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The quote is a sig line from Rob Thomas and is... thought provoking...Yes. And, as one of my favorite paraphrases of someone else on this site: All these projects are great when you realize that setting fire to $20 bills isn't a fast enough way to get rid of them.....
I did it and admit it. Cannot see why it is a problem...cheap, quick, more secure, better connection..soldered with heat shrink tubing. Why is that not the best way? Only one trailer connection done...will do the other after virus.
@ debonAir: I followed your reasoning for wiring the alternator to the starter post, keeping the Batt switch in “1,” and adding an ACR to Bank 1 to charge Bank 2. Sounds pretty reasonable. I’m also intrigued by the Alternator Protector Device (APD)—seems like it would handle many common faults (loose connections, a bad battery selector switch, or selecting OFF on the batt switch while charging).
Where did you put the APD? It says to keep it as close as possible to the Alternator. Do you know if there is any passive electrical draw from the APD?
@ Tin Kicker: I get Mainesail’s recommendation for wiring the alternator output directly to the House Bank (he describes his reasons in great detail) rather than to the starter post. It seems this would alleviate the potential Battery Selector Switch problems and, thus, most of the need for an APD. However, it does require a longer wire run (probably about 3 ft in the E323) and, likely, the need for fusing in the line. I’m guessing 4GA wire would be sufficient here for a 50-70A alternator.
@ Anyone: Poke some holes in this idea, if you would: If I play with Mainsail’s recommendation and end up with a 3 ft charging wire to my House Bank, it seems this this circuit should be fused within 7” or so of the alternator output (although I don’t recall MaineSail specifying this). Any easy way to do this would be run the alternator output wire to an ANL fuse block mounted to the engine stringer below the alternator. The other end of the ANL fuse block would power the 3-ft charging cable to the House Bank. This hot-wires the House Bank to the alternator (essentially eliminating the mishaps from the Batt Selector Switch and, thus, the need for an Alternator Protection Device). And, it still allows charging of the Start Bank by selecting “ALL” on the Battery Switch. (I.E. this is like MaineSail’s recommendation but simply using the Batt Selector Switch as a manual Battery Combiner, rather than an ACR).
In debonAir’s worst case scenario, where the House Bank fails (or is otherwise removed from play) all I’d have to do is move the alternator output wire from the ANL fuse block back to the starter post and select the Start Bank on the Battery Selector Switch to overcome the problem of the failed House Bank. Not an instant fix, but not difficult or time consuming either.
Plus, I wouldn’t have to buy or install an ACR or an APD. And, being on a mooring buoy without AC or solar, I like to minimize passive draws on the battery. Even at .015A the ACR is passively drawing 11A▪H per month–that’s equivalent to 4 continuous hours of a running bilge pump.
Any obvious drawbacks I'm missing here?
Regarding the need for a kill switch, Boat US says 75 percent of boat theft is 26' and under. Vast majority are on trailers. Theft (of the boat) is the 16th most popular claim overall at Boat US. Of all boat theft claims, sailboats represent 3 percent.
Hey Tin, is there a version of this schematic someplace in the site that I can enlarge and print it? DanThe alternator output and glow plug mods are very worthwhile changes. Do pay heed to Mainesails' comment:
"Please note that I generally advise running the alternator output directly to the house bank, not to the starter as shown here. You can then install an automatic combining relay (ACR) or an Echo Charger between the banks to charge both simultaneously. Doing this will remove the potential for fried diodes via the flipping of the battery switch through the OFF position."
In the meantime or if not going to install the ACR, try to not rotate the battery switch while the engine is running. Each time you do hits those diodes with the alternator output and even though they were rated for it when new, they just aren't that new anymore.
I'd encourage doing the glow plug mod as well, because it is also running a high current 10 AWG circuit through those 35 year old (in my case) corroded trailer connectors. When replacing the trailer connectors with terminal strips, the one near the starter is easy to find and replace, but don't forget that there is a second trailer connector hiding beneath the cockpit control panel.
fwiw - I made up some combined schematics a while ago (example below) and have been finding that the diagrams they were based in differ from how the boat was wired. Most of what I'm seeing does appear to be the 1985 factory wiring so I can't blame previous owners for most of these and the message is to check yours before making electrical changes. When I finish the current fuel system replacement and can get in there with the schematics illustrationon the iPad I will update the electrical schematics and post them.