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Old 16-03-2015, 13:05   #4381
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

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Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY View Post
And so you see the game of the internet experts who's opinions are more important than the facts at hand or topic being discussed. It was clearly stated that the charging device needed to have a voltage setpoint...as most quality cruising devices do anyway...but let's ignore that and change out the entire charging system anyway? Set up a straw man and argument of varrying apt voltage and then light it on fire...ha ha. Proper charge voltages has been discussed and clearly understood and wasn't even an issue of debate...classic change the topic debate games...not practial reality of people that are using the technology.

New technology has never been for the naysayers or internet chat room experts who feel compelled to post as an expert on a system they don't even have on their boat...but alas...there were those that once thought the world was flat, the sun revolved around the earth, and LiFePO4 batteries were any more complicated to install and use on a boat than a ships main engine.
Ever notice how it is always those same net experts who have ZERO EXPERIENCE with a product, be it LiFePO4 or other wise, that seem to always know the most about it........
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Old 16-03-2015, 13:35   #4382
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

It's the nature of the beast.
I'm not in the LiFePO4 battery sales game, I'm just a bozo user of the great technology, but I do sell other types of cruising gear and I spend a lot of time educating people about the basic technology and even more correcting rumors and 1/16th truths about the products I know inside and out. It gets frustrating and sure I should just ignore it more to be more politically correct and heaven forbid perhaps offend a potential customer, but I think part of why I'm successful at what I do is that I'm a no BS straight shooter type of personality. It wrinkles a feather now and then, but it keeps me from turning into a turkey. Look every social media marketing 101book out there says to avoid public forums and Never say or post anything that someone can take offence to or be thought of as controversial...but I'm not a marketing guy, I'm a live aboard cruising bozo who posts about things he knows about and shuts up about things I don't know about. The trick is knowing which is which...as my wife tells me all the time.

I have about 175 "cycles" on my 400ah bank, but what is really a "cycle" when my 1300w of solar and KISS wind gen keep me between 70-80 SOC most of the time except when I run my 1100w water maker or 1500w hot water heater from the battery bank just as a fun test because I can. See I'm not gathering scientific data with my bank, I'm living a real life off the grid test and so far even if my $1700 400AH LiFePO4 bank only lasts as long as my 900AH Trojan T105 bank, then I call it a huge win due to the other benefits that I'm seeing every day while living on a mooring completely off grid.
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Old 16-03-2015, 14:17   #4383

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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

No one said to change the charging system--just to be prepared for that need. Any conventional two or three stage chargers might be contenders for upgrades, as among other things lithium is harmed by the "normal" float charge.


You talk about straw men, but you keep referring to statements that haven't been made.


I'm repeating the advice, the cautious advice, from the folks who have made the battery systems and run the life cycle tests on them. Multiple times. If you think your one random installation proves more than all their research, by all means feel free to believe it. But please, stop creating statements no one has made and then decrying them as wrong.


And in fact, the world once was flat. But dragons kept falling off the edge, so the gods tied it all up in a knot to save the dragons.
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Old 16-03-2015, 14:32   #4384
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

I hate to do it and this isn't personal HelloSailor, but words mean things. If you are going to give advice on a LiFePO4 battery system that you have no personal experience with other than repeating what others have posted online, well in my humble opinion, then you need to be more careful. Because, when questioned on your comments made only hours ago you seem to be saying you never said them.......

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
No one said to change the charging system--just to be prepared for that need.....You talk about straw men, but you keep referring to statements that haven't been made.....But please, stop creating statements no one has made and then decrying them as wrong.
Really...because slap me silly...that's exactly what you said only a few posts earlier, am I living in the Star Trek Parallel Universe where my Goatee is gone?

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Lithium is probably a huge fast waste of money UNLESS you re-evaluate, adjust, and replace every other portion of the charging system in order to make it match the needs of the lithium batteries in every way..
What we just had happen here folks is internet chat room advice caution 101.

Look, I don't personally know Hellosailor and I'm sure he's a great nice guy and chat room etiquette is to never speak ill of someone with over 10,000 posts for fear of being censored or banned from the forum, so again this isn't personal. BUT is should raise an eyebrow to those looking for advice on internet chat rooms and it exposes the false assumption that he with the most posts has the most knowledge of a given subject. Of course now I will be labeled the bad guy, As$Ho!#, idiot, and troll for pointing this out, but someone has to keep the internet experts honest and say the emperor has no clothes every once in a while.
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Old 16-03-2015, 15:56   #4385
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

I have been planning my battery system for a couple months now and I thought I would share my planned setup. I'm starting from scratch as the boat had basically nothing in regards to a 12v setup.

Engine- Yanmar 4hj4-te 75hp w/ stock serpentine belt
Alternator- debating on either a DC Power Solutions 160a or the Balmar AT series 165a(i can get the Balmar for just a hundred or so more than the DC Power... )
Balmar MC-614 w/ alternator temp sensor

AC charger- I currently have a Sterling ProCharge Ultra 20a that will be a temporary unit to get by until I get a Victron Multiplus 12/3000w/1206A down the road
Battery monitor - Victron BMV700 monitor

I was going to use a Optima agm that I have had for my start battery and use a Balmar digital duo charger but from a recent thread I'd be better off with a gel due to closer charge characteristics to lifepo4. I have a Smart Charge battery monitor for that(I bought it with the intentions of using agms for house, I know it is probably overkill for a start battery. But I will wire it up for a emergency battery so it could see proper use, but hopefully not)

Solar will come when it comes and if I need more after that then a wind gen. I won't be getting a diesel generator.

I am planning on getting 200ah bank of possibly Winston cells in series. Though I could jump up in size, still have to calculate the max amps my boat will pull. I'm still doing my homework to get a basic House Power bms wired up.

All required fuses, shunts, cabling are without saying.

That's all I can think of now.. Pretty excited to jump in about a month or so.

- Ronnie...on the geaux
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Old 16-03-2015, 15:57   #4386
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

I'm not sure of the point been made here.

Li in a boating environment isn't complex per se. But nor is it identical to LA. The charging and monitoring system has to be tailored to the chemistry , that's no different to charging any other chemistry.

Li isn't necessarily always better then LA in a boat , especially on lower end systems. People looking for "
Drop in " systems will in my view never really provided with that.

Dave


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Old 16-03-2015, 16:17   #4387
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

Seems complicated to ensure the right setup.
Once it is all setup and configured and adjusted, then Bozo can say it is 'simple'. The simpler way is having a LiCharger that goes between the charging sources and the battery and handles the care and feeding of the Li Battery. The current state is everything is setup to be 'the' charger to charge lead acid. Why do solar panels need to be a charger too?And the Wind generator, too. And the Alternator....too. Just let them all think they are charging lead acid and they are happy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SailRedemption View Post
I have been planning my battery system for a couple months now and I thought I would share my planned setup. I'm starting from scratch as the boat had basically nothing in regards to a 12v setup.

Engine- Yanmar 4hj4-te 75hp w/ stock serpentine belt
Alternator- debating on either a DC Power Solutions 160a or the Balmar AT series 165a(i can get the Balmar for just a hundred or so more than the DC Power... )
Balmar MC-614 w/ alternator temp sensor

AC charger- I currently have a Sterling ProCharge Ultra 20a that will be a temporary unit to get by until I get a Victron Multiplus 12/3000w/1206A down the road
Battery monitor - Victron BMV700 monitor

I was going to use a Optima agm that I have had for my start battery and use a Balmar digital duo charger but from a recent thread I'd be better off with a gel due to closer charge characteristics to lifepo4. I have a Smart Charge battery monitor for that(I bought it with the intentions of using agms for house, I know it is probably overkill for a start battery. But I will wire it up for a emergency battery so it could see proper use, but hopefully not)

Solar will come when it comes and if I need more after that then a wind gen. I won't be getting a diesel generator.

I am planning on getting 200ah bank of possibly Winston cells in series. Though I could jump up in size, still have to calculate the max amps my boat will pull. I'm still doing my homework to get a basic House Power bms wired up.

All required fuses, shunts, cabling are without saying.

That's all I can think of now.. Pretty excited to jump in about a month or so.

- Ronnie...on the geaux
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Old 16-03-2015, 17:01   #4388
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

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Seems complicated to ensure the right setup.
Once it is all setup and configured and adjusted, then Bozo can say it is 'simple'. The simpler way is having a LiCharger that goes between the charging sources and the battery and handles the care and feeding of the Li Battery. The current state is everything is setup to be 'the' charger to charge lead acid. Why do solar panels need to be a charger too?And the Wind generator, too. And the Alternator....too. Just let them all think they are charging lead acid and they are happy.

Yes....but can't that same argument be made for boats with Lead Acid?
Why not have one smart device that takes the charging inputs from Solar, Wind, alternators, battery charger, and hamster wheel and then charges what ever type of battery bank you have? That idea/concept isn't LiFePO4 battery related....but really a boat power management issue.

The answer....I wouldn't want such a device because WHEN it dies (not if) you would then be left with no ability to charge you battery. System integration like you are describing works great until...well until it doesn't. So although it is somewhat of a pain to coordinate each different charging source to charge at the correct voltage, etc....it gives you redundancy and ultimate flexibility.

I would argue that lets not add another NEW thing to the mix here (an integrated charging control device) lets just add in a new battery and go Cruising! Sure if you want a science project that would be fun, and Mark Grasser over at DC power solutions is testing a sister battery bank to mine at this very moment to make such a device and I'll demo test it on my boat. But, while I was in Marina Palmira in La Paz, MX there was a nice big shiney power boat that was dead in the water until they had a new PLC control mother board flown in from Sweden. Couldn't run the water maker, generator, main engines, air conditions, you name it because some engineer though it would be a good idea to tie a bunch of system controls into one computer...ha ha ha....Bingo...KISS Principal proven right again.
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Old 16-03-2015, 17:31   #4389
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

But then a battery cell fails, and oops no power.
Why would you test Mark Grasser solution if you think it is such a bad idea?
Redundancy and Flexibility are good, but not the same as 'simple'.
Would you not have a backup magic charge box then, if you think it WILL fail? In fact, does Mark Grassers' magic box have built redundancy itself, becuase Jack's magic box does.
Which is it you want?
Never mind, don't want to argue in a 'chat room' with bozo's.

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Yes....but can't that same argument be made for boats with Lead Acid?
Why not have one smart device that takes the charging inputs from Solar, Wind, alternators, battery charger, and hamster wheel and then charges what ever type of battery bank you have? That idea/concept isn't LiFePO4 battery related....but really a boat power management issue.

The answer....I wouldn't want such a device because WHEN it dies (not if) you would then be left with no ability to charge you battery. System integration like you are describing works great until...well until it doesn't. So although it is somewhat of a pain to coordinate each different charging source to charge at the correct voltage, etc....it gives you redundancy and ultimate flexibility.

I would argue that lets not add another NEW thing to the mix here (an integrated charging control device) lets just add in a new battery and go Cruising! Sure if you want a science project that would be fun, and Mark Grasser over at DC power solutions is testing a sister battery bank to mine at this very moment to make such a device and I'll demo test it on my boat. But, while I was in Marina Palmira in La Paz, MX there was a nice big shiney power boat that was dead in the water until they had a new PLC control mother board flown in from Sweden. Couldn't run the water maker, generator, main engines, air conditions, you name it because some engineer though it would be a good idea to tie a bunch of system controls into one computer...ha ha ha....Bingo...KISS Principal proven right again.
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Old 16-03-2015, 17:42   #4390
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

So far I have destroyed more lead batteries than lifepo4 & I knew more about lead!!

Bill
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Old 16-03-2015, 17:47   #4391
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

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But then a battery cell fails, and oops no power.
Why would you test Mark Grasser solution if you think it is such a bad idea?
Redundancy and Flexibility are good, but not the same as 'simple'.
Would you not have a backup magic charge box then, if you think it WILL fail? In fact, does Mark Grassers' magic box have built redundancy itself, becuase Jack's magic box does.
Which is it you want?
I guess you agree with me then that the multipoint charge controller device isn't just applicable to Li-on then? Lets take these other questions in order....

Ever heard of Lead Acid batteries failing while people are out cruising...it's happening right now in anchorages around the world...next.

Everything on a cruising boat will fail at one time or another, that's just FACT and reality. The question is the interval of use vs failure rate. Do you tow around a spare boat behind you or do you minimize your exposure risk as much as you can, have spares that you can afford and have room to store and then deal with things when they do fail. Ever hear of the saying, "Cruising is fixing your boat in exotic locations?". So of course you carry spares for parts you think will fail...that's called Cruising 101 right?

Mark's black box, I don't know what it will have, I haven't seen it yet...so can't answer you there, but like all of Mark's product line, it will be well designed. Now why would I test it on my boat? That's easy, once a research scientist always a research scientist at heart...plus it's just fun to be involved in product development, what else would I do retired and living aboard, varnish my teak all day....

Now to your last question..."Which is it you want?"
Hell that's easy:
I want a flat tax of 18% with ZERO deductions.
A real president of the USA
A real Congress of the USA
and
Of course I want the number of hot dogs in a pack to match the number of buns...is that too hard to ask?
Oh
And maybe I should God to help me with my smart ass sense of humor...ah...on second thought, it's the only thing that gets me through on some days.
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Old 16-03-2015, 17:58   #4392
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

All the rest of your wants. Achievable. The hot dogs and buns problems , hell , way too complicated


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Old 16-03-2015, 22:01   #4393
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

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But then a battery cell fails, and oops no power.

That can happen with ANY battery chemistry.

BTW, I want a real president too.
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Old 17-03-2015, 06:47   #4394
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

Just a few replies to some comments about my cell top balancer.

Maine Sail You don't need to hold it super high and it does not take all that long to attain bouncing between 0.0A to 0.1A on the PS.....
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Good point, you are probably at a higher level of understanding on LiFePO4 than I am. I am trying to catch up studying the electro chemistry of these cells. From what I know now and a bit of thought about what the knees really mean I have managed to convince myself that it is not a good idea to avoid the knees , it is in my opinion a really really good idea. The time spent at the higher voltages is not all the current taper, using a lower powered device to approach the voltage cut off level will take time as well. You are quite correct in pointing out that the voltage does not need to be high you just need to be on the steep part of the curve. Doing one cell at a time however lowers this exposure.
Very occasional in service balances need to be done. This approach also gives me a device that I can safely use to bring up a low cell. In fact I can use it to completely rebalance the pack without reconfiguring the battery.

OceanSeaSpray.

It is not a bad idea and I do more or less this for the very reason you highlight and I usually use solar panels as power source. There are a few flaws in your reasoning, first of all constant current is senseless and you don't need to hold a high voltage on the cells no matter what.
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I think you more or less answered your own point. I need some method of keeping the power supply within its safe operating range. I do this by limiting the current I take from it. I have been installing home made led lights on my boat for the last few years, constant current sources are really easy.

Controlling anything but current around these cells is meaningless we supply them with current they control the voltage. Misunderstanding of this has led to some discussion in the intervening posts. Quoting a cell voltage under charge is incomplete we also need to specify the current we are charging at. My approach is an attempt to specify a known state of charge as say for the sake of argument we have reached 3.6V at a current of 5A. The usual approach here has been to to define a known state of charge as say 3.6V at a current of 0A.

OceanSeaSparay

If you just switch on and off (and you don't need an expensive latching relay for that), charge them until they hit 3.6V (and that will be very brief) and then recharge again if they drop below 3.5V at rest, and repeat until they eventually hold at 3.5V or more at rest. They are very close to full then. By the way, this switching regime is what Terry was proposing a while ago already.

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Sorry bad communication on my part the term latching relay was an attempt on my part to communicate a concept not an item of hardware. The relay controlled as if latching by the electronics is there in an attempt to idiot proof the process.

However, and this is not a poke at anybody, if you try to idiot proof anything you only create a better idiot.
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Old 17-03-2015, 07:07   #4395
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Re: LiFePO4 Batteries: Discussion Thread for Those Using Them as House Banks

I wonder why you feel it's necessary to do in circuit top balancing in these boat environments

Dave


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