Vehilce alternator pwr to the BT batt's- How /why

Submitted: Monday, Feb 16, 2004 at 23:28
ThreadID: 120403 Views:3831 Replies:15 FollowUps:0
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I have given thought to the use of the vehicles alternator power, which on my Toyota is 100amps. I intend to channel this free power to the rear of the vehicle via cable of large cross section. - (ensuring that voltage drop is minimal) - I estimate somewhere around 13+V. will be available at the BT. The problem I am faced with is how to regulate the incoming power. Logic would say via the existing regulators onboard the BT, which would allow for a simpler system KISS. I have heard of the "Anderson Plug" which I understand refers to the manner of vehicle connection - and not the system employed. ( correct me if I'm wrong ) So my quandary is as follows, in point form to keep this subject also simple. Large Solar regulator for the alternators power OR Inverted alternator pwr and run through the onboard 240 battery charger Is the same battery required under the bonnet ( second battery under my bonnet) as that used in the BT -( AGM) Employ a alternator regulator ( Xantrex have one specifically designed for this purpose) - but where to run this power to keep the input recorded ? Enlighten me ........... All information happily rec'd Cracker some other means
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Reply By: Deleted User - Monday, Feb 16, 2004 at 23:58

Monday, Feb 16, 2004 at 23:58
Macka, Somehow you seem to think that was a jibe at Collyn Rivers. Look at who it is addressed to .... and secondly Self-Appointed Expert Meaning Well is a term applied by the owner of BTI to anyone in BOG who answers questions from other members if the answer doesnt align with their experience.... not mine ! Hang on .... I suppose that does make Collyn a Self-Appointed Expert and I'm sure he meant well !!! Sit at your desk Collyn is in .... Class of 2004 ..may we all become wiser ... [Smile] I didnt mention Collyn's name at all you have a guilty conscience for him ??? Line two is tongue in cheek and line three is a reference to me and my experience on the racetrack with cars. In case you still dont get it wasnt a jibe at Peter either .... just comedy Mate ! If anything it was a go at myself making me the best Self-Appointed Expert Meaning Well since the phrase was coined. Sorry you missed it .... Anthony Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ...Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561200

Reply By: Deleted User - Monday, Feb 16, 2004 at 23:59

Monday, Feb 16, 2004 at 23:59
No didn't really think that but I still wonder who the real experts are Macka LOL
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Reply By: Luvntravln - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:00

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:00
Guys What is the definition of an expert? For every expert you can find to say black is "x" I can find one that says black is "y"! Ultimately, we take in all of the information and consider the qualifications/experience of the person passing on the information. If he has been in the business for a long time with a good success rate (BTi), or lots of experience and a gift for gab (Anthony, Griff, Brian), or has a PhD after his name we tend to give those persons more credence than some newbie like me with a big mouth and a JD after his name. Nevertheless, we all have to ulitmately make our own decisions after - hopefully given the amount of bucks we are spending - doing a proper due dilligence. I can't believe the amount of time I have spent on various issues and will probably in the main wind up with a baisc BTi installation. I will feel good about it because all of the experts helped me arrive at the conclusion that works best for me. Too often we take as gospel something someone with the appearance of an expert says and rely on those pronouncements and find ourselves quite confused when someone comes along and suggest to do it differently. My hat is off to Cracker who after doing his due dilligence arrived at his own decision how to get the maximum use of each individual component. Me, I am not as concerned with wringing out every amp from the charging sources. if after we are "on the road" and I am under the magic 3500 kg I will simply add a fifth solar panel or a fifth or sixth battery. A thread like this certainly underscores the importance of this site. Jak asked me the other day how come I never thoroughly investigated Trackmasker and some of the other "off road" caravans once I decided to more from a windup to a full-blown hotel room on wheels. I said quite simply that it was the Boggers Site. None of the other owners care enough about their rolling homes to take the time to provide the "expert" support that the Boggers provide; none of the others in spite of some difficulties extoll the virtues of the BT as do the Boggers, and frankly I too look forward to driving into a camp site and having people stop and look and point and say to themselves: "Wow, a BT! Wish I had one!!". Cheers for now - keep the technospeak coming tgintl/jay
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Reply By: Wadefarers - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:01

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:01
Guys Following on from jay's comment, I always thought that an expert was defined thus- ex being a "has been" and a xpert as being a "drip under pressure" But I'm sure that this definition would NOT apply to any bogger. Regards Jeff SKE (S**t Kicker Extraordinaire) (Anthony, Griff, Brian and Jay grin)
AnswerID: 561203

Reply By: Turist - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:02

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:02
Jay sometimes I have a PHD after my name.
Bob, PHew Did you?
Must make me an expert in something.

Real name and identity hidden to confuse the enemy.
And to lower the incidence of SPAM, the real reason that I do not leave my e-mail details in the public forum any longer. Always available to Boggers though.
"Do It While You Can"
Nobody is getting any younger.

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AnswerID: 561204

Reply By: Deleted User - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:03

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:03
Jeff, You're right !! [smile] Better slip the "expert" word out and a new one in ... although it wont go away fast ..... [Grin] How about ... Pantologist ? Pantology: n. a systematic view of all human knowledge. Then we could have Self-Appointed Pantologist or ..... Just a plain old ...POOR S.A.P. !!! [smile] Anthony Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ..Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561205

Reply By: Deleted User - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:04

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:04
You may not be aware but kedron
owners have a forum too.
AnswerID: 561206

Reply By: Luvntravln - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:05

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:05
Macka, Yup; but not nearly as enthusiastic as the Boggers tgintl/jay
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Reply By: Deleted User - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:06

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:06
Sorry, but I am going back to the original subject re vehicle alt. pwr to BT Batteries! Advice? My new LC100 V8 (yep, changed to petrol after 4 diesels since 1980!) was wired by my auto sparky for the dual batteries, isolator, etc. including 6mm separate hot wires to the engel narva plug inside the tailgate, and to the 7 pin BT plug as per BTi recommendation. When I swapped the wire loom from under the tow bar to the top, I noticed that the return earth wire was only a 4mm jobbie. BTi's suggestion is for a 6mm earth return. Should I replace the 4mm wire or will it suffice? Thanks.........cheers............Rob.
AnswerID: 561208

Reply By: Turist - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:07

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:07


What goes one way has to go the other.

(Non expert guru type explanation)

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

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Reply By: Deleted User - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:08

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:08
Rob, Normally the earth return should be the same as the positive cable. Especially when doing full loops like in a boat .... from battery +ive to appliance and from appliance back to - ive on battery. If the chassis is used as the earth return for the plug/s it makes the return larger than 6mm obviously, so you should be right because the 4mm is used for short distances. Plugs via 4mm to chassis / chassis to -ive on battery etc etc. If the 4mm wire is a separate run from BT all the way to battery in vehicle and you see a drop connect a larger earth to see if that improves things. For testing this can be as simple as running an extra earth wire from battery in vehicle down the side of the BT through the door and onto the battery earth terminal in BT batt box. Same from Engel -ive terminal to vehicle battery - ive terminal ...... A voltmeter will reveal all. Check the voltage that the fridge is receiving whilst running if it is within the range for the fridge worries. Ideally reading 300 Milliamp below or even 500 (1/2 a volt) would ok ... any more I'd be upgrading return, if still the same I'd upgrade positive feed. The fridge maker might specify 11 to 30 volt as the range so even a full volt loss might be ok. The higher the voltage the less current drawn for the same work though. Disconnect solar from batteries (at Prostar) connect vehicle and start ...measure voltage at BT batteries and vehicle battery .... see if that is acceptable also ... Lets know what it reads ... be a good exercise for all ..... Failing all of that, if the vehicle charges the BT batts ok and the engel keeps the beer cold .... leave it as it is ... Self -Appointed Expert Meaning Well ...type explanation ! [smile] Regards Anthony Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ...Tow a Bushtracker
AnswerID: 561210

Reply By: Cracker - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:09

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:09
Rob, I'll do the tech thing - 6mm wire has a resistance of .0041 ohms per metre battery to BT is about 12 metres SO 12m x .0041 = .0492 ohms resistance for the entire 12 length of wire your using. Now comes the hard part - the more amps you try and shove down this wire the greater will be the voltage drop and vice versa ie .0492 with 20 amps down is will have a voltae drop of .0492 x 20 = .984 volts ( nearly 1 volt drop) so the fridge will see 11.6 volts when the car is off and 13volts when its running Hope this helps Cracker
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Reply By: Luvntravln - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:10

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:10
Hi The next step! We have installed the Pirahana Dual Battery System. Basically, when the starting batteries are full of juice, the system then moves the juice to the two 90 amp AGM batteries in the F-250 AND the AGM batteries in the BT simultaneously so that all of the juice is used whenever we are driving. The juice is transferred to the BT by means of a 175 amp Anderson plug with proper guage wire. I have notified BT to also install a 175 at their end with proper wiring. There is an isolator system which, when the key is turned off isolates the AGMs so that if we left the lights on - oops - only the starting batteries would suffer, We have a push button switch that then puts the AGMs online to supplement the starting batteries to get us started. We are getting to the question - patience Anthony! The AGMs in the F-250 have three charging sources: 1. The alternator through the Pirahana system; 2. A 40 amp battery charger that runs off of the genny; 3. Portable solar panels that plug into either the F-250 with a proper regulator or can be plugged into the BT to supplement the 4 on the roof. The question: Any suggestions on portable solar panels and small regulators? Thanks, tgintl/jay
AnswerID: 561212

Reply By: Deleted User - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:11

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:11
Jay, I hope that big star next to Mercury doesnt explode'll have to start the truck or genny then !!! [smile] I can only offer an opinion for your rig if I assume it was to be mine and I was living in it for 10 years like yourself and doing the travel you are itching to do.... I would try to imitate the BT solar on the F250 because it is reliable, tough and it gives you spares for the BT in the event of a rare failure. That custom canopy if it does not have a boat on is begging for a couple of 80/120w panels and a regulator the same as in the BT. Imagine being half way along the Plenty highway and you get a regulator prob in BT .. no worries spare in F250 .... water pump failure .... no worries spare flojet in cupboard .... etc etc. I take it this is to run an Engel or similar when camping in F250 away from BT for a few days .... 40-50 amp per day should be ample to run that , lights and a laptop for awhile, charge a few camera batteries etc. 2x 80w panels should be sufficient for those needs. The thing I dont like about portable panels is heaps get stolen if not chained down. If you want to go that way I'd get a solar supplier to hinge two 80w panels for ya and carry in back ...and secure somehow from easy theft. If you dont want to go 2nd BT regulator I'd go Plasmatronics 20 ... reasonable price also. You can buy panels already hinged that look like a case when done up but I'm not sure if you can get 2x 80w ... quite big really ???? Paralleling the panels into the BT to supplement its panels presents a few problems. The cleanest, safest way is a plug mounted somewhere on BT that is wired to the panels on roof. The same plug is on wires from panels on F250 to its regulator ... switch off F250 reg, unplug panels ...and plug in BT plug giving 6 panels in parallel. I'm not sure if the new BT reg will take 6x 120w panels (45amp minimum) you might get away with 2x 80w on F250 and parallel these for 40 amp minimum. Check with BTI .....???? If you want to go over 40amp, if this is the rating for the BT one can parallel two regs ...check with BTI ?? When it is all said and done, if your electrical needs are low to reasonable, the genny and the charger will supply 40-50 amps without running genny for too long. Maybe 1.5-2.0 hrs per day with AGM's fast charge characteristics. But if you have the space, money and want a great, silent, way ...and not worry too much about it ..... 2 x 80w panels either portable or fixed with a good reg on the tow vehicle able to charge 4 batteries equals YUM to me !!!! Be ready to create a big checklist for BOTH to look at before moving off with this rig !!! [smile] I thought my list was long !!!! When this F250 and BT combo are complete I'd be seriously considering offering it to a magazine for an article. Especially with the custom work you will have had done. I'd love to see it in a mag ...with mention of the BOG group so maybe more people will know we exist. Regards Anthony Explore this Great Land ...Do it Easy ...Tow a Bushtracker
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Reply By: Luvntravln - Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:12

Tuesday, Feb 17, 2004 at 00:12
Anthony, the roof would be great except for the tinny covering it end to end! Under the spares issue and built in redundancy is definitely the way to go. The pumps etc in the F-250 will be the same as in the BT. The panels are to run the 110L Waeco et cetera. I want the F-250 to be an indepenent camping unit totally equipped so that all we have to do is transfer the food, lock the BT, and off we go. BT is putting in a plug at the bottom of the BT so that we can just plug in the portables and parallel to the panels on top. We are also prewiring so that I can add a 5th panel on the roof. I will be very surprised if my electrical needs are low to reasonable - I am an electricity pig! I believe that it is meant to be used, abused, and replaced! The canopy maker is planning on having professional pics taken of the F-250 for use in his future ads. I will have him plug the BOG site if I can! Thanks for the thoughts. Cheers, tgintl/jay
AnswerID: 561214

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