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Voltage Regulator


Well Known Member
I have 600 hours on my RV-12 with the Skyview HDX panel, and I am still running the original voltage regulator. I do have a couple of modifications that I did, just to try to extend the life of the VR, which is still mounted in the original location on the shelf. First, I added a 1/4" thick aluminum heat sink plate under the regulator, mounted the VR using white, heat sink compound, and I still have the small air scat coming from the engine cooling shroud that was installed on the early builds. I also eliminated the brown terminals holder and attached the wire terminals directly to the posts on the regulator. I think this ensures better electrical connection. Finally, I added an extra ground from the VR housing, directly to the battery ground.
The only problem is that the charging voltage is at 13.8, which is said to be a little low for our Odyssey batteries. It has been this way since day one. I am considering changing it out for Van's new VR, but I prefer not to move it to the top of the firewall and add the NASA scoop. I would like to keep it in the same spot, continue to use my heat sink, connection method, and scat tube set up.
Has anyone installed Van's new VR on the shelf and been pleased with the results. Thanks.....Tom
Voltage regulator

I have the same set up you have and was having to same issue. Tried the JD regulator that I had been carrying around in my airplane for a spare, but it showed over voltage. Bought B+C from Vans and installed on the shelf with the same set up as before. Took some modification because it is a little bigger. I didn’t cut my cowling. It is more expensive, but it looks more expensive and has way more thin cooling fis. I do try and open the oil door for a while on warmer days. Charges steady at 14.1-14.3,except at very low idle.Have 100 hours on it so far
The Rotax 912 starts so quickly that the battery is not depleted very much.
I think that 13.8 volts is good enough for a lead-acid battery.
Thanks for the replies. I have a much better feeling about installing the new B&C regualtor on the shelf. My plan is to continue to use my original VR, even though it only charges at 13.8 volts. I have no starting issues and 13.8 seems adequate for the Dynon HDX backup battery, since the battery test function passes. I also plan to carry the new B&C regulator that I have, along with the neccesaary tools to install it, should the original fail while traveling. Now that I know that the bolt pattern may be an issue, I will do a temporary intall of the new B&C, just to verify that a field swap is feasable. I have read several reports of VR failures, and i don't want to wind up at some remote airport with no facilities, and end up gronded. Planning ahead seems like a better plan. I really appreciate the feed back. Thanks.....Tom
Voltage regulator

To give a little more detail to my last reply, since your situation sounds exactly like what I had. I ended up leaving my Ducatti regulator in its old spot on the shelf and moved the B+C over on the shelf under the brake reservoir. The wires all reached ok,and I had to adapt the blast tube cover to fit anyway. This location is farther away from the exhaust pipe also. I am using the new B+C and now have the Ducatti mounted as a back up, since I felt that it was probably getting ready to die. I do have another low cost JD regulator that I carry in my tool bag in case? So far good!
Thanks Stephen. Having 2 VRs mounted would certainly make for a quick fix in the event of an enroute failure. My only thought is that you are always exposing the unused VR to ambient heat. I can see that the operational heat generated by the VR would not be present, which probably makes your setup a viable solution. But I think I'll just carry the spare VR and take the extra few minutes to do the mechanical swap in the event of a failure. Thanks, Tom