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  #1  
Old 04-20-2011
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Anyone have any feedback on this? - circuit breaker wiring design, relays, dump load

Anyone have any feedback on this circuit breaker wiring design? I have a Xantrex MS2000 pure sine wave inverter but don't want to leave it on (and it's fan running) when connected to shore power. I also don't want it routing power when I have a couple 1500W heaters running in the winter. When on the hook all summer the Xanters MS2000 will power the microwave and anything else needed.

The relay switches the source of 120v automatically, when shore power is connected.



The breakers are "MIDTEX 136-62T3A1 DPDT" rated for 30 Amps. I plan to have a relay for each outlet breaker (port and starboard). The relay looks somewhat sealed and I plan to wrap a "seal" of electrical tape around where the 2 pieces of plastic meet. That ought to minimize any effect of being on a boat. (They will be in the main salon, behind the woodwork, where the back side of the stereo is, close to the circuit breaker panel.)



-

Here is the full design, with the wind generator's dump load going to another similar relay and through an inverter, to route 120v to the water heater.



Any feedback on this design?

Regards,
Brad
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Old 04-20-2011
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Brad,

I would source some solidstate relays from Omron or Teledyne and do away with the open ones for boat work..else it looks pretty good.
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Old 04-20-2011
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There was a long discussion about something like this a while ago: Xantrex/Heart Freedom 25 -- How to connect Water Heater

May not be exactly the same as your question. But does discuss dump loads. In fact, it seems like it was your own question.

Instead of using relays though, it seems that for controlling your inverter, a simple Blue Seas 8032 switch would be the best bet, by keeping your inverter off line when shorepower is available. Having both connected at the same time is not good for the inverter. Inverter Installation
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Old 04-20-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kd3pc View Post
Brad,

I would source some solidstate relays from Omron or Teledyne and do away with the open ones for boat work..else it looks pretty good.
I took a quick look at the solid state ones being offered on eBay, but didn't see any that are DPDT. Do you know whether there is such a thing? Or perhaps the nature of solid state is that double throw is not done?

Regards,
Brad
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Old 04-20-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
There was a long discussion about something like this a while ago: Xantrex/Heart Freedom 25 -- How to connect Water Heater

May not be exactly the same as your question. But does discuss dump loads. In fact, it seems like it was your own question.

Instead of using relays though, it seems that for controlling your inverter, a simple Blue Seas 8032 switch would be the best bet, by keeping your inverter off line when shorepower is available. Having both connected at the same time is not good for the inverter. Inverter Installation
Thanks Stu. I guess this is what happens when a project drags on. Between actually sailing this winter, some travel, work and family, the maintenance sessions got sporatic sometimes. (It's actually been a few weeks since I actually sailed our boat. I want to, but I'm driving myself to finish some long awaited projects.)

I'm part way through re-reading that older thread. Excellent advice throughout it!

By the way, the new (to me) inverter is the MS2000, not the Freedom, since the Freedom is not a pure sine wave inverter. My square wave inverter (1500 watt WalMart type) drove the microwave with 60 amps (of 12v), but the sine wave inverter drove it with 110 watts (of 12v). That's a big difference that I might not have noticed if I didn't have a Victron battery monitor. (If you don't have a Victron yet, I highly recommend it.)

Regards,
Brad
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Old 04-20-2011
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Bene, I don't see any point to using the twin 30A relays in the first diagram, or the charger that's connected to them. What are you isolating or controlling that can't just be powered directly without them? Surely, not the outlets?

And while a wind generator, like all generators, needs a dump relay, photocells do not. You can simply disconnect a solar panel when it is not needed, and not bother dumping the excess output from it. Solar panels can be safely disconnected from a load, unlike generators. There's really no one commercial system AFAIK that accomodates the totally different needs of generators, alternators, shore chargers, and solar panels.
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Bene, I don't see any point to using the twin 30A relays in the first diagram, or the charger that's connected to them. What are you isolating or controlling that can't just be powered directly without them? Surely, not the outlets?
The relays switch to shore-power when the shore-power gets connected. That's really all they do. No thinking about it required, so no mistakes around forgetting to throw a switch. I would use one big relay if I could find a 50 amp or 60 amp one, but two 30 amp ones will work. (Was originally planning to use just one big relay and driving both the starboard and the port outlets from it.)

Quote:
And while a wind generator, like all generators, needs a dump relay, photocells do not. You can simply disconnect a solar panel when it is not needed, and not bother dumping the excess output from it. Solar panels can be safely disconnected from a load, unlike generators. There's really no one commercial system AFAIK that accomodates the totally different needs of generators, alternators, shore chargers, and solar panels.
Yes, I could just disconnect it. And the 40 watt panel is small enough, compared to the 330 Ah bank, that it doesn't really need to be controlled, but could be directly connected. It is directly connected now. However, since I'll have the dump load system in place, I might as well take advantage of it. This is simply leveraging an opportunity that will be sitting there.

Regards,
Brad
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hello sailor - I replied to this topic by linking to a previous one from Brad, and he noted why. You and I seem to agree to counsel him to KISS.

Unfortunately, it appears he's trying to make things simple (i.e., not having to "throw a switch") by complicating matters (i.e., adding relays which can fail).

If you haven't, you may be interested in reading the original topic and see where Brad is coming from (literally and figuratively....

Brad - WDR, you might want to, again, rethink this complexity, and tech your crew to flip a switch or two. I assume they can do that at home, no???

Stu
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Hi Stu. No, I hadn't looked at the older thread but at first glance...that hurts my head. If the hot water tank is powered by shore power AND the dump output for the windgen, what happens if you're on shore power and the windgen hasn't been secured? Or, the shore power gets applied to the windgen dump somehow instead.

Sometimes I really like having donkeys doing the donkey work. Other times, I'm happier when there are no donkeys around, no inddor plumbing means no need to call a plumber at 3AM, no phones no heat...well, fewer service calls to worry about. (VBG)

Teaching a crew to flip a switch DOES seem like a good idea, but I give you this case study instead. A delivery truck (new company, new driver) backed into a loading bay, clipped the water main that stuck out three feet from the roof (!) and zigzagged elsewhere. Triggered the fire bell with the water pressure drop, FD arrived all set to go and disappointed to find no fire.

So the plant engineer got all pissed off and called a plu,mber to repair it--exactly the way it was before. I said, why don't you move the pipe, or at least put up some guards so it can't be hit again? And he said why? Why should he do that when the driver should just know not to back up on that side of the loading bay?

"Should", yeah. I like it better when there's a real engineer and the systems are built so they just CAN'T be screwed up. No matter how seasick, overtired, upset, and full of NyQuil you may be.

In this case...I think a second heating coil, or a hot water tank that used two coils, would be the answer. Hook up one to shore power, the other as a dump, and with any luck it doesn't scald anyone. (Another topic, huh?)

I keep thinking, I SHOULD be clever enough to design "one ring to rule them all", i.e. one controller that could handle all the power inputs and outputs, including wind and solar, and make them all play nice together. Should.
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Old 04-20-2011
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Looks good. I hope I'm not duplicating things others have said, but two things come to my mind:

1. How about using a 1-or-2 changeover switch between Shorepower and 1500W Inverter (wind gen) power as input to your 120V distribution? You'd (a) leave it on "wind" away from the dock, (b) be getting rid of a couple of relays and (c) the water heater needs only a single source of supply (safety first!)

2. I assume you have an engine alternator connected into the charging circuit somewhere? How about fusing of 12V battery charging?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
I keep thinking, I SHOULD be clever enough to design "one ring to rule them all", i.e. one controller that could handle all the power inputs and outputs, including wind and solar, and make them all play nice together. Should.
Combined wind/solar controllers already exist, but you don't really want one "black box" running the whole show because if it dies, you're stuffed.

There's no reason for a yacht power system to be complex and, no, it doesn't have to be as complex as Bene's either.
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