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Old 12-11-2010, 16:50   #1
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Balmar Alternator / Regulator Problems

I have been trying to get power to my balmar regulator and the 10 amp fuse keeps blowing. ( the one that goes with the voltage senser) any ideas? Also I have a picture i would like to know if anyone has seen this kind of belt dust, if that's what it is.

I don't know if the regulator controls both alternators. i tried to full field the balmar alternator but it doesn't seem to work. I know nothing about boats, engines, or electrical systems. obviously. I just happen to live on this boat and need power for my laptop and a few other things. thanks. this is all so that i can desulfate the 8 rolls batteries (12-HHG-8D) that each have one dead cell.
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Old 12-11-2010, 20:20   #2
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I should rephrase this:

There are three battery combiners. a stock alternator and a balmar 9500 210 amp. The balmar is supposed to charge the house battery, the stock charges the starting battery. At 13 volts the two are combined, same thing happens with the port engine. But the port batteries are the "reserve" batteries or house bank 2. When house bank 1 which is now paralleled with the starboard starting battery reaches 13 volts, it is paralleled with the port reserve bank, which has already been paralleled with the port starting battery after the port engine charges them up. Same deal stock alternator to the starting battery, balmar to the house. Now, each side has a balmar max charge mc512 voltage regulator attached to the balmar alternator.

o.k. so. now the fun part. The port engine doesn't work at all. 5 of 6 deep cycle batteries have one completely dead cell. and neither starting battery will start the engine alone. So I have two starting batteries hooked up and the one deep cycle in house 1, just to make it as simple as possible. The alternator/s put out 30 amps to the one deep cycle IF the battery SWITCHES are manually turned to all. That is if I manually combine House 1 with Port 2, Starting Startboard with House 2 and Starting Port with House 2. So I think what is happening is the stock alternator is charging the starboard starting battery and it has to be paralleled with house 2 which is then paralelled with House 1. So it's a round about way of charging house 1. After 1 reaches 13, the combiners take over, but I still have to keep the starboard starter and house 2 together manually or else the amps never make it to house 1. And the battery combiners never combine any batteries except starting starboard and house 1, except once when i used a charger on house 2.

So if you're still following this. I get all the correct readings on the balmar voltage regulator port side, but nothing at all starboard side, where i need it. So i switched out the harness, the regulator, and still nothing starboard. Finally I figured out, after frying both harnesses, that the voltage sensing red wire which is supposed to be on the balmer alternator output with a 10 amp fuse, kept blowing. So I'm thinking that what's happening is that because no amps are flowing to the house battery from the balmar alternator, the current all goes through that little voltage sensing wire and blows it up. So I need to put the voltage sensor on the starting battery. wow i just figured that out by writing it all down. I'm still going to publish this, just in case someone out there has any idea what i'm talking about.

Now next problem: The reason I want the regulator to work is because it has an equalizing mode and I'm trying to desulfate the 5 bad batteries. I have connected the output of the balmar alternator to the field terminal, like it says in the manual, but I still can't get the batteries higher than 14 volts. So I'm thinking it's the stock alternator might have an internal regulator getting in my way. So I should try to full field it also???
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Old 13-11-2010, 06:57   #3
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A previous owner invested a great deal of treasure to design, purchase and install a very complete battery and battery charging system. The Rolls batteries are top of the line.

Your comment:
Quote:
I know nothing about boats, engines, or electrical systems. obviously.
leads me to make the recommendation that you hire a qualified marine electrician with specific experience in dealing with high output, externally regulated alternators and large battery banks and have the electrician sort this out. Ensure that the electrician will restore the system in accordance with the ABYC Standards.

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Old 13-11-2010, 09:05   #4
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As soon as I find a rich sailor to marry me I will hire the best electrician I can find. In the meantime, a mountain of lead sulfite is growing on the battery plates, I'm just trying to salvage what I can. It's not even my boat, I'm just a squatter

I know a little more than nothing about boats, engines and electrical systems today, and I'll be an expert by next weekend. The inverter is not even hooked up so I don't THINK I am dealing with anything but 12 volts. Isn't that correct?

I agree that someone somewhere put there heart and soul into this boat. They kept meticulous records, everything is top of the line. It kills me to watch everything rust and deteriorate.
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Old 13-11-2010, 09:22   #5
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The inverter is not even hooked up so I don't THINK I am dealing with anything but 12 volts.
The implication being that 12 VDC is somehow inherently safe (and I admit that I am reading a bit into your comment) is a common misconception. Follow this link, and drill down into the #1 cause of fires aboard vessels:

BoatUS.com - Seaworthy Magazine

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Old 13-11-2010, 09:41   #6
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Give Balmar customer service a try. It's a great company to deal with and stands behind it's products. Be careful around those half dead batteries as they can still pack quite a wallop!
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Old 13-11-2010, 20:46   #7
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By the way, belt dust is a result of slipping and/or misaligned pulleys.
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Old 14-11-2010, 07:19   #8
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By the way, belt dust is a result of slipping and/or misaligned pulleys.
Belt & Pulley - Cruisers & Sailing Photo Gallery

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Old 14-11-2010, 17:27   #9
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Call Balmar and speak with Rich. He's very knowledgeable and seems more than willing to help.
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