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Old 23-11-2008, 00:42   #1
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Compare Glass Mat and AGM Batteries

Does anyone know how the WEST MARINE SeaVolt Dual-Purpose Absorbed Glass Mat Batteries compare to other AGM Batteries in terms of quality or anything else noteworthy?

I'm thinking of buying some.

Thanks,
Extemp.
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Old 23-11-2008, 02:54   #2
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East Penn Manufacturing in Pennsylvania manufactures and markets the West Marine “SeaVolt” (AGM) and “SeaGel” (gel), as well as their own brand of Deka “Seamate” & “Dominator” batteries.

Stencil line (private label) batteries are often manufactured to a “price point”, and are not always built to the same standards and specifications as the manufacturer’s “branded” product.

See the 'Practical Sailor' (2006) comparison test:
http://www.llelectronics.com/docs/aw...eBatteries.pdf
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Old 23-11-2008, 10:02   #3
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Thanks Gord.
Will continue reading, but will likely go Trojan.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
East Penn Manufacturing in Pennsylvania manufactures and markets the West Marine “SeaVolt” (AGM) and “SeaGel” (gel), as well as their own brand of Deka “Seamate” & “Dominator” batteries.

Stencil line (private label) batteries are often manufactured to a “price point”, and are not always built to the same standards and specifications as the manufacturer’s “branded” product.

See the 'Practical Sailor' (2006) comparison test:
http://www.llelectronics.com/docs/aw...eBatteries.pdf
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Old 10-03-2009, 19:49   #4
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It's partly because I'm spread too thin, suffer from perfection paralysis, am not that smart, like most have limited resources, am overwhelmed by information, struggle with sales bs vs fact, but I have not chosen a battery brand or size yet. I can use just about any size battery I want as I am redoing the interior of the boat, but I have to commit VERY soon as far as size goes.

Some of the things that have run through my mind are: (regarding the batteries that is)
  • I getting 800 to 1000 amp/hrs worth of batteries
  • Trojan group 27's are rated very high by PS
  • Group 27's would mean a lot of cable connections
  • If the new Firefly Group 31 battery come available (dare to dream) then to plan for a Group 31 sized battery would make some sense
  • I've read that the Life Line batteries can take a lot more charge then other battery manufactures will recommend and there would be huge benefits to that
  • I've read that the larger battery sizes are generally better for a cruisers house bank application
Now, if you want to have a bit of fun with an already tormented brain, go for it, but please try to leave something useful behind that I may find of use.

Thanks,
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Old 10-03-2009, 21:37   #5
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Nobody wants to torture you.....I do understand perfection paralysis.....that has kept a lot of people tied up to their docks....Keep things simple, don't believe all the hype, talk to other sailors.

There is only one thing worse than Perfection Paralysis...
it is Terminal Anal Retentiveness... I don't think you suffer from that.

I bet if I met you, I would find you to be a fun person...as far as tormented....sometimes you must feel like that guy on the ED Sullivan show who was spinning the plates on sticks
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:50   #6
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We switched to Trojan L16H batteries (6V 400 Ah each) 4 years ago and still going strong as ever.

cheers,
Nick.
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:18   #7
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Nick, you probably have the room for those batteries, they are high like 16" or so I believe?
I want/need to switch batteries as well soon extemp and understand your point. It seems there is always that next best thing, just around the corner.
I have some sams club 6v golf cart batteries that the PO installed, and then ignored.
All are pulled now, and have rewatered them, but they will not last long.
I like the trojan T105s. The price is good, the amphour rating is satisfactory, and as long as you take care of them, seem to last 6 years or more.
I would rather have rolls or surrettes, but for one they cost 2x more at least, are difficult to find, and are impossible to move.
Find a good wet cell battery, and don't fret no more. The next time we need to change batteries, there will be something else to worry about.

Regards,
Bob
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Old 11-03-2009, 16:00   #8
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We switched to Trojan L16H batteries (6V 400 Ah each) 4 years ago and still going strong as ever.

cheers,
Nick.
Nick,
Can I ask why you chose to go with 6V batteries?
And for others, why did you go with 6V batteries?

Your getting the same 12V amp/hrs for + - the same space, are you not? Or perhaps you have a 24V system in which case you are likely running batteries in series anyway.
I understand if one has a 24V system, but if you can get the battery voltage which your system uses, why would you chose to run lower voltage in series? Unless 6V batteries are cheaper.

Curious,
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Old 11-03-2009, 16:21   #9
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Find a good wet cell battery, and don't fret no more. The next time we need to change batteries, there will be something else to worry about.
Regards,
Bob
I've convinced myself to go with AGM's for various reasons.
  • I can afford them now but may not be able to afford them in the future
  • They will be in the bilge. It's dry and they are not right in the bottom, regardless, the AGM's make sense for this placement
  • I think if one has the proper charging system (and I think I do), the consensus is that you will get greater life out of AGM's. Or at least that's my take on it
  • I can see the increased charge rate that the AGM's will accept over flooded as being a HUGE plus
I do know that the next best thing will always be out there and I accept that, but since the decision is NOW or very soon, I just want to make the best decision I can with what folks think and know now, with what ever contingency plan that may be applied.
That's all.

Thanks,
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Old 11-03-2009, 16:27   #10
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I bet if I met you, I would find you to be a fun person...as far as tormented....sometimes you must feel like that guy on the ED Sullivan show who was spinning the plates on sticks
I suppose everyone finds some broken plates at their feet now and again.

Thanks,
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Old 11-03-2009, 16:37   #11
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You can often get more power in the same footprint with 6volt batteries; and you can move them when you have to.
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Old 11-03-2009, 20:35   #12
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Life Line and Trojan

Got to say, if Spec's mean anything, Life Line's got me thinking.
The first part of the attached is Life Line and the later graph and below is Trojan.
Trojan does not say what the Total charge input is for their AGM's.
Life Line recommends 50% DOD where Trojan recommends 20% DOD.
Also Life Line seams to be a little more forth coming in their literature.

Any comments?

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Old 12-03-2009, 02:36   #13
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Nick,
Can I ask why you chose to go with 6V batteries?
I choose these because they kind of fit the space I had available (with height to spare, they are inside the keel). Rolls did not have something to fit and add up to my desired capacity range.

My previous batteries were 2V and I would buy 12V too, I don't really care as long as they can be handled without having to charter a crane (I needed that for the previous batteries: 2 sets of 900 pounds each!).

cheers,
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:40   #14
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I guess there are pluses and minues to the 12v vrs 6v thing. For me it comes down to 2 things.
Price and weight.
A 6v trojan weighs in at ~65 lbs, and has 220 amphours at the 20 hour rate.
2 therefore = the same as a 8D, but I can move them myself.
Also they are cheaper.
The only thing I wish were different is the hight. I have 12" under the floor and these are just shy of 11".

Far as I know, a good quality flooded lead acid battery will far outlast the AGM. Correct me if I am wrong. The AGM has the flooded beat on charge acceptance, and no maintaince, and not off gassing.
The gelcell will last longer than the agm from studies that I have seen.

But price to performance to longevity, the trojan 6v T105 beats them all. You can get up to 10 years on them if handled correctly, are 170 or so each usd, and are fairly easy to move around. I can't afford the agms, and don't think I would buy them if I could. I do have a concord agm that was used for my windless battery. Not sure how old it is, but might use it as a starting battery. Oh and that reminds me, the agm also stores well, but for me its a non issue.

My 2 cents, but don't take it to the bank, its not worth much.
Bob
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Old 12-03-2009, 08:05   #15
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Extemp... I am a big fan of AGM's for those who live aboard and on the hook and need to charge and recharge daily...especially those using an engine or generator to do so.
In THAT situation they are a good economic choice but in almost no other situation do the economics (i.e. amp hours delivered over the life of the battery divided by cost) make sense. I had a bank of 4-8D's AGM's (Deka's) and they worked great and were a good choice for me.
In the non-economic sense, there are other advantages that may swing you towards them...including the lack of need for maintenance and watering, the ability to hold a charge for months on the hard in winter, flexibility of placement.
If I were forced to make a decision on AGM's today..I would give the Odyssey's a shot as they would allow me to go with a smaller bank and deeper discharge for the same amp hours delivered or their lifetime and quicker re-charging compared to other AGM's.

That said...If I were not in a full time liveaboard situation, I believe a top quality wet cell like Trojans, or Rolls along with water miser caps still provides the most bang for the buck from an ecoomic standpoint.
To me...the 6V option never made a lot of sense given the added complexity and the fact that most of us only move our batteries once. When they die!
I would NOT rely on comparing spec sheets as some are VERY conservative and others make wild claims.
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