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  #11  
Old 06-24-2021, 11:55 AM
DanH's Avatar
DanH DanH is online now
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: 08A
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riseric View Post
How many hours on the alternator ??
That could give a clue to the inspection intervals.
151 hours.

Regarding belt tension, it's 11~13 ft lbs with a new belt, and something like 7~9 with a used belt, per Lycoming.

All current automotive applications have gone to serpentine belts with spring-loaded idler tensioners. It guarantees near constant belt tension hot or cold, which may contribute to the very long bearing life of most auto alternators. Constant tension is definitely not the case with the Lycoming, as the big drive pulley expands a LOT when hot.

Still, if users are routinely over-tensioning belts, as Plane Power seems to think, the same problem would be showing up with B&C installations.
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Last edited by DanH : 06-24-2021 at 12:04 PM.
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  #12  
Old 06-24-2021, 11:56 AM
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digidocs digidocs is offline
 
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Dan,

I have seen the same rear bearing race wear on a 70A Plane Power alternator. As in your case, the unit turned smoothly and had no externally obvious play.

If your unit has the 118mm OD stator, the replacement rear case listed here may fit it, but I haven't tried it myself:
https://www.maniacelectricmotors.com/75909204.html

It appears the 70A Plane Power is very similar to this alternator:
https://www.maniacelectricmotors.com...nda-civic.html
A fairly full list of repair parts is given there.

Hope that helps.
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  #13  
Old 06-24-2021, 12:08 PM
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Dan Langhout Dan Langhout is offline
 
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Location: Huntsville, AL USA
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Default Plane Power

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanH View Post
<snip> The service center is local to me, so I was visiting in person. </snip>
Just curious, is the service center open for anyone to visit/get help or are you on the bouncer's VIP list at the door?
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  #14  
Old 06-24-2021, 12:14 PM
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DanH DanH is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Langhout View Post
Just curious, is the service center open for anyone to visit/get help or are you on the bouncer's VIP list at the door?
I imagine anyone can call the warranty line and tell them you wish to drop off your failed unit in person. That said (and I'm being PC here), I did not find my visit very useful, informationally speaking.
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  #15  
Old 06-24-2021, 04:37 PM
BillL BillL is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digidocs View Post
Dan,

I have seen the same rear bearing race wear on a 70A Plane Power alternator. As in your case, the unit turned smoothly and had no externally obvious play.

If your unit has the 118mm OD stator, the replacement rear case listed here may fit it, but I haven't tried it myself:
https://www.maniacelectricmotors.com/75909204.html

It appears the 70A Plane Power is very similar to this alternator:
https://www.maniacelectricmotors.com...nda-civic.html
A fairly full list of repair parts is given there.

Hope that helps.
FYI - The 60A unit has a 100 mm OD stator. Measured.
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  #16  
Old 06-24-2021, 06:17 PM
jakej jakej is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 153
Default PP FS14-B Alternator

A slight thread drift however still about the Plane Power Alternators - just pulled my engine due Superior (not so) AD & found the alternator bearings are shot. Aircraft has 604 hrs. Why would this happen especially as it’s a vac pump pad mount unit & therefore minimal load on the bearings, unlike belt driven alternators?
This is the second unit that I know of, the other one had the bearing cone turning in the housing. My original belt driven PP unit failed at approx 200 hrs & I swore never to buy another of the PP units again, the failure of the # 2 PP unit just reaffirms my decision.
Ps -just a “heads up” The other PP Alt (gear driven- vac pad mount), not in my aircraft, had a lot of black dust around the housing - mine was clean & as I pulled the engine & had to remove the alt I checked it’s operation. I would not have known it was failing otherwise.

Last edited by jakej : 06-24-2021 at 06:22 PM.
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  #17  
Old 06-24-2021, 07:41 PM
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rv6ejguy rv6ejguy is offline
 
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Again, Dan has done a good service for PP alternator owners here on VAF on what to look out for. Hartzell knows about the issue but believes it's excessive belt tension? Bearing races spinning in the housing have nothing to do with belt tension as long as the bearing is still rolling.

Loose bearings may result in internal parts rubbing. Seized bearings will result in a smoked belt and no charging.

My suggestion to Hartzell is to use best quality bearings and other components and establish proper interference fits for those bearings in the housings. Step up the entire validation and QC process.

There are some people who have posted here on VAF with 1500-2000 hours on their OEM Denso alternators with original parts in place showing that belt tension probably isn't the issue. Hartzell should strive to achieve similar performance from their units. They are losing market share to competitors by not licking these issues after several years of bad press. I don't understand. The propeller division has a good reputation for their products and service. Can't this be applied to their alternators?

A couple hundred hours life here would generally be deemed unacceptable by most owners. I know a couple people with "old" PP units with a lot more hours than that on them. Did the product quality suffer after outsourcing offshore sometime back?
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  #18  
Old 06-24-2021, 08:40 PM
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is Plane Power the same company that makes Sure Fly mags?
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  #19  
Old 06-24-2021, 09:11 PM
BillL BillL is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Melton View Post
is Plane Power the same company that makes Sure Fly mags?
It is my understanding that this group of people did create the PP line and sold the company to a Hartzell division. 2016??

This certainly tarnishes the good name of Hartzell. It is hard to understand how/why the top management allows this to continue for years.
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  #20  
Old 06-24-2021, 09:33 PM
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RVbySDI RVbySDI is offline
 
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Posting to give a data point for reference.

I have a 60 amp PP purchased and installed around 2009. I have just over 700 hours with no issues. Perhaps in 2009 they were manufactured differently than the newer models. Of course Murphy’s Law may have it fail the next time I fly but it has been flawless so far. I am concerned considering the stories of all these failures. If I have to replace it, I might choose to replace it with a B&C.
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