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Old 06-05-2017, 09:06   #1
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A way To Save Charging Time

We discovered a way to cut our charging time by 60%!!

During the off-season I purchased a brand new Mastervolt Mass 24/75 battery charger from a dealer who was liquidating overstock on eBay for only $325, $400 total shipped to MA. Last week a good friend installed the new charger along side our existing Mastervolt 24/50 charger.

I got a quote for a Solbian solar array last season which came in at $10,000 when the mounting wing was included, which would have reduced our need to run the generator down to less than one hour per day. Now with this new additional charger, for only around $700 total, we have basically reached the same goal, added redundancy, saved a ton of money and don't need to look at or live around the solar array.

It turned out fantastic!
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Old 06-05-2017, 09:14   #2
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

We often install ~200a of charging on boats (12v).

The gen should always be maxed out while running. Or you are wasting time and fuel.

The gen will only get the batteries up to 85-90%. Though unless you run for 5+ hours. So unless you plug into a dock at least once a week. Solar is still highly recommended otherwise your batteries will suffer . But you could probably do with less now.
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Old 06-05-2017, 09:19   #3
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

I can see how you might reduce time spent in bulk, but more amps are not going to reduce your absorption time. Solar - while expensive - will charge your batteries all the time and help reduce the risk of sulfation from repeated under-charging.
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Old 06-05-2017, 09:24   #4
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

Going on our sixth season with the present house battery bank of Trojans. I can purchase five sets of house banks for the cost of a solar array, but no need to since the present bank is still holding a charge.

My absorption time will also be reduced by 60%.
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Old 06-05-2017, 09:29   #5
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

My absorption time was reduced nearly 100% by going to LiFePo4.
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Old 06-05-2017, 09:54   #6
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

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My absorption time was reduced nearly 100% by going to LiFePo4.
I got a quote for those as well, it came in at over $12,000 when the new charger and labor was included, plus.... the guarranty was very iffy. I need something that can be fixed anywhere we go, and not need to fly someone in to do the (expensive) repair job.

A pair of Solbian zip-on solar panels for the bimini might be in our near future to top off the batteries. Going to look into it again this week.
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Old 06-05-2017, 10:22   #7
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

The cost benefit of solar is now a no brainer. We too are perfectly happy with flooded lead acid batteries, 3 stage charging and solar as primary power source. The generator is now a backup.
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Old 06-05-2017, 10:55   #8
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

Our home and office building is now 66% solar powered with a second contract to bring it up to be just over 100% by next November. So we're well aware of solar having installed the first system 11 years ago.

But... on the boat we have a 10kw generator and an engine with a 175w alternator. Sometimes it's faster, cheaper and more efficient to use what we already have. Just spent an hour looking into a pair of Solbian 112w flex panels for the bimini. Here in Italy, they're offering a promotion on them. I'm thinking a pair of them will be more than enough to top off the batteries every day with the generator run cut down to only an hour, even with some shading.
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Old 06-05-2017, 12:40   #9
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

Hi Kenomac,

You said that Solbian are offering a promotion on solar panels, my boat is in Fiumicino where was the promotion in Italy ?

Thanks
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Old 06-05-2017, 12:45   #10
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

This is the company I dealt with last year. They list several "Italy only" promotions on their website.

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Old 06-05-2017, 12:51   #11
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

Ok Thanks
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Old 06-05-2017, 13:06   #12
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

Given the huge volume of heat that those levels of charging must be producing, what about something simple, like a system for removing some of the heat from the battery compartment continuously. Can't imagine it'd hurt. Might extend their lifespan too.


How much energy are we talking about BTW, ah wise/day I mean?
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Old 06-05-2017, 13:34   #13
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

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Given the huge volume of heat that those levels of charging must be producing, what about something simple, like a system for removing some of the heat from the battery compartment continuously. Can't imagine it'd hurt. Might extend their lifespan too.


How much energy are we talking about BTW, ah wise/day I mean?
150-180ah, sometimes less. Everything goes through the inverter, and all cooking is done while the generator is running. At the same time, we run the watermakers and fuel polishing system in order to put a good load on the generator.

The chargers have cooling fans and the compartment is well ventilated. The battery bank is located in a cool spot under the saloon floor boards, where a cooling exhaust fan is already installed.

Thanks for the suggestion.
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Old 06-05-2017, 14:00   #14
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

We just put 3x90a chargers (270 total) on a boat with a 900a/h FLA bank. Significantly (!) reduced genset time and very happy owner. Love solar but if you have reason to run your genset (watermaker, etc) then loading it and getting a good charge is a good option
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Old 06-05-2017, 16:42   #15
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Re: A way To Save Charging Time

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150-180ah, sometimes less. Everything goes through the inverter, and all cooking is done while the generator is running. At the same time, we run the watermakers and fuel polishing system in order to put a good load on the generator.

The chargers have cooling fans and the compartment is well ventilated. The battery bank is located in a cool spot under the saloon floor boards, where a cooling exhaust fan is already installed.

Thanks for the suggestion.
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