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View Full Version : 1961 Eureka-Cadillac Hi-Boy Electrical Questions


Nicholas Studer
04-11-2017, 08:48 PM
Working on getting the parts together and making a plan for the hopefully rapid mechanical refresh and paint work coming in a few months. http://www.professionalcarsociety.org/forums/showthread.php?t=18944 is main thread for updates. The electrical system has been of particular interest to me since it's a bit of a mess.

1. The 1961 flyer for Eureka ambulances notes a 45-amp generator as standard (See http://www.professionalcarsociety.org/forums/showpost.php?p=841903580&postcount=21). The Cadillac shop manual for that year agrees, this generator also common to cars with air conditioning. This 1961 Eureka-Cadillac Hi-Boy served in four services during its 31 year service life. In 1992 - it underwent what was termed "restoration" in Taos County, NM. A 1992 dated paper service tag from a local electrical shop was present on a Leece-Neville 7706J 165 amp alternator that was in place when the car was surplused. The date code on the data plate is damaged, but comparing to others - the type of plate corresponds to the early 1990s. This model is internally regulated with a Leece-Neville 77973 voltage regulator in place on the back of the unit. There are a a red and yellow wire from the main wiring harness without attachment and hanging free in space.

http://www.professionalcarsociety.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=30217&stc=1&d=1453066947

Further forward, there is what appears to be a voltage regulator with the wires to the harness cut - but still present on both sides The regulator doesn't appear to be a factory Cadillac model, but no model markings seem to be present besides Made in USA and a voltage adjustment screw in the center. I believe it to be a Delco-Remy product from some quality time with Google, and a later model at that. Photo below.

An similar alternator setup is also present on the 1964 Eureka-Cadillac Hi-Boy owned by Mr. Joe McDonald in Rock Falls, IL. Larri Dirks is kindly getting me some further details on it - but unclear if it was original to the car or added later.

Does the hive mind believe the car had "just" a 45 amp generator and alternator when it started its life? If so, should I try to go back to this when we put the second battery back in? There are surely more than a few lights plus a Q1 siren to worry about, but no AC. Granted, there is supposed to be a second battery which we will be putting back in.

2. I was a bit perplexed what the pictured item in the bottom right of the was, beneath the voltage regulator. I am being told it is an aftermarket GM auxiliary fuel pump - and was probably added later in life due to a sluggish fuel pump. It was not hooked up and remains that way, and the car requires a bit of starter fluid to get going. Obviously, we'll be boiling the gas tank, flushing the lines, and rebuilding the fuel pump and carburetor. (You can see an an inline fuel filter someone added running off to the left) I expect we'll be rebuilding the engine, more likely than not too. Is this item indeed some 1970s/1980s add-on to the car, and likely to become unnecessary once the fuel system is cleaned up?

3. Running on the opposite side of the engine compartment, is what I believe are the flasher modules for the emergency lights. Does anyone recognize the brand? The yellow decals are only a warning about cleaning connections. It's also interesting that there's a disconnected wire hanging free, plus two other reds that are cut far forward of these modules (unsure if related). The two center lights in the front tunnels are not flashing, and the outer two are "steady burn." The rear "bullet lights" (1959 Cadillac taillamp modules) and the rear door lights flash). In contrast, Mr. McDonald's 1964 has a Cole-Hersey 3034 flasher, which is what my 1963 Pinner-Chrysler has. Again - unknown if that module was original to his car. I believe whatever these are, they're likely at least close to what originally was installed. I am certainly unclear why there's 1-3 wires disconnected....

It's going to be a lot of work - but thankfully the body is solid and most everything is there. Can't wait to see the end result!

John ED Renstrom
04-11-2017, 11:14 PM
One look at the alternator says it was added. the engine doesn't have pullys that add up. My guess would be that the 64 commercial would have the same large GM alternator that the 63 had. In can dig out pictures to be sure but that is what I recall it having. It would have the solid state regulator.

The old trick for the hard start hot was to add the electric pump with a switch to flip it on for start. It is not needed for a properly operating car

The flashers would most likely have been the !Motorist round McDerment one. The square heavy duty were most likely added.

The hardest part of the restoration is returning the. Car to what it was in 64

John ED Renstrom
04-11-2017, 11:29 PM
ok here are a couple of the 63 set up I have the radiator support out of the car at this point so the regulator is laying on top. the other shows how the belts were put in. it did have the round motorized flasher.

Nicholas Studer
04-12-2017, 01:00 AM
Hi Ed - appreciate the reply on such a dull topic! :)

1963 is slightly newer than mine, but reviewed the M-M literature for that year and indeed a generator as well was standard for that year. The voltage regulator you've got pictured is same as mine. Do you think 45A will be able to handle all the lights and such?

Glad to know I was on the right track, and the electric pump is just a later "quickly fix" add on.

The flasher boxes have a bit of overspray on them, so they date from 1970 at the latest. They indeed may be McDermont products, after reviewing the catalog they have one in a plastic box but otherwise similar.

Kurt Arends
04-12-2017, 01:14 AM
Chrysler led the pack on the introduction of alternators. Chrysler Corp. first introduced them in 1960 and in 1961 all Mopars had them. Chrysler had scads of "firsts" in the industry.

Nick,
You are a stickler for originality. Put a generator back on it!

Paul Steinberg
04-12-2017, 10:31 AM
1234567890

John ED Renstrom
04-12-2017, 11:39 AM
Paul must be thinking again. I thought the big GMs were 65 amp. The generator on my 53 is a 45 or 50. Now all the charging system does is charge the batteries. That being said nothing in 61 would keep up with Q, dual four bulb beacons corner flashers and running the front and rear ac units on high. in a paraid. Your newer 150 amp would have trouble keeping the batteries toped off under those conditions.

But the factory set up in 61 was Good enough that when it went out they replaced it with a similar size unit so it most have worked for the way the car is set up.

Steve Loftin
04-12-2017, 12:14 PM
If so, should I try to go back to this when we put the second battery back in?

More than likely the original owner ordered the large alternator.

For reliability's sake, I'd leave the current (no pun intended) alternator on the car.

Paul Steinberg
04-12-2017, 04:54 PM
Paul must be thinking again. I thought the big GMs were 65 amp.

I didn't have time to finish my response. The largest standard size alternator offered by Cadillac back in the early 1960's was a 55 amp alternator for the air conditioned passenger model cars. Commercial chassis cars supplied to the body builders would have had a Delco alternator on them, since GM didn't use Leece Neville products on anything other than the largest trucks offered in the GMC commercial lines.

The generator on my 53 is a 45 or 50. Now all the charging system does is charge the batteries.

I seriously doubt that the generator on your 1953 is any more than a 30 amp generator, since to get to 45 or 50 amps, would require a much larger set of fields and armature. One must be careful not to confuse amps with volts, since a 6 volt system requires larger cables than a 12 volt system. Increasing the voltage allows you to use thinner cables.

That being said nothing in 61 would keep up with Q, dual four bulb beacons corner flashers and running the front and rear ac units on high. in a paraid. Your newer 150 amp would have trouble keeping the batteries toped off under those conditions.

It is difficult to say for certain that a 150 amp alternator would have difficulty keeping up with the demand, without doing a amp calculation on the different types of equipment. This is why ambulances were supplied with battery switches. You start on one or two batteries, and then switch to a single battery when running emergency calls. If you pull that battery down to the point that it doesn't have enough cold cranking amps left in it to start the engine, you can switch to the other battery and get the vehicle running again. Then you would switch to "both" batteries on, so the alternator would charge both batteries simultaneously.

But the factory set up in 61 was Good enough that when it went out they replaced it with a similar size unit so it most have worked for the way the car is set up.

150 amp alternators were not in common use in 1961, so I can say with almost certainty that the original alternator probably wasn't much more than 135 amps.

Now, getting back to what I originally started to post this morning.....

In the early 1960's, GM referred to "alternators" as generators. 45 amps isn't going to do much charging with the emergency lights illuminated. My 1962 came standard with a 42 amp alternator with air conditioning, and the optional high output generator was a 60 amp. The 1962 Cadillac production model with air conditioning was a 55 amp alternator. To know what originally came with the 1961 commercial chassis for ambulance service you will need to look in the electrical specifications chart in the service manual. It will give the model number and the output. The solid state regulator in your car, is probably original to the car.

Nick.....

It is time to get your hands dirty, and remove the solid state regulator, and post a picture of it. In one corner of the unit, you will find that there is a part number, and a date code. This will verify if the regulator is original to the car or not. Please post these numbers or a clear picture of them, will be even better.

Kurt Arends
04-12-2017, 10:25 PM
Is this McDermott flasher the same vintage?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/371918324390?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

John ED Renstrom
04-12-2017, 11:58 PM
got you on the poncho standard was 45 the high out put was 50. no way to tell with out taking it apart so I got both rebuild kits the 50 amp regulator is the hard one to find.

my point was it should have had the big alternator that GM offered as that went with that solid state regulator that the wires were cut on. that size alternator must be enough to run the equipment, because they replace the delco with one of similar size. I just don't understand why they did not place it correctly on the car and run the duel belts with it. but such are the in house repairs made on most ambulances.
the hardest part when you start is figure out what they cobbled and reversing that back to factory specs. as you have said in 1961 you would have been proud to drive the car cost to cost. rebuild it back to factory specs and you can do the same in 2017.

Nicholas Studer
04-13-2017, 12:49 AM
More than likely the original owner ordered the large alternator.

For reliability's sake, I'd leave the current (no pun intended) alternator on the car.

Knowing what is original is often quite hard. :) Primary concern ahead is cleaning up the mess of 31 years of in-service tinkering, getting all of the lights to work, etc. It'd be nice if we can get it back to how it was before 1992.

I didn't have time to finish my response. The largest standard size alternator offered by Cadillac back in the early 1960's was a 55 amp alternator for the air conditioned passenger model cars. Commercial chassis cars supplied to the body builders would have had a Delco alternator on them, since GM didn't use Leece Neville products on anything other than the largest trucks offered in the GMC commercial lines. It is difficult to say for certain that a 150 amp alternator would have difficulty keeping up with the demand, without doing a amp calculation on the different types of equipment. This is why ambulances were supplied with battery switches. You start on one or two batteries, and then switch to a single battery when running emergency calls. If you pull that battery down to the point that it doesn't have enough cold cranking amps left in it to start the engine, you can switch to the other battery and get the vehicle running again. Then you would switch to "both" batteries on, so the alternator would charge both batteries simultaneously.

Unclear exactly how the dual battery system was setup in my car. In 1992, they decided to install a beat-up, black-painted Model 28 siren in the driver's side battery box. (The Taos News reported the siren was missing upon receipt by the county for parade use) A cable runs directly from a solenoid on the driver's side to the positive terminal of the single battery, bypassing the large power cutoff switch (It's also hooked up to the horn ring switch to activate the siren). Review of the 1964 Hi-Boy seems to show a similar setup, but it has a power cable running from the positive terminal of the driver's side battery back to the firewall, which is not present on mine. That vehicle does have the Cole-Hersee "marine-type" battery switch. I do not have definitive proof that was not added later on in life. That switch is also not present on this car, and I do not have definitive evidence it is missing. The former-Parish 1959 Hi-Boy now owned by Mr. Otten in Europe, may or may not have been a dual-battery setup originally, but currently is single battery and also does not have a switch. I'll post photos of it soon.

I do have a Rochester Products "Mak-Saf" kill switch (http://www.rochestergauges.com/products/2835.html), which is also found on the 1959 Hi-Boy. Main module is on the firewall, pull-handle in the cab. Best I can tell - that was/is not present on the 1964. I also have an electrical pull-switch on the left dash under the parking brake release, that has unclear function. Perhaps related?

I guess all I really know for sure is the second battery probably wasn't hooked directly up to the other one. :)

150 amp alternators were not in common use in 1961, so I can say with almost certainty that the original alternator probably wasn't much more than 135 amps. Now, getting back to what I originally started to post this morning.....

In the early 1960's, GM referred to "alternators" as generators. 45 amps isn't going to do much charging with the emergency lights illuminated. My 1962 came standard with a 42 amp alternator with air conditioning, and the optional high output generator was a 60 amp. The 1962 Cadillac production model with air conditioning was a 55 amp alternator. To know what originally came with the 1961 commercial chassis for ambulance service you will need to look in the electrical specifications chart in the service manual. It will give the model number and the output. The solid state regulator in your car, is probably original to the car.

Paul - photos I have found on Google show a black Delco-Remy unit present in cars of the same year. Please see below for the Eureka ad for that year plus the 1961 Cadillac service manual's relevant page. You can see commercial chassis and air conditioned cars were specified at 45 amp apparently. My car does not have A/C. I have not found mention in any literature that I have access to from 1959-1962 that mentions anything different for M-M, Superior, S&S, or Eureka. However, I must caveat that I do not have any specific option lists for these years. I only have a photo of the 1962 Eureka funeral coach flyer, but it mentions 45 amp as well.

It is enlightening to know that the Delco-Remy 45 amp "generator" referenced may indeed be an alternator. I have made some slight efforts to dig one up - but no easy leads just yet. A few 35A ones, and a few unspecified ones - have turned up on eBay...

Nick..... It is time to get your hands dirty, and remove the solid state regulator, and post a picture of it. In one corner of the unit, you will find that there is a part number, and a date code. This will verify if the regulator is original to the car or not. Please post these numbers or a clear picture of them, will be even better.

Good point. Will get it demounted and post some photos as soon as I am able to access the car. What spurred me to wonder about it was that the service manual shows another type of regulator, which is what Google searches show in engine compartment photos of 1961s. Maybe I'm just missing a cover? Photo below.

Is this McDermott flasher the same vintage?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/371918324390?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

Kurt - the TG-12-90 is still sold today! http://mcdermottlight.com/pdf/Cat7.PDF

I have e-mailed them to ask if they recognize those flasher modules. They look similar to the NTG-12-90 also sold today.

http://i872.photobucket.com/albums/ab281/Lesneyfan/1961EurekaAmbulancespecs_page1_0.jpg

Daniel Scully
04-13-2017, 01:49 AM
62 is the first year Gm offered an alternator and even that is a bit hit and miss depending on application. Your pic shows the location for the stock GM voltage regulator for the generator. The tube in the pic is the duct that runs from the front of the radiator support to the back of the generator. My understanding is a/c cars and 75 series cars had this duct to help cool the generator . I bought a 62 limo for the parts to convert my 61 to a alternator ,a/c and dual master cylinder . I have all the old parts from my 61 I will have to take a look at the generator to see what amp it is. GM called there alternator as mentioned as a generator for a long time.

Nicholas Studer
04-13-2017, 12:41 PM
Dan - if you've got the generator and want to part with it, let me know.

Has anyone had good experience with Ace Alternator & Starter Exchange h(ttp://acewichita.com) or Classic Generator (http://www.classicgenerator.com/index.html), or another vendor to buy the missing generator?

Daniel Scully
04-13-2017, 12:59 PM
I'll dig it out and see what all I have.

John ED Renstrom
04-13-2017, 03:12 PM
the push pull switch is for the center dome light in the rear. if it's wired the same as the 58 was. Eureka wired every light on a different switch. if you look at the pictures of the set up on the 63 you will see that the alternator mount pulley set up and regulator are the same as what is on that 61. that would lead me to believe that on the ambulance they were using the delco alternator same as the 63 on the 61. as for whether or not is was duel battery that would be up for grabs. but if there is no evidence of a duel battery set up it, most likely did not have one. you can't compare the ambulance set up with the hearse or the factory limo. I have yet to see one that was not the smaller standard charging system.

Paul Steinberg
04-13-2017, 06:46 PM
Series 75 is commercial chassis, which consists of the factory built limousine, or either the cowl and chassis, which came in two versions... one being the hearse & flower car, and the other being the ambulance. The difference between the hearse /flower car, and the ambulance commercial chassis is that the ambulance has a higher output generator (alternator), and dual battery compartments. Until you find yourself a 1961 or 1962 factory parts manual (must have been printed in 1961 and/or 1962, there is no way to know exactly what was shipped with the chassis for 1961. The earliest Cadillac parts book that I have is dated 1967, and it is limited information about prior years parts. That is why the parts departments had a rack of parts books that was 4' long. It wasn't practical to keep printing old information in every book every year.

Nicholas Studer
04-23-2017, 10:01 PM
I pulled the regulator today and no markings except for "MADE IN USA" on the bottom, "12 VOLTS" along the side, and the center voltage adjustment...

Looking at the "executioner switch" in the grille - the thought occurs to me that the switch may not be simply on/off. There are three terminals. The central terminal is a ground, and appears to have an original cable attached. There are then terminals on the left and right sides. Perhaps - this was actually intended to just switch between batteries?

The Socorro News on January 29, 1970 noted the car was equipped with "an independent electrical source to power electric saws for slicing into a car to remove a trapped victim." There is indeed a standard electrical plug on the rear of the vehicle and the head end of the driver's side rear wheelhouse. Not quite sure if there's an inverter in there somewhere.

John ED Renstrom
04-23-2017, 10:28 PM
Looks like the regulator on Brendon 63. Power out would be a female plug power in would be a male end. Most of the inverters were a simple transformer in those years

Nicholas Studer
05-13-2017, 01:55 AM
After a few weeks of digging - I believe we've clarified some of the mystery.

The alternator on the car currently is 1990s vintage and clearly incorrect. In 1961, "Standard" equipment for a 1961 Cadillac commercial chassis would indeed be the 45 amp Delco generator common to AC cars, as opposed to the 35 amp used on non-AC vehicles. Dan Scully's 1961 S&S-Cadillac endloader hearse was equipped with 45 amp generator. Eureka-Cadillacs wouldn't have been different at standard, as noted by the sales flyer.

Unfortunately, I have no specific details on the options available for the "Hi-Boy" or other ambulances sold by Eureka. Ed's discussion of Brendan Martin's 1963 Superior-Cadillac Rescuer got me to thinking, however. The 1961 Superior parts book (among others) was digitized by Mr. Sal Adinolfi and recently shared on the PCS Facebook group.

For 1961, a Delco 1117115, 105 amp alternator is listed as one of Superior's "Standard Extra" options. The Delco 1119160 mechanical voltage regulator is also listed. I suspect the ammeter listed is also the one I have in my dash with -100 to + 100 amps.

1962 has an identical list. 1963/1964 has the setup found in Brendan's car - with the 130 amp 1117128 alternator superseding the 117115. There was also a change to the solid-state 9000590 regulator. The 1964 Hi-Boy owned by Joe MacDonald has the same setup. That regulator is what was present in my car and pictured above. My best guess is the original regulator failed at some point and was replaced by the solid-state, otherwise backwards compatible model prior to the alternator itself being replaced with the newer model with built-in regulator.

So - it appears best answer is my car had a Delco 1117115 alternator and 1119160 regulator. I was able to find both over the past month. No idea what the 1950609 alternator option was for 1961/1962, the Delco parts resources I have looked at have been unhelpful. Before we close the book on this - anyone have any ideas or old Delco catalogs?

John ED Renstrom
05-13-2017, 12:12 PM
You may find that the regulator is good. One can never guess what someone else did and why. I gust know if you return the car to what it was when new it will work like it did when it was new.

A lot of times need and availably over ran common sense when making a repair on these cars. They would make due with what was on hand and make it work.

Nicholas Studer
06-01-2017, 11:40 PM
So - it appears best answer is my car had a Delco 1117115 alternator and 1119160 regulator. I was able to find both over the past month. No idea what the 1950609 alternator option was for 1961/1962, the Delco parts resources I have looked at have been unhelpful. Before we close the book on this - anyone have any ideas or old Delco catalogs?

I was able to obtain a Delco 1117115 alternator, and a NOS 1119160 mechanical regulator for the car. The former had been rebuilt at some time in the past and sat on a shelf in a "Mom and Pop" auto parts store in Washington State. The latter was literally new in the box. I brought them to a local, large alternator shop to be examined/tested and the alternator's battery terminal repaired due to some in-transit damage.

All seemed well - and both items function. Just not together, according to the shop... They report the regulator is a B circuit, and the alternator is instead an A circuit. The shop doesn't have Delco books prior to the early 1970s, and the owner has never seen these models before - so that may be a factor. I am surely not one to carry on a significant technical discussion on these, although I am trying to learn.

Unfortunately, information on these two particular devices is few/far between and they appear to have been replaced quickly in the Delco lineup with the 1117128 130 amp alternator and 9000500 transistorized regulator. What I have turned up:

1. Th shop claims the newer solid state regulators (like the finned one pictured above in post 18) would be correct, but according to a short "Delcotron" introduction book from 1961 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/262196671395 shows one) - the mechanical "black boxes" were the only things available then.
2. Multiple GM parts references specifically list the 1119160 regulator as the correct one for the 1117115 alternator from the 1960s to 1980s. It's not just Superior Coach. Paul Steinberg tells me it is indeed possible there's an error that's been propagated for years.
3. http://restorecarsclassifieds.com/wiki/show_pdf.pdf?n=13135 shows one of the few documents I've found with a specific mention of the 1117115 alternator. Maybe I just don't know what I'm reading - and it tells me what circuit it is?
3. I e-mailed Ken at Classic Generator (http://www.classicgenerator.com/) and he couldn't find much on the 1117115. The 1119160 is indeed a B circuit regulator. His recommendation was to just use them - as they are indeed correct and compatible by his understanding.

Questions:

1. Possibly the alternator was molested in the past and was originally a B circuit and now is an A? I pick up the unit tomorrow - is there any way to tell?
2. Anyone got any references besides what I've found?
3. I am also looking for a fan and pulley for this unit. They were not present when I bought it.

Thanks for any help!