How to Hook Up a Single Wire Alternator

by K.K. Lowell
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Photos by KKLowell

The General Motors one-wire alternator needs to have only one wire connected to operate. This feature has made this unit popular with car enthusiasts and off-road truck builders. With the proper brackets, this alternator can be used with just about any engine and vehicle combination.

Step 1

Mount the alternator to the engine. It may be necessary to fabricate brackets if they are not available from a speed shop or junkyard. Be certain the belt lines up straight in the pulleys.

Step 2

Disconnect the negative cable from the vehicle battery.

Step 3

Connect a 10-gauge wire from the output stud on the alternator back to the positive battery terminal. Make both connections with a solderless ring terminal. This connection can be made at the starter relay also, as long as it connects to the same terminal as the positive cable from the battery.

Step 4

Reconnect the negative cable to the battery.

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