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Discussion Starter #1
I bought 2/0 cable for my ground and 1/0 for my power cables, 4AWG for the frame ground from the battery. I was wondering if this will be too much for my system. I'm running 1/0 to the starter relay and to my starter and stock 3G 95 amp alternator. I am gonna put a 125 amp breaker in there somewhere just not sure if my power cables are too big for starter/relay/ and alternator being stock...and the stock ground was connected to the frame before the block, do I just run another cable from the block back to the frame spot?
Thanks for any help
 

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Those parts will only draw or deliver what that are able to. The only risk you might run is the new thicker cables will be able to take more before they fail or burn up, which means there was a problem anyways that should be addressed.

The factory uses bare minimum size of wire to get the job done (most of the time), what you are doing with the big 3 upgrade is increasing those items and giving them all less resistance, which should in turn make them all work better, especially since your replacing more then likely corroded 20+ year old cables. You will not have an issue running too big of wire, if anything you could say you are just using an un-needed size of wire.
I would run a ground from the frame to the block like you have described, should be fine as long as all three of them are grounded (body, frame, block).

I have had success on many vehicles with the big 3 done and most of those that was the only change to the electrical system.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you guys!
I figured it wouldn't be a problem. Had to ask, I read about fires not trying to make that happen. Where inline does a breaker fit in best? I'm having troubles making the tiny alternator ring terminal fit to the big a$$ ring on the 1/0.
 

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^^^ Explained it much better .
The ground stud nut on the block is a beotch to get to, getting that 2/0 cable on there along with the other crap that is mounted on that stud is not going to be fun.
I suggest taking your tire off and removing the plastic wheel well to give yourself better access, only takes like 10 min
 

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Thank you guys!
I figured it wouldn't be a problem. Had to ask, I read about fires not trying to make that happen. Where inline does a breaker fit in best? I'm having troubles making the tiny alternator ring terminal fit to the big a$$ ring on the 1/0.
1/0 charge cable is waaaaay over kill for little or no gains.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I did it last night and it really was a pain. Took me maybe 2 hours trying to re route and turn that terminal but the fux don't wanna budge. It's on now so it's staying there.
 

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On the ground side, you might want to add a smaller ground cable from head or manifold to the firewall... I usually add a dedicated #4 ground from battery NEG to alternator mount to help stabilize charging. And I try to get a new fresh ground from engine to passenger side hood hinge bolt to get better ground path to the 'Puter :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'm back with issues starting my truck..I'm leaning towards a ground or wiring problem. Here's what I'm dealing with, so I wired my BATT- to have two outlets coming from the post: one goes down to the block, and on that stud it runs back to the stock frame clamp(figure it shouldn't be a problem re-routing grounds that way) and one wire that goes to the body ground with many other small wires(should any of these maybe need to be upgrading in size too?)....then from the BATT+ I have two wires coming out from the battery post,one to my starter relay(left side looking down at it)...on the same relay post goes to a 120a breaker then to the alternator. The right starter relay post(looking down at it) goes to the bottom post on the starter. The other wire from the battery goes directly to the top post of the starter. Hope this makes any sense to someone out there.thank you guys
 

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Discussion Starter #11
When I try to start the truck it cranks a few times fine but never fires and gets slower as it tries to start up, charged the battery for a couple days now with no luck still. My fuel pressure is fine while its priming,haven't tried cranking pressure yet. New battery new alternator, original starter that I noticed has a loose starter solenoid plastic cap. Never seen anything like it, I assume that's bad for the connections and may be causing this problem...?
 

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I just finished my Big 4. Battery to Ground and Frame / Battery to Starter Solenoid / Battery to Starter / Alt to Starter Solenoid. I used all 1/0 gage wire and ring terminals. I used to average 13.8 Volts on Scan Gage at idle and I am now running 14.2 at idle.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
So it is okay to run to starter relay wire to the bottom stud on the starter and not the spade terminal then?
 

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When I try to start the truck it cranks a few times fine but never fires and gets slower as it tries to start up, charged the battery for a couple days now with no luck still. My fuel pressure is fine while its priming,haven't tried cranking pressure yet. New battery new alternator, original starter that I noticed has a loose starter solenoid plastic cap. Never seen anything like it, I assume that's bad for the connections and may be causing this problem...?
Check your coil feed. Sounds like you have no power to the ignition and thus no spark.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Sparks good at the coil and at the plugs, power and ground to the coil is good, now my priming fuel pressure is low (under 10psi) since I last checked. It used to be good though so I'm not sure if it's a fuel pump issue or something else...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
No fuel smell or leak from the fuel pressure regulator vacuum line...seems to me like it's a fuel pump and/or filter problem any ideas??
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Update...
I sprayed starting fluid and it brought it to life! Now it takes more cranks but I can get it to fire. Doing a fuel filter change today hope that helps *fingers crossed*
Really don't wanna drop the tank again!
 

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I'm interested to see how this turns out for your as I'm about to swap sending unit and filter as well as do the Big 3 (...or Big 4) or whatever you like to call it.
 

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I'm planning on doing this upgrade this weekend but I'm unsure where to run the charging wire from the alternator. Do you run it to the starter relay where the original wire is or directly to the battery?
 

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Kmart,

Here is how I ran mine.
Here is my power wire. I used #1 AWG cable. The short side goes to the starter relay on the fender, the longer end goes to the starter. I used the solder on battery terminals from NAPA and they are awesome. You have to bend the starter cable end 90° which was done easily in a vise.


There is no need to use anything larger than #1 AWG, its beefy enough to handle 500-1000 amps and is almost as big around as the average finger.


For the ground wire, I ran one leg of the terminal to the fender ground next to the battery and the other end to the engine block.


I also used these solder on ends and battery terminals from NAPA they are perfect.



I found some super heavy duty shrink wrap with the glue inside for battery terminals at harbor freight that also worked perfectly to help insulate and protect the connections.

I then took the old frame ground and a section of the cable that was there originally and cut that to fit as a jumper from the engine block to the stock frame ground location. I used a solder on end for the block connection and the original frame ground connection and heat shrinked them both. I also used a grinder to clean the area on the frame where it bolts to so it has a clean grounding surface.


For the starter trigger wire, I used #10 wire and solder on ends for it.




Here is a diagram of how it all hooks up and the approximate lengths the cables need to be, I left the terminal at the starter off till I had the rest of it in place so I could trim it to fit nicely to the starter.


Note the drawing shows the Battery lead going to the front post on the relay and the starter trigger on the back side of the relay, thats wrong, its the reverse of that. My bad. It should connect like shown in the photo below.

If that diagram is too small to read heres a direct link. Just click on the image to see a larger version.
http://www.supermotors.net/getfile/1021910/original/positive-battery-lead-measurements.jpg

And here is one for the ground circuit.
This is the way the stock cable is run. I ran mine a bit differently as stated above. but this is good for measurements so you know how much cable to get.


If that diagram is too small to read heres a direct link. Just click on the image to see a larger version.
http://www.supermotors.net/getfile/1021989/fullsize/negative-battery-cable.jpg

I also got a 130amp alternator and ran a 1 gauge wire to a 175 amp megafuse then to the Right side of the starter relay (the side toward the windshield). Same side as the Battery lead connects to.

Im thinking about modifying the system a bit so I have a bit better setup for power distribution. I will eventually get a power distribution block and transfer the wire from the starter relay over to the distribution block, then run a wire from the block back to the relay with another megafuse in it. Then I have another lug available to run my Stereo power or extra lights or whatever else I may add. Its also a good place to hook up one of those heavy duty headlight harness's they sell at Bronco graveyard and Painless. I will eventually do a dual battery setup and this will come in handy for that as well.




If you dont know exactly where the ground connects to the block here is a couple of shots that will help you see how it connects.
my 94 is setup just like View F where it says for Lightning


That screw in stud connects right here on the bottom passenger side of the block.


Heres a shot of it in the truck.
 
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