I unhooked and unbolted the alternator last night. It went super fast and easy.
UNTIL I had to pull it out. You have to move the exhaust out of the way for the alt to come out. The third and last nut I needed to take out of the downpipe flange did not want to come out. (Used plenty of PB Blaster) I almost rounded the damn thing off twice. Time to put the ratcheting wrenches aside and buy/borrow a "real" 17mm. Why did I leave them all at home??
Anyway hopefully the thing will be together in a couple days and I'll be able to see if it's holding a charge.
Also. The alt is hidden behind the engine, under the intake manifold. Is it always bass ackward like that with crossflow heads, or was it just Mazda trying to be difficult?