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Old 19-01-2012, 18:14   #16
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

I don't think so.
I have installed mostly Xantrex TrueCharge2 chargers in the last year or so with only 1 fan problem. A phone call to Xantrex - promptly answered - and one to my dealer and I had a new charger same day.

I have installed a few Victron as well - a good charger I thought but there have been more returns with Victron than Xantrex locally at the highest volume dealer.

The Sterling looks like a good charger but I don't believe there are any dealers in Canada yet.

In this area there are not too many choices - especially in the 40 amp and smaller size.
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Old 19-01-2012, 18:16   #17
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

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Originally Posted by btrayfors View Post
I would steer clear of Xantrex-anything (except the EchoCharge). There are much better choices and there is much better after-sale support from other manufacturers.

Wow... that bad then.

Quote:
I think you are misjudging the rapidity with which you can recharge those six T-105s. A battery under charge will accept only so much amperage at any given voltage, regardless of the size of the charger or alternator.

Those 675AH total batteries are only going to accept between 20-25% of their capacity (135-169 amps) maximum, and that's only when they are in the bulk charging phase with a significantly discharged battery bank. And, they'll only do this for a few minutes.
Actually, your numbers are very accurate, the alternators initially put out about 250A for about a minute, then ramp down to about 150A or so for a while and drop to 60A by the time the bank is back to around 85% SoC.

Quote:
Charge efficiency of T-105's at 50% SOC is somewhere between 80-90%, judging from the above-referenced study and from my own observations over many years. That is to say, although you may have a huge alternator on the engine, it's NEVER going to use anywhere near the 250A capacity...at least not for more than a few seconds.

Given your 675AH battery bank discharged to 50% SOC, then, is 100A or 125A charge capacity better than 60A. Yes, indeed, it is. When my battery bank is down to about 50% SOC, I see my 100A Balmar alternator with Balmar MC-612 regulator putting out 80A for long periods of time, until the SOC reaches a level where the batteries won't accept 80A any longer. Then, it ramps down progressively until the final stages are reached at about 10A.

However, as earlier noted, once you're operating in the higher SOC range -- say, above 80-85% SOC -- the batteries won't accept much amperage at the recommended absorption voltage of 14.6-14.8VDC AND something less than 50% of the amps supplied to the batteries are going to be lost in heat anyway.

No way around it. Physics, chemistry, and Ohms Law at play here, with Peukert fiddling in the background :-)

Bill
Can't argue with physics and chemistry (or Peukert!)!

The reason I was thinking about the larger charger is so that perhaps I can do my bulk charging with the charger sometimes as opposed to the engine - and the batteries do accept 100A quite happily for a while if I'm really low. Just as an option..

Having said that though, it really doesn't appear that there is a 240VAC >60A charger only option with equalize function anyway (except the mastervolt which is a bit too wide)

It's a real shame the Honda doesn't have a 110V/240V output selection switch! Then I'd buy the Iota immediately! :\
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Old 19-01-2012, 18:24   #18
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That bad?
Made me cry...

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Old 19-01-2012, 18:25   #19
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

You can parallel two identical Iota chargers without difficulty. They make a special IQ-4 smart-charge option for just that purpose.

The limiting factor would be the capacity of the Honda generator. I know the EU2000i will handle a 75A Iota @ 120VAC; don't know if it could handle two 55A 240VAC Iotas, though. I kinda doubt that it could.

Iota makes a 45A 240VAC model, though...the DLS-240-45. It's conceivable that the Honda could handle two of these.

Bill
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Old 19-01-2012, 19:15   #20
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

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Originally Posted by btrayfors View Post
You can parallel two identical Iota chargers without difficulty. They make a special IQ-4 smart-charge option for just that purpose.

The limiting factor would be the capacity of the Honda generator. I know the EU2000i will handle a 75A Iota @ 120VAC; don't know if it could handle two 55A 240VAC Iotas, though. I kinda doubt that it could.

Iota makes a 45A 240VAC model, though...the DLS-240-45. It's conceivable that the Honda could handle two of these.

Bill
Now that sounds very interesting indeed! Do you know if it's possible to mix-and-match - e.g. 55 and 45?

There's no current limiting option though is there? So maybe 45 x 2...

OK, now to check available space!
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Old 19-01-2012, 19:23   #21
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

Quote:
Originally Posted by btrayfors View Post
You can parallel two identical Iota chargers without difficulty. They make a special IQ-4 smart-charge option for just that purpose.

The limiting factor would be the capacity of the Honda generator. I know the EU2000i will handle a 75A Iota @ 120VAC; don't know if it could handle two 55A 240VAC Iotas, though. I kinda doubt that it could.

Iota makes a 45A 240VAC model, though...the DLS-240-45. It's conceivable that the Honda could handle two of these.

Bill
Oh wow, is this correct?

ProgressiveRC - IOTA DLS-220-45 Power Supply

Why on earth is it so cheap?!?!? I can buy 4 of these and still be cheaper than what they charge for a Truecharge 60A here in Australia...
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Old 19-01-2012, 19:36   #22
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

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Originally Posted by akio.kanemoto View Post
Oh wow, is this correct?

ProgressiveRC - IOTA DLS-220-45 Power Supply

Why on earth is it so cheap?!?!? I can buy 4 of these and still be cheaper than what they charge for a Truecharge 60A here in Australia...
OK, there's always a gotcha, equalization is automatic - it has to be in float mode for seven days first... and there's no manual way to start it... (or is there? there's nothing in the manual)
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Old 19-01-2012, 19:37   #23
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

Don't forget any Australian import duties.
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Old 19-01-2012, 19:46   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akio.kanemoto

OK, there's always a gotcha, equalization is automatic - it has to be in float mode for seven days first... and there's no manual way to start it... (or is there? there's nothing in the manual)
There exists another thread where Mark who has one of these confirms this and other shortcomings. Others seemed to counter that but I don't think that defense lived up to anything.

I would go for one good, full featured, 60A 240V charger. No, let me change that. I would go for one good, full featured, 60A world charger that takes 100-250V 50/60Hz.

ciao!
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Old 19-01-2012, 20:18   #25
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

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Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
There exists another thread where Mark who has one of these confirms this and other shortcomings. Others seemed to counter that but I don't think that defense lived up to anything.

I would go for one good, full featured, 60A 240V charger. No, let me change that. I would go for one good, full featured, 60A world charger that takes 100-250V 50/60Hz.

ciao!
Nick.
...and not the Xantrex right?
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Old 19-01-2012, 20:19   #26
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

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Don't forget any Australian import duties.
Thank God, anything under AUD1000 doesn't import duties, otherwise my refit would have never finished.

There is literally nothing available here at a reasonable price (but that's for another thread!)
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Old 19-01-2012, 20:20   #27
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

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...and not the Xantrex right?
On that note Nick, quality aside, do you have any thoughts on the feature set of the X?
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Old 19-01-2012, 20:24   #28
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

There is no equalization mode on the Iota's at all. They have a feature where for a battery on constant float mode, every 7 days or so the charger comes out of float and enters a short period of time on absorption mode. They call this "equalization" but it is not the standard meaning of that term in the industry.

If you do not need the equalization mode, these are very good, robust and inexpensive chargers. But frankly, they do not make good primary chargers because they are not power factor corrected, do not have much control over voltage setpoints and don't have the ability to equalize. I specifically bought one for a secondary/backup charger because it fit specific criteria I wanted for that purpose.

Mark
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Old 19-01-2012, 20:33   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akio.kanemoto

On that note Nick, quality aside, do you have any thoughts on the feature set of the X?
Just stop thinking about the X... it will hurt you somewhere down the road. And don't beleve people who earn mo ey by selling or installing these... they will tell any story to optimize their profits

cheers,
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Old 19-01-2012, 21:20   #30
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Re: Optimal Charging Regimen - Wet Cells

Nick

I make the same amount installing any brand of charger - which the customer buys, not me.

But as I said, around here there aren't many choices in the under 40 amp sizes, and as posted by others Iota isn't exactly a fully featured marine charger. 9 out of 10 chargers I see on boats are Xantrex. A lot of the rest are cheaper chargers without any flexibility and nowhere as well featured as the Xantrex.

In larger sizes and in particular inverter/chargers there are others like Magnum which is an excellent product.

Interesting story - recently I was hired to install a Magnum inverter/charger to replace a 5 year old Xantrex - both 2500 watt units. First thing I noticed was the cable was too small for the 198 amp load - convinced the customer to change to bigger cable. When pulling the old cable out I found 5' of negative cable that was charred and stiff with melted covering - that killed the Xantrex - and there was no fuse installed so it could have burned the boat. It was installed by a local yard. Installed the Magnum with the proper size cable and a fuse. Original cable was 2 awg for a 20' there and back run and 200 amp load - surprised the Xantrex lasted as long as it did. New cable 3/0.
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