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ricka



Joined: 05 May 2019
Posts: 26
City/Region: Yreka
State or Province: CA
C-Dory Year: 2020
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Photos: ricka
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2020 12:34 pm    Post subject: House Batteries Reply with quote

We purchased our new Tom Cat with very few of the options trying to keep the tax bill down. So I have spent the last couple of month's adding equipment. One of the options I left off was the inverter as I felt it wouldn't be of much use with the factory battery setup. I have read a lot of C-Brats post in regards to battery setups but one thing I haven't seen is anyone using a Goal Zero type portable battery/inverter setup as opposed to install of a complete system.

Have any of you tried one of these, I have been looking at Goal Zero 1400 with the portable solar panels as it would fit in the port hanging closet. We would use it to run a Kerig single cup unit and a smaller convection/microwave.
Any thoughts pro or con?

Thanks Rick

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smckean (Tosca)



Joined: 18 Jan 2014
Posts: 575
City/Region: Guemes Island (Anacortes)
State or Province: WA
C-Dory Year: 2005
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Tosca
Photos: Tosca
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2020 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never seen the advantage of getting a "Goal Zero type portable battery/inverter setup". They're really nothing more than a battery + inverter in a sexy package. I can see them if you want to throw it in the back of the pickup or trunk of a car to go car camping or some such. No muss, no fuss. However, on a boat it seems to me you are better off having individual components (unless you have a very small boat). You're not going to move the system from place to place. The multiple components give you more options to find places in the boat to install them; and they will be easier and cheaper to maintain.

Plus, those sexy units in the final analysis are really nothing more than a single battery. Calculate how long you can operate one of those babies (for example, 60 amp-hour battery will give you 1000 watts of AC for less than 4 hours since you should never go below 50% state-of-charge).
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jkidd



Joined: 23 Oct 2006
Posts: 1264
City/Region: Northern, Utah
State or Province: UT
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Voyager
Photos: Voyager (JK)
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2020 1:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok I'm on the other side I have a 1000 watt Lithium and I take it with me all of the time. I use it to run my laptop and keep all of the gadgets charged. I do have an invertor on the boat that I use to charge up the Goal Zero when I'm underway. I like the battery monitor in it. Yes you can do it for less and I have done that too. It can go with me camping or used at home in an emergency. I also have the solar panels to charge it but, I haven't used them on the boat yet.
The best price I have seen is on the 1000 watt at Cosco.


On Edit the microwave is going to be the hard one it is going the push the 1400 watt unit to it's limits and might have trouble getting it to run.

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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
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City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2020 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of the C brats tried using the "Goal Zero" at Lake Powell for his Engle refrigerator chest type--it was inadequate. The solar demand is about 200 watts at Powell, else where I would want 300 watts of panels.

If you really want to run a convection microwave--(1200 to 1500 watts) it is going to take a robust system. A small coffee maker is a different story. 1500 watts is close to 150 amps at 12 volts. The amount from a group 31 battery is 50 to 60 amp hour available, so you could run it for 20 minutes max. The voltage drop might cut off the inverter before that time...

Either go golf carts and a lot of weight--I would suggest at least 4 205 amp hour golf carts (gives you 205 amp hours usable. Or Do as I did and go with two 100 amp hour LIFE PO4--weight is far less. (60# vs300#). We have two 100 amp hour Battle Born batteries, a Victron 2000 watt PSW inverter with 80 amp charger programed for LIFePO4. We also have a Sterling 30 amp battery to battery charger between the start battery and LI batteries. Temp sensors from the inverter, and both chargers.


IN either case you will need a monitor system, (I like Victron 702). A 700 watt microwave oven will actually draw closer to 1000 to 1200 watts AC power in. A convection oven micro, even in the smallest size will be close to 1500 watts. A microwave is used for short period of times, convection oven longer.

There are those who run small microwaves for short times off group 31 batteries (two are best) with in-expensive sine wave inverters which are in the several hundred dollar range. That can be done. But you have to charge up those batteries, and there are some potential issues if you draw the batteries down too far too fast. I have had best luck with Western World inverters, such as Magnum, Victron or MasterVolt. These are heavy duty commercial grade units which will work for years.

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jkidd



Joined: 23 Oct 2006
Posts: 1264
City/Region: Northern, Utah
State or Province: UT
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Voyager
Photos: Voyager (JK)
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2020 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bob I use my Goal Zero to run my National Luna fridge all the time I can usually get 2 to 3 days before I need recharge. I tend to use the Goal Zero to run electronics and my house battery to run the fridge. The spec for the 1400 watt unit is 132 amp hours at 10.5 Volts. The house battery is a group 31 and has a victron to monitor it.
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smckean (Tosca)



Joined: 18 Jan 2014
Posts: 575
City/Region: Guemes Island (Anacortes)
State or Province: WA
C-Dory Year: 2005
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Tosca
Photos: Tosca
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2020 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
.....(for example, 60 amp-hour battery will give you 1000 watts of AC for less than 4 hours since you should never go below 50% state-of-charge)

OOPS, I see I made a massive math error above. 4 hours seemed way too long in my gut; now I see my gut was right and my head was wrong Embarassed. Thataway's post set me on the right path, thanks Bob.

(corrected) A 60 amp-hour battery will give you 1000 watts for maybe 20 minutes.
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Gene Morris



Joined: 28 Sep 2006
Posts: 410
City/Region: Eureka CA
State or Province: CA
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Vessel Name: Reef Madness
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2020 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have had good luck with 4-6 volt golf cart batteries, installed in the hanging locker, A 2000 watt Xantrex inverter mounted in the cabinet just forward of the locker. Have used it for 8 years now and batteries still in good shape.

Gene

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ricka



Joined: 05 May 2019
Posts: 26
City/Region: Yreka
State or Province: CA
C-Dory Year: 2020
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Photos: ricka
PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2020 2:29 pm    Post subject: house batteries Reply with quote

Thanks very much for all the input. Gene I have heard that wet cell batteries should not be kept in a living area because of venting. Is this not the case? I have installed 6 volt cart batteries on the outside of our Airstream and have been really happy with them.
If I understand Bobs calculations correctly it sounds like I may be best just to pack along the Honda generator and drop the idea of trying to go Batt/Solar. I was hoping to avoid generator hum!

We do plan on installing a Wallas cooktop/heater but also felt we would need the convection microwave unit as well.
Hope you are all doing well, we are stuck at the house here in Ca. haven't even been able to put the new boat in the water yet. All the campgrounds are closed here but sounds like some of the boat ramps are still open so we may try Monday
Thanks
Rick
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Gene Morris



Joined: 28 Sep 2006
Posts: 410
City/Region: Eureka CA
State or Province: CA
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Vessel Name: Reef Madness
Photos: Reefmadness
PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2020 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rick,

That is what I understand also. My batteries are sealed and have not been an issue. They are more expensive but seem to have the AH rates that are sufficient for our needs. Below is a link to a photo of my installation since that photo was taken I added two more of the same.


www.c-brats.com/modules.php?set_albumName=album1499&id=008_G&op=modload&name=gallery&file=index&include=view_photo.php
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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 18219
City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2020 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jkidd wrote:
Bob I use my Goal Zero to run my National Luna fridge all the time I can usually get 2 to 3 days before I need recharge. I tend to use the Goal Zero to run electronics and my house battery to run the fridge. The spec for the 1400 watt unit is 132 amp hours at 10.5 Volts. The house battery is a group 31 and has a victron to monitor it.


I suspect we are talking about two different types of "Goal Zero". The one I referred to was a self contained unit with a 100 watt solar panel for recharging. I don't remember which boat it was on. I don't know the capacity of the Li battery, or other specs.

Pat Anderson's ARB refrigerator required more than the 100 watt panel would produce at Lake Powell, for his lead acid batteries--and required topping off the battery every day or so with a generator. The National Luna is certainly the best of the chest type refers.

I believe the "Goal Zero" unit you have is the 132 amp hour battery. The specs call for:

Quote:
Charge Time (hrs)
Wall: 25 hours; Boulder 100 Solar Panel Briefcase: 29-57 hours


I do not know what type of Li battery the "Goal Zero" contains, but with the LiFePO4 batteries the suggestion is that they not be taken down below 12 volts (which is 90% discharge). The internal BMS cuts the circuit at 10.5 volts, my inverter is set to cut at 11.8 volts. The resting state voltage of the LiFePO4 battery is in the mid 13 volt range, vs 12.6 for Flooded Lead Acid batteries.

The 100 amp hour Battle Born battery is recommended to use a 350 watt solar panel system for full recharge during a day's sunlight period in upper North America. The charging capacity for these batteries is 5C. This is 50 amps for each 100 amps of battery power. I have 80 amps for 200 amps of battery power and allows rapid recharging via the generator. (usually in less than an hour) I also have a small 10 amp charger, which shows amps output as well as voltage, for charging off mains power at home. I don't want to overload a long 15 amp extension cord, vs the 2200 watt Honda or 30 amp dock power used on the boat while cruising. I have not "tested" my batteries to see how long they would go with the two chest freezer/refrigerator units, but we have gone 3 days using just engine charging for 3 to 4 hours a day, cooking on the induction burner, and a few minutes of microwave time without other charging and were still at over 40% SOC of the Li battery bank. But If I am running the microwave for a prolonged time, we will run the Honda Generator.

No matter what battery set up you go with, you need a good charging source. I preferred a 1000 watt Honda, with a 30 amp "forced" charger for AGM batteries at Lake Powell--a couple of hours a day did fine there. Also the demand of power for refrigeration depends a lot on ambient temperature, as well as insulation, shade, evaporative cooling efforts etc.

In our Tom Cat 255 and other 25 we only used AGM batteries inside of the cabin. As I recollect, we had one group 31 battery behind the heater heater, and the other somewhere near there (sorry don't remember the exact location, but not in the hanging locker). I did put the inverter in the hanging locker.
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