Sudden Amphi Death syndrome (SADS)

R

rogtwo@aol.com

Guest
I think it most likely is your generator. When you got the jump start, it
charged the battery enough for you to get home. If you weren't running lights,
wipers, fans, etc., then the engine requires very little electricity to keep
it running.

If the battery was bad, and the generator was working, then it wouldn't have
sputtered to a stop the first time.


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
R

rogtwo@aol.com

Guest
Oops, I should have said generator OR voltage regulator.

With the engine running, check the voltage. It should be around 14 volts.
If it's under 13.5 volts, have your generator and voltage regulator checked.

Roger
White '63
Seattle


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
 
R

Randy Bograd

Guest
I just experienced my first case of SADS. Driving down the road, running
great. Start to loose power. Engine starts to backfire, lots of
sputtering. It quits. Battery is dead and won't turn over. My friend and
I get our half mile cardio exercise and push it into a garage. A jump
gets us going. Drives home fine. I shut it off and try to restart.
Battery still dead. I know the generator is working since that is what
powered us home. A hour on the charger and it starts. I'll see if it
starts tomorrow. Any ideas on what this might be?

Randy
'67 in Gaithersburg, MD
 
J

John Friese

Guest
Hi Randy,

My first guess would be sudden battery failure. It happens that way
sometimes.

John Friese


--- In amphicar-lovers@yahoogroups.com, Randy Bograd <rdboggie@j...>
wrote:
> I just experienced my first case of SADS. Driving down the road, running
> great. Start to loose power. Engine starts to backfire, lots of
> sputtering. It quits. Battery is dead and won't turn over. My
friend and
> I get our half mile cardio exercise and push it into a garage. A jump
> gets us going. Drives home fine. I shut it off and try to restart.
> Battery still dead. I know the generator is working since that is what
> powered us home. A hour on the charger and it starts. I'll see if it
> starts tomorrow. Any ideas on what this might be?
>
> Randy
> '67 in Gaithersburg, MD
 
B

Bill Connelly

Guest
I just experienced my first case of SADS. Driving down the road, running
great. Start to loose power. Engine starts to backfire, lots of
sputtering. It quits. Battery is dead and won't turn over. My friend and
I get our half mile cardio exercise and push it into a garage. A jump
gets us going. Drives home fine. I shut it off and try to restart.
Battery still dead. I know the generator is working since that is what
powered us home. A hour on the charger and it starts. I'll see if it
starts tomorrow. Any ideas on what this might be?

Randy
'67 in Gaithersburg, MD

==================

If the battery is fairly new, then ITS charge and NOT the generator may have
powered you home. The most likely culprit, especially in a car like yours
that's been standing nearly a decade, is either the voltage regulator box
(LUCAS Control Box Model RB 106-2) or some miswiring from it (especially a
ground wire). There are lots of little finely adjusted springs and contact
point thingees in there that simply don't respond well to sitting through a
couple of presidential administrations unbudged. The springs lose their
tension and the little points joints and faces sort of moulder and corrode
and stiffen up through lack of use. I had a similar experience. My car sat
for 14 years before I rescucitated it, and a few weeks later my control box
also gave up the ghost. Of course, the problem could also be worn generator
brushes, but this is far less likely in your circumstances.

In the Members Only area of the website (password required, as found in your
Club Newsletters), you'll find the whole diagnostic procedure for the
charging system near the bottom fifth of the page at
http://www.amphicar.com/goodies/Maint_Manual/1.htm . For handy reference,
here is the excerpt that describes initial testing, so you can at least rule
out if the generator as the cause:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A) PRELIMINARY CHECKING OF CHARGING CIRCUIT

~Before disturbing any electrical adjustment, examine as follows to ensure
that the fault does not lie outside the control box.

~Check the battery by substitution or with any hydrometer and a heavy
discharge tester.
Inspect the generator driving belt. This should be just tight enough to
drive without undue tension.

~Check the generator by substitution or by disconnecting the generator
cables and linking large terminal "D" to small terminal "P', then connect a
voltmeter between this link and earth (i.e. ground) and run the generator up
to about 1.000 r.p.m. when a rising voltage should be shown.

~Inspect the wiring of the charging circuit and carry out continuity tests.

~Check earth connections, particularly those of the control box.

~In the event of reported undercharging, ascertain that this is not due to
low mileage.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In view of the relatively low cost and critical function of the Voltage
Regulator Control Box, most folks do not mess around with trying to adjust
it, as described in the Service Manual page above, but instead simply swap a
new one. This might also be a grand time to consider whether to just
"upgrade" to an negative ground alternator system, as perenially discussed
on this List. There's no denying that such systems are much more reliable,
but require some fiddling, especially with the fuel level guage to change
its polarity. Check the List Archives for details at
http://www.escribe.com/automotive/amphicar/search.html

Best of Luck!
~Bilgey~
 
M

Mike Israel

Guest
Voltage regulator?

--- Randy Bograd <rdboggie@juno.com> wrote:
> I just experienced my first case of SADS. Driving
> down the road, running
> great. Start to loose power. Engine starts to
> backfire, lots of
> sputtering. It quits. Battery is dead and won't
> turn over. My friend and
> I get our half mile cardio exercise and push it into
> a garage. A jump
> gets us going. Drives home fine. I shut it off and
> try to restart.
> Battery still dead. I know the generator is working
> since that is what
> powered us home. A hour on the charger and it
> starts. I'll see if it
> starts tomorrow. Any ideas on what this might be?
>
> Randy
> '67 in Gaithersburg, MD
>


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A

a_colo_native

Guest
> Voltage regulator?

I would bet money on it!
95% chance that it's the regulator.
5% chance it's wiring (corosion) problem.

Cap'n
 
R

rdboggie@juno.com

Guest
So are voltage regulators considered an Amphi consummable? That may explain the
2 older regulators I found in the extra parts box.

Randy
 
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