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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Link 2000 Battery Monitor
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Thread: Link 2000 Battery Monitor Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-24-2012 05:04 AM
eianm
Re: Xantrax Link 2000 Battery Monitor

I want to buy a Xantrax LINK 2000 - if anyone knows of one for sale- please let me know! Please email me at eianm777@gmail.com
thanks very much,
Eianm
Sydney , Australia.
11-17-2007 02:41 PM
Valiente
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoffaLives View Post
It's really important to sit down and work out a power budget, and be scrupulous. There are small systems that are running and are easy to forget about, like a sniffer, a propane shut off solenoid, radio, and so forth. To be realistic you should list everything and to be safe double it, and you'll probably be closer to real consumption. And you likely are aware that these alternative power sources very rarely achieve anything close to their rated output. That's why it's important to have the best charging system you can afford.
And while redundancy is a very good idea, remember that reliability tends to suffer the more complex the system is.
I understand this, and thank you for the reminder. I adhere to the "triple/thirds" rule: triple the amp capacity you expect to use, based on only one-third maximum performance of one's gear.

The complexity thing may be an issue in terms of failure, but I'm hoping that buying quality...and quality spares...plus the ability to test and fix the larger sorts of circuits (wires, switches, solder jobs, etc.) will serve.

Due to a relative immunity to weight kept low, I'm able to have more battery capacity aboard than most, and this is the key to my evil plans: constant charging in one form or another to keep the whole battery system above 80%.

Note that while I've stated I don't care to run the alternator to charge the batteries, if I have to, I'll have to, and then I'll have to consider a built-in genset, or more solar/wind charging capacity. But we don't anticipate running A/C or electrical pressure/hot water or vast freezers or other big draws offshore. If this changes, I would have to rethink it. Right now, it looks as if even under marginal conditions, I will make more amps than I can use. Put me in high latitudes in winter, and this might change, but we plan on being for the most part between 40 N and 40 S.
11-17-2007 02:35 PM
sailingdog Valiente-

Flip a coin... I'm actually planning on getting the Microlog unit and installing it next spring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Valiente View Post
Nice tip. I thought I'd like the Xantrex unit because it can interface directly with Windows and I can monitor usage via Excel (amp draw of the fridge at 25 C in the saloon versus 33 C in the saloon might be useful information, as well as tracking stand-by versus active radar amp draws).

But this unit has its own attractive features, and manually transferring numbers isn't such a big deal, because once I know the draws of all the usual power-sucking devices, I can complete my energy budget.
I'm trying to see if I can see a Duogen unit in person... I think Ferris here in Massachusetts might have one I can look at.
11-17-2007 02:31 PM
Valiente
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Good ideas all around Valiente... I like the Duogen units... although there are better windgens...but none quite so versatile.
There are at least three makers of this type of unit, and I find it interesting that if you see wind as merely a supplemental source of power to solar, alternator and genset, you actually have the opportunity to tow such a unit at night in big air (when the drag would hardly matter), and its output jumps to number 2, right behind the alternator. 11-12 amps at 7 knots (easily achievable in the trades 24/7 in some situations) would alone exceed the normal night watch energy budget (fridge, a few LEDs, a radar on stand-by and the occasional GRIB download).

Add the sun in the daytime and you've got a lot of juice flowing.

I am fortunate in having bracketed steel plates designed to hold davits securely welded onto my transom. I could quite easily have a "tipping" pole trailing behind my stern, well clear of the windvane and the rudder. A small block and tackle on the arch would bring the thing upright again, and ready for wind service.

It's certainly something to think about, particularly as so many distance cruisers appear to be raving about it:

http://www.duogen.co.uk/custcom1.htm
11-17-2007 02:18 PM
Valiente
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Valiente-

Might want to look at this battery monitor as well. A bit less expensive than the Link 20, and does two banks.
Nice tip. I thought I'd like the Xantrex unit because it can interface directly with Windows and I can monitor usage via Excel (amp draw of the fridge at 25 C in the saloon versus 33 C in the saloon might be useful information, as well as tracking stand-by versus active radar amp draws).

But this unit has its own attractive features, and manually transferring numbers isn't such a big deal, because once I know the draws of all the usual power-sucking devices, I can complete my energy budget.
11-17-2007 02:27 AM
HoffaLives It's really important to sit down and work out a power budget, and be scrupulous. There are small systems that are running and are easy to forget about, like a sniffer, a propane shut off solenoid, radio, and so forth. To be realistic you should list everything and to be safe double it, and you'll probably be closer to real consumption. And you likely are aware that these alternative power sources very rarely achieve anything close to their rated output. That's why it's important to have the best charging system you can afford.
And while redundancy is a very good idea, remember that reliability tends to suffer the more complex the system is.
11-16-2007 11:26 PM
sailingdog Valiente-

Might want to look at this battery monitor as well. A bit less expensive than the Link 20, and does two banks.
11-16-2007 11:01 PM
sailingdog Good ideas all around Valiente... I like the Duogen units... although there are better windgens...but none quite so versatile.
11-16-2007 10:55 PM
Valiente
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoffaLives View Post
Either case. If your aux power sources are supplying power while you are also charging it via alternator or shore power, the voltage from the aux source can fool either circuit that the battery is fully charged.

FWIW, I'm not sure how realistic it is to keep a large bank charged with aux sources, unless your A hr consumption is crazy low. And unless you have a great regulator, you still have the problem of improper charging regime for the batteries.
I don't know about crazy low, but the 4-5 amp NovaKool fridge, plus the SSB radio and the radar (both occasional) would be the biggest draws. We are installing new water tanks and fixtures that will allow both pressure water and foot pump water...the pressure water use offshore will be rare. I plan on going all LED or flourescents...no incandescents, before we go, and the use of the inverter underway for items such as the microwave will be brief. Some of our entertainment choices will be chargeable, such as laptops and DVD players. These will be charged off the inverter in "prime times" of full sun and/or good wind. Speaking of wind, I am considering a DuoGen or something similar: a wind generator that is also towable in the water...yet another way to avoid using the diesel to make amps. I don't object to the diesel making headway, or making amps during making headway, but making amps at anchor at a fast idle is wasteful and hard on the engine. And loud.

I plan on having the ability to switch either the Honda 2000 or the alternator into the house batteries if needed, but between the combined wind and three, possibly four 130 W solar panels, I suspect I'll be covered. If not, there's always room on the diesel for a bigger Balmar, but as I said, I would prefer to have a large bank I can keep full with one input or another to reduce cycling.

Thanks for this discussion, guys. It's helping me focus on what is a complex way to achieve a simpler life.
11-16-2007 10:44 PM
Valiente
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Interesting... I was going by the owner's manual for the Link 20, which doesn't mention it at all.

BTW, I believe that Hoffa means that you should shut down/disconnect the solar/wind if you're charging the batteries on shore power using the Xantrex. The higher voltage caused by the solar/wind sources can fool the Xantrex into thinking the batteries are actually fully charged when they're not.
I think the logical thing to do in that case might be to simply shut off the inverter, let the sun and wind charge the batts, and power the AC side from the shore. I can switch over when the sun goes down, unless it's windy.

Part of my design ideas is extensive switchability as the key to redundancy: I want to have the ability to vary charge sources based on availability, but not necessarily to combine them, which I agree, on a breezy noon hour, might prove a little rich for the system to absorb along with shore power.
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