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Author Topic: Sunny Island frequency 'blip'  (Read 5158 times)
camillitech
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« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2016, 07:52:31 AM »

Thanks Eric,

agree 100%, as soon as I expanded the graph I came to the same conclusion and immediately went and checked the settings. My 'user interface' the SRC says 'enable' so I assumed it was disabled. Perhaps its 'German logic' works the other way round, a bit like the current graphs where a minus is a plus  banghead It's easy enough to change so the next time the batteries are needing help I'll alter it and see what happens. Mother in law is leaving today so that may be a while  Grin

Cheers, Paul
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'Off grid' since 1985,  Proven 2.5kW, Proven 6kW direct heating, SI6.OH, 800ah Rolls, 4.75kW PV ,4xTS45, Lister HR2 12kW, , Powerspout pelton, Stream Engine turgo, 60 x Navitron toobs and a 1500lt store. Outback VFX3048 and 950ah forklifts for backup,
bautsche
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« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2016, 07:59:43 AM »

"enable" is the default and means that it does try to average to 50Hz. The naming of the property is odd, though, I agree: AfraEna is redundant, it should just say "Afra" surely. Alas....

Eric

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camillitech
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« Reply #17 on: September 22, 2016, 08:20:12 AM »

"enable" is the default and means that it does try to average to 50Hz. The naming of the property is odd, though, I agree: AfraEna is redundant, it should just say "Afra" surely. Alas....

Eric



Perhaps it's my 50% Italian logic that's wrong and not the German  wackoold
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'Off grid' since 1985,  Proven 2.5kW, Proven 6kW direct heating, SI6.OH, 800ah Rolls, 4.75kW PV ,4xTS45, Lister HR2 12kW, , Powerspout pelton, Stream Engine turgo, 60 x Navitron toobs and a 1500lt store. Outback VFX3048 and 950ah forklifts for backup,
biff
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« Reply #18 on: September 22, 2016, 02:00:28 PM »

        "Communications"
     Yes, even though we strive to improve our lot, we are duty bound to relay as much info as possible to those that need it, in as clear and as positive terms that one can understand.
   I feel heartly sorry for anyone mixxing it with Sunny Islands and the family. I have an excellent memory for different members problems and these same problems keep reoccurring on a regular basis.
   So it must be down to the  lack of dependable "COMMUNICATIONS", or perhaps very complicated ones.
   We have been reading these same Groundhog Days for years now and in between we have had some very serious installations crashes. All down to the lack of communication.
   I have a very very complicated Symmetra RM UPS,, It does a lot more fancy tricks than every any SI does, Yet you can access each part and read the results of any failure as it points out the exact
   component that has failed. But wait !!..It don,t shut down or throw a strop, instead you get to remove the offending module and replace it with a healthy one while the Symmetra keeps working away.
   The Symmetra has a working load of 4.5kw continuous. Now this technogy has been around for many years.
   Getting to grips with the Symmetra is fully possible for a novice like me within 2 hours. The layout of the screen is very straight forward. If you do something wrong, it will tell you immediately and point
   you in the right direction.
   So why are our members having all this hassle,?
                                                 Biff
   
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bautsche
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« Reply #19 on: September 22, 2016, 02:05:53 PM »

Hmm, I can't say I've had great experience with APCC UPS products, but then, perhaps that was quite a while ago and I am not comparing like for like. I can't say I've ever had serious issues with my SI, once set up, it does exactly what it says on the tin. It's pretty configurable and the various possibilities of interaction produce a wide range of possible settings, not all of which are necessarily compatible with each other. I'd still rather have that than have a designer tell me how I can use his product when I know better (and how arrogant can I be, I know)  Wink 

Eric
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biff
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« Reply #20 on: September 22, 2016, 02:28:19 PM »

 No problems Bautsche
There must be some other way that they can be installed without all this mix up and hassle.
 Someone pointed out recently to me, that these machines were meant to be worked on by installers only,
      Maybe they are trying top discourage self installations,
                                                         Biff
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« Reply #21 on: September 22, 2016, 03:39:45 PM »

Looks like you have your "issue" sorted Paul. Another nice bit of learning for me, courtesy of the rather intimidating Eric Smiley genuflect, and a useful reminder of the things that don't like systems with varying frequency.
Must get a bigger battery bank so I run an immersion like that!

Biff all this SMA ire will give you stress, let it go as they say these days. As has been pointed out before most, if not all, the SI issues are around DIY installs where there has been a shortfall in basic understanding of the potential/limitations of the equipment or some dodgy installer credentials. My own SIs, albeit short on the bells and whistles of their bigger cousins, installed pretty much out of the box with default settings and have never missed a beat. As a complete novice I would not dare change anything initially but bit by bit it all started to make sense - anything I make a mess of now will be my own fault. I would suggest SIs were not designed for the small off-gridder and the direction the company has taken overall in recent years has demonstrated that. They do fit the bill fine, though, for particular purposes. I doubt there will even be a next generation of SMA off-grid inverters - this company has bigger fish to fry.

I take heart that members share their knowledge and experience of SI "problems". With SMA documentation being both murky and disparate it is just as well this line of "communications" holds good is it not?
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« Reply #22 on: September 22, 2016, 03:50:55 PM »

Another nice bit of learning for me, courtesy of the rather intimidating Eric Smiley genuflect,

That comment certainly made my wife's day  Grin
She regularly reminds me that my mannerism can be take in that way.

I'd just like to point out that I wasn't planning on intimidating or offending anyone, if I have caused offense, I apologise.

Eric
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camillitech
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« Reply #23 on: September 22, 2016, 04:00:40 PM »

      Now this technogy has been around for many years.
   Getting to grips with the Symmetra is fully possible for a novice like me within 2 hours. The layout of the screen is very straight forward. If you do something wrong, it will tell you immediately and point
   you in the right direction.
   So why are our members having all this hassle,?
                                                 Biff
  

But a Symmetera cannot charge batteries, share a load, start a generator, operate various relays NC/NO on SOC, successfully integrate wind and solar, AC couple   and uses hunners of Watts on idle. I chose an SI cos I needed all this stuff to successfully run an all electric 'off grid' house. I prefer the 'hassle' of having a fully automatic system that I can leave unattended, or in the hands of 'mother in law' without special instructions on what she can and cannot use.

The SI is most certainly not an inverter/charger that's 'plug and play' and certainly not for the feint hearted. 'Keeping things simple' is a good mantra and laudable aim but it's not going to run a house, workshop and croft spread over several acres. Well, not unless you spend an awful lot of money on cable. My furthest 'consumer' is over 1600M to the north and my furthest 'input' is 800M to the south, you need a pretty clever inverter to make this possible.

If money is tight, your needs simple and you don't mind intervening to charge up your batteries then by all means use a nice cheap and quality UPS. However even the best UPS is not a proper inverter/charger be it SMA or otherwise.

Cheers, Paul
« Last Edit: September 22, 2016, 05:51:29 PM by camillitech » Logged

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« Reply #24 on: September 22, 2016, 06:20:41 PM »

Yes Paul,
          The symmetra is for a different caurse, however the points i am making are that the communication between the company and the customer is fraught with misunderstanding and
    unnecessary complications, I preach a module type set up where one can remove the offending part and replace it without shutting down the whole installation or run on 50% power.
  Surely to god they can make use of this technology and of course the Symettra can tell you exactly what part failed and bypass it until it is fixed.
  I only use the Symmetra on loads over 3 kw and run 99% of the time on our old Chinese faithful inverter. We very seldom ever use the generator and even on days like yesterday,spent
  cutting wood with a circular saw,we still had juice left over to heat water and retired to bed at midnight with the voltage still above 124vdc under load. No generator used.
  I am not trying to blow my own trumpet here but I think you need to move up to 120vdc buy 60 nice new cells, I will put you in touch with Kim Yong who will supply you with a few
  decent controllers and good proper long life Chinese inverter,Yes, the ones with the concrete weights on the bottom. Grin Deliveries in the usual white transit whose driver know"The Road to the Isles"
   
 I could not agree more Heatherhopper and you are spot on, I will take your advice I think I have developed some kind of allergy. freeze
                                                                     Biff
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camillitech
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« Reply #25 on: September 22, 2016, 07:14:10 PM »

Hi Biff,

yes there is more than 'one way to skin a cat' and 'each to his own' but the SI path is the one I've chosen and I'm quite happy with it. I have been 'off grid' now for half of my life, I'm 60 and want to make it easier in my dotage. I do not want to be switching this on, switching that off, lowering turbines, raising turbines, lifting the tarp off a genny 'oot the back' to start it and leaving a 'checklist' for MiL or any random house sitter that comes my way. I do not want to have several inverters/UPS's or 'Chinamen' that I swap about every time I need to do some welding or ironing, I want a 'normal' life now. I have 'been there, done that and got the video', can we please 'move on'.

In my heart Biff I'm like yerself 'old school' and reluctant to change, a bit of a dinosaur in fact, but we have to 'move on'. Three years ago we got an 11,000,000 ferry that operates pretty much like an SI but with Dutch logic and it scared the 5h!t out of me. Every time the power failed on the island (which is regular) the thing would 'crash' and boy did it cause headaches. The first time it happened it took me six hours to get everything 'up and running', the second time two hours and now it's 10 minutes and we always sail on time.

Luckily in the early days of the MV Hallaig https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MV_Hallaig we had a trusty old 'Loch Class'  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MV_Loch_Striven on standby and what a pleasure it was to know that I could go down that engine room, open two sea cocks and press one black button and she'd 'burst into life' come what may. Kinda like an old Fergie tractor without the wheels. Thing is, this 'old faithful' that I'd spent 9 years of my life on was as noisy as an old Lancashire cotton mill, carried 12 cars (Vauxhall Viva and Ford Escort sized) and burnt 500lts of diesel a day.

The new one that requires a laptop to fix it and an understanding of Excel to diagnose faults carries 23 Mondeo's faster, quieter and cleaner for 400lts a day. Apparently it's the 'way of the world' now and, thanks to invaluable help on here, I've joined it  Wink

This is an invaluable forum for resolving such issues and constantly knocking the route that several members have chosen is not helpful in the least. Apart from one deranged member who bought something that wasn't suitable for what he wanted it to do, accepted no help that was offered and lied about its provenance I see no other major complaints about SMA products. Bearing in mind that this forum is hosted by an SMA dealer I am, quite frankly surprised by your hostility.

Cheers, Paul

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« Reply #26 on: September 22, 2016, 08:18:40 PM »

Goodness Paul,
           I would not call that hostility, I would call it honesty with humor. The last time I had to swap over the Symmetra (testing)was over 14 months ago. The last time I lowered the turbine was Christmas 2014. It has not been down since, so you see. You have drawn a few conclusion that were not quite right.I also run the Shed off our installation and have never know our bank to fail,,ever.
  I am only off grid since 2002. I started with a small 12 volt system and learned a little from that and like yourself I learned the most important bits on Navitron.
   My motto is keep it as simple as possible and map everything .
  I could not care less who sells these machines and i don,t think it is too much to ask them to try and make life easier for the customers,
  You are light years ahead of me in electronics and a highly qualified engineer but your relationship with the SI has been a troublesome one and if you are having trouble with it
  how do you expect me to cope,? We need better communications to enable us to trouble shoot easier. I am not the problem, I am trying to be part of the solution.
  We have had a few tiffs in the past and I don,t see anything here to get serious about. We are all striving for the same goal.
  My experiences have been drawn locally here in Donegal from installation set up  and companies going bust leaving the owners out on a limb on the slightest little fault.
  Trying to get cooperation and information was a headache which I was forced to abandon because I simply could not win.
  Woodie did well to get Mrs Hoad up and running but I was called out to another similar installation not long after that. I honestly did not want to know. It was a load of bother for little or no reward
  and worse still,  if I  could not help, i was an idiot. I could write a book on it Paul, I really could.
  I could say a lot more here and it would all be relevant but also a waste of time. I believe that honesty is all important. I also agree that moving on is the best thing to do.
                                                       Biff
 
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bautsche
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« Reply #27 on: September 22, 2016, 08:38:54 PM »

I've been trying to stay out of this, because I'm not sure this is a fruitful discussion, but here goes (I'll probably have occasion to regret this decision later)....

Biff, you're asking for incompatible things: You want a system that's fully documented, gives you maximum flexibility, never fails and can be understood by a non-technical person. That doesn't exist.
(You also seem to have issues with SMA support, which, again, I can't say, I share. When I did contact them (apart from the idiotic exercise with paying for the installer code, which I mention for full disclosure, but which didn't affect me in any way, in fact I got the installer code in record time), I never had any issues with getting help. I'll also point out that I used their UK guys and did not resort to calling Germany direct. )

Returning to the incompatibility though: I'm pretty sure full and complete documentation in the form of flow diagrammes of the firmware exists, but who other than an IT engineer would be able to read them!? Surely, if you're complaining that the settings are too complicated, you have no hope to read those (no offense intended)!?
Any "issues" I may have experienced with my SMA kit was during setup phase and/or when I was changing stuff. Any IT Service Manager will tell you that, surprise, surprise, that's when you get issues: when you change stuff.
In normal running, I have never had issues with any of my SMA kit.
The same cannot possibly be said to what was deemed perfectly good on this farm before we moved in: you couldn't run the feed track on both sheds at the same time, power washing required that the generator be started first, if you wanted the washing machine to run reliably, you needed to run it when the genny was running, otherwise, it might just go into an infinite loop trying to spin-up, sitting there for the rest of the day, fans in the sheds could only be turned on if you ran the genny, I'd get thrown out of bed at least once every fortnight by some alarm or the other that required manual intervention.
I could go on, but I shall desist. The upshot of all of this was, that I couldn't leave my wife on her own for more than a day without her having to call me for instructions on how to fix the latest fault. Right now, I can go away for two weeks at a time if my employer sends me and I have zero worries that anything will break.
I'm not suggesting that SMA are the only company that can deliver that kind of reliability, but I am saying that SMA does deliver that kind of reliability for me.
I'm with Paul on this: I don't see where the massive issues with SMA are being reported that you allude to, unless they are during setup or changes.

In all fairness: Paul's problem that started this thread was also due to a change: he got a new inverter attached to the existing system and the new inverter didn't like what the SMA was doing. If he hadn't attached that inverter, his system would have happily continued working without any "issue" being visible.

Sorry.
Eric
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camillitech
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« Reply #28 on: September 22, 2016, 08:41:12 PM »

But that's the thing Biff, you're not helping. This is a thread clearly directed at people with an understanding of the SI's logic aimed at folk who have an grasp of it, or at least some degree of electronic competence more than I. By your admission it's 'way above your head' so why comment. We all know your views on SMA products so why wade in here telling us how marvelous your Symmetra is. It suits you just fine, I know that and the little Chinaman do you proud, so long  live both of them.

My relationship with the SI has not been 'troublesome' it's been just like my relationship with the hybrid ferry, challenging and a great 'learning curve'. I would not for one minute suggest or ever have suggested that you should get an SI. I have driven Land Rovers for almost 40 years and never ever suggested anyone ever buy one. Just Like the SI, I would say do not buy one unless you know what you're letting yourself in for  Grin

Cheers, Paul
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« Reply #29 on: September 22, 2016, 08:50:33 PM »

No Problem Eric,
              What you have written makes perfect sense, There are no "Buts" coming from me,
    I am glad that your system is working correctly and I hope it keeps doing that.
    I have been wrong many times and made plenty of mistakes so it is nothing new to me.
    The last few Sma installations were under 40 minutes from here, I will say no more.
                                                     Biff
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