Charged GBH

I noticed someone was breaking an LT on eBay so I emailed him to see if he still had the alternator. He did, so I snaffled it for £30 and then, when it arrived, spent the most infuriating afternoon I’ve had in a long time, removing the old one and fitting the new one.

Now I’ve worked on many a motor in my time and done many a job that had me wanting to headbutt brick walls in sheer frustration. But never in recent memory have I come across a job so absolutely cuntish as changing the alternator on a VW LT35. Every single fucking bolt seemed to have been deliberately placed so that it was as mindfuckingly inaccessible as it was possible to get at. I honestly spent about three or four hours swapping that bastard alternator over - a job that involves undoing three bolts and a couple of cable connectors. It would literally take less than ten minutes, if you could get at it easily.

New alternator on the right. Old one on the left. The old one actually looks in better nick!
New alternator on the right. Old one on the left. The old one actually looks in better nick!

You already know what the punchline is going to be, don’t you?

After spending all that time, cursing, swearing, grazing my knuckles and shortening my life by about three weeks with the stress of it all, I got the alternators swopped over and fired up Herman… and the bastard charging light started glowing again.

This one could run and run! - next thing to try will be to trace every damned wire coming off the thing and see if I can find a dodgy connection, or a short anywhere.

Meta TAGS: alternator
ORIGINAL PUBLICATION DATE: 20 Nov 2009
AUTHOR: stíobhart matulevicz