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Tractor's generator not charging? Try this...

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If you have an older tractor with a generator instead of an alternator and the battery is disconnected or dies, then the generator won't put out any voltage. Try this before replacing the voltage regulator.
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Text Comments (45)
Adolph Shitler (6 months ago)
You sound like the guy in the new true grit film. Thanks I'll give that a try.
farmboy30117 (6 months ago)
Well thank you pardner! (in my best John Wayne voice)
Gary Desgres (6 months ago)
Thanks for posting, worked for my 4000.
Bill Dozer (10 months ago)
wouldn't believe it if I didn't see it myself....I'm off to re-flash with hopes to bring life to my 54 pontiac!
farmboy30117 (10 months ago)
Hope it works for you Bill!
Eric Whitaker (1 year ago)
hey farmboy, first of all great video! that was really helpful. I'm helping my father-in-law work on his d14 Allis Chalmers tractor and the battery won't charge. it's a positive ground 12v generator. the ammeter shows discharge and a multimeter on the battery shows the same thing. I stuck a wire between the 2 points it showed me on the diagram for the voltage regulator but it still doesn't charge. I also checked the voltage between the 2 leads on the generator and it doesn't show anything. what do you think the problem is? is there another way for me to check and see if the generator is even working?
Eric Whitaker (1 year ago)
farmboy30117 No problem. Thanks again for the informative videos!
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
Thanks Eric!  I'll have to admit I know nothing about positive grounded equipment.  Sorry.
Christian W (1 year ago)
Like iamzid, I was just trying to figure out why that light wouldn't go off on my 3000. Now I have hope! Thanks!
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
Thanks Christian!  Hope it solves your issue!
iamzid (1 year ago)
i watched 3 video's on how to do this and this is the only one that made any sense to me. just got my new regulator in and that stupid red light finally shut off. thanks for making this video, i couldn't have done it without you.
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
Glad it helped!
Bill Payne (1 year ago)
I like your video. I'm preparing to fire up my rebuilt 48 ford pickup for the first time this week and this helps a lot. I like how it didn't work the first time because that's the way things usually go! At least when I'm doing these jobs!
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
Thanks Bill!  It often goes that way for me too ;)
Bob Gilston (1 year ago)
I wonder if you have any thoughts on my problem - which is: I have a little 1960 Jacobsen 8hp garden tractor that won't charge the battery. I've had the Delco 12v starter/generator rebuilt by shop that only works on electric motors. I've replaced all the wiring. I have a new ignition. I have a new voltage regulator that I put in today thinking/hoping that I had replaced the last item in the charging system. I saw your polarizing / re-flashing the Field video which I did with the old VR before I fried it. Do I have to do it to the new voltage regulator? Do you have any other advice if not? Thanks for your help!
Tony Gatto (1 year ago)
you may have to change the idot light it flashes the field on some alternators
Bob Gilston (1 year ago)
Thank you for the input. I'll give it a try later today and let you know.
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
Bob, I'm in no way an expert on alternators/generators, but I can tell you that (on our Ford 3000) when the battery is disconnected, I have to reflash the field to get it to charge.  I'm not sure how it works on your garden tractor though.
Bill Miller (1 year ago)
generators don't have diodes
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
You're correct, but there is an in-line diode to prevent current from back-feeding into the generator
bamboogie b (1 year ago)
hey farmboy. I have a mf 35. my generator gets really hot when I turn off the tractor. I have to disconnect the battery. I've changed the generator still same problem. you reckon its the regulator? I've checked all the wiring. cheerrs
dave12546 (1 year ago)
the points are burnt together in the regulator
farmboy30117 (1 year ago)
I would reckon that's the issue as long as everything is wired correctly.  Sounds like the power is back-feeding into the generator.  I suppose a diode or something is bad.
Jared Caudill (2 years ago)
Thanks man, this helped me on my car 1950 Dodge, same problem 6volt system!
farmboy30117 (2 years ago)
Well, at least you found the issue! 
Jared Caudill (2 years ago)
+farmboy30117 actually it ended up being the VR itself, opened it up and had to clean the contacts points off
farmboy30117 (2 years ago)
+Jared Caudill Cool, glad it helped!  I appreciate the feedback!
Cathy M Phillips (2 years ago)
Thank You . Just what I needed to Know. :) I've got the same tractor Ford 3000.
farmboy30117 (2 years ago)
+Cathy M Phillips You're welcome!  Glad it helped!
krrrruptidsoless (2 years ago)
Working on a 2 wire generator with a 3 wire regulator on a gas case. Nothing is marked anywhere. Bought a CD that supposedly was a shop manual that didn't even have a electrical diagram. Your vid showed me more than that or the internet. YT strikes again as far as I am concerned. Thanks for the vid. I was tracing all the wires to find where they go to. Thanks again.
farmboy30117 (2 years ago)
+krrrruptidsoless Glad it helped!
Rodger Peterson (2 years ago)
Thanks a lot ,that helped me many dollars
Ian Knau (2 years ago)
Thank you Farmboy, I've had problems with my 55Ford, been restoring it and never had to deal with flashing a generator. Some idiot looking at the car, back when we thought we'd sell it, hooked up a 12 volt battery to it. The car's a 6v system so it fried out the regulator. Anyway, Im replacing it tomorrow and your video was a nice easy to understand guide to polarizing the generator, so thanks man. :)
farmboy30117 (2 years ago)
+Ian Knau You're welcome!  Thanks for the comment!
James Olmstead (2 years ago)
you are a life saver thank you for this video I have been trying to find out what is wrong with my case 220 1975 tractor it would not charge after I change the batter. A BIG THANK YOU
farmboy30117 (2 years ago)
You're welcome, I'm glad it helped!
Joe Corrie (3 years ago)
looking for a hood for my 460 utility tractor and just watching videos and came across yours, i was just showing somebody how well my tractor starts and yes somehow left the key on and it's dead now ha, it was totally dead, all have to see if it's charging when i fire it up, if not i now know what to do thanks.
farmboy30117 (3 years ago)
LOL, that's how it goes Joe.
Jim Buford (3 years ago)
The reason cows have 3 stomachs is so they can get all the nutrients out of what they eat.  Horses only have one stomach so they need a better quality hay.
Jim Buford (3 years ago)
talking about the poor quality of the hay, my dad used to say well, "it beats a snowball."
farmboy30117 (3 years ago)
Like I try telling my mother, if they aren't eating it they ain't hungry enough!
Brad1237202 (3 years ago)
Love all your videos Farm Boy! I look at the weather in the background in your videos and see that my brother in Roswell and friend in Hogansville are still enjoying the warm, sunny weather down there! We are now having morning temperatures up here in RI in the low 30's.
farmboy30117 (3 years ago)
Weather's been very nice for the past week.  40's in the mornings and 70's in the afternoon. 
mossman381 (3 years ago)
Dad has put alternators in all our Oliver crawlers. I think they are cheaper to replace.
farmboy30117 (3 years ago)
More dependable too! 

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