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Im gonna have to read up on that. Im assuming that its a charging unit only. I am using the atwoods as converters so i would have to add that unit to my electrical "system" i am not sure if i can use the 3 bank system as my batteries are tied together in parallel and not easily accessable. I think i could use one bank for the agms and one for the cab bats, but if the cab selinoid sees 13.6 it will connect them together. Then i would add one more disco to the system and complicate things a little more. Sooooo many ways to do this I would just like it to be simple and reliable.
 

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The CTEK Dual selects between alt and solar (or alt/solar/generator) to give the batteries the best power supply.

It's not a "charger" in the same sense as the other chargers discussed in this thread, unless you add the M300 module to give it an AC supply.

I didn't say they were "bad"--it's not going to kill your batteries at all; just that one could get to peak charge with a big bank of flooded lead acid cells faster with an RV/Marine charger.
 

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One of the reasons i am using both of the atwoods is to run the dc power requirements of the sleeper. I figure with the stereo, roof fans, lighting, phone chargers, tv, ac/heat blower, codensor fans and using them to charge the batts when pluged in i would need that many amps. basically the 30amp unit runs the house and the 55amp unit will run the hvca requirement. I guess i can get an amp meter and see what the load on those batteries are and maybe stream line the system. Also i got the numbers a litle messed up. The panel is 30amp and the box is the 55 amp unit i need to keep the panel as it is my 110v breaker panel when pluged into the 30amp rv input plug power. The 55amp unit runs off a seperate breaker panel that is fed from a 50 rv input plug. So if i only plug into one of my rv plugs only one is on. When i run the genny the tranfer switch puts a leg to each of the breaker panels. I hope that makes sense.
 

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RGR, its not a powerhouse by any means, but with the a/c module I think its a good addition for long term use to keep your batteries healthy
 

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Discussion Starter #66
No new tech, still waiting on parts.

Rant: Fawking neighbors called the cops. Apparently city code says no parking RVS more than 4 hrs. Probably a dozen RVS in my hood. Oh, but they only enforce if they get a complaint. Shady as hell. I don't have place to park at the house, so this will slow work on it down a bit. I generally hate people and they continue to reinforce that belief.
 

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Discussion Starter #68
Both arrived on Monday. Not bad for the meter coming all the way from China.



http://promariner.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/ProNautic-Manual.pdf

Several youtube videos on the power meter. This particular one seems to be both accurate and capable according to the reviews on there.

From the vids I have learned that it has an internal 100amp shunt, so no additional shunt is needed. Both pos wires are connected at the same point, so it does not matter which one you use. You will also need a switch if you want to reset the meter.

In looking at my panel in the RV. The DC side has input from the charge controller and output to the batteries. It also powers everything on the 12v side. My guess is when I unhook either the controller or the batteries (while on shore power) everything is still getting 12v. If I am correct wiring should be very easy. I'll try and test it this weekend.

Wiring plan is this:
AC from auto transfer switch to new charge controller. (longer run and smaller gauge wire). DC panel will only be powered through the batteries. Only negatives I see is I can't disco the batteries and still get 12v power. (Don't know why I would care.)

DC from the controller to the batteries. (shortest run possible, bigger cable). I may be able to fit it in with the batteries which would be great from the wiring side for ease and cable run lengths. Only downside is all of the horror stories of creating a hydrogen bomb. :nuke: My batteries are in an enclosure and I could vent it. With new batteries and a smart charger I'd be pissed if they were off gassing enough to go critical, but I also don't want to die a fiery death. :eek:

Already have the DC from batts to board, so no change there.

I think I can wire the meter directly to the panel using the original inputs where the ATS came in. Add a switch and I should be able to get a good guestimate by resetting for each trip.

*Edit: This route will also circumvent the solenoid. The current set up completely isolates the battery bank. My way would just isolate the batts from the panel, not the charger. I guess the added benefit would be I could eliminate any load while charging if I wanted to. (?) May need to adjust my route a little to pass through the solenoid. Should be just as easy, if not quite as clean.

Here's the part where you shoot holes in my plan. :flipoff2:

Thanks

Vince
 

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Discussion Starter #69

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I followed that entire plan. No holes.

I got mine Sat or Mon. :laughing:
I hadn't googled yet. Good to hear it's got an internal shunt. I would have liked to have mine next to my "test" panel on the bathroom wall, but the power doesn't go through there. I'll have to be content putting it on my panel under the bed so the 12V loads can go through it. I may switch it as well so I can both see loads as well as check charge Amps.

It may have a 100A shunt, but I don't feel right tying 6ga cables to it and running all my loads through it! :eek:



I have the same mounting/location issue. My current (switching, non-transformer, but not smart) convertor/charger is in the compartment with the batteries. I open the compartment when I switch it to boost mode. No :nuke: yet.

I'm not sure where to place the P-D converter/charger. I'd like it visible so I can access the panel and see the screen. I might put it in the dinette above the battery box.

You don't need the solenoid. I don't know why it was ever there. Running the 12V loads with the battery connected "filters" the power, so it is cleaner for devices.
 

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Also I have had these VisionX rock lights sitting around for years. I was planning on putting them on my Taco when I lived in the SE and was all "hardcore" with my IFS self.

http://www.amazon.com/Vision-HIL-STW-Superwhite-Strobe-Light/dp/B000ES867C/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1429813790&sr=8-2&keywords=vision+x+rock+lights

Thoughts on placement, use etc for my motorhome? Cool disco lights mounted underneath?
Your wife will hate that, and your kids will love it.

(Based on my direct experience with a 5M long RGB LED strip that can be set to demo/scan mode). It doesn't dance to the music, but it can give you a stroke! :laughing:

Mine's under my awning so it acts like an actual porch light when it's set to a solid color (white or yellow).

Actually...bugs are attracted to UV/Infrared, so they're not attracted to LED's.
Figure out a way to put a couple up higher to serve as a functional porch light.
 

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Discussion Starter #72
I think the solenoids only function is to jump the chassis battery. I think my plan would keep that capability.
 

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I think the solenoids only function is to jump the chassis battery. I think my plan would keep that capability.
I have a solenoid under my hood (like a winch solenoid) that is there to charge my coach batteries off the alternator when the engine is running.

There was another solenoid in the old charger/convertor that gave me unfiltered 12v power to 4 of the circuits when I was on shore power. No idea why. When I needed 12V, I needed it on all circuits, not just the 3 on battery.
When I had shore power, I preferred to have 12v filtered through the battery, not just direct from the xfmr.
 

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I am in the process of updating the electricals in an rv for a boondock hunt camp/part time 4 season residence.

I upgraded the battery this weekend from a group 24 - 12 volt deep cycle marine battery with a meagre 85ah to 2 Crown 6 volts in series which bumped me up to 235ah.

I have a 40 watt solar panel connected to it and was able to run my furnace and keep the interior temperature at a balmy 72 degrees and lights all weekend and only lost 15%. The outside temperature at night was 28 degrees.

To me, this alone was an amazing upgrade!!! All lighting is LED but the furnace is still old school in a 1993 Jayco.

All my internals are still stock rv parts. Following this thread, I am sure all that will change.

I am thinking of adding 2 more batteries, 2 more 40 watt panels and an inverter/charger so I can run a fridge.

Really liking the power meter you scored.
 

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Discussion Starter #75 (Edited)
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I am in the process of updating the electricals in an rv for a boondock hunt camp/part time 4 season residence.

I upgraded the battery this weekend from a group 24 - 12 volt deep cycle marine battery with a meagre 85ah to 2 Crown 6 volts in series which bumped me up to 235ah.

I have a 40 watt solar panel connected to it and was able to run my furnace and keep the interior temperature at a balmy 72 degrees and lights all weekend and only lost 15%. The outside temperature at night was 28 degrees.

To me, this alone was an amazing upgrade!!! All lighting is LED but the furnace is still old school in a 1993 Jayco.

All my internals are still stock rv parts. Following this thread, I am sure all that will change.

I am thinking of adding 2 more batteries, 2 more 40 watt panels and an inverter/charger so I can run a fridge.

Really liking the power meter you scored.
Nice, read a couple sources that said Crown is the king of the lead acid batteries.

What type of furnace and how big is your RV? Switching to one without a blower may be cheaper than another bank of batteries.

Let's see some pics!
 

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I saw Crown 6 volts at Tractor Supply the other day. My Johnson Controls (from Sams Club I think) are starting their 8th season. Still going strong. But starting to keep an eye on battery prices. Tractor Supply was $80, pretty reasonable if it's a decent battery.
 

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Discussion Starter #77 (Edited)
Hope to get this phase wrapped up this week.

How do I get throughput/output on the meter from multiple sources?

I should be able to hook everything to a common bus bar and still get accurate results correct?

This - Amazon.com : Blue Sea Systems Common 150A BusBar with Four Terminal of 20 1/4-Inch Studs with Cover : Boating Electrical Equipment : Sports & Outdoors

Only thing I still need to source is a 30amp 12v inline circuit breaker. I can probably get one locally at a car audio joint. Anyone have a online source that can get here cheap this week?

Would like to find some scrap copper to do a jumper for the pos bar. 3 outputs for 3 banks. Directions call to jump them when using less than 3. I think a bar would be cleaner than wires. Any drawbacks?

Edit: found source for both on Ebay, should be here this week.

Thanks

Vince
 

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Discussion Starter #79
No, I think you need a separate shunt and ammeter for each load or source.
Suck. Still doable, just need a shunt between the batteries and the bus bar.

Would adding another shunt mess up the readings since this meter already has an internal shunt?

May skip the meter for now. At least the bus bar gives me some options for later.
 

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Nice, read a couple sources that said Crown is the king of the lead acid batteries.

What type of furnace and how big is your RV? Switching to one without a blower may be cheaper than another bank of batteries.

Let's see some pics!



I got a very good price on the batteries. One of our suppliers sells them. He said the same about the Crowns.

It's the OEM furnace,a vintage 1993 Hydro Flame 8525 mkll. It puts out 20,000 btu...mostly out the exhaust it seems. Consumes 5.6 amps. I just round it out to 6 amps for the purposes of my load calculation and use a 15 minute per hour runtime to calculate ah. Not a very efficient source of heat but for now I will make do.

The trailer itself is a 1993 26.5' Jayco.

The premise of my build is to make it modular until we build our cabin. This will mean a stand alone structure to house everything except arc and spark devices so when we bring in a larger trailer at some point we can more easily restore things back to stock on the old one for resale and incorporate the system into the larger trailer with less prep work and eventually use it for the cabin. I will plumb the wiring using tech cable and utilize the space under the fridge for new converter charger or inverter charger, which ever I go with. More research is needed there.

I didn't take any pics of the battery install, will do next week when I am up. It is kinda ghetto just so I could get it up and running. For now, I just picked up a dual battery box for the 6 volts and installed it on the tongue of the trailer using the existing butchery that came with the trailer.
 
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