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Author Topic: Inverter vs charger  (Read 4200 times)
gus
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« Reply #15 on: May 21, 2006, 12:57:05 PM »

NCBob,

I'm no gen expert, I'm just going by what my gas Onan Instruction Book says "There is a small charging amperage produced by the flywheel alternator at all times. Never run the generator without a battery hooked to the starter".

Pretty plain to me. Makes sense since no alternator should be operated with no load. It's also pretty plain that the generator engine needs an ignition source.

Since, unlike automotive alternators, it has a permanent magnet field so it produces power all the time.

When I had it hooked directly to my starter bank it did all kinds of crazy things to my bus alternator.

I'm pretty sure that any alternator used to produce DC uses a rectifier, don't know of any other way to get DC from AC.
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Chuck Newman
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« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2006, 01:07:30 PM »

Great programs for us geeks.  Reasonable prices.

Thanks Steve.

Chuck
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1989 MCI 102A3, Series 50, DDEC III, Allison 740D
El-Sonador
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« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2006, 02:09:31 PM »

Great programs for us geeks. Reasonable prices.

Thanks Steve.

Chuck

If you, or others, decide to get one of these programs and need help getting acquainted with it, just let me know. I'm not an expert, but I have used this system constantly for the last four years...

Steve
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NCbob
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« Reply #18 on: May 22, 2006, 04:05:34 AM »

Steve, I'm just really applying the same practices we used during the years I was on private yachts.  We had shore power and we had generators. The first inverters I became aware of were the Heart Inverters and initially they didn't have a very good track record.  We mostly ran the generator(s) to keep the reefers & freezers going.  With guests on board, underway it was required that we run the chillers for the A/C.  If we were on an extended stay in the Bahamas we could always get some measure of single phase power although in the out islands it was less dependable.  On the larger yachts it was rare to be able to get 3 phase so we needed to run 2 generators (not paralled) if we also ran the water maker (1000 gallon per day).  City folks can sure use a helluva lot of water!

I can't see running a 12.5 KW generator just for refrigeration.  Our bus is very well insulated and the times of the year we travel we generally don't use the roof A/C's.  In my particular case the idiot who installed the generator didn't install a long enough pickup tube in the tank so the generator runs out of fuel after the main engine burns about 50 Gals.  I will rectify that (one of these days) but for the moment it's not a priority.

When the wife and I traveled by car we used the cooler so we didn't have to stop for lunch or drinks.  Traveling with 'home' water makes for a more predictable schedule, if you know what I mean.

I may see the day wherein it's an advantage to add another system, like an inverter, but for the moment I believe that a 3 stage convertor will satisy my needs.  Since the generator battery is charged of the small alternator on the main engine chances are its' winding, for battery charging, is disconnected or not functioning.  By moving the generator start battery into the "house" bank it will be charged with the rest, become a member of that bank and be charged by the Convertor (at post) so there should always be more than enough reserve to crank and start the genset.

Hope that clears it up...and thanks for your input.

NCbob
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« Reply #19 on: May 22, 2006, 06:15:11 AM »


NCbob

It seems we have a lot in common Bob... I too sailed and lived on private yachts and did so in the "old tradition". I understand from your other post that you have a woody also, would it be a Criss Craft Constellation or affectionately referred to as a Connie? Anyways I purchased a 72 footer built in 1934 by ACF - twin 671n's and a 4 cylinder Perkins that ran the genset and no inverter on-board at that time for the same reasons you mentioned. I lived on this boat for almost ten years with no permanent dock to run to during storms. I was out there fending for myself 24/7.

I progressed or degressed, depending on how we look at things, to my MCI-9 "Land Yacht" I remember being on-the-hook on the lee of some island riding out a storm and that little Perkins just humming away through the night... wish I had an inverter then, knowing what I know now and that the inverters of today are so efficient and reliable. It seems that these two lifestyles, one on the water and one on the land are virtually the same. They both possess freedom, self-sufficiency and independence. We can just pull up our anchors and move on with all our possessions as we now do with the bus on dry land.

At first, this may appear that we are "off-topic" but I don't think so. Your choice to go with an inverter or charger is one based on life-style, needs and wants. Leaving money out of the equation and assuming one can afford it, I believe we should equip our "vessels" with the best systems we can to provide us with the best enjoyment of the life-style we have chosen to embark on. You mentioned your wife being disabled in some form. My wife too is now confined to a wheelchair for the rest of her life, so much so that I had to give up my life on the sea. But we all have our crosses to bare as you eluded to.

Most here are caught up in the actual building of their dream, hobby or what ever it means to them. For some "tinkering" with the conversion process is the dream itself, while other see the conversion process as a means to a life style further on down the road. Whatever this means to you, and the comfort you want for you and yours will dictate how you equip your unit and for what purpose.

Life is short and our wives bring that message a little closer to home, so what ever you decide, choose wisely... Your life on the sea is a great asset to draw from.


Steve
« Last Edit: May 22, 2006, 06:16:56 AM by El SoŮadorô » Logged
DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #20 on: May 22, 2006, 06:35:06 AM »


I'm pretty sure that any alternator used to produce DC uses a rectifier, don't know of any other way to get DC from AC.

Alternators produce AC power directly. Generators produce DC power directly. To get DC power from an alternator, rectifiers are required as you state.

To my knowledge there are no true DC generators being manufactured today. Generators require commutator bars. The last one I worked on was manufactured in the 60's.

Richard
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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« Reply #21 on: May 22, 2006, 06:57:40 AM »

If we were on an extended stay in the Bahamas we could always get some measure of single phase power although in the out islands it was less dependable.† NCbob


Bob, the attached link shows the products I developed and patented for the Marine Industry. The frequency converter would take in any frequency and any voltage, single or three phase, and out put the required voltage, phase and frequency the yacht required. Sure did resolve a lot of the problems you used to have.

http://www.shorpower.com/products.htm

Richard
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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