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Old 05-07-2012, 00:16   #166
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Re: Electrical Musings

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Originally Posted by twistedtree View Post
A "Cell" in a battery (let's stay with flooded lead acid for now) consists of a minimum of two plates, one positive and one negative, separated from each other, and immersed in acid. Chemistry creates a nominal 2.2V potential across the two plates, and an Ah capacity of C.
There is the view that that you may share, that the two plates in a cell, N and P, are in series and cells are connected in parallel. Accordingly
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a bunch of PARALLEL wired plates.
should read: A bunch of parallel wired cells.

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Originally Posted by FlyingCloud1937 View Post
the most dangerous battery bank is a series bank that is being charged.
In the mid seventies some battery chargers where provided with a voltage sensing device that prevented recharging a faulty battery. I like your avatar. You should provide a link to the discussion of it now that we are moving into the generator part of electrical musing.

If it was possible to conclude the discussion on paralleling versus not paralleling batteries…..
It could be said that if a person did enjoy breathing chlorine gas, wading in and moping sulphuric acid when the remnant of a cracked battery sparks and crackles so as to render Dr Frankensteen or some myth busters pale with envy, then enjoy. On the other hand some one can select a configuration that is more efficient, accurate and safer and also may save on washing.

What are the significance of connecting dry cells in series-parallel
What are the significance of connecting dry cells in series-parallel?

it explodes if two a series batterys connected in parrallel to another forth circuit , this may result in you changing your pants...
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:59   #167
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Re: Electrical Musings

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<digression> I find my Honda gen very economical to run but the sound travels through the decks. I've discovered that it's quieter below if I put it over a bulkhead. The forepeak works best on my boat, gives me some damping and separation. I don't use the cockpit since with a full bimini the fumes are a problem. </digression>
Mine is totally inaudible in the space at the transom which is revealed when I open my folding transom platform. I keep the genset here as well as any petrol I keep on board to reduce the risk of petrol vapors getting into the bilge. I forgot about it once and let it run -- without a load - until it ran out of fuel. Not heard at all on board, no vibration, no sound, but there area a couple of stout bulkheads between there and the interior space of the boat, and a full beam lazarette full of junk.
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Old 05-07-2012, 04:54   #168
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Re: Electrical Musings

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What are the significance of connecting dry cells in series-parallel
What are the significance of connecting dry cells in series-parallel?

it explodes if two a series batterys connected in parrallel to another forth circuit , this may result in you changing your pants...
Huh? Unintelligible.
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Old 05-07-2012, 18:49   #169
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I am really making an effort to keep up in this thread but my head is aching. Can someone wake me if any important electrical theory is revealed...

So far it all seems like junk science but honestly Most posts are TLDR and ramble along...
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Old 06-07-2012, 07:20   #170
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Re: Electrical Musings

Dan, if you'd read the whole thread you'd have realized this is all the reason why the announcment of the "It might be Higgs" Boson was made this week!
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Old 06-07-2012, 18:10   #171
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Dan, if you'd read the whole thread you'd have realized this is all the reason why the announcment of the "It might be Higgs" Boson was made this week!
Colliders are cool...

I just love the particle physics guys. There is a distortion in the force Luke, there must be something there!

I have no clue about this stufff but if they need a billion dollars for a collider to make something that may or may not exist travel at close to the speed of light and crash onto something else, I am all for it. Gomez Adams would love it.

Puts the mono v multi speed debate in perspective for me - LOL
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Old 06-07-2012, 18:17   #172
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We all hope it's worth it...and assume it is. In the long run it has to pay dividends,
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:27   #173
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Re: Electrical Musings

Update.

So I'm nearing the end of the first week of my summer cruise, and electrical life on board is pretty good. My diesel generator is running fine, and my batteries -- which I tried hard to kill in May -- have come back nicely.

I finally got on shore power in Dartmouth for three days, and got to really top off the batts and do some equalization. I tested the specific gravity and all the cells test at 1.26 to 1.27 with a single exception, one cell (out of 48) which tested at 1.25. That's at 22 degrees C so corrected for temp about 0.003 less. But I think that's pretty good. And I seem to be getting about the right capacity out of them -- pulling 60 amp/hours out of the 420 amp/hour bank reduces the charge to about 85% (according to my crude light loaded voltage test). I'm going to baby the batteries for a while longer and do some more equalization to try to get out any remaining sulphation. Life on a mooring with no shore power and no solar is hard on batteries

One disappointment I have is my Victron charger/inverter. In general this is a brilliant piece of kit, but the current limiting feature is not working according to specification. The power boost feature (automatic inverting to supplement external AC power) is supposed to work from 2 or 3 amps. It does not. The minimum current limit when the inverter is switched on is 5.5. So that means that I can't use the little Honda EU10i genset simultaneously with any AC power on board which is really a bummer, since the whole idea of having this genset is to have it purring away in the background while normal life goes on, the inverter covering any short-term AC loads. Crap.

So the Honda genset is not all that useful. I guess few people would bother to take it out of the laz and set it up rather than put a few extra hours on the diesel genset, especially if it requires switching off all AC power on board So for the benefit of anyone considering a solution like this - you will need a minimum of the EU200i with this inverter/charger. That generator will handle 5.5 amps of power (all this is at 230 volts, by the way) which is the minimum the Victron requires to use the inverter. It is really a pity that the Victron literature is wrong on this point. But I'm glad to have a backup source of AC power, and a way to do a long finishing charge on the batts before leaving the boat, I guess.

It becomes increasingly clear to me what a right solution solar is for anyone living off shore power. It's just what the batts need to stay healthy -- consistent, gentle topping off, without noise or fuss. I'm not going to do it this year, but maybe next spring I will spring for it.
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:45   #174
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Re: Electrical Musings

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One disappointment I have is my Victron charger/inverter.
Be careful of the standby power consumption of the larger inverters and particularly the inverter / charger combos.

I have just returned from another boat trying to sort out their electrical problems. The main problem was that their Mastervolt inverter charger consumed 2.4 A on standby and they were leaving it on 24 hours a day.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:09   #175
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Re: Electrical Musings

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Be careful of the standby power consumption of the larger inverters and particularly the inverter / charger combos.

I have just returned from another boat trying to sort out their electrical problems. The main problem was that their Mastervolt inverter charger consumed 2.4 A on standby and they were leaving it on 24 hours a day.
I leave my Victron inverter on 24/7 when I'm on board, which is SO convenient, as there are always small loads of some kind or another, like charging mobile phones and laptops. Except now when my little Honda is running The standby power consumption is only 10 watts or 0.4 amps or so.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:13   #176
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Re: Electrical Musings

The Victron does use a lot of power. I flattened my batteries figuring that one out the first year I had it. In the summer when the sun was strong the panels kept up but I came back to the boat in early winter the first year I had it and the batteries were dead. I turn the Victron on only when required. It can be left in charger mode which doesn't use power unless there is an AC source.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:18   #177
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Re: Electrical Musings

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The Victron does use a lot of power. I flattened my batteries figuring that one out the first year I had it. In the summer when the sun was strong the panels kept up but I came back to the boat in early winter the first year I had it and the batteries were dead. I turn the Victron on only when required. It can be left in charger mode which doesn't use power unless there is an AC source.
Naturally, it should be switched off (together with everything else) when you're not on board.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:49   #178
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Re: Electrical Musings

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Naturally, it should be switched off (together with everything else) when you're not on board.
I turn it on only when I want AC, which isn't very often. There's a few systems that "someday" I'll convert to 12v and then I'll use it even less unless I find myself tied to a dock again.

It's difficult to assess some of this stuff since change a variable in your life and everything changes. I've been going on two week trips mostly by myself with usually a weekend here and there with a friend and a couple of weeks with my son once a year. Two weeks by myself means the 12v mini fridge can hold enough fresh food for the whole trip. The 110 in counter freezer hasn't been run in some time. I believe it used to be 12v and I'd like to convert it back but it's been low priority. Showers aren't high priority when it's just me so the 110 water heater is fine. If I can't make a solar shower and a cockpit bath won't cut it I run the gen for half an hour. Of a sudden it seems I'm going to be sharing my boat more and being able to carry more fresh food and making the hot water more efficient seems more important so I'll probably, in time, convert them to 12v.

It sounds like you run your AC all the time you're on the boat. Are you finding a lot of applications where it is required?
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Old 08-07-2012, 10:05   #179
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Re: Electrical Musings

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Update.
So the Honda genset is not all that useful. I guess few people would bother to take it out of the laz and set it up rather than put a few extra hours on the diesel genset, especially if it requires switching off all AC power on board So for the benefit of anyone considering a solution like this - you will need a minimum of the EU200i with this inverter/charger. That generator will handle 5.5 amps of power (all this is at 230 volts, by the way) which is the minimum the Victron requires to use the inverter. It is really a pity that the Victron literature is wrong on this point. But I'm glad to have a backup source of AC power, and a way to do a long finishing charge on the batts before leaving the boat, I guess.

It becomes increasingly clear to me what a right solution solar is for anyone living off shore power. It's just what the batts need to stay healthy -- consistent, gentle topping off, without noise or fuss. I'm not going to do it this year, but maybe next spring I will spring for it.
Dockhead:

Glad to hear you got your charging issue straightened out. My boat too usually lives on a mooring or at anchor. I'm in my fifth year with electric propulsion and have two battery systems on board. 12 volts for the house power and a 10 kilowatt 48 volt bank for the electric propulsion bank (House is gel and Propulsion AGM). So charging is something I keep an eye on. I really don't see the need for an inverter for my needs because my Honda 2000 is able to provide 120 volts when I need to use it on board. I'm able to charge both battery banks off of my Honda 2000eu generator with no problem. If both are way down I may need to charge them one at a time. But, that is rarely the case. I do have two solar panel systems (150 watts 12 volt, 120 watts 48 volts) keeping things topped up over the winter and during the season and yes it does make a world of difference. Though I did have a scare this spring with one of the batteries in the 48 volt bank which consists of four 8A4D 12 volt batteries in series:
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: BATTERY INVESTIGATION PART FIVE: Some Good News!
I had a 25 ma parasitic load (battery meter) connected to the lowest batteries in the string. Suddenly this year this battery would time out when charging and show a fault on the two separate battery chargers I tried. At first I could not get it to charge over 12.9 volts at first. I disconnected the parasitic load and gradually the battery came back to the same condition as the other batteries in the bank and completed a full charge and load tested good:
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: BATTERY INVESTIGATION PART 7: Much better balance
I'm glad I took the time to investigate why this battery was under preforming compared to the others in the bank. If I had just trusted the battery chargers first fault indications I might have discarded a perfectly good battery. I found even the little parasitic load over time can sulfate a battery to the point where it can fool a charger into declaring it faulty when all I needed to do was to remove the load and put the battery through several charge cycles along with some solar helping it along in between charges. I wonder how many people have discarded perfectly good batteries before giving them a second chance with some TLC.
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Old 08-07-2012, 10:33   #180
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Re: Electrical Musings

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I leave my Victron inverter on 24/7 when I'm on board, which is SO convenient, as there are always small loads of some kind or another, like charging mobile phones and laptops. Except now when my little Honda is running The standby power consumption is only 10 watts or 0.4 amps or so.
That is a good low power consumption.
It is still 9.5 AHrs a day @ 24v (= 19AHrs a day @ 12v) or I gather about 10% of your total power consumption just to keep the inverter on, before it does any work. Personally I have got virtually everything running off 12v which not only avoids the standby drain of the inverter, but it tends to be a bit more efficient in power conversion.
The main thing is to aware and measure the drain as you have and then decide if it's a problem in the scheme of your overall power consumption.
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