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23.11.2014
I have a project boat I have been working on for 2 years and I have come to the point where I have to install batteries.
The VSR cluster has a parallel for both starting batteries, but I will also add an electric solenoid to parallel starting and house batteries. For generating limited AC , an extra pair of extra house batteries and a combo battery charger dc ac verter does a fine job on a small boat .
The Blue Seas relay works well but you will never quite have the house battery at full capacity and you need to have a manual switch in case it fails (or for jumping main if starting battery were to fail.). I haven't revisited these in years, but as I remember them the relays do draw down some voltage from the starting battery to monitor the system voltage. Finally my fourth bank is a collection of 6 2V true deep cycle batteries in parrallel that operate the house loads.
I am a little nuts about these systems, but I can promise you I have done everything I can to ensure that I will always have the electrical power necessary to get an engine cranking.
Location: Jacksonville, Florida If you put a red top on one engine and three blue tops on the other with the vsr between you will increase the size of the house bank so you can draw off it longer. Originally Posted by Stumble At the time I looked at it I remember seeing something like 1amp draw for the monitoring of the primary battery bank. I've designed a few of these systems, both for marine and photovoltaic applications and never needed more than a few milliamps to monitor battery condition. When charging current is available, you can use some to operate a power relay and during starting, a device to switch batteries parallel can draw a few amps.


I've used bipolar relays that can be toggled with a short pulse, so once in the desired state, the power demand is zero. That adds up to 1.5 Ah each day, so after a month under a roof the battery is depleted to the point where the under-voltage protection cuts in. When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals.
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For the best possible results and longest service life, install a battery with the maximum dimensions and highest capacity. This for a day sailor is fine, but for a long range cruising boat minimizing any current draw from the starting batteries is a necessity so that there is no question that they will start when called upon. Each of the starting banks holds two (these engines are 550hp cummings diesels so one would work for you i think) starting types of batteries.
Does what you are saying mean that my setup as I posted above is drawing down the starting battery if I don't turn its switch to "off"?
But it takes a very stupid designer to let the system draw 1 amp when the battery charge needs to be conserved. In my RV there is a fancy controller for the start- and house battery with alternator and solar input. Take measurements of the length, width and height of the battery you are replacing or battery tray and use those physical dimensions to determine which replacement battery to order.


Using a battery with lower capacity could shorten battery life and may occasionally cause electronic malfunction. My decision at the time (admitedly this was about 5 years ago) was they just weren't justified. There is also a built in jumper cable system that runs through typical battery switches that allows me to do one of two things. But remember I am working off of a memory of a system I researched years ago, I could certainly be remembering wrong. It is not necessary for the replacement battery to match the dimensions of your current battery exactly but they should be close in physical size. A battery with higher capacity will not do any damage to the starter or electronics, but it will extend the battery discharge time and ultimate service life.
1) Simply jump the non-starting engine, or 2) remove a bad bank from the system and run both engines off of one bank (This is in case I have a battery melt down or something catastophic not really a big wory). The reason for this is to fully seperate the engine starting batteries from even the possibility of a draining current from anywhere pulling down the engine starting batteries. Since I can deal with anything (almost) at sea, but a boat full of dead batterys means I am screwed (can't even call the coast guard cause the batteries are dead ).



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