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a2wolfsburggli Mon May 20, 2019 4:26 pm

jseehorn wrote: Has anyone looked into installing a battery pack under the floor on the RH side near the sliding door? (as opposed to the LH side where the propane tank is on a camper). I like the idea of preserving inside storage space.


This! This is a great idea. I found that little cubby the other day and was going to see what I could stuff in there.

I've heard of other people putting the batteries in the engine compartment too.

Inlet Mon May 20, 2019 4:44 pm

Kirsche Wasserboxer wrote: I see that GoWesty is now offering a 50ah LiFePO4 battery.
https://www.gowesty.com/product/electrical/25082/lifepo_aux_battery?v=

It looks pretty close sizewise to the Battle Born I have under my driver's seat. It is quite a bit cheaper in cost, but I don't see any mention of the warranty terms, or specifics of the BMS, other than a low voltage cutoff.


So the gowesty battery is just plug and play? Or do I need separate components to charge it? I'm assuming my promariner prosport 12 dual charger won't be able to charge a Li battery...

ledogboy Mon May 20, 2019 5:13 pm

jseehorn wrote: Has anyone looked into installing a battery pack under the floor on the RH side near the sliding door? (as opposed to the LH side where the propane tank is on a camper). I like the idea of preserving inside storage space.

Yes, search for the Peace Vans setup, there are other diy threads on here too.

shagginwagon83 Mon May 20, 2019 5:25 pm

a2wolfsburggli wrote: jseehorn wrote: Has anyone looked into installing a battery pack under the floor on the RH side near the sliding door? (as opposed to the LH side where the propane tank is on a camper). I like the idea of preserving inside storage space.


This! This is a great idea. I found that little cubby the other day and was going to see what I could stuff in there.

I've heard of other people putting the batteries in the engine compartment too.

Look up ntaramorris on here. His propex unit is in there. Plus he has room to add another 120ah if he wanted to.

msinabottle Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:33 pm

Having bought and received a GoWesty 50 AH LiFePo4 battery--RIGHT before the sale...

:shock:

I now report the following correspondence. First, my letter to Yandina:

Quote: Hello!

In 2006 I purchased and installed one of your C100 Combiners in my 1984 VW Westfalia camper as described HERE:

https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=159091&highlight=winston+gets+wired

I'm fairly sure I was the first to do so. I wasn't the last. The Odyssey PC1200T AGM battery installed at the time is no longer holding sufficient charge, although I credit your combiner for how long it lasted. I aim to replace it with this much more modern battery, already delivered:

https://www.gowesty.com/product/electrical/25082/lifepo_aux_battery-50ah?v=

a LiFePo4 with charge management circuitry to make it charge like a conventional lead acid battery.

When I installed the C100 in 2006 I attached the blue wire it had then to the AGM's + terminal to keep it from overcharging, as your instructions detailed. I understand that your company later cut off that blue wire, saying it wasn't needed it. Should I cut it, or connect to the new LiFePo4 battery now?

I suspect the former, but you know more than I.

Thank you!

Today I got this response:

Quote: The Combiner 100 is not compatible with Lithium batteries. We are working on Lithium compatible equivalents of our products and hope to have them available later this year. Some tests are already underway.

I will put your name on a list of people to be advised when the Lithium versions are available.

Regards,


Having browsed this and the other LiFePo4 threads, I had thought the power management circuitry made the GoWesty battery a 'drop-in.' In fact, I was about to drop it in. Now I am not so sure.

The one thing I can report is that I 'topped off' the LiFePo4 battery, in keeping with the only instructions I got from GoWesty, with a charger set for Lead Acid, 2A, and everything seemed to go well, up to and including 'float.'

Informed thoughts would be most welcome.

Best!

puchfinnland Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:43 am

I got a REDARC BCDC40D for my 100A lipo,
this charges at 40A, also avail in 25 and 50A versions

avail from vanagain.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfp0vE7teNg

redarc.com

replaces the battery connector device
the solar regulator
properly charges a lithium
solar is priority over Alternator if avail

rmcd Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:20 am

Regarding Msinabottle discovery about not supporting lithium batteries.

Each battery type requires a charge controller than can model the charging requirements of that they battery. Lead acid, AGM lead acid and lithium are all different and the controller needs to match.

I use a ctek controller setup That is a splitter, battery management and MPPT controller for my AGM batteries.

I also asked them about a similar setup for lithium. They explained the same that the controllers are NOT lithium compatible and as of a year ago donít have a 12v setup for lithium in the works to do all these functions.

https://www.ctek.com/products/vehicle/140a-off-road

rmcd Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:36 am

Guess ctek does have something close.

https://www.ctek.com/products/professional/pro60

It support 12v lithium and all types of lead acid. I didnít read up but it looked like it would manage across multiple input sources. You probably want to do some further research first to confirm.

Btw. You can buy ctek devices MUCH cheaper from indie resellers. Look around before buying.

rmcd Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:23 pm

Ctek does have a 12v system for managing lithium batteries, with lead acid batteries, battery split/combo, smart alternator input and support for MPPT solar or other input.

https://www.ctek.com/products/on-board/d250se

Good news for me if I every go to lithium as I can swap out my d250sa for the new controller that supports lithium batteries. Yea. Probably years off.

msinabottle Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:50 pm

Thank you, rmcd, for all that thought and input. I, too, am a fan of the Herkimer Battle Jitney, not the first van with a manual I have seen killed by poor clutching. I always hoped the great non-lethal machine survived the explosion of Casanova Frankenstein's mansion.

GoWesty is, I note, selling the same combiner set-up for the LiFePo4 battery that they have long sold for all set-ups. As I see it, voltage is voltage and there shouldnít be an issue with the Yandina funneling current flow into the system to the low battery in it, it never had any issues between the Lead-Acid and the AGM Odyssey. The LiFePo4 seemed to do just fine with my charger.

All that Ctek stuff looked awfully expensive and complicated and I didn't see the functions I sought. I wrote GoWesty. Are there other, further thoughts?

:shock:

Best!

msinabottle Mon Oct 14, 2019 3:55 pm

I've already received this full and useful response from GoWesty, to whom I am very grateful. They said I could post the information. Ecce:

Quote:
Hi,

I ran this past one of our engineers and his comments are below. I hope this helps to answer your question. Thanks!

--

Iíve got some hypotheses, but since we donít really use those VSRs much here I canít give too much definitive info.

It looks like the VSR he mentions (guessing itís that one linked) has a connection voltage of 13.3V. Thatís right on the edge of problematic with our LiFePo4 batteries, which will charge up slightly above that voltage Ė this means that the LiFePo4 would then drain (trickle charging the starter battery and powering any accessories) until it falls below 13.3V, at which point the VSR would separate the batteries.

That sounds problematic, but the nonlinear discharge characteristics of LiFePo4 batteries means that heíd probably only lose 5% of the batteryís total charge before falling below the VSRís connection threshold. At 13.29 V, the LiFePo4 would still hold the vast majority of its charge Ė still much more useable charge than one of our typical lead acid batteries would have fully charged. This may have a tiny effect on the batteryís long term charge capacity, since youíd effectively be very minorly charging/discharging it every time you ran it; this is something we havenít tested, so Iím speculating on it

All that said, the VSR isnít ideal but it should still allow the LiFePo4 to function as a solid upgrade over lead acid for this application.

Iíll note that these batteries are drop-in with our system because our isolator separates the two batteries by sensing the alternator charge. They also work fine with almost any solar charge controller.



I wrote back this:

Quote: THANK YOU, very much, for a prompt, full and useful reply. That's tremendously helpful. What I could do, I think, would be to turn OFF the combiner when the van is on shore power to let the Schumacher charger/tender 'top off' the LiFePo4 battery and perhaps mitigate the problem significantly. On the alternator, the SLI battery would get its charge while running.

and got back this:

Quote: I think your plan sounds like a solid one. It is no problem sharing what the engineer wrote on the Samba. Thanks!

Still time to order that battery during the sale. We of the Vanagon community, as I have remarked, are well-served by our aftermarket.

Best!

pnwkayaker Mon Oct 14, 2019 5:36 pm

Would you mind posting some pictures of your setup (location, wiring, etc). Iím about to order a similar REDARC unit (not sure if 25A or 40A version) and Iím wondering where would be a good place to install it (it will replace aPWM slar charger and a Blue Seas ACR)




puchfinnland wrote: I got a REDARC BCDC40D for my 100A lipo,
this charges at 40A, also avail in 25 and 50A versions

avail from vanagain.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfp0vE7teNg

redarc.com

replaces the battery connector device
the solar regulator
properly charges a lithium
solar is priority over Alternator if avail

gershee Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:42 pm

Pcforno wrote: I have one 50 amp smart battery and 2 20 amp smart batteries totaling 90 amps all sitting sideways- they fit perfectly in the battery tray under the drivers seat. I removed the central sheet metal between the seat sliders and was able to fit a charger and a battery isolator in there as well.

So you 90ah in batteries under driver's seat?
Can you link me to batteries and/or show pics?
Interested to know what batteries..

erste Wed Oct 16, 2019 9:17 pm

gershee wrote:
So you 90ah in batteries under driver's seat?
Can you link me to batteries and/or show pics?
Interested to know what batteries..
Not sure about Pcforno's setup, but you might check out this thread:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=723621

Syncro Jael Thu Oct 17, 2019 3:03 pm

I have been running (2)two 100ah Battleborn Batteries for a couple years. I mounted them in the sink under cabinet standing on end.



I have the Victron Solar Controller and Battery Monitor. Both work well and I really like the bluetooth monitoring.

I recently added a 1 gauge wire from the starter battery to the house bank with a 100amp combiner switch. This is to charge the depleted house bank if weather conditions do not permit the solar array of 270 watts on top to keep up with the demand.

Winter camping with the heater and dometic fridge/freezer running will usually draw 20-30ah out of the 200ah bank. So I can still last a couple days without worrying about depleting the Lithiums. This was not so with the AGM battery bank I had of 150ah. 30ah was my 80% threshold and my AGM's just would not last but a couple years.

I still have the house bank attached to the GW alternator wire and get about 4amp of charge while driving. This is also switched to turn on and off.

So far this system has worked for me well.



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