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Author Topic: big battery chargers  (Read 6317 times)
camillitech
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« Reply #15 on: March 06, 2008, 10:27:28 PM »

We have some of their kit on the ferry Martin and it's excellent. Somewhere in my 7 sheds I've one of their 24/12v converters that I took off a fishing boat years ago as it was supplying a mobile phone in the days when they didn't work up here, try as I might I can't find it  Angry

Cheers, Paul
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Bob
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« Reply #16 on: March 07, 2008, 06:44:22 AM »

Not often I find myself disagreeing with Paul but I think you can run both fridges and freezers.

We have a 14cu ft Libeherr (wrong spelling?) chest freezer and an Electrolux larder fridge.  Neither cause a major problem.  Both are A+ and low on the total Kwh per annum (always look at that number).  I'm not saying that I could run any type of refrigeration but some of the modern efficient ones are well within our capabilities.
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« Reply #17 on: March 07, 2008, 12:52:32 PM »

Liebherr the spelling would be (German make).
I need to run a Fridgefreezer in the kitchen (6 people) as well as a chest freezer to keep the meat from the pigs... I don't think they do anything comparable in 12V just yet.
The Fridgefreezer only uses 103W on full power, 112W with the door open and 0W when not cooling. I don't have a chest freezer, so I will look for A+ rating when I purchase (I do have a very old freezer with 3 drawers sucking the life out of the mains electricity we still have - but not for much longer, it's going on freecycle soon as it is not suitable for the off grid system nor does it fit in with my energy saving ideas right now). 
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camillitech
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« Reply #18 on: March 07, 2008, 07:02:06 PM »

Not often I find myself disagreeing with Paul but I think you can run both fridges and freezers.

We have a 14cu ft Libeherr (wrong spelling?) chest freezer and an Electrolux larder fridge.  Neither cause a major problem.  Both are A+ and low on the total Kwh per annum (always look at that number).  I'm not saying that I could run any type of refrigeration but some of the modern efficient ones are well within our capabilities.

Aye Bob the gas fridge was in the bad old pre inverter days, we run two fridges and sometimes two freezers now with no problem.
Dunno what Martin has against inverters, best thing since sliced bread if you ask me. As our dump loads run through the inverter our inverter can be passing 2kw for days so I have nightmares about it failing and having to be inveterless Shocked

Cheers, Paul
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'Off grid' since 1985,  Proven 2.5kW, Proven 6kW direct heating, SMA SI6.OH, 800ah Rolls, 8kW 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,
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« Reply #19 on: March 07, 2008, 07:35:36 PM »

I've got nothing against inverters per se, but I do find they are grossly oversold to newbies - as you know, a GOOD inverter, properly sized is worth it's weight in gold.
Many people end up with massive 1kw or more square wave jobs sold them by pushy salesmen who've glibly said "oh yes sir, run it off your car battery", and suggest you can run a fridge freezer and hair dryer off it without any problems............. Tongue
- Well, if you're lucky, and your fridge freezer is happy running off square or modified squarewave, and you have  suitably massive battery bank, it MAY work - but it's far more likely to kill your little car battery stone dead inside a fortnight, and burn out the motor in the 'fridge........ Grin
SO, most people want to run a laptop - if you have an inverter, and you plug in the mains  connection, it may draw 85 watts or more, through a switch-mode converter, 25 watts...........
As for fridges and freezers, they consume gobbets of power - unless you've got the means to provide large quantities of renewably generated energy, (which if you're talking pv-generated is horrendously expensive), it's often a lot more practical to generate electricity only for those thing that can use nothing else (ie laptops, tvs and lights), and use bottled gas for the fridges and cooking! (You can easily get through 2kw/h per day on a fridge/freezer and a freezer), that takes one helluva lot of batteries, pv panels, and a thundering great true sinewave inverter just to power them! Grin
And whilst "plugging" switch mode converters - I like 93% efficient! Cool
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camillitech
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« Reply #20 on: March 07, 2008, 09:51:16 PM »

I've got nothing against inverters per se, but I do find they are grossly oversold to newbies - as you know, a GOOD inverter, properly sized is worth it's weight in gold.
Many people end up with massive 1kw or more square wave jobs sold them by pushy salesmen who've glibly said "oh yes sir, run it off your car battery", and suggest you can run a fridge freezer and hair dryer off it without any problems............. Tongue
- Well, if you're lucky, and your fridge freezer is happy running off square or modified squarewave, and you have  suitably massive battery bank, it MAY work - but it's far more likely to kill your little car battery stone dead inside a fortnight, and burn out the motor in the 'fridge........ Grin
SO, most people want to run a laptop - if you have an inverter, and you plug in the mains  connection, it may draw 85 watts or more, through a switch-mode converter, 25 watts...........
As for fridges and freezers, they consume gobbets of power - unless you've got the means to provide large quantities of renewably generated energy, (which if you're talking pv-generated is horrendously expensive), it's often a lot more practical to generate electricity only for those thing that can use nothing else (ie laptops, tvs and lights), and use bottled gas for the fridges and cooking! (You can easily get through 2kw/h per day on a fridge/freezer and a freezer), that takes one helluva lot of batteries, pv panels, and a thundering great true sinewave inverter just to power them! Grin
And whilst "plugging" switch mode converters - I like 93% efficient! Cool



Fair enough Wink
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http://lifeattheendoftheroad.wordpress.com/

'Off grid' since 1985,  Proven 2.5kW, Proven 6kW direct heating, SMA SI6.OH, 800ah Rolls, 8kW 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,
doubletap
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« Reply #21 on: March 07, 2008, 10:01:52 PM »

Hi Martin

Hell, you talk some sense and I for one really appreciates it. Ads I did from Steve (Roys), who kindly sent me excellent wiring diagrams and who originally help me set up my system and gave some sound advice on fuses and charge controllers - thanks very much to you both.

Carrying on from my original post 'What Inverter.' I too run a gas fridge and stove it's the only way to go off grid unless you dig a cold store and build a brick charcoal oven but if i had wanted that I would have built a mud hut! Even with my extremely limited knowledge I would not run a fridge from own generated power.

As you know from my past posts, I'm having inverter troubles, (my appols, but this topic seems 'live' at the moment) it uses far to much power. I really like the idea of using switch mode converters and binning the inverter nonsense. So, sorry mate I have a few more questions and just to reiterate saving you having to click back to my past posts.

I'm totally off grid. My wind turbine is a 300w 24v unit. I have run a conventional house electrical circuit, 6 x ceiling lights, 6 x double sockets. Short runs as my cottage is a small 2 up 2 down. I use very little power, 1 light on at a time mainly candle power and or laptop/portable TV for 3hrs max a day.

1.  If I by pass the inverter can I just connect into my fuse box? Obviously change the lights for 24v.

2.  Will I need a switch mode converter for each laptop and TV, or just replace the inverter with one switch mode converter. If so, what type and where to buy them?

Sorry to sound a divvy but really need your advice as you seem to know what you are talking about.

Rgds,

Spud

PS. Also taking your advice on changing my leisure battery banks (another big and expensive mistake made) to forklift type - my mate has a source.
 
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billi
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« Reply #22 on: March 07, 2008, 10:19:36 PM »

hello gentlemen


i would say there  should be no easy adverticing for off grid living.... as long it is compared to the normal standards of nowadays living......

to achieve that standard  its  a huge investment to reach these standards

(but why achieve these standards ?)



but   is fun and enjoyment, cleverness , and much more as well, beside the wholly  angel "save the planet idea"


i didnot doublecheck the efficientcy of my inverter/charger , i just thought i get a 100 watt solar panel more instead of dumping my fridge to replace it with an espensive gas driven one
to run on gas
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« Reply #23 on: March 07, 2008, 11:07:25 PM »

trust me to open my big mouth.......... Roll Eyes
This is for Doubletap.........
First of all, I have a feeling that as much as anything, you're deficient on the amount of charge your batteries are receiving, and that the batteries themselves may be on their way out.................
In an earlier post, you mention "charged batteries at 24.7 volts..........." - if that's the voltage you're seeing before you apply a load, they have very little charge left in them - a fully-charged system like yours should be showing something close to 26 volts "at rest" - (no charge coming in or leaving). What I suspect is that you've underestimated the charge from the turbine, and literally just run the batteries down too far and possibly too often - it really is down to lots of sums, and "getting a feel" for battery voltage/condition. I think it's pretty important to get some charge in your poor batteries - I'd suggest "cheating" and borrowing a petrol genny and battery charger, and giving them a really good charge first of all (or taking them to a friend's with an electricity supply and a charger), then having given them a really good charge, leave them to settle for a few hours, then if needs be, top up with distilled water (goggles and gloves job), THEN check the voltage of each 12v battery - it should be showing something between 12.7 and 13.1 volts (or double that for 24v) - that should tell you if they're still ok (or not) Smiley
Then the inverter and other circuitry................ here's a link to a cheapie laptop switch mode converter http://tinyurl.com/2pmkvj - if you find the same as I did, using one of those, you'll use around a third of the juice that you will powering the "mains voltage brick" that comes with most laptops.
Having scratched my head a lot, and being averse to spending money, what I would suggest is a strange mix, but I hope a pragmatic one........run a fused lead from your batteries to wherever you're going to use your laptop, and terminate it in a twin "car type" socket - plug your switch mode laptop job into one, and your portable tv into the other via an Alfatronix 24v/12v voltage dropper of appropriate size (if your tv is 12v).
Then for your lighting, use the blessed inverter and existing lighting circuit! Lips Sealed - you'll think this may sound odd, but that will save you having to beef up the wiring circuit, and sourcing some 24v energy saving bulbs.......you should find that if you only use the inverter for lighting that your battery should last a lot longer - but do remember to always switch the inverter itself off when you put the lights out - they take quite a bit of current on "standby". Cool
If the "charge the batteries" thing works, I'd be tempted to add to my charging input, perhaps with another 300w 24v turbine, or possibly a couple of pv panels (or both), and then when funds allow go for a bigger, better battery bank- hope that helps! Grin
« Last Edit: March 07, 2008, 11:22:07 PM by martin » Logged

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dodgy rog
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« Reply #24 on: March 08, 2008, 11:57:10 AM »

hi Billi can you please shed some light on how if at all possible too charge my forklift battery with the yanma generator, ratted at 5.5kva but perhaps 4 is more realistic?  and if this is not possible ,i suppose i must buy a charger of somewhere between 70/140 amp output?
this sounds expensive?  we have very little money and there is no option for connecting to mains as we are to remote without talking about the pros and cons of nuclear power and the EDF Mafia.

thanks rog
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billi
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« Reply #25 on: March 08, 2008, 12:37:48 PM »

rog

first of all my forklift battery i connected yesterday  and it was a 48 v battery with 775 ah

and we changed it to 24V  ( because my charger , inverter  i have  is 24 volt)  so have now

1550 AH ( if the battery is good ....time will tell)   but still the same amount of kwh  Grin


It, of course depends on ,how much money you want to spend and how much compfort

so i think martins idea is the cheapest

i cannot compare to other systems , but mine befor i installed the photovoltark  panel  was running for a year only with a yanmar clone (same output as yours)  charging the battery (sh/te gel one )  trough a inverter/charger combi unit ( i suppose you can use an inverter and a charger separately)

so turned the generator on for 2 hours in the morning and 1 hour in the evening (or so) to

charge  the 4-8 kwh into the battery each day ( the closer it gets to the fully charged battery the less watts are flowing into the battery)

You can also use a DC alternator instead of your AC generator to charge the battery directly (there are many ideas and done posts here)

But then you donot have AC if you have to maintain the battery or in case something goes wrong so i started with the ac diesel version

The question  about costs is determined (if you go for an inverter)  how much watt you use on high demands  ( so think of  what consumers in the house need how much watt and figure out how often several consumers operate together )

we have a 6 kw inverter/combicharger with max 140 A charging(connected to the yanmar)(two units switched paralell)  (140 A = 3360 Watt   and thats good ampere for the battery

perhaps you start with one and then connect another later

Like this here
http://www.onboardenergy.com/acatalog/victron_special_offers.html

With my bad  500 ah gel battery i charged only with 70 A  similar to your charging (perhaps )

so about 1700 Watt ( i didnot like to run the generator for 3-4 hours only on that so made hot water in paralell with an imersion element in a 300 l storage tank)


the whole system i have now is a bid overdone for our temporarry house but designed for our familihome soon

regards Billi




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« Last Edit: March 08, 2008, 12:40:15 PM by billi » Logged

1.6 kw and 2.4 kw   PV array  , Outback MX 60 and FM80 charge controller  ,24 volt 1600 AH Battery ,6 Kw Victron inverter charger, 1.1 kw high head hydro turbine as a back up generator , 5 kw woodburner, 36 solar tubes with 360 l water tank, 1.6 kw  windturbine
doubletap
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« Reply #26 on: March 08, 2008, 06:30:20 PM »

Martin

Thanks for your last. I'm gonna try the 'laptop' option, sounds about right. I guess use thickest cable I can get away with!

All 4 of my batteries were new and fully charged before I connected them up so, I'm binning the inverter for the time being from the socket circuit and only using it for the lights.

Looking forward to seeing the forklift batteries. I will keep this post up to speed with things, as I believe there are many out there like me being reeled in with this nonsense 'leisure' battery farce. So far, I've spent just short of 200 on 4 so called top of the range. At least I can use one as a spare for my 12v boiler.

Thanks again mate.

Spud
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Bob
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« Reply #27 on: March 09, 2008, 06:37:54 AM »

Quote
I have nightmares about it failing

Hi Paul. I know that dread so well!
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