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Hello to all and thanks for the numerous welcomes to the forum. My alternator failed and I was hoping to get some feedback on the choices of replacements. I'm trying to decide between the high output choices of brand name vs. the generic units available. Also, if anyone has any tips or tricks they've used when doing the swap. I would greatly appreciate the help. Thanks in advance to all who respond. Safe riding to all!
 

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Depending on your accessories(lights,heated clothing,etc.) You may want to look into the Compu-fire...I know it's a big chunk of change,but if it ever fails on you,most auto parts stores carry parts for it.(GM/Saturn alternator)
 

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I was at the Honda dealer this past week with an electrical problem on my bike.Got to talking about alternators and he told me that Honda offers a rebuilt OEM that is guaranteed for life.I did not need one but thought it might be an option for you.
 

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If the rebuilt unit is made in the same Chinese factory Honda have been buying alternators off since 1996, I wouldn't have too much faith in them. A Compufire and new battery is the better long-term solution.
 

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Mine went out earlier this year and I pulled it off and had it completely rebuilt at the local place that does auto starters and alternators. About half the price of a Compufire or a new OEM and works just like it did when it was new plus it now has a lifetime warranty.

Removal or replacement is about a 45 minute straightforward job. Be sure to remove the battery cables to avoid blowing fuses. It is a tight fit and you may have to temporarily re-route some drain hoses behind the alternator to get enough room to pull it out of the engine. I tied a string to the lower end of my hoses as I re-routed them and it was much easier to pull them back into place when the job was completed. While you have it out would be a good time to replace the 4 rubber alternator dampers (about $ 4 US each). When re-installing, take a marker and mark on the engine case where the slots (where the alternator vanes go) are on the dampers. Put the wires on before you stick it in the engine (not enough room to do it after wards), lube the O-ring. Put the back end of the alternator into the frame first and rotate the vanes on the alternator to match the marks you made on the engine case. Stick the alternator into the engine - try to do it straight in to minimize pinching the O-ring or you'll have an oil leak. Mine went in OK up to the O-ring and then it got harder to push on in. I made sure mine was started straight and then put the 3 bolts into it and started tightening each of them about 1/4 turn until they pulled the alternator completely tight. If you decide to go with a Compufire, the process is basically the same but the Compufire is physically larger than the OEM alternator so you will have less room to work with.
 

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buy new...i made the mistake of buying used rebuilt...cost me 3x the money i tried to save ...in towing
 

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Compufires are reputed to be the most reliable of any alternatives, some of which are very poor.
A few years ago Wingworld ran a story on another make of "recon" alternator which apparently just got a coat of paint to look nice and shiny.
 
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