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Old 03-23-2003, 05:48 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 7
Wink I replaced my voltage regulator/brush unit

There are some posts about how people have done this. Just thought I'd post mine. This is on my 1985 380SE. I removed the assembly from the back of the alternator. Removed two screws and popped it out - easy. Then had my "Oh S**" moment when I saw how fiddly it would be to put the new one in - to compress the brushes in particular. I tried tieing the brushes down with string, but at first couldn't compress them enough. Then I tried to fiddle it in with my fingers, no luck. So this farting around took about an hour. Then I tied the brushes down again, looping the string over the brushes and then around the outside (VR) side of the VR unit, and tying the string as tightly as I could. Then to make the string tighter I fiddled with it to go over the VR flanges. To make the string tight I think you could put some cardboard or pieces of popsicle stick to shim the string between the string and the unit body. The trick is to really compress those bad boy brushes down as far as they can go. With the string compressing the brushes virtually all the way down the unit went back in the alternator easily. Then I inserted and tightened the two mounting screws, cut the string and pulled it out using needle nose pliers.
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Old 03-23-2003, 11:56 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: SoCal
Posts: 1,303
I haven't done this in a Merc. Other alternators always provided a hole in the brush assembly you could insert a bent paperclip through to retain the compressed brushes for assembly. You then just pull out the clip. Did you note if there was such a hole?

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Old 03-24-2003, 07:24 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 7
Nope, didn't see one, but then I didn't look. I will have a look-see later to see if one is there for future ref.
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