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Technical Is it ok to use 12volt battery in 6 volt system?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Wizard, May 25, 2020.

  1. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    That’s exactly what I did many years ago when I put a 430 MEL in a 6v 1955 Ford Fairlane. Drilled and tapped the center bar.
    Worked great!






    Bones
     
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  2. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,240

    The37Kid
    Member

    Nothing, as in it will not work or nothing bad?
     
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  3. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Sorry about that! Nothing bad will happen. You can run 12 volts through a six volt system, as the wires are larger on the 6 volt system. Larger wires are a good thing, less voltage drop.
    Now, you should not use a six volt battery on a 12 volt wiring system as the wires would be too small to carry the load at 6 volts, but I can’t see anyone doing that anyway!






    Bones
     
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  4. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,240

    The37Kid
    Member


    Any chance you want to explain why 12 is TWICE the number of 6 volts and runs TWICE the volts through SMALLER wire without burning it up, on a 12 volt wiring system? Bob
     
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  5. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 46,399

    squirrel
    Member

    We can't explain it to you...because you can't seem to understand electricity.

    First you would have to understand what Voltage is.

    Then you'd have to understand what Current is.

    Then you'd have to understand what Resistance is.

    Then you'd have to understand Ohm's Law (and Algebra).

    If you can show that you understand these four concepts, then we'll see about trying to get you to understand.

    Not everyone can understand this stuff, it's nothing personal. If you can't understand, then you'll either have to take someone's word for it, or else decide that it's magic that you want nothing to do with, or something.
     
  6. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Why yes I will! To understand electricity , think of it as water! Voltage is pressure, amps are gallons per minute of water flow.

    If you need 100 gallons( 100 amps of electricity) of water in one minute to do a job( start the car) you can get it two ways. Low pressure ( 6volts) big hose or high pressure (12 volts) small hose.
    You can get your water with high pressure in the big hose, also. But you can’t get your water out of the small hose with low pressure.




    Hope this helps.






    Bones
     
  7. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Jim, your scaring him! Make is simple.










    Bones
     
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  8. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,240

    The37Kid
    Member

    Thanks Squirrel, glad to finally get an honest answer, I'll add it to music, another thing I can't understand. Bob
     
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  9. patsurf
    Joined: Jan 18, 2018
    Posts: 387

    patsurf

    well,then don't try an electric guitar!!
     
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  10. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,253

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    You can start a 6v car on 12v and move it around. A couple of things to bear in mind, be sure everything is turned off like radio, headlights, heater etc. don't forget the dome light and instrument panel lights. The other thing is don't grind and grind the starter, if it won't start. You don't want to overheat the starter. Also, it is best not to run the car for more than 15 minutes so as not to overheat the coil.

    You can also boost a 6v car with 12v but disconnect at least one side of the 6v battery first, or have someone stick the cables on right before you hit the starter and take them off as soon as it starts.

    As for availability of 12V batteries all farm supply places stock them for tractors, usually the 3 most popular sizes for cars. Or, any auto parts store can get one in a day or 2 if they don't have them in stock. In your case it might be smart to buy the more expensive Optima type or the kind with round cells, they work better and last longer. If you don't use the car much disconnect the battery when not using the car or get a battery tender.
     
  11. VANDENPLAS
    Joined: Dec 14, 2009
    Posts: 2,446

    VANDENPLAS
    Member

    As @squirrel stated.

    electrical/ electricity can confuse and dumbfound a lot of people.


    Why?

    you cant see it and it’s all this jargon about ohms, amps, current,watts,resistance etc.

    it was broken right down and explained to me in trade school to look at electrical circuits the same way you would look at a water system or hydraulic system.

    we all seem to understand theses as we can physically look at the system work.

    apply the same principals to electrical so you can “see the flow”
    And it will all make scenes.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2020
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  12. 5window
    Joined: Jan 29, 2005
    Posts: 7,463

    5window
    Member

    The formula you want is Ohm's Law: I=V/R or current equals voltage divided by resistance. Because the wiring in a 6 volt system has to be larger than in a 12 volt system, the resistance of the wire is less. In fact a lot less as resistance is inversely proportional to the cross sectional area of the wire. Divided the Voltage (V) by a much smaller resistance (R) and you get a big increase in voltage (I)=fried components.

    Either convert everything to 12 V, get a good 6V battery and charger or just go to an 8V battery which won't fry anything and is traditional.
     
  13. Boden
    Joined: Oct 10, 2018
    Posts: 717

    Boden

    All ford cars and trucks used 6v gauges up to some time in the 70s. So you can get a voltage regulator for any ford car from 56 to whenever the last year for 6v gauges was. (I forget the last year)


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
  14. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Electricity is easy to understand, if you simply it. Most folks start throwing formulas and terms out there, that most people don’t understand and it scares people, so much that they close their mind to learning!
    I have had no,,,zero! formal teaching in electricity, just learned as I worked. But, you don’t learn everything about electricity in one post!
    Looking at a wiring system can be intimidating, but remember, it’s just a bunch of single circuits grouped together. Only concern yourself with one circuit at a time and follow it.
    When I have to explain electricity , I use water, pipes, and valves, as examples. That way people can visualize it! Everyone has handled a garden hose!








    Bones
     
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  15. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 46,399

    squirrel
    Member

    I think you should qualify that statement. Electricity is easy for you, and me, to understand. But it's not easy for everyone to understand.

    There are a bunch of things I am clueless about, which other people seem to have no problem understanding.

    Our minds don't all work the same.
     
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  16. 5window
    Joined: Jan 29, 2005
    Posts: 7,463

    5window
    Member

    Here's an example. A 2 gauge wire has a diameter of about 0.2576". A 4 gauge wire has a diameter of about 0.2043". Resistance is a measure of the cross sectional area of the wire-remember
    A=πr squared? So if the area is greater, the resistance is less. With a little figuring, you'll find that to get the same AMPS to a goal, you need a larger wire with a smaller voltage battery.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2020
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  17. 5window
    Joined: Jan 29, 2005
    Posts: 7,463

    5window
    Member

    I really have never been able to remember the Infield Fly Rule and don't even think about explaining Cricket to me. :)
     
  18. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    I guess not. But I am like the 37 kid.... I don’t understand music! I like it, but don’t understand how to “ read” music. But, the main thing to learning anything is “ wanting to” and entering into a study with an open mind and the attitude “ I AM going to learn this” . If you possess these three things, you can learn anything!


    Except music! Lol












    Bones
     
  19. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,065

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Wouldn’t the resistance be more with less area?






    Bones
     
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  20. My grandpa always told me that if you double the voltage, the amperage will be cut in half, so a 12v system will put out half the amperage of a 6v. Its is the current (amperage) that will burn up a wire if it is too thin, not the voltage, so a 12v system will not as large of wires a 6v system. Following this same reasoning a 24v system will have half the amperage of a 12v system, so it can use even thinner wires. 24v systems are common on airplanes because they can reduce weight with thinner wires.

    There may be something wrong with this explanation so someone correct me if there is. It just made sense to me and my grandpa worked for Flying Tigers and had plenty of hot rods, so I figured he knew what he was talking about.
     
  21. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,240

    The37Kid
    Member

    Explain this one: Go to an auto parts store and check battery sizes, with some catalog searching you should find a battery that measures 8x10x6 for the sake of discussion get one that is 6 volts and another the same size in 12 volts. How do you get twice the volts in the 12 volt box? Yeah, it just like water.
     
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  22. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,253

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    Think of it this way. Total energy = volts X amps. More volts means you need less amps for the same energy. High voltage has more energy with less amps and can pass through a smaller wire.
     
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  23. birdman1
    Joined: Dec 6, 2012
    Posts: 959

    birdman1

    2 six volts wired for 6 volt charge and 12 volt start,
     
  24. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 46,399

    squirrel
    Member

    by getting half the current.

    But you'd have to be able to understand what volts and current are, before you can understand the relationship.
     
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  25. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,690

    jimmy six
    Member

    I've got a 56 Ford and have absolutely no gauge problem. Same with the 56 we had new. There is only a water temp and fuel gauge the gen/oil are lights. The only problem I had was a getting the gas gauge to read right and that was accomplished by shortening the arm on the float. Even the original clock keeps perfect time after a small bushing was replaced. I've even kept the stock 30 amp generator since the car has no AC and doesn't need any more to keep up the battery. NAPA has the proper one in stock as I just bought one after 5 yrs on the previous one. Even tho I don't use one currently I've never had a Holley 4100 fail either and our 55-56 Fords we dove when new never did either.
    PS: I was an electrician in power plants for over 45 yrs and definatly understand AC and DC circuitry and the trouble shooting of both.
     
  26. F-ONE
    Joined: Mar 27, 2008
    Posts: 2,257

    F-ONE
    Member
    from Alabama

    Engines have been rebuilt because of a bad condenser.
    Cars have gone to the junkyard because of a stuck starter bendix.
    Cars have been re-wired over a bad or intermittent ground.
    Starters have been replaced or rebuilt and the whole car re wired because of a faulty solenoid that gets hot or a bad voltage regulator.

    My point.....
    Check the simple stuff. Most of the time, it’s simple stuff.

    As far as understanding electrical theory.....
    You don’t have to understand how something works to fix it.
    Example......
    It don’t work right?
    I notice the wires are crusty and corroded. I clean said wires. Shine up the contacts and all the washers and where the wire connects.
    Now it works....why? I know not. ;)
    Example 2.....
    My car acts funny. I have this big book that has a picture of my car on the cover. In it there is a chapter of common problems. Wow! These problems sound like what’s wrong. The book the offers hints and refers me to detailed chapters that I can read showing things step by step.....
    Funny thing...,following these instructions the thing works or it works much better.
    Why? I know not.....
    Eventually though I begin to grasp it.:)
     
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  27. nochop
    Joined: Nov 13, 2005
    Posts: 1,645

    nochop
    Member
    from norcal

    What about using a 12v “tender” on a 6v battery? Yay? nay?
     
  28. jaracer
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 376

    jaracer
    Member

    I think you meant to say starter rather than generator. The generator does care.
     
  29. jaracer
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 376

    jaracer
    Member

    Nothing to the wiring, it's the 6 volt devices that will suffer. You only have a problem when you go to too small a gauge wire for the current load. In electrical devices bigger is better (wire gauge).
     
  30. jaracer
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 376

    jaracer
    Member

    Nope, 12 volts is too high for charging a 6 volt battery. It would get hot and off gas depleting the water.
     
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