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Stripped lower alternator pivot bolt
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erdonline
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Joined: September 26, 2004
Posts: 918
Location: CT
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 2:02 pm    Post subject: Stripped lower alternator pivot bolt Reply with quote

(This is on my '84 stock 1.9, but don't all the alternators on both 1.9 and 2.1 mount the same way?)

I needed to tighten my alternator belt. I have a problem with the lower pivoting bolt. I've searched several threads on alternator bolt and mounting problems, but they all seem to have to with the bracket facing the rear or the van- the one I'm concerned with is the one under the alternator. I removed the alternator from my spare engine to see the set-up. It's a carriage bolt with a square shoulder. I suspect that the square shoulder or the hole it sits in has rounded, as when I turn the nut at the rear and under the alternator the bolt spins as well and won't tighten or loosen.

I didn't look so closely at the spare engine to see how that mount is attached to the engine, but I'd rather not have to take that off. I'm wondering if there is enough room back there to put a standard bolt with a hex head. I know there's room to get the bolt in, because obviously the carriage bolt slides in and out, but I'm wondering about room for a socket to hold it in place.

The nice thing about the original is that it sits in place while you tighten the nut on the other end.

Anyone else have this problem and found a solution? As I said, the other threads seem to deal with one of the other two bolts or the bracket that the alternator locks onto.

Thanks,
Ed
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'98 Mexican air-cooled Beetle
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erdonline
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 9:50 am    Post subject: lower alternator bolt Reply with quote

I got several responses from the Vanagon mailing list and thought I'd share here in case anyone else has the same problem:

I was assuming that the bracket and bolt set-up for my '84 was the same as my '85. This may not be the case. Early models have a regular bolt with a nut going through the lower bracket, so it's necessary (even if you have to remove other belts, AFM, etc.) to get a wrench in there on the front side of the van to hold the bolt head while you loosen the nut.

On my '85, there's a carriage bolt and the bracket has a square hole, so all you have to do is loosen the nut.

I haven't felt back there or looked with a mirror yet, but now I know that I may have the earlier set-up, and just have to get a socket in there. If for some reason I do have the later style with carriage bolt and I did strip it or the bracket, I can cut off the nut and push the bolt back and replace it with a regular bolt- I was worried that there wouldn't be room to do this, but since the earlier style uses this, there's got to be room on mine. Also working to my advantage is the fact that I don't have power steering or a/c, so those belts won't be in my way.

Ed
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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, it was the reference to a carriage bolt on an 84 that prevented me from responding. My 84 uses the hex bolt & nut you describe.

You might also consider this:

http://www.gowesty.com/ec_view_details.php?id=4454&category_id=&category_parent_id=

I got one awhile back and it used a hex bolt with a nut welded on the back of the aux bracket, now I see they have changed the design to the carriage bolt approach -- perhaps less troublesome.
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teej
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I overtorqued the carriage bolt that comes with the GW kit (slightly longer than stock) and snapped it. Got a hardened similar hex bolt from the hardware store, was able to wiggle it in with some fussing, more to do with the additional GW bracket, and torqued it carefully. Friction kept the head from spinning, so I can't recall if you can actually get some sort of wrench on the thing. Holding strong several months later.
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