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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #11  
Old 08-04-2007
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Hmm, mine are 105 AH group 27 2 bank so I have 210 AH will the guest or Statpower 10TB work for this how long to charge on these smaller chargers? What is the next step up?
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Old 08-04-2007
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
jack/zal...you both have similar capacities and I assume remain plugged in at the dock for extended periods and have flooded cells rather than AGM's.
I would say the best overall value for you would be the Xantrex 20
http://shop.sailnet.com/product_info...ywords=charger

this will do an excellent job but at $250 it is not cheap. If you are thinking about getting a larger bank the Xantrex 40 is the next step up in the mid 300 buck range I think.

I would note that you can get non-3 stage charges cheaper...especially non-marinized non-UL marine listed types...but they will boil off your batteries at the dock and pose more of a risk so I DO suggest biting the bullet and doing it right.

You should be using 100-120A/H's or so MAXIMUM out of your existing banks before going o the charger... so recharging should take about 4-5 hours to get to 90%...then of course, thee slow trickle to get to 100%.

Hope that was clear.
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Old 08-05-2007
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I have a pair of brand-new Group 24 batteries (judging by their size, installed by the PO). Assuming that's what they are: At 75AH each, and remembering one needs to be reserved for starting, I imagine I'm way under-resourced for cruising, unless I can get regular shore power?

Cam, the 10TB isn't enough to bring a pair of Group 27's up to snuff on an over-night (say, 8 hours or so) charge? (Your comments were clear to me, at least.)

I wonder if there's an "economical/affordable" battery status/condition monitor I could add?

Jim
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Old 08-05-2007
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Semi...first...with 2xG27 batteries you are OK with a 10amp charger but really pushing the limits as you will be looking to put back 100amps or so (1/2 of around 200amphour capacity) in an overnight situation. You can get away with it especially if you don't USE 100amps a day...which in most cases is largely dependent on whether you have refrigeration or an ice box. I sure wouldn't change it out if it is in good condition...you could always add a second small charger if you find you need it.

As to a monitor...you can get something really simple like the ProMariner 3 battery monitor for about 50 bucks...but if you really want to monitor amp hours used and in then you need something like the Xantrex Link10 which is nearly $200 even on closeout...(replaced by link1000 I think). This is probably overkill for occasional cruising but was my most used instrument in full time cruising mode on the hook.
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Old 08-05-2007
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Thanks for your comments, Cam. Looks like the ProMariner Remote Battery Monitor monitors only voltage. (What can you expect for $50, eh?) Searched, but couldn't find any reviews of the device. Nor a user's manual. Oddly enough: Couldn't find it on ProMariner's own site. Anyway, perhaps monitoring just battery voltage is sufficient for casual cruising use, where shore power will frequently be available, as you suggest. No 'fridge. Just a built-in cooler. No TV. (Tho we've briefly discussed a small LCD and DVD player, some day, perhaps.) We're both avid readers, so I suspect most of our battery consumption, other than engine starting, will be lights--navigation and cabin illumination.

I do want to consider putting something in to monitor battery health. Our surveyor suggested the two G24 batteries the PO put in to be under-sized for any amount of cruising.

The Xantrex Link 10 monitors only one battery/bank. ISTM the Xantrex Link 20, which monitors two batteries/banks, would be the better way to go? (Kind of surprised they're still using LEDs in this day-and-age.)

Jim

Last edited by SEMIJim; 08-05-2007 at 12:12 PM.
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Old 08-05-2007
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Jim...since the link 10 monitors 1 BANK...I would suggest setting up your G27's as a single bank and then keeping something small to start the engine. Xantrex does have a new LCD monitor that performs the same functions but is 50 bucks more.


I believe that the Link20 has been discontinued and replaced by the Link2000 which interfaces with their charger/inverters and is really not a great choice for what you need.
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Old 08-05-2007
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I'm selling my XANTREX TRUE-CHARGE 20 AMP Battery Charger for $125. This is half the retail price. Charger is in excellent condition. We need something larger, so we're purchasing a 50 amp charger.

If interested contact me at: stoutwench@yahoo.com
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Old 08-05-2007
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Jim, monitoring voltage can be a pefectly good way to monitor batteries. They will pretty much range from 12.6 to 11.6 volts as they go from full to empty, with some load on them. When they are freshly charging they will show a false high (i.e. 13.6) but a minute or two of a load will knock that back down to reality. Likewise, engine starting will pull them down very low for a minute.

So, if you find out what your batteries are supposed to read (they may vary by .1-.2 volts depending on chemistry, etc.) and any similar variation from your meter or wiring...you can get used to seeing "this means full, this means half empty, this means I'd better start the engine while I still can".

Group 24's are best left for an overnight or starting the car. Groups 31's are almost the same price as Group 27's and still luggable by one human.

Battery chargers are not 100% efficient, they waste about 10% of the power they are trying to put into the battery. Once you have a charger than needs more than 10 hours to recharge your battery--the waste goes up a bit more, because the charger just isn't "pushing" hard enough to be efficient.

So, if you had two 100AH batteries, and decided to be religious about just drawing them down to 50% (using 100AH total)...then you probably could use a 10AH charger for 12 hours, and it would be "just enough" to recharge them. Upsizing a bit more would be a good idea, if your budget allowed it. After all, you might draw them down more than 50% some time.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Jim, monitoring voltage can be a pefectly good way to monitor batteries.
Understood.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
...you can get used to seeing "this means full, this means half empty, this means I'd better start the engine while I still can".
I imagine that's what the "idiot lights" on that one monitor are meant to tell you. I wonder how "accurate" they are?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Group 24's are best left for an overnight or starting the car. Groups 31's are almost the same price as Group 27's and still luggable by one human.
I guess you're telling me the same thing my surveyor did: They're undersized for cruising.

Regarding my current battery charger...
Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Upsizing a bit more would be a good idea, if your budget allowed it. After all, you might draw them down more than 50% some time.
I think it's going to have to do for the time-being. The Admiral and family CFO is getting a bit twitchy about the cash outgo. (Can't say as I blame her.) I'd have a hard time convincing her to spend several hundred dollars right now to replace two brand-new batteries and a top-of-the-line charger. I'm not even sure I could convince myself . We won't be doing any cruising this season, anyway. I don't know if we'll be ready for extended crusing even next season.

If I can find something out about it, I may be able to swing that ProMariner monitor, tho.

Jim
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Old 08-05-2007
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See how you can make out with what you have. Take notes about your energy budget, i.e. are you just using nav lights, or a microwave and entertainment center? Some things can be made more efficient regardless of how much power you will have, and "for now" if you have to run the engine for an hour daily to keep the batteries up--just do it, and make good use of the motoring while doing so.

A lot of surplus houses i.e. www.allelectronics.com have simple digital voltmeters for sale under $20, these are raw displays with electronics behind them that can measure 1-20V with good accuracy, so you can install one with a push-button switch (to turn it on when you want to read it) and check the battery state without spending a lot of money on anything fancy for now.
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