BTI and the Boggers #3

Submitted: Friday, Jan 30, 2004 at 06:07
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After the first email, Steve and I had a very friendly 30 min + conversation and this is the second email he sent: "Supply of your own batteries: Our price includes the marine bronze terminals, cables, fittings, battery boxes in re-enforced fiberglass, vents, drains, clamshell covers on external venting in stainless, sometimes long and larger cables due to distance to equipment, labour and GST. Supplying your own does not necessarily give you a savings... Supply of your own solar panels: Installation includes the rack and mount, locating rafter locations and fixing points, wiring in co-ax and watertight plugs, conduit, junction boxes, and the liability of interrupting the watertight integrity of the roof itself which is worth quite a bit, materials, labour, and GST. There will not be a savings in supplying your own panels, because of the watertight integrity we guarantee. And if there is a warranty issue, we will charge to remove the owner supplied panels and re-install them. It could even cost more than our quoted prices. If someone else installs the panels for them, we will not deal with any water leaks in the roof or damage caused by them working on the roof in possibly an improper manner... They may damage seams, seals, and or have other associated mounting problems as they will not know how to properly mount the panels in the first place, nor be familiar with our structure and wiring in the roof... So they take on all the liability themselves. On supply of the owner’s inverter: Our price is an installed price with safety devices and large cables and automatic switching, and things like a very large triple circuit breaker midline on the 12v supply and such other things that you are not aware of.... You need to realize that the 240volt sub-boards have to be increased in size to get the automatic switching to all the outlets in the van, there are split circuits because the inverter does not charge up all the outlets or you would have some closed loops like in the case of the battery charger.... You may of course continue shopping and purchase the equipment elsewhere, but our Shop Rates of $60 /hour plus materials for ourside work, and GST will apply to the installation. I just don't want you to think that you are getting discounted equipment elsewhere and not take into account the installation and warranty of the work done here, which is worth quite a bit... One more example: Switch mode chargers: A "switch mode" charger is a fully electronic component charger. They have always had problems standing up to the corrugation, just not as robust as the transformer based charger that we use... We abandoned switch mode chargers years ago in favour of the wire wound transformer based style that is far more robust in a violent vibration environment of travel on the corrugation. In the "switch mode" style, it is fully synthesized electronically, and the corrugation has actually shaken the electrical components right off the circuit boards. An iron wire wound transformer is superior engineering for that condition. Here are four other problems that are relevant: 1) Heat, switch mode chargers do not like the heat...Better on yachts and aircraft.... 2) Hertz variation, on the outback lines the frequency variations are bad for the switch mode style of full electronic synthesis, and the further out the lines in the outback the worse the frequency variations on the mains power... 3) Voltage variations, further out in the bush, the worse the variations, terrible for switch mode.. and major heat problems ensue... 4) Voltage spikes due to lightening, large equipment usage on and off, and other causes of voltage spikes deadly to switch mode, harmless to transformers. In any case, supply of the owners own equipment does not guarantee a savings, and could infact work out just the opposite. Our prices are not just for the equipment. And sometimes the equipment supplied is not compatible with the Outback or other equipment and the Owner second guessing us comes to grief for reasons he could not be expected to know... There is a lot more to the proper installation than you may think and I don't want you to get a shock when you find out the actual costs... "
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Reply By: Turist - Friday, Jan 30, 2004 at 06:09

Friday, Jan 30, 2004 at 06:09
Must have read my earlier posting in "Battery Charger Set-up"
We, Boggers that is, do not need to be so sophisticated.

Nearly everytime I came across someone broken down or having problems in remote areas it was with a sophisticated expensive European 4WD's or with fancy electronic equipment.

A lot of it might be classy but "it don't cop the abuse".

People seem to forget that the centre was crossed by 1928 Chev Four's and old trucks. Lacked the air con but did the job.


"Do It While You Can"
Nobody is getting any younger.

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