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huntnjim

colorado

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Posted: 07/29/12 08:12pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I need more battery life and looking for the best set up, battery size and brand 2 minimum or how many?
Also does keeping the ac power pluged in while not being used do any harm to the inverter?

* This post was edited 07/29/12 08:56pm by huntnjim *

bldrbuck

one or the other

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Posted: 07/29/12 09:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have four Trojan batteries and they seem to do the job for me. I would turn off the inverter if plugged in.

gkenworth

Alberta

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Posted: 07/29/12 09:30pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Go with the biggest 6volt golf cart batteries you can (in groups of 2).
X2 turn of f the inverter when stored for a while.


IMHO

skipnchar

Topeka or somewhere else

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Posted: 07/29/12 09:44pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

6 volt Trojan TG 105s are probably the best bang for the buck. WELL over double the power of most of the largest 12 volt batteries and their MAIN advantage is their longevity (years not hours). I had two of them stolen from my trailer a year ago and they had 8 years use on them at the time and were still in good shape. MOST of our camping involves being self contained so they got a LOT of very hard use.


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huntnjim

colorado

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Posted: 07/30/12 06:04am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I assume you turn the breaker off for the inverter...correct?
2 or 4 Trojan 105s?

RoyB

King George, VA

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Posted: 07/30/12 07:09am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you are tight on a money budget the four 6V COSTCO/SAMs ($70 each) would be the way to go... each of these batteries weigh 63LBs.

If you really want a better setup and money is no object I would go with four each of the TROJAN T1275PLUS 12VDC 150AH Batteries. These batteries weigh 82LBs each and would give you a 600AH battery capability. The cost of this is around $1000. Then I would also install at least 140WATTS of Solar Panels to keep these batteries on trickle charge during the daylight hours. The cost of this I think is around $2-$3 a watt.

I would also use the Progressive Dynamics SMART-MODE Converter/charger 60AMP PD9260C or equiv setup ($200) with the thought in mind you can run all you need too off the batteries in an one day/night outing and then re-charge everything back up to 90% charge state the next morning by running your ONAN for 2-3 hours during breakfast. Then the Solar Panels will take over during the day when the sun is out and by evening you should be ready to do all of this all over again etc... If your batteries are not at their 90% charge state by early evening then another run of the ONAN for an hour or so will seal that in for you. Of course none of this includes running your air conditioners. Air Conditioners and Batteries and Inverters doesnt mix to well. About the only way to run air conditioning when camping off the power grid is to run the generator. Then we always run into generator run time restrictions just about everywhere we go. Who needs air conditioning anyway... A bowl of ice or cool stream water running down a grate with a fan blowing behind it works good for us... Think that is called a swamp cooler (just takes a small DC water pump and a fan) hehe...

The big Golf Cart batteries with the large cores is the answer... I am not a big fan of running two 6V in series to get a 12VDC Battery system but a lot of folks do it. If you only have one group of two 6V batteries and one fails on you it may get dark on you. The answer here is to have two groups of 6V batteries in series. Two groups in series will give around 450AH Battery capability. You have to think of the two 6V batteries as one 12V battery and you know you have to have to run two 12VDC batteries (four 6V batteries in this case) when you are camping off the grid to always have a backup.

I would rather have multiple 12VDC batteries in Parallel then if a battery goes bad you can still get by but at a lower capability until the bad battery has been replaced.

This is the way we camp off the power grid with our OFF-ROAD POPUP setup and it is very successful for us. I realize i am on a smaller scale then your setup but the system technique is all the same. I don't have the solar panel setup yet but it is next on my list.

I would install a Blue Sea heavy duty Battery Disconnect and completely disable the battery Banks while in storage if you don't plan to run everything from your shore power connections at your house/garage. Your solar panels would keep all your batteries topped off while being parked if you had those installed and are using SMART-MODE CHARGING techniques. I have two INVERTERS on my OFF-ROAD setup and they are always hard-wired to my battery bank. They both use a remote on-off panel and I activate them when they are needed. They are always left connected to the batteries so I guess there is always a parasitic battery drain involved there but my system is always connected to 120VAC when at home.

Big heavy batteries and your Big Sky Montana might be a challenge as to retrofit the storage bay to accommodate them. You will need to fume off the batteries good when being charged and take care of battery fluid spills or boil-over. Using smart-mode charging will almost take care of all this for you as for as boiling over is concerned.

Like everything else all of this needs to planned out good...
Cant just slap some bailing wire and duct tape on it and expect it to be successful. Make it a good professional install so that it wont interfere with your hunting time...

My thoughts on the subj...

* This post was edited 07/30/12 07:16am by RoyB *


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MC9

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Posted: 07/30/12 07:53am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Go to Sams and get 2 six volt golf cart batteries. Hook them in series and you will be good to go.

Mile High

CO

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Posted: 07/30/12 08:30am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Year 5 on my pair of 6-volt golf cart batteries and going strong.

Ridawing

Suisun City, Ca.

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Posted: 07/31/12 08:59am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I changed by 12 volt Interstate on my 2012 because it is not a true deep cycle battery. Not sure why the dealers put these in RV's since they are more for boats requiring some cranking power and doesn't have much on amp hours. I went to Costco and picked up two 6volt. Went to home depot and bought a plastic tub and used it to vent the batteries top and bottom. Between having the six volts, LED lights, and a Honda 3000, not sure if I even want to go solar until the price comes down some more.

smkettner

Southern California

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Posted: 07/31/12 09:19am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I recommend 2 or 4 of the golf batteries.
LED lighting had the effect of doubling my battery.

Inverter? or Converter? If it is charging the battery then it is best to keep it on. Lead-acid battery prefers to stay 100% charged for long life. Some are better than others so post the make and model of the component for best answers. Or measure voltage on the battery terminals after a week to check the function.


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