Please help me recapture a 55 year old memory ? In the recent thread on the "downside" to running on battery, allusion was made to recharging the magnets in the car by using three 12V batteries in series . . . In my callow youth, I followed directions for doing this, I remember cranking my T to satisfy the position of the compass placed on the hogshead, then connecting to power, and the resulting weird "Tesla is with us" sound, and a definite improvement in magneto performance. I followed directions, I thought were in the "bible" but I can't seem to find 'em. I assure you, I did NOT use three 12V batteries in series back then . . .
I was hoping to learn where to find the Ford directions for charging the magnets. That link is kinda the usual forum BS - some fact, some fiction then the usual "so's yer ol'man" arguments.
I don't believe the Bible covers in-car charging. See Fahnestock page 235.
Ford did not approve of in car charging and stated so in bulletins, but by 1926 the service bulletins give instructions of in car charge using the KRW battery charger that was also able to do the magnets.
The 3 battery charge has always worked well for me, even for on the bench fly wheel charge.
If gas gets into the crankcase and the in car charging caused a spark it will test the integrity of the engine.. Maybe that's why Ford didn't suggest it. You really should ventilate the crankcase before you charge the magnets.
"Engine Integrity Test." Made my day! Cheers.
Instructions for in-car magnet charging are also in the MTFCA Electrical book.
I think the bench charging of the assembled magneto is in the transmission book too.
They were in the October 15, 1926 Ford Service Bulletin. Instructions were for using the K.R. Wilson battery charger and the magnet polarity indicator that came with it.
I also found these instructions on the same site:
The process isn't nearly as complicated as I thought it might be. I successfully did it this afternoon and am very pleased with the results. The only thing I did that doesn't show up in any of the instructions I've seen on or off the forum is in getting the magnets lined up exactly in front of the coils with only a compass. I could get it pretty close, but not dead on with the crank. After getting it mostly lined up, I made the first flash with the parking brake in neutral. This pulled the magnets directly in front of the nearest coil. After that, I pushed the brake lever forward so the clutch spring was working to hold the flywheel closer to the ring. Flash a few more times and then rotate the flywheel 90° and repeat a few times.
I charged my dead magneto in 2010 and my T is still running perfectly on a strong magneto 8 years later. Here is the thread I posted detailing what I did, step by step. Jim Patrick
If you can, park the car east/west. If the magnets are weak parking it north/south you are fighting the poles and can get a false reading.
One of the links above says to give 20 flashes to engine block..I've also read to use 5-6...big difference...which is correct?
I did 5 - 6 for each 90° rotation and had excellent results.
The Vintage For, Volume 15, Number3, Dated May-June 1980. covers the entire Model T electrical system including the magneto and coils. It will solve 90% of the T electrical problems. It included this sub article about what I mentioned above. I hope this is legible :
I made this and all you have to do is "walk" it around the magnets. The hogs head has to be removed. It takes a 12V battery, or a 12V battery charger, and a heavy switch that you can click on a few times for each magnet. I made a better looking one but I can't find a picture of it. Works great...NO ARCING!
Do you have a picture of the magnet tool in use?
Thomas, no I don't. You have to make sure that you don't change magnet polarity; other than that it's quite easy. One of these arms is wound in one direction and the other the opposite with several layers of copper wire. The tool gets hot so I only do about 1/3 of the magnets at a time. I'v used this tool primarily when assembling an engine but it should work just fine with the engine in the car with the HH off.
I've also heard you can use a Arc Welder? ?
DC arc welder on low setting, heard that too and one of these days am going to try it out. (or and AC/DC set to DC)