How to convert from alternator to generator


Asked by May 03, 2013 at 09:51 PM about the 1974 Volkswagen Beetle

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

8 Answers


? why ? You don't like alternators? I would assume that the older VW's had generators (early to mid sixties). That's where I would look, less fabrication to mount it to your engine. If not you will have to size one according to your amperage needs and ensure you use a regulator (DC to DC) with the right output voltage (common ones are 6, 12, 24 volt outputs). If your having issues with your alternator there are options for that too. New rectifier diodes. Or there is one wire conversions that negate the vehicles circuitry making them operate with out the additional risk of failure of the vehicles wiring.


Excuse my ignorance but I dont know the difference between the two.


Alternator creates AC voltage and converts to DC through rectifier diodes and voltage regulator. More efficent A generator creates DC voltage and uses an older type of DC to DC regulator. More reliable. Stopped being used in most applications in the mid 60's.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Unless you really just want to, stay with the alternator set up. Less wires and a much more constant output. If you switch to a generator you'll have to her a voltage regulator, run new wires and get a new generator stand. The stands for altnators are different.


Ah okay. You learn something new everyday. Thanks!


@kbro No problem. @EdS2K You can get gens with the reg attached to the side, down to one wire operation but they don't look as clean. But I have to say for a low current application a gen will out last a alternator 6 to 1.


Read this article and do it backwards --- http://www.vw- --- People usually updater to a alternator but then again people return cars to stock condition for shows.

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the delco one-wire alternator has layed waste to all discussion on the subject~

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