Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on Cruisers Forums. Advertise Here
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 10-06-2019, 05:33   #436
Registered User
 
Kenomac's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Pangaea
Posts: 10,453
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

By the tme most of you complete your install and figure it out, you’ll be into it for more than the cost of a proven product like the ones from Mastervolt.

I truly don’t understand the attraction to an unproven, troublesome voltmeter. Is it the internal voodoo it’s supposed to have that attracts so many?
__________________

Kenomac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2019, 07:17   #437
Marine service provider
 
newhaul's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: puget sound washington
Boat: 1968 Islander bahama 24 hull 182, 1963 columbia 29 defender. hull # 60
Posts: 6,745
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
By the tme most of you complete your install and figure it out, youíll be into it for more than the cost of a proven product like the ones from Mastervolt.

I truly donít understand the attraction to an unproven, troublesome voltmeter. Is it the internal voodoo itís supposed to have that attracts so many?
new gadget to oogle over ?
__________________

__________________
Non illigitamus carborundum
newhaul is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2019, 07:23   #438
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 10,831
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailinglegend View Post
Thanks - and just to make things even clearer, the SmartGauge part of the SG-200 should work - we hope - exactly the same as the original Merlin SG since Balmar have been marketing that as the Balmar Smartgauge.



The SG code in the BALMAR SG-200 is all new code written by Balmar so may work better - or a lot worse.
I think use of that sort of terminology would be misleading.

Chris has stated "Active Impedance Compensation" is Balmar's label for the technology shared in common between their SG-200 and Gibbo's / Merlin SmartGauge.

Their agreement is simply to sell and support the relabeled Merlin SG, they did not have access to its proprietary algorithms and wrote everything themselves from scratch.

As you say their implementation may (or may not) prove to be as good as or better.


> The only person to rely on for the test results of the SG-200 is Maine Sail

There may well emerge others as qualified willing to spend time doing rigorous testing. For example Bruce @OceanPlanet had started doing so for a collection of leading BMs against Merlin SmartGauge, long before the SG-200 was released.

Even a moderately technical user can do a head - to - head accuracy comparison, but of course the conclusion would just be one datapoint for that particular battery model and bank type.

As Chris points out, the resources required to verify / tweak the Active Impedance Compensation algorithms to cover more and more batteries accurately is a huge investment, and

if it is indeed the case that it works well for only a limited set of models / types, then the firmware updates will be critical to its future success.
john61ct is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2019, 09:28   #439
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 30
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
By the tme most of you complete your install and figure it out, youíll be into it for more than the cost of a proven product like the ones from Mastervolt.

I truly donít understand the attraction to an unproven, troublesome voltmeter. Is it the internal voodoo itís supposed to have that attracts so many?


Mine was a very simple install. Been a month, with maybe 4-6 deeper cycles. Last night with lights, fridge, 3-showers, stereo, cooking dinner and the propane heater running for several hours. Showed 88% this am, although the solar had already started kicking in. My battery SOH of 91% seems to correspond.

No need to figure out algorithms, how itís coded, etc. I also donít care to know my diesel fuel down to the ounce, which seems people want this to do for the battery. Mine works as advertised, and seems very accurate.
two-rocks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2019, 04:26   #440
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 22
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Ok can someone tell me if a typical lifepo4 dropin will work with this monitor? There are a good handful of lifepo4 deep cycle poping up outside of NA. They are all the same chemistry right?

They all seem to use the same brand of Chinese prismatic cells. What i want to know is, if balmar haven't tested a particular brand of dropin, will it still work?

Im looking at victron, enerdrive, fusion brands etc.
JmanC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2019, 04:35   #441
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 22
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
By the tme most of you complete your install and figure it out, you’ll be into it for more than the cost of a proven product like the ones from Mastervolt.

I truly don’t understand the attraction to an unproven, troublesome voltmeter. Is it the internal voodoo it’s supposed to have that attracts so many?
I got no problem going back to basics (rising voltage, falling current). This gauge has been an absolute nightmare and spent weeks trying to get it to work but nothing. That time wasted alone completely outweighs any convenience the soc reading has.
My attraction was simply to avoid going to deep with lifepo4. But for lead i can get by more easily with no monitor. If this thing turns out to be a flop for me, its in the trash can, as life is to short for this nonsense.
JmanC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 06:21   #442
Marine Service Provider
 
witzgall's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Eastern Shore, MD
Boat: Camper Nicholson 44 Ketch
Posts: 1,909
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

We have tested successfully the SG200 with a number of drop-ins, including Lithionics, Dragonfly and Relion. If the construction of those are similar to a target battery, in the quality of cells, construction etc, I don't see why it would not work.

We did have an early customer that had a friend build a LIFEPO4 battery for him, fully integrated with a BMS embedded into the system, that did not work well. In that case, the BMS was an inexpensive board purchased from eBay. Cells were sourced from Alibaba I think. We did not get further that that with the testing, as he was unwilling to dismantle the system.

As to the "Same Chemistry, right" I would not make any such assumption. In my opinion, there is a wild-west component to some of the Lithium drop in market. There are a number of reputable, reliable manufacturers out there, making quality products. There are also a number of unknown manufacturers that are looking to make a quick buck. The price will be the most obvious indicator for the buying public, but even then, who knows? If I was buying a drop in solution, where I could not see the cells, circuitry, etc, I would stick with a known brand.

Chris



Quote:
Originally Posted by JmanC View Post
Ok can someone tell me if a typical lifepo4 dropin will work with this monitor? There are a good handful of lifepo4 deep cycle poping up outside of NA. They are all the same chemistry right?

They all seem to use the same brand of Chinese prismatic cells. What i want to know is, if balmar haven't tested a particular brand of dropin, will it still work?

Im looking at victron, enerdrive, fusion brands etc.
witzgall is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 09:02   #443
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 10,831
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by JmanC View Post
They all seem to use the same brand of Chinese prismatic cells.
That is very contrary to my experience.

Best also to call those "pouch cells", as opposed to those prismatic cells encased in hard plastic or metal, with terminals easy to access already provided, as with Winston, CALB, Sinopoly and GBS.

> Ok can someone tell me if a typical lifepo4 dropin will work with this monitor?

There is no such thing, especially the brands you mention have little in common with the cheaper Chinese ones, and I suspect not with each other either.

K2 being Trillium's OEM would I imagine make them very similar but not necessarily the same.


> They are all the same chemistry right?

Yes, and if the BM has direct access to the cell terminals I'm confident you would see similar performance / behaviour among those top quality cells where the makers are diligent about chemical consistency and purity.

But when the BMS' components stand between the BM and the cells, there will likely be major variability.

I don't know to what extent Balmar's version of the Active Impedance Compensation technology is important when used with LFP banks, as opposed to lead.

If it's the coulomb-counting side doing the heavy lifting, that mechanism should be pretty consistent from one brand to the other.

But of course, the self-consumption of power by the BMS itself can't be counted from "the outside", and I've seen that vary a lot.

Note that many BMS have their own Ah counting SoC functionality, and one would think would be set up to count their own power consumed.
john61ct is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 09:12   #444
Marine Service Provider
 
witzgall's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Eastern Shore, MD
Boat: Camper Nicholson 44 Ketch
Posts: 1,909
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

A small clarification: Active Impedance Compensation only applies to the SG200.

Chris


Quote:
Originally Posted by john61ct View Post

Chris has stated "Active Impedance Compensation" is Balmar's label for the technology shared in common between their SG-200 and Gibbo's / Merlin SmartGauge.

Their agreement is simply to sell and support the relabeled Merlin SG, they did not have access to its proprietary algorithms and wrote everything themselves from scratch.
witzgall is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 09:13   #445
Marine service provider
 
newhaul's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: puget sound washington
Boat: 1968 Islander bahama 24 hull 182, 1963 columbia 29 defender. hull # 60
Posts: 6,745
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by john61ct View Post
That is very contrary to my experience.

.
and please expand on what experience is that ?

Or are we talking theoretically again?
__________________
Non illigitamus carborundum
newhaul is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 09:57   #446
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Panama, Central America
Boat: CT 49, 1989
Posts: 491
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by john61ct View Post
That is very contrary to my experience.

Best also to call those "pouch cells", as opposed to those prismatic cells encased in hard plastic or metal, with terminals easy to access already provided, as with Winston, CALB, Sinopoly and GBS.

> Ok can someone tell me if a typical lifepo4 dropin will work with this monitor?

There is no such thing, especially the brands you mention have little in common with the cheaper Chinese ones, and I suspect not with each other either.

K2 being Trillium's OEM would I imagine make them very similar but not necessarily the same.


> They are all the same chemistry right?

Yes, and if the BM has direct access to the cell terminals I'm confident you would see similar performance / behaviour among those top quality cells where the makers are diligent about chemical consistency and purity.

But when the BMS' components stand between the BM and the cells, there will likely be major variability.

I don't know to what extent Balmar's version of the Active Impedance Compensation technology is important when used with LFP banks, as opposed to lead.

If it's the coulomb-counting side doing the heavy lifting, that mechanism should be pretty consistent from one brand to the other.

But of course, the self-consumption of power by the BMS itself can't be counted from "the outside", and I've seen that vary a lot.

Note that many BMS have their own Ah counting SoC functionality, and one would think would be set up to count their own power consumed.
"That is very contrary to my experience."

Ok can you tell us what your 'experience' actually is?

Most of the others here claiming to have experience have listed their systems and experience.

And also what you have asked of others regularly.

Continuing to decline to do so is begining to sound suspicious.

Thanks.
Q Xopa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 11:43   #447
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: On board in Leros, Greece
Boat: Hunter Legend 420 Passage
Posts: 773
Re: Balmar SG-200 Battery Monitor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Q Xopa View Post
...Ok can you tell us what your 'experience' actually is? ....Continuing to decline to do so is begining to sound suspicious.....
++++1
__________________

sailinglegend is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
balmar, battery, monitor

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Cooked Balmar AT-200 Jd1 Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 57 08-10-2017 20:48
Balmar at-200 on Volvo Penta D2-55? Jorma Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 0 01-03-2017 13:50
Balmar Battery Monitor wannacat General Sailing Forum 1 22-11-2015 08:49
Balmar 614 regulator / Balmar Alternator help Strait Shooter Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 16 25-08-2015 13:08



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 21:54.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.