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Manual Swapped!!
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Finally got around to doing my Big 3 upgrade yesterday. I really only did it because I wanted to, there was nothing wrong with the wires, my sound system or electrical performance. Now that it is done I do notice that my car starts faster, the windows move faster, max A/C has less of a drain on my battery's voltage and my car idles smoother at a lower RPM. So I can say it was worth it.

There is already this good to go writeup on how to on C3G so I just posted pics of what I did and added some things that I feel are missing from the closed how to thread. For reference here is the original writeup http://www.club3g.com/forum/electronics/85190-how-upgrade-big-3-a.html. There are 2 write ups on how to do this in that thread. I went with the second one (yellow top optima). They are slightly different on what they did.

First, it doesnt really mention what wires are what on the factory positive terminal, and Im not sure it mentions it anywhere else on the forum so I will go over it for the sake of everyone else.

Here is a pic of the factory terminal courtesy of tizal



There are 5 wires on the factory terminal, 4 8AWG and 1 6AWG. The red oval is 2 8AWG white wires with a red stripe, these are the factory alternator wires you will replace, and they tie into a 120 amp fuse. The yellow oval is the starter wire. This will be kept and you may have to lengthen it due to the fact that there isn't much extra to work with. Last is the blue oval, these are 2 8AWG solid white wires that run to the fuse box to the right of the battery. If you have the room on your terminal or a second positive terminal (like on an optima), SpyderMan03 discusses the big 4th upgrade which is basically turning the 2 8AWG wires into 1 4AWG wire.

Next, I noticed that the 2 how to's are for the GT, I did mine on my GS, which is a little different. The alternator on the GS is between the engine and the firewall as opposed to being in front of the engine like on the V6, so the car needs lifted to get to it. See the picture to understand what I mean.



Now, what I did . . . but first to echo the how to, DISCONNECT THE BATTERY AND JUST REMOVE IT FOR SAFETY AND EASE!!! Or stand by to get jacked up.



I did my upgrade with 0AWG wire by Knukonceptz for the alternator wire (this), and as the writeup mentioned the alternator can only take a 4AWG ring terminal at most. In his writeup tizal mentioned that if using 0AWG wire you could just shave a 0AWG ring terminal down to the width of a 4AWG one and make it work. I however did it a little differently. I used a 0 to 4AWG reducer from Sound Quest (this) from the wire with a 4AWG ring terminal by Stinger (this). I made sure the hex screws were very tight, went over the whole thing 4 times with e-tape, covered the connection with split loom and e-taped it some more for safety (you never want this connection to accidentally ground so feel free to be overly cautious). I bolted this connection to the alternator and completely removed the original connection, tapped it up and zip tied it out of the way (to remove the wire completely is a pain because it has the plug connection to the alternator taped to it the entire length to the fuse box, for the same reason be careful cutting off the original ring terminal so you don't accidentally cut the other wires). I then zip tied the new wire which i covered with split loom to the original split looming as per the how to.



I ran the alternator wire to the radiator hoses at the front of the engine then paused on that part and did the engine ground connection. For reference it the only black wire with a yellow stripe bolted to the engine block between the top end and the top of the transmission on the GS. I used 5ft of black Kicker 0AWG wire (this) with 2 0AWG ring terminals by Stinger (this) for the engine to ground connection. See the pictures of the engine ground point and battery ground point for reference.





For the factory ground I used a T style ground termination block by Stinger (this). I bolted one foot to the factory point and used the left over foot to fab a connection to the engine ground with lock washers and bolts. It is all very tight I tugged and twisted and its not moving so its good to go.

I went back to the alternator wire, and ran it to the ANL digital fuse holder by the battery (this) and a 120A ANL fuse by KnuKonceptz (this). THIS FUSE HAS TO BE THERE TO PROTECT THE ALTERNATOR (if you look at the factory terminal where the 2 factory alternator wires connect, there is a 120A fuse there).



This is where I ran into a hick-up. I only had one battery post with one Absolute digital terminal (this), it has 1 0AWG input, 1 4AWG input and 2 8 AWG inputs (I couldn't find any terminals with more inputs besides one designed to take ring terminals), and I had 1 0AWG wire for my audio, 1 0AWG wire for my alternator, 1 4AWG wire to my fuse box, and 2 8AWG wires (factory alternator), all that I needed to do something with. For the 2 0AWG wires I connected them to the battery through a T distribution block by Stinger (this) in the 0AWG input, the starter in the 4AWG input, and put 2 8AWG runs of Stinger power wire (this) back to the fuse box which went into the 2 8AWG inputs obviously.



here is a close up of the T distribution block



That is pretty much it, I used an Absolute digital terminal as well for the negative (this). After I double checked everything I connected the terminals back to the battery and started my car right up with no problems. There should be no sparks, no electrical burning smell or other problems. I can see the voltage at my battery, the voltage to my alternator and to my audio which is nice. Also during this instal is a good time to remove the rust and re-paint the battery shelf which I did.

Any question or comments please let me know.
 
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