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  #1  
Old 09-28-2009
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What's your Battery Bank

I'm upgrading my electrical system and battery bank and would like to know what other PSC 34's are using and their bank location. I want to keep my batteries where they currently reside, in the port locker but could only find one set of batteries that will fit in that location and give me 350+ ah. At this point I intend to purchase Trojan SCS225 - 12v 130ah (4 total: 3 house and 1 starter) I still have to create an extra 1 inch space to fit them in, but for the amp hours and weight (264 lbs. total) I'm thing it's my best bet.

A friend can get me the Trojans for $168 each but suggested the Interstate SRM-29 for $85 each. They're basically the same size and rating, and I'd buy an Interstate battery for my car but not so sure about my cruising needs. Any comments?

Carl
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Old 09-28-2009
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At quite literally HALF the price with substantially identical ratings...I'd be tempted to give the interstate a try. They are one of the top three manufacturers in the US and they do know their business. My only question would be since Interstate shows the battery as a dual purpose type not strictly a deep cycle, there may a be a difference in the plate thickness. But since Trojan also shows cranking capacity for their batteries--I think both may just be reflecting the realities of battery use today.
Half the price...If I was going to be around civilization four years from now, I don't think I'd mourn too long or too loud if that didn't work out.

Stick the savings into optimizing the rest of the electrical system (alternator performance, regulator, LED nav lights) and I think you'd come up with a pretty effective choice.
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Old 09-28-2009
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On my 34', I built a small aluminum frame and bolted it low in the port locker next to the existing battery compartment. I then put a third Group 27 AGM in a battery box and used a rachetting tie down strap to secure the additional battery and box to the frame. I'll probably add a 4th battery down the road a ways but this basic arrangement works great for now.
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Old 09-29-2009
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I have two group 29 125 Ah Energizer flooded lead acid batteries from Sams in my port locker battery compartment. They are the "house battery". My boat is tiller steered, so I have spots for two more batteries where you wheel steered boats have a quadrant. One is easy to service through a covered opening at the foot of the quarter berth, and my "engine battery" (another group 29) is mounted there. The second spot is accessed through the engine compartment, is too hard to service, and is currently empty. The three batteries at Sams were about $75 each. This is my second set. The first set I swapped out last year after four years because we were planning on spending five months in the Bahamas, and I just wanted new.

The boat has engine drive refrigeration, so the only time I bump up against an battery problem is when sailing overnight with the nav lights, radar, chartplotter, a fan, and light or two on down below. About 4am I will start the engine to bring the house battery back up. At anchor I would have started the engine at 9am for an hour or so to cool the freezer.

At some time I may put a smaller (Gr 24) AGM in the unused spot for the engine battery and add the third Gr 29 to the house bank. I just need to figure out how to manage the differing charging voltages of flooded and AGM batteries. Or, I could put another flooded lead acid battery in the unused spot, but I would need to figure out how to easily service it.

Bill Murdoch
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Old 09-30-2009
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My first question is what is your charging method? I only have the engine with a 100A Balmar and smart charger. Therefore why go with four batteries. It provides longer between charges but the time to charge is doubled as well. With this thought in mind I put in 2 100Ahr 6 volt batteries. This gives me 100 Ahr between charges which is 1-2 days on the hook. Then I can get it back up to 85% in an hour or less.

The advantage of 6V is you don't have one battery with more resistance as in parallel.

Batteries seem to be a personal thing but this works well for me without sacrificing weight and space on my 31.
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