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Old 11-15-2015, 11:52 PM   #1
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Default 180 AMP Mean Green Alternator Upgrade

So......I read around about the 125 AMP quest / villager alternator upgrade. I decided not to do it.

It wasn't because I was skeptical or anything.....desperate times call for desperate measures. A also trust most of you, lol, on here to share some sound advice, so it wasn't that either.

After seeing the time it would take, let alone the modifications to the alternator, mounting brackets, and changing different belts I figured I could apply myself and find a vendor who makes high amperage alternators.

I searched for a while, maybe a month or so, and found one. You would think that iraggi or DC would put them out, but they don't. There are some sketchy vendors on eBay, but I am not willing to take that chance. The one I found is from a company called Mean Green.

Bought it off of a store called 4x4 parts.com. Credit to member OldGreyBeast for linking information on this particular part brand in a different unrelated post.

http://www.4x4parts.com/i-18979492-m...lternator.html

It isn't cheap, 349.99, but has more power than the 125 quest/villager and is brand new with a one year warranty. As for reliability, I suppose stay tuned. As for installation, it was a bitch. No shit neither.

First the old one didn't want to come off. I had to jack the truck up, take the wheel off, then pry at the bottom of the alternator to get the old one off.

The new one dropped in like silk. Got the bottom bolt in and was doing fine, or so I thought. I run into about three problems.

1. Connections are not in identical spots.

2. Clearance issues with utilizing the big three upgrade next to my oil filter

3. 8mm ground bolt too short to place old ground connection and new 0 gauge on at same time.

2 and 3 are pretty much self explanatory. Number 1 though, pics are below



Obvious difference in these two photos, the position of the two pronged connector. OEM on right has it clocked at about 12 (if 6 was the bottom of the alternator where the two brackets form a C channel.



Obvious difference here, position of ground screw connection and positive terminal connection. So, on the OEM, Positive terminal is at the 1 o'clock position, negative ground the little hole at the 4 or 5 o'clock position.

New alt on the right, the positive terminal is at the 11 and ground screw at the 10.



Not much difference. I did not remove the pulley. Once installed it tightened just fine.



Pretty much identical from the front.

So, you wouldn't think that the position of the connections would make that big of a difference right? Well you'd be wrong. After the alternator dropped in so easy, I was thinking this is cake.

It wasn't until I tried to terminate the connections did I realize I screwed up. I felt like Doc Brown in Back to the Future when he's trying to connect the two wires together after the tree limb fell on top of it.

I knew the plug was supposed to plug in, but damned if it was too short. Then, when I managed to get it in, I proceeded to get the alternator set up top and realized then too, that the wires were not going to give me the length I needed to adjust accordingly.

So I spent like 2 hours rerouting grounds and wire harnesses in order to get the needed 2 inches of clearance to get the alternator mounted correctly. Its a mess and its still not perfect, but its operational.

So this is just a little of what I learned. It was still worth the trouble. Sounds like I have a supercharger under the hood now.
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Last edited by hardbodyhero; 11-17-2015 at 09:59 PM.
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Old 11-16-2015, 01:01 AM   #2
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For the amount of money and the difference in amps (125 vs 180) I think I would still go with the 125 amp Quest alternator. Brand new from Rockauto for $101.00. Not really too much to modify to get to fit from what I have read. Haven't done it myself but I plan on doing the swap soon.

I was on the Mean Green site earlier and they really do not give much information. Did the alternator you bought include any performance data?

Would be nice if they gave the amp ratings at the different RPM's, all the amps in the world are useless if they occur at a high RPM.

That's why I reference the FSM for say the Quest alternator as it lists the amp ratings at different RPM's, compared to stock it's a big difference.

Stock hardbody:

VG30:
amps more than 22 at 1300 RPM
more than 50 at 2500 RPM
more than 67 at 5000 RPM

KA24:
amps more than 17 at 1300 RPM
more than 48 at 2500 RPM
more than 57 at 5000 RPM

Quest 125 amp:
amps more than 36 at 1300 RPM
more than 90 at 2500 RPM

Big difference between stock and the Quest

The other thing I'm amazed that they do is use the internal fan on the alternators, usually a high output alternator will have an external fan, not talking about those cheap looking metal ones.

The 160 amp Wrangler alternator I had in my former 87 hardbody was a large case GM style, it was more than what you paid for the Mean Green alternator but it had options on it such as dual outputs and an external voltage regulator.
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Old 11-16-2015, 03:35 AM   #3
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To be honest, and I may be judged, but I took a leap of faith on this. No data, no anything.

I can say that its running 14.5 at idle with everything on, lol.

I may be judged on this too, but how do I figure amps on the voltmeter? Seems like when I tried to do it, it never read right.
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Old 11-16-2015, 03:37 AM   #4
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And you're right, there is nothing on the site. To be honest, there is ABSOLUTLY nothing on the KA model, however found it for sale on 4x4parts.com.

It was worth it for me to try something that fit the same chassis so to speak. Same mounting hardware, no modifications, and same belt means more to me in the long run.
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:19 PM   #5
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Could have hooked me up with some credit for linking that part in this thread :P

http://www.infamousnissan.com/forum/...ighlight=green

Thanks for taking the time to do a write up on it though. Your experience will definitely help when I drop one of these in mine later.
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Old 11-17-2015, 10:06 PM   #6
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Sorry OGB, lol. I have fixed it as it should be. I am usually pretty good about that kind of stuff, and quite frankly a lot of what I do is channeled from the rest of the regulars around here.

Are you a 4 or 6? The one I did was for the KA.

I totally get where ahardb0dy comes from. I don't know how much more my installation came to vs going with the quest/villager alternator, different belt, changing the pulley, and time invested in performing the modifications (with my luck wouldn't last long). Maybe 150 to 200 more?

I know its a badass. Like I think I mentioned before, it sounds like a supercharger. You'll definitely need to do the big three upgrade for this.
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Old 11-18-2015, 12:13 AM   #7
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I did the 110 Maxima alternator swap on my former V6 pathfinder, I did it differently as far as the lower mount.

I guess what you paid for the 180 amp alt, isn't that bad. I paid about $450 or so Jobber price for the 160 amp alternator from Wrangler Power Products that I had in my former 87 hardbody. it included as I mentioned already, dual outputs and an external voltage regulator, the adapter harness, bracket and a new Goodyear belt.

And that price was about 20 years ago.
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Old 11-18-2015, 02:26 AM   #8
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lol it's cool man I was just giving you a hard time. I've got a V6. I want to add a winch to mine, so I really want to have that extra "oomph" on the alternator to keep the battery alive.
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Old 11-18-2015, 02:45 AM   #9
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After researching the higher amp'd alternators, I noticed that a lot of them had all the features you describe ahardb0dy.

I thought it was weird too that it looks just like a standard cased alternator. Maybe because its below 200? Maybe special patented parts? Who knows.

I have to change the terminals out on the battery and reroute all my stuff to a distro block in order to clean it up.

I can at that time try to pull a quick amp output reading, but by going by the standard directions of placing the multimieter on amps, disconnecting the power (while running), touching black lead to the positive terminal, red to the alternator wire, that should give me the amperes right? I wont blow the lead wires out with running a lot of amps though it (I know it wont be 180). That way I can at least report to everyone what the amps are at an 800 rpm idle.
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Old 11-18-2015, 03:11 AM   #10
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I think, from what I have read, you need a clamp type meter to measure the amps. I also read that regular multimeters only go up to like 10 amps.

Check out the military style battery terminals unless you have a specific type in mind already, I really like the ones I'm using, made from Zinc so more conductive than lead, cheap ( around $4 each) and available from Oreily auto parts. I like them because you put all your wires on the back bolt, yet if you ever need to remove the battery you just loosen the front bolt, leaving all your extra wires in place on the terminal.

I used to have a distribution type block on my former 87, it was a Moroso part where it had one stud in the center of a plastic base, pic below of one I found a while back.

I ran one power cable from the positive, to this block, than made all my extra connections off the block, keeps the positive terminal clutter free:

Can't find a pic of the moroso one but this one is similar except the Moroso one has a cover:

http://www.jegs.com/i/Painless-Perfo...80114/10002/-1
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Last edited by ahardb0dy; 11-18-2015 at 03:24 AM.
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