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Old 01-04-2019, 08:54   #16
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

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Originally Posted by Ryban View Post
Thank you all for your replies. I've followed the majority of the links offered here, until my weak internet got fussy with me. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


At this time, buying a different ACR, or a different switch configuration isn't really possible, so maybe my question should be more focused on what ill-effects do we face by starting in the "combined" position, other than the potential for human error (not switching back to the primary bank, or somehow switching to the OFF position).

I understand your issue, well described, thanks.

From the links provided, you have many options.

If it was my boat, I'd remove the AO from the switch and send it to the house bank, and continue using the 1-2-B switch, just start on your start bank. Other than possible electronic dropouts (and you didn't say), this option answers your needs. No new switches, just move a wire.


In my links, I described how I did just that in the beginning before I physically installed my new alternator, by simply moving the AO to the #1 post of the switch. As recorded, this only works if you have separate wires to the starter and from the alternator. You may choose to re-read those links, they have lots of detail. Make it a USE switch, not a charging switch.


And then go find out why you're not starting rapidly. Most likely a bad engine ground. BTDT, we all have and it's usually the culprit.


Your diagram is also unclear, 'cuz it shows wires to and from "engine" where you should differentiate between alternator output and power TO the starter. They are two separate "things" on "engine."

Good luck.
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Old 01-04-2019, 09:05   #17
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

You ARE overlooking a simpler "no worry)" system. Your boat is a 27 foot Albin Vega you say. And you are in Panama.

What I would do is have a SEPARATE "system" for starting your little 14HP job. It takes so little juice to start it - if it is in good condition - that the little 40A (or so) alternator that is on it will replace the juice you use to start it within a very few minutes of your being above 1,500 RPM. That's that problem our of the way. Even a cheapie automotive FLA battery kept tidy, clean and as cool as you can, will last several years in a setup like that.

Now for the "house loads": Do you have a power budget? If not why not? If so, what is your daily consumption? You have solar panels, you say? And a towed generator? Well, then. Are the two together sufficient to meet you budgeted power consumption? If so, Bob's yer uncle. If not, then reduce your consumption. It's a Vega. People cruised them for years with no fancy electrical systems. In my day I lit the cabin with an oil burning hurricane lantern. Another such was hoisted up the forestay for an anchor light.

Keep your house bank separate entirely from the starter battery. If you run your house bank down in the night, no biggie. You will still be able to start. The sun will get to work in the morning and charge you house batt. If you get really desperate, you can always motor for a day with the house bank being charged via jumper cables from the engine starter battery. But you gotta be above 1,500RPM. And it will still take hours.

But there is your dead simple system. Everything hinges on knowing what your power budget is. It's no different from knowing at all times what your bank balance is. You wouldn't run your house bank down any more than you'd write a bouncer on your bank account, would you?

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Old 01-04-2019, 10:03   #18
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

My boat is wired almost exactly the same as yours ... I just start from the house battery, the voltage drops down to 12V during cranking, but otherwise it doesn't complain. the ACR keeps the "start" battery full. I just leave the switch set to 1, and occasionally switch to 2 to check that the "start" battery is happy.
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Old 01-04-2019, 10:32   #19
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

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you are required to have a battery switch on engine battery.

if the house battery dies, how do you use the VHF and nav lights for emg use?

momentary parallel does not work for this.
With the ACR. Once the engine has started the ACR will start to charge the house bank, If the OP just replaces the 1-2-both battery with a modern parallel battery switch, that issue goes away.
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Old 01-04-2019, 10:42   #20
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

I can only guess what you are saying. Any chance you can just state plainly?
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Old 01-04-2019, 10:53   #21
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
...

And then go find out why you're not starting rapidly. Most likely a bad engine ground. BTDT, we all have and it's usually the culprit.


Your diagram is also unclear, 'cuz it shows wires to and from "engine" where you should differentiate between alternator output and power TO the starter. They are two separate "things" on "engine."
Thanks Stu, now that my connection is stronger, I'll go peruse the links further.

I cleaned all the contacts recently, but it could be an issue with the ground, I'll have to trace some wires. When the starter battery is selected on the 1/2/both/off switch, the engine cranks without trouble. But I do believe there is a separate ground wire from the house bank, and perhaps there is an issue here somewhere.

In this case the engine wiring was meant to convey the starter wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrentePieds View Post
...

What I would do is have a SEPARATE "system" for starting your little 14HP job. It takes so little juice to start it - if it is in good condition - that the little 40A (or so) alternator that is on it will replace the juice you use to start it within a very few minutes of your being above 1,500 RPM. That's that problem our of the way. Even a cheapie automotive FLA battery kept tidy, clean and as cool as you can, will last several years in a setup like that.

Now for the "house loads": Do you have a power budget? ...
There could be an issue with the wiring from the house bank to the engine that explains our house bank-related starting issues. We'll investigate.

As far as our power budget goes, we're quite good about keeping our loads down. A typical night results in a 10-20AH deficit, which for our (theoretical) 230AH capacity is less than 10%. On passage, we sometimes go down to 80-85% as a result of increased loads and decreased solar input. We've never gone lower.

==

In any case, I think we have more than enough information to properly configure our system to suit our needs, and are very grateful for all the helpful feedback .
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Old 01-04-2019, 10:53   #22
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

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I can only guess what you are saying. Any chance you can just state plainly?

It appears to be the long way of saying what I included in my links in #9.
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Old 01-04-2019, 11:35   #23
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

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I can only guess what you are saying. Any chance you can just state plainly?
Those are threads of interest to some of the questions raised by the OP.

Some consider MaineSail's opinion on the topic to be most authoritative.
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Old 01-04-2019, 11:43   #24
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Re: Combined for starting, or in need of a better system design?

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It appears to be the long way of saying what I included in my links in #9.
Much easier to just say so though, but I hope so.
MSs batt switch articles are, as usual, IMHO exactly on the money.

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