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Old 07-12-2010, 11:06   #31
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chala-
"Zener and fuse? Once the fuse is gone so is the protection."
Yes, but the threat is also gone. No fuse = no power = no surges possible. Spikes that are long enough to blow the fuse are uncommon, it is there mainly in case the diode breaks down and crowbars the circuit. A fast-blow fuse may be designed to blow at twice the amp rating in 1/10th of a second (100 milliseconds) while the typical engine starting spike or other spikes are reported all over the place, from 20V at 25ms to 600v at 250ms. Somewhere in between...You roll the dice.

"Beware of these new multistep chargers which float at 16.7V."
Any charger putting out 16+ volts at ANY time, would be categorically unfit for use in a 12V system since "12v" electronics are usually rated at 13.8 volts +-10%, making 15.18 volts the absolute maximum they can safely be connected to. Since components vary, that's one reason why there is an industry standard of 15V parts for these applications.

Escape-
No, I don't know of anyone selling them as premade boxes. Maybe that's a cottage industry for "How to earn money while cruising" ? <G> Recycle the sardine tins, add a couple of Scotchlocks so there's no soldering to hook them up...Oh darn, still need the business liability insurance. :-(

That's what I like about stark dumb crude boats with no gizmos installed. Stark and crude, inconvenient, sure. But when there's no gizmos...none of them break. You never hear complaints about how much the plumber charged for a leak in the middle of a holiday weekend, from the folks who just have outhouses. <VBG>
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:13   #32
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If you are installing Blue Seas panels in your boat and need knowledgable advice try calling or emailing this guy Peter Kennedy Yacht Services Peter Kennedy Yacht Services. He is authoized distributor for Blue Seas and a certified marine elecrtical contractor. He helped me design my main panel, and gave much good advice plus his prices are very resonable and no charge for the excellent advice and design help.
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:32   #33
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Originally Posted by SV Escape Plan View Post
Sounds like a lot of soldering and sourcing of small components from am electronics store. Is there not soemthing I can buy off the shelf that can be easily wired in where the positive wire leaves the distribution panel?
Take a look at this, no affiliation.
STO-P Power Fault Protectors for Pleasure Boaters
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Old 08-12-2010, 01:21   #34
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With regards to separating the noisy buss from the quiet buss, you have a point if you go through the combiner switch for everything, but must you? If you were to take the quiet buss directly off of the house bank you would get the desired effect most of the time. Think of the house bank as a big bucket full of water with two hoses coming out of it. In your case you run a single hose from the bucket to the switch then a y to both busses. When you turn off a motor on the noisy buss the flow shuts off suddenly and you get a pressure pulse through the entire system, just like the water hammer effect in plumbing when flow is cut off suddenly. If you have two separate hoses coming from the bucket when you shut off the motor you still get the pressure pulse, but it travels back through the bucket which absorbs almost all of the force and almost no pressure is transferred to the second hose.
OK, I understood this. I didn't understand much of the thread after this - I've never really got to grips with electricity - but I did understand this bit.

I think.

Are you saying that it's a good thing to have 2 completely separate cables from the positive terminal of the battery running to two separate fuse or breaker protected switch panels. One for inductive loads, one for non-inductive loads?

And it's not a good thing to have a single cable from the battery to the positive buss at electrical panel which then feeds two separate fuse or breaker protected switch panels?

Like this:-
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Old 08-12-2010, 07:12   #35
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The answer is yes and no. Most boats are wired like your second diagram, except for very high loads , like windlasses, winches and thruster, which are generally wired as per diagram one. As to where small indictive loads like refridgerators and bilge pumps well there're usually as per the first diagram.

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Old 08-12-2010, 10:24   #36
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It does make sense, in a way. If you keep the inductive loads isolated from the bulk of the electrical system (which tend to be more delicate electronics loads, not simply electrical ones) then you also isolate the delicate components from the ones that are likely to throw spikes and surges that will damage them. Not "could" damage them but "will" damage them, the only question being time.

OTOH if you properly clamp loads, if you follow proper operating practice (like not starting or stopping the engine/alternator while the electronics are on, haha) the inductive loads shouldn't be a problem.

I'd like to spend some time in a boat with an oscilloscope hooked up to the powr leads to actually SEE and verify whether putting the inductive loads on a second line actually accomplished anything though. It sounds like that is depending on the battery bank being located "at" the fork between the circuits and using the battery to absorb any spikes. Which it will, to some extent, but probably not completely.

Without seeing what happens, I'd personally suspect the two circuits to be a waste of effort unless the inductive run was heavily clamped (spike/surge protected) at the breaker panel, to make Real Damn Sure all those devices were isolated. I wouldn't just rely on isolation and the battery bank to do that job.
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:27   #37
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OTOH if you properly clamp loads,
well try clamping the load dumping that can occur on windlasses and thruster and see how you get on!.

Dave
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:53   #38
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I've never tried, Dave, but that might be one more argument in favor of putting them on their own battery and only charging it when they are not in use.<G>

Capacitor, high power diodes, polyphaser...there's probably an acceptable solution documented somewhere out there. Or one of those big old surge protectors that uses a honking huge iron-cored coil just to smooth things out.
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:30   #39
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OTOH if you properly clamp loads, if you follow proper operating practice (like not starting or stopping the engine/alternator while the electronics are on, haha) the inductive loads shouldn't be a problem.
Lets see, If we're using LED running lights, radios, chart plotter, a variety of other electronics, etc. then on my boat every time we want to get a drink of water, flush a head, use an electric winch, etc I have to turn off all of these things. Not very practical.

Bewitched,
You pretty much understand, though since my house bank has two batteries I'm planning to take the quiet buss off on one battery and the noisy one off of the second. This may make little practical difference, but I like the idea of the electrons having to pass by two big sinks before getting to my quiet buss cable.
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Old 08-12-2010, 13:20   #40
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Lets see, If we're using LED running lights, radios, chart plotter, a variety of other electronics, etc. then on my boat every time we want to get a drink of water, flush a head, use an electric winch, etc I have to turn off all of these things. Not very practical.
You are Joking. I can see that anchor light of yours flashing at night after the family has eaten a strong curry. I wonder how many boaties are in your situation? I have auto sump pump, deck wash, etc, no problem. The cabin lights are LED, 27 per fitting, I will have more than 100 LEDs on that boat never had to replace any since installed. May be all your capacitors are the cause of yours LEDs blow up. The dunny light is LED I do not have to turn the light off when flushing. You are just having the poor OP on.
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Old 08-12-2010, 13:49   #41
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You are Joking. I can see that anchor light of yours flashing at night after the family has eaten a strong curry. I wonder how many boaties are in your situation? I have auto sump pump, deck wash, etc, no problem. The cabin lights are LED, 27 per fitting, I will have more than 100 LEDs on that boat never had to replace any since installed. May be all your capacitors are the cause of yours LEDs blow up. The dunny light is LED I do not have to turn the light off when flushing. You are just having the poor OP on.
Of course I was joking about turning off everything every time I wanted to use an inductive load. However I don't believe that I'm leading the OP on about separating these kinds of loads if he can. I spent a few years working in solid state electronics and voltage spikes were always a problem in circuit longevity. Every one does a little damage to the solid state devices, eventually causing their demise. If the spike is big enough the effect is immediate, if not, it's cumulative. In a number of LED threads on this and other forums people have complained that their LEDs do not last nearly as long as advertised. If you're experience is different I'm happy for you. My point is that as long as the OP is doing this from scratch he might as well do it the best way he can. It might improve the life of his expensive electronics and LEDs and it will cost him little to do it now as he already has two panels.
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Old 08-12-2010, 14:22   #42
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Captain Bill-
" In a number of LED threads on this and other forums people have complained that their LEDs do not last nearly as long as advertised. "
Like everything once, once LEDs got enough of a following to attract mass-marketers, there has been a quality issue with goods that are built and sold to the mass market.
LEDs are industry-standard rated to a spec requiring 60? 70? % of their rated output at 50,000? hours. There really are standards for these claims. But on the other hand, one prime LED can cost $7 in bulk, while the cheap stuff if 49 cents each.
The cheap replacement "bulbs" usually are raw LEDs with a dropping resistor. The prime components are assembled with voltage, current, and spike protection, and that can all double the price of the raw LED itself.
So...one guy pays $100 per fixture, the other guy pays $5 and replaces it every two years as it fails or dims. Sometimes, you get what you pay for. And we can't blame it all on LEDs, I know folks who routinely blow tungsten bulbs at home because the power company is putting a little too much power in the lines, and they take years and years to figure it out.
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Old 08-12-2010, 15:02   #43
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know folks who routinely blow tungsten bulbs at home because the power company is putting a little too much power in the lines, and they take years and years to figure it out.
If you live close to the transformer you get too much, on the end of the line not enough, tough life. Reduce the voltage (dim the bulbs) they will last longer.
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Old 08-12-2010, 17:21   #44
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since my house bank has two batteries I'm planning to take the quiet buss off on one battery and the noisy one off of the second. This may make little practical difference, but I like the idea of the electrons having to pass by two big sinks before getting to my quiet buss cable.

Like this?

Or completely separate (i.e. not pos to pos connection)
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Old 08-12-2010, 18:14   #45
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Like this?

Or completely separate (i.e. not pos to pos connection)
Yes, when I rewire that's the way I plan to do it.
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