I haven't decided on voltage regulators yet. I had a Link 2000R on my last boat and I was happy with it, but don't plan to do the whole Link installation
again. I will probably go with Xantrex or Balmar
3 stage regulators.
I replaced the existing house bank (almost dead 12 volt batteries) with four 6 volt golf cart batteries. Lots of our cruising friends are happy with them and they are cheap
to replace ($46. each at Sam's club). Right now, the port engine only charges the starting battery (12 Volt). The stbd engine charges the house bank, but has an isolator that also charges the engine battery. I'm not happy with this since I want both alternators charging the house bank since the engine battery rarely discharges. I plan to use the existing isolator or install a combiner from the house bank to keep the starting battery topped up.
I agree with your conclusions that the high amp alternators are probably not needed with alternative energy sources. I have two solar panels
hooked up now and plan to add two more plus an Air X wind generator
. (I had an Air Marine gen on my last boat and liked it very much). My final set-up will depend on the type of refrigeration
system we choose. The boat has a Frigoboat engine driven system that I may convert to a DC compressor
or go with an Adler Barber type system. "The Admiral" wants a separate freezer
so that will drive power consumption
way up and I may need more batteries and solar panels
. I had engine driven refrig on my last boat and decided I didn't like it on our first cruise
. I added an Adler Barber clone and kept the engine driven as a "quick cool down" just before anchoring
My concern about both alternators connected to the house bank is that they may interfere with each other. When one alternator
is charging, the other regulator will sense the higher voltage and may "throttle back" the charging rate of the second alternator. I was wondering if there was another black box needed to "direct traffic." Perhaps the Balmar regulators will handle that issue.
The fun part of any of these options maybe fishing
wire from one hull
to another. I may have to rent a small monkey to crawl through the passageway with a wire in his mouth..ha.ha.