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Split charge kit? Keeping your bus alive mag...

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Custard Nights View Drop Down
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    Posted: 20 May 09 at 17:14
Hi can anyone suggest a good split charge kit for me to buy along with a leisure battery to fit to my van - I'm going to follow the easy to follow how to (hopefuly it is as easy!) in this years keeping your bus alive mag.

I'm looking to run my stereo (inc amp + sub) plus fridge (to purchase) amongst other possible things (a cosy electric blanket for those cold nights maybe!)

Also think i'm gonnna fit an electric hookup too - just kampers look like they can cover this bit but the split charge kit i'm not so sure where...

Any thoughts?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PaulG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 May 09 at 17:36
You should be able to find quite a bit on this topic if you search.  A 12 volt DC battery will not run those things you think you want to run for more that about 30 minutes before it's flat though!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jason k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 May 09 at 19:56
yup all those = dead battery very quickly Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chappy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 May 09 at 20:37

get a zig CF9 panel - takes care of all your 12v outputs, charges the leisure battery when on 240v, steps 240v down to 12v when on hookup and takes care of split charging.

£180 - but well worth it Tongue
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Joker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 09 at 16:33
look at sterling power products costs loads but fantastic kit
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Custard Nights Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 09 at 08:57
CF9 sounds good - how do these work exactly and is fitting easy?

I have no zig knowledge whatsoever...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chappy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 09 at 20:32
I've got a copy of the manual somewhere - PM me your email address and I'll email it  Smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote syncrostan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 09 at 09:50
Sorry to cross post,but does anyone run a freestanding generator?Believe those suitcase types are really quiet
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chappy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 09 at 10:57
I've thought about it (genny), but the be honest I've got two whacking gert leaisure batts and they'll easily see me through a week of sensible use, so for weekends it's not an issue.
 
The only benefit of 240V availability is that you can charge up your leisure batts, use a fan heater, hair dryer (for those of you aquainted with me, you'll know that's not an issue LOL) etc, etc
 
Water pump, stereo, strip lights and flat screen telly draw very small amps on 12v so no worries there. 
 
We've got an eber for those cold non-hooked up nights, so the faff of having to lump a genny about isn't worth the benefit of having 240V anywhere you go.    
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Custard Nights Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 09:20
you know anything about the cf9b? this seems to be a similar affair - lost a cf9 on ebay yesterday to highest bidder, however seem to be a couple of the older style cf9bs.

then the interesting part of fitting it!!! i'm useless with electrics
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chappy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 13:56
not sure about a CF9b, maybe an older model?  PM me your email adress and I'll email you the CF9 manual though. At least you can have a look and see what's involved.
 
Mind you, if I can wire it, anyone can Big smile
 
Where are you located? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote green manalishi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 20:41
I am a Sterling fan, having had the kit in the van now for over a year I cannot fault it.

If you want to properly charge two or more big batteries then there is little else to compare.



The Stirling alternator manager monitors the starter battery and the leisure or domestic batteries, and puts the power where it needs it. I have seen 114 amps at 14.8 volts going into the domestic batteries, and that's from a standard 90 Bosch. It amplifies the voltage direct from the alternator to 14.8 whilst it bulk charges, then drops the voltage in a 4 stage manner.

http://www.sterling-power.com/products-altbatt.htm

It is expensive, but it is a fit and forget item, I just use two batt's from Mole Valley Farmers at 45 quid each.

This product means that you can properly free camp, I just dont need to hook up.

Below photo shows the alternator putting out around 100 amps, but at a too low to charge 13 volts, and amplifying it up to the required 14.8 volts. You just wont get that sort of charging from a little relay and speaker wire.








The Sterling twin battery charger, inverter and alternator manager all sit on the second shelf.



















Edited by green manalishi - 25 May 09 at 21:01
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 21:22
I keep telling people on 80/90 to fit 100A systems but they all persist in fitting these puny 30A ones due to lack of knowledge as to the amps involved - then there are posts about 'my 30A fuse has blown'!My Merc van has a 180A relay switched by a 30A intelligent relay to charge my pair of 110A batteries,topped up by a solar panel.This is far cheaper than the Sterling way but you don't get the pretty lights!
Nice to see a sensible set up.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote covdubber Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 21:39
i've just done this on my van, piece of piss my system is this on my devon
12v/gas fridge, 2 burner hobb/sink
 
Mains hookup as per KYBA mag but with a trip-out box, double plug socket but have the opertunity to add more!
 
split charging as per the KYBA mag with a 110 leisure battery, i dont know where to put it yet though??????
 
when driving the fridge can go on 12v although i dont need that option & apparently its not good to have the fridge running on the move???
 
when hooked up on the mains i have a trickle charger on the leasure battery so in affect all my stuff on the leisure battery is being charged as needs be just like a Zig panel in a way, seems to be working a treat at the moment :P
 
also going to pick up a cheap solar panel to hook up to keep power hunky-dory, i am a cheapskate but my system is setup safe/tidy, i've use the biggest cable i can, if there is a recommendation on a bigger relay to use, i'm a newbie to all this anyway
 
also my alternator is the OE one?
 
could do with an idea of where to mount my big battery?????????
 
that sterling setup looks great, i my upgrade to that in the futre!!!


Edited by covdubber - 25 May 09 at 21:51
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 21:49
Originally posted by covdubber covdubber wrote:


when driving the fridge can go on 12v although i dont need that option & apparently its not good to have the fridge running on the move???

It's better to use the 'spare' energy from the alternator when on the move to cool the fridge than to use expensive gas.The 12v is meant to be used on the move only.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote covdubber Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 09 at 21:56
cheers oldie-goodie, iin an ideal world i'l like to setup all the rear electrics fridge/lights etc & my stereo from my leisure battery thats being kept topped up from the split-charge & keep my driving battery completely seperate so its just starting the van & drving the lights!!!!
 
i've set mine up in the usual fashion just to get it up and running but i'll change bits n bobs as needs be & ppl advise me where to better things
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Custard Nights Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 May 09 at 10:46
Well this all seems good advice and helpful to see what other people are doing - on a moment of reflection i think i need to keep mine simple, i'll only go away in my van a few times a year and i plan to add to the system slowly (i plan to get a fridge but don't have one yet as well as extra internal lights).

I guess i need a reasonably priced solution which will prove worthwhile in the long run but also practical and simple to install and manage (novice!) within my capabilities.

i like the look of the zig, i do want to get a mains hook up as KYBA, the sterling looks impressive (loving the serious setup) but this looks like more than i need and want to spend.

hmm where to go from here...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Custard Nights Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 May 09 at 11:21
Found the manual download online cheers - doesn't seem crazily complicated. I'm based in north london
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote covdubber Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 09 at 12:49
if i can find my phone cable i'll do picks of mine, mine is a super simple setup & safe!
 
i've been told a 110 leisure battery should give me enough power for a long weekend if i'm sensible, its the fridge/stereo thats the power user & in the day you are'nt using anything really other than maybe for a cuppa etc
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