12 volt system

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2016: 12 volt system
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By George schmidt on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 05:56 pm:

I purchased a Model T with a 12 volt system. The previous owner did not use the starter to fire the engine, he used the crank. My question is, When I just tried to start it with the starter, the starter, began to smoke. I found on line , I should reduce the size of the cable going to the starter. It appears to be (00) currently and Use a cable 5-6 feet long to reduce the power.

I wait any and all replies.

Thanks
George


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By JohnH on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 06:04 pm:

Instead of doing that, I'd be restoring it to the correct 6V system.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dick Fischer - Arroyo Grande, CA on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 06:31 pm:

I wouldn't expect the starter to smoke just from cranking for a short time on 12V.

Maybe the starter has some other problem.

Dick


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith, Lomita, California on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 07:11 pm:

I like to use a 12 volt battery on a NON STARTER CAR only. If you have a starter model, you are wasting your time. Nothing is better than a 6 volt system, if your system is in good order. Enough said!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Whelihan Danbury, WI on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 07:30 pm:

There's probably a pretty simple reason why the previous owner didn't use the starter for getting the engine going: its bad. Take it out and get the MTFCA electrical book and check it out thoroughly. Many of my colleagues around here use 12 volt and they've been in the hobby far longer than I. My 6 volt system works fine, so I can see no reason to convert it to 12. There's a pile of trick folks claim reduces voltage to the starter to prevent bendix damage. For sure check all your connections, but something tells me you are going to wind up pulling your starter and going through that as well.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank Harris from Long Beach, CA on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 07:36 pm:

12 Volts has worked just fine for me for over 56 years. Use a long 12 volt cable and not a "00" .

The problem with 12 volts is even if you use a small wire to build resistance the "ready supply" is 12 volts so it hammers the Bendix and then drops the voltage to spin it slower after it gets going.


Smoke is from hot oil so clean up the contacts. The only reason to go to 12 volts is the jump start dealiebob . . . ( a Texas word for thingamuhjig), getting a spare battery out of a parked car so you can finish a tour, and getting light bulbs at your drug store at 10:00 p.m. at night to replace a burned out bulb. Try to get six volt stuff when you really need it in the real world and then talk to me.


Don't get misguided by the kneybob puerest's looking for authenticity trophies. Comfort and safety are more important than a correctly restored T that can't go because of no 6 volt light bulbs on the shelf after dark.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Pat Kelly Montana on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 08:13 pm:

I have two T's running 12v and no starter smoke.
Look at that starter. Remember to remove the bendix first. PK


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 08:38 pm:

I can see a few reasons for using 12 volts. If your magneto is not working or if you have a distributor or other system made for 12 volts or if you are using other electronic equipment which needs 12 volts.

The worst problem in using 12 volts is with the starter. It can be re-wired for 12 volts and that would be the best thing to do if you must use 12 volts. Otherwise use a 6 volt battery and everything will be fine. I even drove one T for about 10 years on coils using 6 volts. It was a little slower than the others but really don't know if the reason was the 6 volts because at the same time I replaced the magneto, I also had the head milled a bit and replaced the timing gear. The timing gear was one I had in a bunch of parts I had purchased over the years so I don't know if it was advanced or standard, but the car runs better on magneto. Anyway, if you must use 12 volts, rewire the starter. Anything else will be hard on the starter Unfortunately any voltage dropping devise only drops the voltage under load so when it first contacts the flywheel is when the damage is done. I think Frank Harris might be right about oil on the contacts. If the starter hasn't been used for a long time, it just might have oil there.
Norm


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