[Amel] Re: All Battery Chargers

drew_gaffney <drew.gaffney@...>

We had the same experience when we bought Revelation. The previous owner had Reya repair his 30A charger. A few months later, when we met to inspect Revelation prior to purchase, the Dolphin had stayed in bulk mode, boiled a fairly new set of Trojan T-105's totally dry and ruined them!
We installed a Xantrex Freedom inverter/charger, which replaces the Dolphin 30A unit and gives us the capability of getting 220V 50Hz AC from 60Hz shore power. It's also sometimes handy to be able to run the microwave for a minute without having to start the generator.
Our 100A Dolphin also failed. The fan stopped (it was fine, the PCB was not...) We managed by opening the charger and using an external fan while charging until the end of the season. As long as the charger was cooled, it charged.
We replaced it with a Victron 100A charger, which fits nicely in the same space and has worked well for the past year. It was half the price of a Dolphin replacement.
We have found that we do need to equalize periodically. The charge rate declines and a full charge takes longer and longer. The Xantrex will do equaliazation, but ONLY if you purchase the external control device, approximately $125 USD. The 24V controllers are not available, but Xantrex says the 12V units can be kluged to work. We typically use our Balmar alternator to equalize, getting our SpGr back into the 1.250-1.285 range.
Finally, some have questioned the need for the 30A charger. I think the 100A charger will pop most marina shore-power breakers...
S/Y Revelation SM390
Lying Coffs Harbour, AU

--- In amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com, kimberlite <kimberlite@...> wrote:


My 30 amp charger did the same thing,

It burned up my whole bank.

I returned it to reya and for about 125 US they repaired it.

I also replaced my batteries with group 31 sealed lead acid batteries.

Fair Winds


Amel Super Maramu #376 Kimberlite


From: amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com
[mailto:amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of gtesta23@...
Sent: Saturday, March 19, 2011 12:42 PM
To: amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com
Subject: R: [Amel] Re: All Battery Chargers

Hi Garry,
we are now in Panama, Colon. With us an other SM ABORA with the same
But we don't have the solution.
I'll ask directly to REYA FR.
all the best

----Messaggio originale----
Da: no_reply@yahoogroups.com <mailto:no_reply%40yahoogroups.com>
Data: 19-mar-2011 17.19
A: <amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:amelyachtowners%40yahoogroups.com> >
Ogg: R: [Amel] Re: All Battery Chargers

----Messaggio originale----
Da: no_reply@yahoogroups.com <mailto:no_reply%40yahoogroups.com>
Data: 19-mar-2011 17.19
A: <amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:amelyachtowners%40yahoogroups.com> >
Ogg: R: [Amel] Re: All Battery Chargers

Hi Gianni:

I installed 12 new Trojan SCS225 deep cycle batteries about 9 months ago.
They are flooded lead acid batteries.
I chose to have these since I had understood that absorbed gas matt (aka gel
cell) batteries didn't tolerate
the heat of the Caribbean well. My engine starting battery is a Deka and is
a high cranking power battery. Not
sure of it's number but it was a group 31 battery and I considered buying 12
more to serve as my house
batteries because they were compatible with the existing Amel copper bar
connecting plates. The supplier
didn't have 12 more available and I further researched the one I had and
found that it was not a deep cycle
battery and thus decided on the Trojans.

At any rate, we were in a marina for a few days after having been charging
on the generator for a few weeks,
and I had the 30 amp Dolphin charger on to "top up the batteries" One
morning I came from the aft cabin
and while walking through quarter-berth companionway, placed my hand on the
berth mattress and noticed
that it was very very warm. I opened the battery compartment and found all
the batteries actively gassing
and bubbling to overflowing electrolyte. Using an infrared thermometer I
measured the temp of the batteries
at 135-145 deg F. The voltage was about 28.3 volts. As I recall they were
still having 18 amps pumped into
them even after 36 hrs on the charger. It seemed that the 30 amp Dolphin
charger had failed to switch from
"bulk" charge to float charge. Fortunately the batteries didn't have the
plates exposed and hopefully they do
not have warped plates from the excessive heat.

I called the Dophin charger people in the US and spoke to them. They
suggested re-setting the charger
by disconnecting the voltage to the charger, letting it sit for 30 minutes
and then reconnecting to the
batteries. I did this by "turning off the main battery switches" assuming
that I was indeed disconnecting
the charger from the batteries. When I didn't see any change in the behavior
of the charger I assumed that
the charger was faulty. As we were leaving the boat I didn't take any
further action to trouble-shoot the issue.

Now, with the information that the battery switches don't disconnect the
batteries from the charger (at least
on SN 318, and will shortly be determined if that is the same on my boat),
perhaps my old Dolphin 30 amp
charger can be made to behave. At any rate, I will no longer take the
automatic functioning of my charger
for granted, and I am considering installing a temperature alarm on my
battery bank so I won't risk
destroying $3,000 US worth of batteries due to a faulty charger. Watch your
battery temperatures, and the
amperage going into the battery bank carefully as it sounds like your
charger is doing the same thing
mine was.

Just my thoughts,

Gary Silver

Amel SM 2000 #335
s/v Liahona

--- In amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:amelyachtowners%40yahoogroups.com> , "gtesta23@" <gtesta23@>

Hi Chris,
Thanks for your suggestions
I have 12 new DEKA lead acid deep cycle batteries. About 630 Ah.
My Dolphin 30 A charger works slowly up to 28.1,2 v. Than, I suppose, it
should go down to about 27 /26.5 v in stand by. ( no boost).
The my one seems to remain at 28.1 for long time boosting few amperes.
Is the charger to little for my 630 Ah ?
thanks in advance
All the best
Gianni Testa

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