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Old 31-12-2018, 19:20   #1
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Balmar 100 amp alternators

Hi, I am looking at getting two of the Balmar 100 amp 621's with Balmar regulators for our catamaran (two engines). Has anyone had any experience with these? I understand that this model and size is supposed to OK with the original brackets on a Yanmar engine.

I searched for posts about these, but couldn't find anything relevant.

Appreciate any experiences you've had with these.

Thanks Keith
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Old 31-12-2018, 22:53   #2
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

Just be aware the 100amps is marketeers dream. They will max out at near the spec, but will overheat and have to be derated very quickly. You can derate them with a balmar regulator along with the alternator temperature sensor.
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:18   #3
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

Thanks Paul, have you used the Balmar alternators or know anyone who has? They are reputed to be quite reliable and are supposedly able to put out near to their maximum at quite low revs and continuously. But I would like to check if anyone has actually experienced this. I am skeptical, but would like to know if anyone has had experience.
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:35   #4
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

I have two Mark Grasser 100 amp alternators on my catamaran with lithium battery bank which accepts all the charge those alternators can produce. With that arrangement I use Balmar external regulators with temp. sensors and dialed back to 78% capacity and have had no issues with overheat or belt slippage. Serpentine belts would be a nice upgrade at some point. I will say my battery bank seldom gets discharged very deeply and with 1080 watts of solar the alternators do not get worked hard but for a brief period if engines are running at beginning of day. Balmar alternators are similar to Mark Grassers with upgraded funds and more robust parts along with balancing.
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:43   #5
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Balmar 100 amp alternators

In my opinion, Mark Grasserís alternators are a much better buy.
NO small frame alternator will make rated power continuously, not in an engine room anyway, they canít heat build up prevents it, although if the diodes are externally mounted they can come close, but thatís $$$
Iíd go larger than 100, cause your not going to get 100, unless you plan on running both motors, then dual 100ís is likely plenty.
You will need an external regulator to get the usefulness out of any alternator, the Balmar 614 is I think among the best, but Mark is or has already come out with something new, I donít know specifics though.

Anything above about 80 amps almost requires serpentine belts to keep from slipping, my 80 amp alternator ate belts, made a lot of dust that of course the engine inhaled, my 165 with a serpentine belt never requires any attention and I run the belt a little loose thinking that bow string tight is hard on bearings.

I can get about 90 amps continuously from my 165 alt, but I do have the temp limit set conservatively to hopefully make it last a good long time
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:56   #6
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

Thanks guys. The only high output alternators that I can buy in Australia are the Balmars. The engine rooms on my Leopard 38 are ventilated to the outside, so I imagine that this might help with the heat. But I could put an additional exhaust fan in that might help with the cooling, do you think this might help?
Also, the Balmar dealer here told me that anything up to a 100 amp Balmar would be fine with the existing belt setup on the 3YM30's (anything higher would need the belt kit). Do you think this is true?
Thanks
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Old 01-01-2019, 05:24   #7
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

I have just replaced a Balmar (940??) with another Balmar, after 20 years excellent service. This unit is apparently rated to 200 amps but the test sheet that came with the unit showed something like 240 amps at 5000rpm. It does need an external regulator. I have seen it putting out 220 amps on my system (1600rpm, with pulleys multiplying the speed), when the batteries were a bit low.

It is driven by Isuzu 50hp motor, with 2 belts, and produces no dust.

When I was deciding on the replacement, I was dubious about spending so much extra on a name brand. But I am now convinced it is worth the extra.

I *think* the agent in OZ is Zenith in Brisbane
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Old 01-01-2019, 07:02   #8
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

I just installed a balmar 150 amp 6 series with the mc614 regulator and serpentine belt. I dialed back the alt 30% and programmed the regulator to bulk / absorb / float to battery manufacturers specs. I bought a kit from MaineSail who frequents this site (https://marinehowto.com). I bought a kit that was specific to my engine (Yanmar 4JH4E)and fit pretty good.. I had a Balmar 70 amp on last boat (Yanmar 3HM35f). My new setup charges my 500 ah bank nicely and by dialing back does not overburden alt.
Good luck!
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Old 01-01-2019, 09:43   #9
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

We ran one of these for nearly 20 years without a problem and it now is carried as a spare. Personally, I feel this is about as big as you want before you go to before going to double belts etc. We put 8500 hours on it before swapping to a new engine with a 140 amp Balmar back in.

Very happy customer.

Ross
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Old 01-01-2019, 09:56   #10
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

When I added a 100 A alternator (large frame) I went with dual belts. Serpentine would have been better, but a very costly modification. IMO a single V-belt is asking for troubles on alternator that size (of course V belts are available in various cross-sections and a wider single V belt may be just fine but requires larger sheaves).
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Old 01-01-2019, 10:03   #11
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

Serpentine is the way to go in my opinion. Easy conversion...... $350 and kits come for specific engines . Had a vbelt on 70 amp balmar on last boat and there would be significant dust...... would have swapped if I kept the boat.

Greg
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Old 01-01-2019, 11:24   #12
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwiggy View Post
Hi, I am looking at getting two of the Balmar 100 amp 621's with Balmar regulators for our catamaran (two engines). Has anyone had any experience with these? I understand that this model and size is supposed to OK with the original brackets on a Yanmar engine.

I searched for posts about these, but couldn't find anything relevant.

Appreciate any experiences you've had with these.

Thanks Keith
I would second that recommendation to upgrade to a serpentine belt. I have a Balmar 110V and it ate belts but the conversion is another cost.

In terms of output I would recommend talking to a Balmar tech on your plans and what he thinks the output would be given your engine pulley diameter and the pulley diameter that comes with the Balmar or serpentine conversion kit if you go that route. The conversation can be enlightening as to what you will actually experience.

~ ~ _/) ~ ~ MJH
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Old 01-01-2019, 11:34   #13
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

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Originally Posted by NYSail View Post
Serpentine is the way to go in my opinion. Easy conversion...... $350 and kits come for specific engines . Had a vbelt on 70 amp balmar on last boat and there would be significant dust...... would have swapped if I kept the boat.

Greg
Where did you find a kit that cheap? For my Yanmar 3yms... it's $600 each engine.

Standard belts are the poorest choice. Gates makes a green stripe belt. Standard belt is just rubber, the green stripe belt is built like a radial steel tire. More expensive but way cheaper than serpentine.

Question for the original poster. Why 100 amp alternators to begin with? With solar and wind you may not need to run the engines.
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Old 01-01-2019, 12:07   #14
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

I just replaced an older Balmar 70amp alternator and went with Balmar 100amp and serpentine belt and pulleys. Also added new external balmar regulator. Definitely the way to go but mine is for yanmar 4jh4 hte 110hp on a monohull.
Charge performance is markedly better and the serpentine belt has good advantages and better wear of course.
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Old 01-01-2019, 12:25   #15
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Re: Balmar 100 amp alternators

100 amps on a 1/2 inch belt was the rule of thumb but if you derate the alternator to 80 amps you will get decent belt life and keep the alternator from overheating.
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