"Big 3" Upgrade


Silver Member
Username: Jwbulger79


Post Number: 142
Registered: Nov-04
I've decided to upgrade the "Big 3" in my 1984 4runner.

1. alternator to battery(+)
2. Battery(-)to chassis ground
3. Engine to chassis ground

Here's a great tutorial thread:
(have to copy and paste or go to www.SoundDomain.com >>Forum »Car Audio General »Electrical Explanations »The OFFICIAL "Big 3" Upgrade Thread, With Pictures

My situation is a little different. Here is what i have now:

1. looks like 1 gauge from battery(+) to engine
block, or something down there.
2. 16 or 14ga from battery(+) to fuse box
3. a woven bare metal wire from battery(-) to chassis
4. 8ga from engine to chassis
5. here's where it gets tricky: from the alternator there are a few small wires. it seems like one of them(14ga or 12ga) is coming from a mounting post on the alternator, grouped with the other small wires, and that runs to a small box on the side of the engine compartment - maybe the regulator(dont know much about this stuff).

can i just leave everything that is there, and run new a new 4ga wire from the alternator straight to the battery(+) with an inline fuse instead of going through the regulator and fuse box and all that mess?

i was thinking of doing that, upgrading the engine to chassis ground to 4ga, the battery(-) to chassis to 4 ga, the fuse box to battery(+) to 4ga, and since the wire that runs from battery(+) to the bottom of the engine is already 1ga, i was going to just leave that.

will this work? obviously i am in need of an upgrade, but i dont want to mess things up. please help! thanks in advance.

gonna be running 400 watts RMS.

Unregistered guest
Why do you want to do this?
Your truck should be ok with that ammount of RMS wattage. I have a 95 explorer with an old school punch 800a2 with 2 12" fosgates, and an old school 800a4 for the doors and rear and everything works fine. no dimming lights, no funney smells, nothing. just run good wire and you will be all set.

Silver Member
Username: Jwbulger79


Post Number: 143
Registered: Nov-04
well, believe it or not, my alternator is only 40A!

Silver Member
Username: Xxkmfdmxx

St. Petersburg, FL USA

Post Number: 377
Registered: Oct-04
40A? lmao. Didn't know they came that low.

Silver Member
Username: Jwbulger79


Post Number: 144
Registered: Nov-04
isn't that rediculous!? i hooked up my amp(Memphis 3004) and installed my components today(Infinity 600cs), so I'm runnin' 150 watts and it's fine now. of course the real test will be when I hook up my sub(Atlas 12) and put another 230 watts on the ole' 40amp alt. we'll see how it goes. it'll probably take me another month to build the box because i've been so busy with work lately.
i also put a 4ga battery ground and upgraded the engine ground to 4ga. i called a local alternator shop and they said it would be fine to run wire from the alt straight to the battery and bypass the regulator and fuse box so i guess i'll go ahead and do that too one of these days.
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