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Old 20-12-2014, 13:17   #1
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Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

Can it be done if the controller is wired in parallel?
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Old 20-12-2014, 16:21   #2
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

what is a "12v controller"...


alt regulator? solar controller? battery charger?...
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Old 20-12-2014, 16:22   #3
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

Oops. Solar controller. I should also mention the bank is 3 x 12 volt batteries.
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Old 20-12-2014, 17:08   #4
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

The most common controller output is of course 12 volts, but also come in 24, 36, and 48 volt. What panels do you have? If in series the voltage is > 42 volts, then buy a 36 volt controller. Here is a list of multi voltage charge controllers for you....

At Wholesale Solar, we're experts at finding or designing exactly what you need! Questions? Call 1 (800) 472-1142
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Old 20-12-2014, 17:39   #5
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

DeckOfficer,

I currently have 3 smaller panels, and will probably add 2 larger ones. I know they make 36 volt controllers. I actually bought this controller early on in the project with too much exuberance and not enough thought. What I am curious is do I kick myself or not? Can I make it work?
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Old 20-12-2014, 17:48   #6
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

Next question, what is the 36 volt bank for? Do you have electric propulsion?
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Old 20-12-2014, 18:22   #7
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post
Next question, what is the 36 volt bank for? Do you have electric propulsion?
Indeed. Working on it. I will have a separate 12 volt house bank that I know I can make use of this controller on, but ...
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Old 20-12-2014, 18:29   #8
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

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Originally Posted by jeanathon View Post
DeckOfficer,

I currently have 3 smaller panels, and will probably add 2 larger ones. I know they make 36 volt controllers. I actually bought this controller early on in the project with too much exuberance and not enough thought. What I am curious is do I kick myself or not? Can I make it work?
No, not practically.


Edit:
And yes, kick yourself - then you will feel better and get yourself the proper 36V controller and selling or using the existing 12V one elsewhere
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Old 20-12-2014, 18:39   #9
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

For others to be able to make suggestions, it would be helpful if you post what your system now consists of....

Size of 36 volt bank

Size of 12 volt bank

Size of solar panels

Ratings of charge controller

Do you have an inverter?

Your intended usage, i.e. electric propulsion used only for getting in and out of the slip.


What I'm getting at is if your needs to charge the 36 volt bank is only for getting in and out of the marina, I would just go with a separate 36 volt charger because they are cheap. This way you can size your solar and 12 volt house bank for your needs such as reefer, nav, lights, radio, autopilot, etc.
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Old 21-12-2014, 07:44   #10
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

Deck,

Yes I am only planning on using the electric propulsion for marinas or shooting an inlet. If I decide to do canals or what not I will add a disposable generator to the mix.
The motor is way overpowered at 24 KW at 36 volts with an EV1 controller. Current panels are 2 x 45 watts and a 30 watt. Currently looking at some 200 watt panels.
Not sure yet if I can use this motor for hydroelectric generation via the prop unless I put a manual disconnect to the controller.
36 volt bank is 750 amp hour consisting of 3 batteries.
12 volt bank is yet to be determined. No inverter and minimum electronics ie. no autopilot, fridge, or watermaker. All interior lights are LED.
The boat ways in at 7000 lbs.
Just me and two dogs although I might take current girlfriend, but that is yet to be determined.
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Old 21-12-2014, 09:28   #11
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

If your 36 volt load is 80 amps or less and your 12 volt charging source is 150 amps or less you can use the Trollbridge36. It is an automatic switch that puts the batteries in parallel so they get charged by a single output 12 volt charging source and switches back to series to give 36 volts for running a trolling motor.
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Old 21-12-2014, 09:50   #12
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

36 volt at 750 ahr is a 27 kwhr bank, which is quite large for intended usage. I don't even know of any 12 volt batteries that are 750 ahr. I think a heavy 8D battery is around 250 ahr, so 3 in series would be 36 volt at 250 ahr which is 9 kwhr.

Just buy a used 36 volt golf cart charger and top off the propulsion bank at the marina. Use your small solar and charge controller for your 12 volt house bank. If you decide to do canals just pick up a Honda 2000i.
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Old 21-12-2014, 10:24   #13
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

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Originally Posted by Andina Marie View Post
If your 36 volt load is 80 amps or less and your 12 volt charging source is 150 amps or less you can use the Trollbridge36. It is an automatic switch that puts the batteries in parallel so they get charged by a single output 12 volt charging source and switches back to series to give 36 volts for running a trolling motor.
Interesting.
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Old 21-12-2014, 10:27   #14
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post
36 volt at 750 ahr is a 27 kwhr bank, which is quite large for intended usage. I don't even know of any 12 volt batteries that are 750 ahr. I think a heavy 8D battery is around 250 ahr, so 3 in series would be 36 volt at 250 ahr which is 9 kwhr.

Just buy a used 36 volt golf cart charger and top off the propulsion bank at the marina. Use your small solar and charge controller for your 12 volt house bank. If you decide to do canals just pick up a Honda 2000i.
Deck,
I meant 750 total, but I misspoke anyway. It is actually 675 total. 3 x12volt x 225 amp batteries. Did I figure that correctly?

I want to be able to anchor out and recharge so will need to recharge the propulsion bank.
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Old 21-12-2014, 11:00   #15
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Re: Charging a 36 volt bank with a 12 volt controller

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Deck,
I meant 750 total, but I misspoke anyway. It is actually 675 total. 3 x12volt x 225 amp batteries. Did I figure that correctly?

I want to be able to anchor out and recharge so will need to recharge the propulsion bank.
You can only add the ahr of batteries in parallel, not series.

If you keep your motoring speed below 5 kt, your consumption should be no greater than 400 whr per mile. With your 36 volt bank at 225 ahr, that is 8100 whr. On lead acid batteries you shouldn't discharge deeper than 50%, so that gives you 4050 usable whr, or just a tad over 10 miles range. Would that range be suitable to allow you just to charge at your slip and not have to worry about charging while on the hook?
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