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PostPosted: May 22nd, 2017, 11:56 am 
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I can't speak to the PD4655V, but if I were installing a new charger in the "brown box" area, what I would do is run a new/larger wire along the outside wall behind the couch (between water tank and outside wall). With some loom and securement. The existing 8 gauge wire is too long/too thin. Making a quick calculation, and presuming around 16' of wire to the battery (there is more like 28' in the original run!), I'd like to see 2AWG wire. One could still see improvement by using 6AWG, but it's a bit more voltage drop than I would like, hence I'd go 2AWG (well, being me I might go 1/0).

Since you want to be able to fuse to at least 60 amps, I checked on the 8AWG for the other bits of the loop, and while you could get by with it, ampacity-wise, I'd still want to upgrade those legs as well. I just don't like one (not visible) leg of a loop to be inexplicably smaller.

So the full circuit would be, starting at the brown box positive:

Positive wire behind couch to base of pillar (goes to LVD if you are keeping that)
Positive wire from LVD to battery tray (if you are keeping LVD)
Positive house battery jumpers and off lead (they are likely already larger, but I'd check).
Negative house battery jumpers and off lead
Negative lead to chassis ground (I ran a new, larger one to the frame just inboard of the battery box - there are already holes in the frame you can use a bolt/washer/nut on)
Negative lead from rear chassis ground to brown box (I eliminated this but that's cause I changed the brown box system, but if you're keeping it you'll likely want to upsize this for consistency).

Typically the battery jumpers and leads from the battery to the chassis ground and to the first positive bus point would want to be larger, since they handle multiple things at once. Adding fusing to the positive post (or positive wire within 7" of positive battery post is a big plus. (Sometimes it doesn't exist because the wires aren't large enough to fuse as originally constructed.)

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PostPosted: June 17th, 2017, 9:52 am 
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Here's my update:

I finally installed the Progressive Dynamics PD4655 Converter running an 8 AWG line from LVD. So far so good.

My other electric upgrades:
-Installed Progressive Industries PD EMS-HW30C Surge Protector. It's the hard wired version which I Installed in rear compartment behind spare. Mounted the data panel next to Coke bottle opener. I was able to run all the cables behind the shower.
-All interior converted lights to LED: overhead cabinets, ceiling and closet.
-Replaced the 12v socket next to the hot water switch with a Blue Sea 4353 Below Deck Panel 12V Socket & Dual USB which is switched.
-Replaced both coach and cab batteries and added cut-off switches to the cab and coach batteries.

As far as the rear view cameras:
I could not decide if I wanted one that was on all the time or just when I shifted into reverse. Also whether or not to have parking lines. Also mounting it high or low. So I ended up installing 2 cameras.
-I got a Pyle PLCMRV9W - for Trucks and RVs - Heavy Duty Waterproof Housing and Night Vision IR LEDs, and I installed it next to the top of door above the "porch" light. It's powered by a fuse panel tap - always on with ignition.
-I then mounted on left of steps on the step frame an Esky EC170-08 Waterproof Night Vision HD CMOS 170° Viewing Field with parking lines. I tapped the power from back-up light. In order to prevent the camera from bottoming out damage, I installed a hitch skid wheel.
-I used an E-KYLIN 5" Car Monitor, with 2 RCA inputs. This permits the Pyle to always display when the ignition is on, but it changes to the step-mounted camera with parking lines when Reverse is engaged. It's mounted on the lower left windshield.
-All cables run from the rear along chassis up through the firewall by the steering column.

I also replaced the doghouse console.

Everything works great. The only problem is that I have spent all my money and cannot afford to go anywhere ;-).


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PostPosted: July 17th, 2017, 4:53 pm 
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Joined: June 21st, 2017, 3:12 pm
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Location: Port St Lucie, Florida
Glad your upgrade went well. Question about "so far so good". I installed a pd4645v on Friday (3 days ago). Battery was charged and on factory solar in driveway. I plugged into shore power and powered up the new convertor and the light blinked once per second, normal charge for a battery that's 50-90%.
Well, two days later (Sunday) it was still on " normal" I would have thought it would have charged and entered the float mode, blinking every 6-8 seconds.
Could the two detectors (O2 & gas) pull that much juice?

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PostPosted: July 17th, 2017, 10:28 pm 
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Location: Northern NJ
The detectors should only pull max about 0.5A combined.

Try this during a sunny day: flip the circuit breaker off on the converter (or just remove shore power). Does the Wizard LED continue? Mine does.

Or do it at night with no solar output. Does the Wizard LED go off?

---
My suspicion is that the PD wizard indicator LED is independent of the actual PD charger circuit, and simply blinks at different voltages it sees on the DC output. Thus the parallel connected output of the solar charger causes the PD wizard indicator to light up.

Check the DC voltage with no converter power, at night and day. (This is why I installed meters by the distribution panel. A handheld voltmeter will work too.). This will tell you battery state, and also show if solar is causing the blink or is it actually the PD charger.

Again, this is just suspicion as I have not yet tested to prove it or not.

Kevin

Easy meters: viewtopic.php?f=8&t=688

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PostPosted: July 19th, 2017, 2:24 pm 
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Joined: June 21st, 2017, 3:12 pm
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Location: Port St Lucie, Florida
Hi Kevin,
Thanks for the in depth thought. I had read your voltmeter thread and found what appeared to be the same meters but some sort of linear shunt as opposed to an unobtrusive coil shunt on eBay.
I did some checking today, 4 Harbor Freight multimeter's gave 4 different results, but close enough to come to a reasonable conclusion.
All OFF including master over helm- solar ON 14.27v at house battery
Pull fuse to solar- 13.60
Generator ON- 13.05
Battery master over helm ON- 13.60
Put fuse back in solar 13.65
CONFIRM your suspicions, LED dark when solar off
Concern, ran Genny and roof A/C for 1 hour, battery 12.75 with all off.
Lost 1/2 volt in 1 hour with system running?????

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PostPosted: July 19th, 2017, 4:17 pm 
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One note is that voltage is not a great way to check the state of the battery(s) -- unless they are in the resting state, i.e. no charging/use for at least four hours, and preferably longer.

Voltage is a good way to see what your charging sources are doing. When the voltage is up in the 14's, you are in the absorption stage (this is from about 85% charged to 100% charged, when you are shoving power through the eye of a needle at a constrained voltage and a diminishing amperage (as they get closer to 100%).

If the voltage is climbing from 12.x to 13.x, then you are likely in the bulk stage. At this point, given the relative weakness of any of our charging sources (i.e. they can't put in hundreds of amps), they will be throwing everything they have at the batteries. The voltage will rise from wherever it was when you started charging, until it gets to the absorption voltage (typically 14.x).

If the voltage is steady at around 13.3-13.6 then you are likely in float. This is just a maintenance charge.

So the three stages, in order:

1) Bulk (from whatever voltage you start at until you reach the absorption voltage).
2) Absorption (voltage limited, will be in the 14.x range typically, and will last until the amps taper off to nearly nothing, indicating fully charged).
3) Float, which is a low level maintenance charge.

So voltage can show you what's happening (especially if you also know how many amps are going in). But it's not a great way to measure batteries that are being charged or depleted. For example, just after charging, there will be a "surface charge." This is kind of a fake charge that will quickly dissipate once any load is applied.

If you can "rest" your batteries (say overnight with no charging and little usage), then check the voltage before any new charging is applied, it will be a more accurate indication of the state of charge.

Note that I'm speaking of lead acid batteries here; lithium charge differently (essentially no absorption phase).

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PostPosted: July 19th, 2017, 4:33 pm 
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LilNookie wrote:
Thanks for the in depth thought. I had read your voltmeter thread and found what appeared to be the same meters but some sort of linear shunt as opposed to an unobtrusive coil shunt on eBay.


As far as the meters go, here are a couple of AC loop ones shipped from inside the US.

https://www.ebay.com/i/272515349723

http://www.ebay.com/i/322446608075

And here's the DC one I got from China, and no the sensor was much smaller :) but you'll likely have to cobble up a three wire sensor extension.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/DC-600V-Red-LED ... 2391801857

EDIT: and this beauty, again with probably a too short cable:

https://www.amazon.com/DROK-Multimeter- ... B01MZIAJI0

---

More later. Btw, when you pulled the solar fuse, was there shore power? Because 13.6v is the PD charger absorption phase voltage with one second blinks.

As for 12.75, that is fully charged if it's been off the charger for a while. Which is weird since you said you were running the generator, and that should've been at least letting the charger keep the battery at 13.2 (float) the whole time.

Questions are, what are the charging points of the solar, and how many DC amps are being used with nothing on except the detectors.

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Last edited by kdarling on July 20th, 2017, 10:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: July 19th, 2017, 9:58 pm 
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kdarling wrote:
Because 13.6v is the PD charger absorption phase voltage with one second blinks.


13.6 volts is the absorption phase? That sounds really low to me. Of course it depends on the specs called for by the battery mfgr. but I thought it was always over 14 volts (at 77ºF). For example, Lifeline calls for 14.3 volts absorption. That can be as low as 13.7 if it's REALLY hot (110º or so), or up to 15 volts or so if it's really cold; but it would be 14.2-14.4 or so at most "normal" temps.

Just for grins, I looked up Trojan flooded cell specs (since I have AGM). They call for 14.82 volts absorption, so even higher than the AGMs I have. So I don't understand having it at 13.6. Seems like the batteries would have a hard time getting to 100% (?)

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PostPosted: July 20th, 2017, 4:52 pm 
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My PD converter/charger is a different model, but I assume they all use similar parameters.

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PostPosted: July 20th, 2017, 9:40 pm 
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Okay, so they are doing a 14.4 volt absorption stage. That's good to know. They call it "boost" mode. Then float is their "storage mode." It's not uncommon for different names to be used for the various stages. They kind of gloss over bulk, but it's kind of in there (and that's not where chargers usually fall down anyway - it's just heave amps at the things).

So as long as 14.4 and 13.2 are good figures for one's particular batteries, and the battery temperature stays at around 77ºF, it looks pretty solid. Funny but those would be almost exactly the right numbers for my Lifelines (they call for 14.3 and 13.3) at 77ºF. But, my batteries are almost never at 77º during solar charging times. Since my rig isn't as "climate controlled" as a house, and since I like sleeping in cool rooms anyway (my batteries are under the couch), they are typically closer to 50º or so (cooler in winter) when they are charging (the mass takes a long time to warm up). Hence they actually need closer to 14.7 and 13.7 or more when cooler.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, I have a small battery system in a car, and the other day it was so hot it was absorbing at 13.6 (vs. 14.4), temperature compensated. Hot/summer.

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