty much as well as it can be done. It my experience, which is probably dozens of recharges, they all have been quantifiably satisfactory, as measured with the St. Louis type current meter.
The February 1924 Service Bulletin says that Ford conducted comparative tests in the factory by charging magnets in the car with an aftermarket magnet re-charger and charging each individual magnet.
There is a graph that shows that the magnets only receive 60 percent of their original magnetism if charged on the flywheel versus charged individually. It demonstrates a little more than 10 amps at 1300 rpm to just a hair more than 6.5 at 1300 rpm. (Individual charging is the higher amp reading.)
It further states that there are two options for magnets: recharge each one individually or replace the whole set. When replacing the whole set, each magnet is EXACTLY 1/32" from the coil face.
Now this leads me to believe that is we are charging our magnets in the car and getting good results, Ford was instructing it's dealers not to recharge magnets and just sell the whole set...however, it also says unless it's abused the magneto will retain it's magnetism forever.
If that's the case, why did I have to recharge mine???
The Service Bulletin must be where Murray got the 60% figure, then throw in a little quasi-science and voila! a new gospel.
William asked:"If that's the case, why did I have to recharge mine???"
It was abused, obviously.
William, the October 1926 Service bulletin 8 pages long, Seems to encourage in car magnet charging as an accepted practice. They even sold the equipment to the Dealers in order to do this. Maybe by 1926 they worked out the weak points. I encourage our readers to look at this Bulletin before making a conclusion...Fred
Anything unique/different than previous method in the suggested steps within that 26 service bulletin?
I've done 4 of them for various club members and it got their engines to where they run very good on magneto. So who gives a crap if they're only 60%? The end result is what counts. The engine ran better on mag than on battery and saved the person from tearing down his engine at the time or installing a distributor.
What could the bad experience be? It either will fix the problem or it won't. The only other issue that could happen is doing more than an arc or flash when doing the in car method.One of the methods I read said to leave the cables hooked up to the mag ring for a number of seconds to clear shorts. I wouldn't do that as it will possibly clear the short to an open circuit.
I want to add that I was skeptical about the in car charge method until I did it the 1st time. It does work.
OK, recharging in the car will get the magneto working well enough for the car to run better on MAG than on BAT. But what about starting? I've always had to use a battery to start my 1915 runabout. Would an in-car recharge give the mag enough oomph to fire it off? Anybody have experience with that?
Steve - I'd like to hear some response on that too. If you don't get any response in a reasonable time, please start a new thread on this one as I'm sure that more than just you and I are interested,.....thanks,.....harold
If the engine will run on the mag, then it should start on the mag if it is turned over fast enough. Others have reported using the in car recharge and being able to hand start on mag after the recharge.
"Since individual charging of magnets requires removal of the engine from the car, a separation of of the engine from the oil pan and complete dismantlement of the transmission, requiring many hours of of work, not to mention new screws, spools, magnet face plates, gaskets, a homemade charging unit and possibly an expensive magneto gapping tool, charging of weak magnets in the car, between overhauls, is the most convenient way for most of us, to charge the magnets and, if done correctly, is just as effective in magnet strength, longevity and performance.
The above thread documented my experience in charging my magnets in the car in September of 2010 and almost 2 years later, my car starts easily on MAG and runs strong, providing more than enough current to the various systems. To be honest, now that I have done it this way and had such great results in a fraction of the time, expense and effort, I would not consider any other method. Jim Patrick"
I found on my car that I have to hand crank at least 115 RPM to start on the mag.
Kenny asked, "What could the bad experience be?"
That is the question. My guess would be: Damaging the field coil. Sparks igniting something. Bodily injury. ???
From what is written here, it appears that there is virtually no down side to an in-car magnet recharge.
The way these forums go, I would guess that if there were any bad experiences, then those bad experiences would surely be blown out of proportion here. The very fact that no one has ever heard of a bad thing, would lead me to believe that the worst thing that can happen is that it may not work.
I would think that if too munch power was applied too long that things would start to smoke and melt. I have never heard of that happening.
I have charged magnets with the flywheel out of the car by placing a single pole magnet on the end of each magnet pole and placing a single pole magnet over the magnet pole piece. Then in each test, I measured the magnet strength with a magnetometer. Charging each magnet individually, even one pole end at a time provided much higher readings than charging the magnets actually two at a time by placing the charging magnet on the pole piece.
The measuring device I used.