I had a decision to make if I wanted to install a new alternator or not.
Now 50am Motorola unit that is on there is fine, but I do have some issues I’ve seen due to the stereo and amplifier that has been installed in the car.
While I don’t have the full electric draw figured out, I’ve driven her enough in the evening to know that while driving with the headlights on, and the stereo blasting there’s a heavy draw that dims the headlights.
Pull in the driveway facing the garage, turn the stereo off, and watch the lights brighten.
Now she’s a convertible that always has her top down… you can’t hear much without it loud so I’m unlikely to be quiet in her… especially when I finally get around to modernizing her with inputs from my iPod and Phone!
I’ve explored heavier duty alternators, and since I’d rather stay away from the EMPI ones and, godawful chrome ones, that doesn’t leave me many options.
So I’ve decided on going with a Compu-Fire 58690 VW 90 AMP alternator which should more than provide me with power, and also looks totally stock.
Now I’ve also decided to do something completely non-stock for a 79 US Beetle, but something that was implemented later by VW in Mexico on the 1600i Mexican FI Beetles… a fan alternator pulley.
I’ll admit, I don’t see them around here in Ohio. But I have seen them on various cars on the net and so forth. The fan’s function in the engine bay is to allow more air to circulate around and the through the alternator, thereby assisting in keeping the internals cool. Going up to a 90am alternator will generate more heat, and therefore I think this may be one of the lower cost better bolt-on changes I can make that will benefit the engine.
Does it change the engine look? Yeah. It does. The sorta-kinda yellow zinc plated alternator pulley goes with the same colored stock crank pulley.
I found a video that does a great job of showing the 1600i engine, especially the differences from any 79 and earlier US standard ones.
The FI is quite different from the L-Jetronic as well. It has a much nicer electronic ignition type on it, but you can see the fan alternator pulley that it uses.
I’m going to look for yellow-ish zinc plated finned pulley but I don’t know what kind of luck I’ll have finding a Mexican Beetle original part. Frankly, I’ve never actively looked for anything off those model years so this’ll be a new fun thing.
I’m really loving the video. There’s so much early Golf stuff shared on them.