North American Turbocoupe Organization



Almost Burned Up!!!!
vegas_ss Offline
Senior Member
#1
My daughter took the 87 TC to Wendy's, when she got back she said the car was smoking. She was right! Smoke was pouring out of the hood vents and seams. Opened the hood and the alternator was smoking badly and the solenoid was smoking mildly. Disconnected the battery and managed to stop any more damage. The last TC I had burned up in an electrical fire back in 96... deja vu?

The alternator is about a 10 month old duralast (autozone)... I assume it shorted out from all the smoke pouring out of it and the melted connections... why wouldn't there be some sort of fusible link or fuse to blow rather than have the whole car burn up?

Both times this has happened right after the car has been shut off (ignition switch was replaced 6 months ago) ... At least it was caught this time!!! Any ideas?

Anyhow, with the alternator disconnected, I was able to start it and move it into the road.

Need to figure out how to protect this from happening again (will get a 3g soon as that should help). I will need a new alternator connector (flat one) as that one melted... sources for that (dealer only?). What can be done to prevent this?

Nothing like the smell of burned electronics! *cough cough *
1987 TC, 5sp, Boport Stage 3 Head/2.1 Cam
1996 Impala SS, DCM, Borla Cat Back, too much other stuff!!!
2009 Pontiac G8 GXP 6M, 6.2l LS3, Kooks Long Tube, Hi Flo Cats, Mild Cam
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DonH Offline
Posting Freak
#2
There is supposed to be a fuse link 14 gage green between the alternator and the starter relay. Possibly the smoke isn't visible until the car is shut off because its being blown away by the alternator fan and the movement of the car. There may be some problem in the regulator wiring causing it to put out to much current or the wiring was damaged before. The stock connector to the B circuit is known to be prone to failure because of bad contacts and the wires from the connector are thought by many to be too small gage for the power they have to carry. If the A/C and the engine fans were running (does it get hot in Vegas?) possibly the wiring and alternator got overloaded.
1987 TC stock except ATR 2.5"
1983 Pontiac Transam T-top 5.7 T56 [email protected] top speed: 176mph
1978 Fairmont 2.3 4-spd Big-top S/W
1946 Willys CJ2A 134.2ci L4 No-top
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cm Offline
Member
#3
dont mean to hijack the thread, but im seriously debating putting a fire extinguisher in the tc... too many horror stories
|| 85 TC 5 speed ||
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Hurff Offline
Senior Member
#4
um, proud owner of one since I got the car...

But then again, I have them in all of my cars.... Its just that I dont think of ways to use them that much on the other cars......
1987 TC - RIP
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Joe F Offline
Posting Freak
#5
The old-style TC alternator with the plug for the output (instead of the newer post-style output) is notorious for causing fires. I came close to loosing JR that way. The alternator was actually on fire when I popped the hood; luckily I had just pulled into my driveway and had a nice halon extinguisher handy. It actually burst back into flames a second time before I was able to disconnect the battery!

So warning to all, if you have that older alternator type you'd be well advised to change it out to a newer stud-output type. That would be a great time to put in a 3G 130 amp unit, too! Big Grin
JR's Place - My '87 Turbocoupe
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Gulfdiver Offline
Senior Member
#6
Ditto Joe.. My first TBird ('87) had the alternator burst into flames at a gas station back in 1991... almost lost it.. We were able to put out the fire.. but dam the engine compartment was a powdery mess!
!!!!! MINE ALL MINE !!!!!
1988 TBird Turbo Coupe Mach 1 Special Edition
K&N airfilter; Spec Stage 3.. More mods to come!
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vegas_ss Offline
Senior Member
#7
Quote:Originally posted by JoeCool:
So warning to all, if you have that older alternator type you'd be well advised to change it out to a newer stud-output type. That would be a great time to put in a 3G 130 amp unit, too! Big Grin
Is there a direct swap for a stud type alternator? I would eventually like to get the 3g, but don't have the tools to grind the mount. May just need to move that mod up the list!
1987 TC, 5sp, Boport Stage 3 Head/2.1 Cam
1996 Impala SS, DCM, Borla Cat Back, too much other stuff!!!
2009 Pontiac G8 GXP 6M, 6.2l LS3, Kooks Long Tube, Hi Flo Cats, Mild Cam
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Joe F Offline
Posting Freak
#8
I think I remember seeing here that the 95 amp has a smaller case and will fit as is. However there's not really much grinding to do even with the 135.
JR's Place - My '87 Turbocoupe
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Matt S Offline
Posting Freak
#9
Correct. My 95A was plug and play. I used the PA Performance power (fused) feed fed to the solenoid in addition to all the stock wiring. So far 3 years with no issues at all.
Sold it Sad*
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vegas_ss Offline
Senior Member
#10
Quote:Originally posted by Matt S:
Correct. My 95A was plug and play. I used the PA Performance power (fused) feed fed to the solenoid in addition to all the stock wiring. So far 3 years with no issues at all.
I was looking at their site (PA performance), they have two output options on the 95a... 60/120 or 80/150 amp. Question I have is... What wiring needs to be done with the 95a option? The rectangular plug is destroyed (melted) and I'm trying to get the parts list complete. Is their fused feed in addition to the stock wiring?
1987 TC, 5sp, Boport Stage 3 Head/2.1 Cam
1996 Impala SS, DCM, Borla Cat Back, too much other stuff!!!
2009 Pontiac G8 GXP 6M, 6.2l LS3, Kooks Long Tube, Hi Flo Cats, Mild Cam
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