new batteries

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by aba, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. aba

    aba

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    just collected 2 new batteries for the motorhome so should now be able to last about a week without needing hookup.

    was going to get Trojans but when at the forklift firm he found some a little bigger for not much more money he also said "they have something like a 5 year warranty so any problems just bring em back and i'll sort em for you."

    so what are they i hear you ask??
    http://www.usbattery.com/usb_us12vxc_sweep.html
    and at a shade over £130.00 + vat each i don't think i've done too bad.
    just got to get them fitted and connected to the electrobloc in place of the 80Ahr gel battery thats there at the moment.
     
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  2. Craig Rogers

    Craig Rogers Read Only Funster

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    Sounds like a decent price to me and a pretty decent sized (dimensions) battery too. Would be interested in two of these, but I think it's slightly too tall for my battery box.
     
  3. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Hooray!:BigGrin:

    Someone has seen the light and bought decent batteries!!!!

    It's time we all stopped accepting the rubbish 'leisure batteries' this industry sells us!:BigGrin:
     
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  4. aba

    aba

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    the trojans were the T105's at about £110+vat so i thought for the extra £20.00 to end up with 310Ahr in quite a small area, granted they are heavy but i would have needed 3 of the trojans to get the almost the same power.

    they won't fit in the battery area being under the drivers seat so i am having to make a sealed from the van vented to the outside box made to fit in the belly locker to house them.
    then my next acquisition will be down the solar route although the vertical turbine that Dingray has also looks like an option.
     
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  5. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    We use a Sterling battery to battery charger with our 2 115AH traction batteries.
    It fast charges using a proper 4 stage charge and allegedly gives 20% more capacity to the battery than is achieved through a regulated alternator output.

    http://www.sterling-power.com/products-battbatt.htm

    Although fast charging does increase the need to top up your cells, we have found they have only needed it once a year. The higher charging voltage is also claimed to reduce sulphation and increase battery life too.:Smile:

    As a guide, we can go three days straight at persistent below zero temperatures with the Webasto Dualtop running 24/7 and no rationing of lights or telly.
     
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  6. aba

    aba

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    to be quite honest about it all these fork lift batteries are a lot cheaper than people think and are built for a sustained drain over a long period.

    if i had to go down the route that the dealer fitted an 80Ahr exide gel battery to get 300Ahr would nearly have cost £1000.00.
     
  7. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    I work as a forklift service technician.
    The forklift industry has used, and will continue to use, open lead-acid batteries for years to come. No other battery technology can match them on a capacity for price basis.
    The batteries fitted to our truck fleet can usually see out a five year contract and still keep going!
    Our Dyno monoblocs in the Chausson spent some of their life in our old Elddis and, at three and a half years old, show no difference in performance from when they were new.

    You often hear about a 50% rule which people quote on the forums in respect of the REAL Ah rating of a leisure battery. We are advised not to discharge them below 50%.
    Traction monoblocs and forklift battteries are discharged doen to 20% regularly and quite safely. The 20% is left as a buffer zone to get you back to the battery charger without overdischarging the battery.

    An 80% dicharge on a 12V battery equates to an OPEN CIRCUIT voltage of 11.66V.
    ie., switch everything off before checking your battery voltage to accertain the state of discharge!:Smile:
     
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  8. aba

    aba

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    i did once have the gel down to 10.2 volts and it has recovered well but not a thing i wish to repeat hence the change.

    i do feel that due to how the van has been assembled it was never designed to be off hookup for more than maybe 1 night as the lighting alone used to draw around 20 amps.
    i have since disconnected the filament rope light and fitted a 5 metre LED strip so now with the small 12 volt tv and sat box on consumption is down to around 5 amps.
    we have just been able to manage 2 nights without hookup and even after the 100 mile trip from the whitby meet the battery was showing just 75%.

    i was thinking of going solar first but i feel batteries first is a more sensible option
     
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  9. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    It is quite liberating to have a good battery bank on board, I think you will be surprised at how long they will last you.
    I often wonder how much money is wasted by people buying large solar panels and gennies to make up for the poor industry-standard leisure battery they have on board.
    If, like us, you only stay in one place for 3 days or less, the gennies and solar panels are a waste of time because you will charge you battery bank on the way to the next stop!:Smile:

    The Sterling charger does speed up the recharging process somewhat though!
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
  10. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    Thanks Jonandshell for a very informative post and also for not dismissing the age old 50% rule for regular batteries.:thumb:

     
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  11. Craig Rogers

    Craig Rogers Read Only Funster

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    Where, if you don't mind me asking, did you get them from?

    The cheapest online I've seen them is well over £200.
     
  12. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Hi John

    Thank you for the compliment on my post.

    Not all Funsters are as independent as Shell and I in their camping habits, many people's leisure batteries only need to see them right for a few breaks en-route to their camp site.
    For these people, the investment required in proper traction batteries would not be money well spent.
    For the hookup-phobes among us, I firmly believe in a no-compromise approach to your MHs power supply.:BigGrin:
     
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  13. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Hi Craig

    It might be good to start with googling or yell ing for forklift battery specialists in your area.
    Our Dyno batteries came from SJB Batteries, Thorney, nr Peterborough.
     
  14. Craig Rogers

    Craig Rogers Read Only Funster

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  15. aba

    aba

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    hi craig
    i got mine from my local fork lift service and training centre pendle forklift services.
    but any fork lift supplier will be able to get good traction batteries and often cheaper than wholesale distributers.

    some may have some nearly new used ones as occasionally accidents do unfortunately happen and a couple of batteries out of a bank may get damaged so they replace the whole set and have a couple of spares although these most probably end up on ebay.
     
  16. aba

    aba

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    at the end of the day you do get what you pay for and these batteries will i feel out last any standard leisure battery even if not used for extended periods.
    but if the motorhome manufacturers would take on board that all the gadgets and gizmos they fit use a certain amount of power and fit appropriate sized batteries for the job.

    lets face it the muppet that thought that a single 80 Ah battery would be suitable for a 6 berth motorhome with lighting that draws nearly 20 amps alone not taking into account TV and the heating system really wants f***ing with said battery.
     
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  17. Popeye

    Popeye Funster

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    Could you elaborate or include sketches................:Rofl1:
     
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  18. Craig Rogers

    Craig Rogers Read Only Funster

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    Great stuff, well the one not too far away has them albeit Lucas re-branded as per a post a while back. Little more than you paid, but still damn cheap for a 155ah battery.

    I think I'll at least get one to replace the 96ah that I've currently got, just got to make sure it'll fit in the current battery box. I have a doubt that it's ever so slightly tall to fit in.

    If I went full hog and decided to connect up two batteries. I assume all I need to do is connect a cable between the + on each battery as - will just be to the chassis. It'll fit under the passenger seat, but its a long way from the rear garage where the battery box is. I guess I'll need to put a fuse on each end of the cable in case it gets damaged and shorts out. Would a 60amp be large enough? I guess there are boxes/clamps available to house/mount the battery under the seat?
     
  19. aba

    aba

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    i wouldn't put one of these under the seat even if it would fit as they are not sealed batteries.
    the ones that are fitted under seats are normally the sealed type all others need venting to the outside of the vehicle as they can discharge explosive gas when charged and if its not vented outside then it will build up in the van until it goes bang. not a pretty sight.
     
  20. Craig Rogers

    Craig Rogers Read Only Funster

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    Good point, but then again isn't the standard Transit battery non-sealed?

    As it happens, the battery box isn't big enough, only 240mm deep. :cry:

    One more point, didn't I read somewhere that Traction batteries don't have a venting pipe? If this is the case, how to you vent them?

    It looks like the Trojan 130ah will just about squeeze in there, so all is not lost.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2011
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