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Old 05-03-2015, 13:22   #16

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Re: Shore power charger

Factory calibrated Fluke is a good start.(G) Typically calibration is pretty simple. Connect meter to calibration source, turn trimpot inside meter until the numbers match the calibration source, generate the paperwork while sealing the meter back up.
Obtaining a reliable calibration source is the tricky part for us cheap folks who don't want to pay Fluke or others the $$$ for calibration. Using a "reliable" battery (i.e. fresh silver coin cell) or measuring voltage drop on a reference diode, etc. all are a bit less reliable, and if you really want to test the "20.00" volt scale, they're just not a good fit.
I broke down and made a ten-volt reference source a few years ago. A precision source, a couple of bits, and of course, the crucial miniature Altoids tin to house it all.(G) Any time a meter doesn't say "10.00" when it is hooked up, I know there's a problem. Net cost, about the same as the two-way postage to send one out somewhere.
You want some fun, compare a Horror Fright "free with" meter to your Fluke.(G)

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Old 07-03-2015, 13:08   #17
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Re: Shore power charger

Carefully consider what size you need!

Battery manufacturers like Trojan recommend a charger size that is 10-13% of the bank capacity. For faster charging, especially when using a generator, most other manufacturers recommend a maximum of 20% of battery capacity. You should also allow 5% for house loads, so for a 400 Ah bank the charger should be rated at 100 amps.

The OP is suggesting AGMs, and Lifeline recommend a MINIMUM of 20% of the bank capacity. AGMs will accept high charge currents, so to maximise their extra costs then a higher rated charger would be better.

Unfortunately Sterling chargers are only 60 amp, but they do say run two in parallel. So 120 amps would be a good option for the OP.

There are 120 amp chargers available, like the Victron, where all the parameters can be programmed, including equalising times and maximum current settings.

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Old 07-03-2015, 13:17   #18
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Re: Shore power charger

Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
As to lithium batteries...I don't think you can buy any retail charger that has any accommodation for them.
We have owned Outback and Victron chargers that are completely user-adjustable to any charging profile one wishes.



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