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  #1  
Old 09-19-2010
martyspaulding martyspaulding is offline
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Default Dual charger/inverter replacement questions

I have an '87 PT40.

I currently have:

* a 2001-ish Iota DLS-55, 55a charger without any add-ons, and
* a World Friendship Co (WFCO) WF-8875, 75a charger also without addons. Looks pretty old.

Both have 4 pin phone type jacks for some sort of add ons, but none installed.

In the Bottom tray there is a unit I have yet to identify. It is primarily a round motor-looking unit and I'm not sure if it's the inverter? It looks like OEM to me. It has a multitude of wires running to it and appears to be 12v based as it doesn't plug into 110v like the chargers do.

Photo of that bad boy attached.

There is nothing in my blue box about an inverter system.

I do not seem to have *any* 110v circuits that operate off an inverter circuit. I *only* have 110v when on shore or gen power as far as I can tell.

These may be dumb questions when you already know the answers, but:

* Why do I have TWO chargers when the batteries are all in one bank ? Or it there a second charger just for the gen battery ? Or is one purely a backup that should be unplugged when not needed ?

* Am I missing an inverter switch somewhere ? There isn't one on the dash or dinette consoles that I can see. I would assume that there is a way to turn it off so that its not a drain on the house bank when not in use and some random 110v device calls for power.

Newbie to things ... just picking up the clues as I follow the bread crumbs.

I like the idea of replacing all three units with one, having a little more ROOM in that compartment, and being able to sort out the mess of wiring that is in there.

I've read favorable things about the Xantrex units. Do they make one that could replace all three ?

I realize also that the current inverter could be bad, a solenoid or relay could be out, or a fuse blown ... but I wonder about a switch before I tear into all that.

Thanks for all the help
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Marty Spaulding
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'86 PT 40
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  #2  
Old 09-19-2010
martyspaulding martyspaulding is offline
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Default

I think I've answered my own question on the lower unit. Its a redi-line inverter.

Its HUGE.

And I remember seeing a switch for that so I will try it.

But I'm also thinking that its probably very obsolete based on its size. Is it worth replacing to gain space, more power and general efficiency in house battery consumption ?
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  #3  
Old 09-20-2010
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bwinter1946 bwinter1946 is offline
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Default

I can only answer based on my limited experience and on what I have read here on this forum. FWIW, this is a somewhat common question around here.

The motor unit does appear to be a Red-I-Line inverter. It uses 12 volt battery power to spin the motor. The motor spins an AC generator. They are heavy and not very efficient. The one good thing about them is when they work they produce clean full sine wave AC power. Most solid state inverters produce a modified sine wave. The best way to go is to replace it with a solid state inverter and replace the old chargers with new technology three stage chargers.

I believe there are three different ways to go.

1. Buy an integrated modified sine wave inverter/charger. This puts both items in one unit. (Seems to be most common in the later Birds) Common sizes are 2500-3000 watt inverter/chargers.

2. Buy a separate inverter and charger.

3. Buy a full sine wave inverter/charger.

Full sine wave inverters are more money and may be preferred or needed for sensitive equipment.

Xantrex is a common brand used here and I have read of a new to me brand of Magnum. Thread Link: http://www.wanderlodgeownersgroup.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7382

Inverter/Charger Links:

http://www.xantrex.com/

http://www.magnumenergy.com/

Someone more knowledgeable than I will speak up but this could get you started.
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  #4  
Old 09-20-2010
martyspaulding martyspaulding is offline
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Thanks Brad !

I'm inclining toward a total upgrade rather than tinkering with 20-30 year old mismatches. I'm always happier knowing that whatever is down there I've personally been through and checked.

One less thing to wonder about.

More comments certainly welcome. Especially people that have made this conversion about oddities to watch for while doing so.
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  #5  
Old 09-20-2010
martyspaulding martyspaulding is offline
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There are also a bunch of power blocks (possibly diode based) and some relays that I'd love to have some guidance on. Is *everything* in that bay related to the chargers/inverter discounting some hillbilly mechanics ?

I'm seeing twin old-school metal can relays and a newer one as well as a couple of fuses and a number of 12v terminal blocks.

Anyone else been in this territory ?
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  #6  
Old 09-21-2010
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I just installed two pure sine wave Magnum inverter/chargers to help with my problem of regularly burning out modern circuit boards and helping with pictures on new HDTV flat screens. They are fantastic. They are smarter than the old Freedom 25s (2,500 watts each with 150 amp chargers). They manage power for you based on your setup. I used 2,800 watts PSW with 125 amp chargers. Magnum was started by the Xantrex owners that sold out, according to industry rumor.
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  #7  
Old 09-21-2010
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Christian Christian is offline
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Default UPS Unit

I have a UPS unit that I got off ebay. $150 2000va and charges the battery as well. It uses 24 volts so I will be putting the two chargers in series for the gross 24 volt output isolated from the chassis to charge 4 t105 one of the chargers will also power the house and starting battery and be referenced to ground.
The entry into the electrical system is the next feat... perhaps I could tap into the 30 amp feed that I never use and use that switch in the power selector for "Inverter"? Sure don't want to power the waterheater or frig in this case.

In theory the ups will do the 3rd stage charging while plugged in or on genny and the 50 amp chargers will do the gross bulk charging.

Still working on a dc to dc inverter that can charge from the engine... perhaps a 24 volt alt
that opens up the possibility of buying a used webasco heater most I have found are 24 volt

Any Ideas?
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  #8  
Old 09-21-2010
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[QUOTE=Christian;74136]I have a UPS unit that I got off ebay. $150 2000va and charges the battery as well. It uses 24 volts so I will be putting the two chargers in series for the gross 24 volt output isolated from the chassis to charge 4 t105 one of the chargers will also power the house and starting battery and be referenced to ground.
The entry into the electrical system is the next feat... perhaps I could tap into the 30 amp feed that I never use and use that switch in the power selector for "Inverter"? Sure don't want to power the waterheater or frig in this case.

In theory the ups will do the 3rd stage charging while plugged in or on genny and the 50 amp chargers will do the gross bulk charging.

Still working on a dc to dc inverter that can charge from the engine... perhaps a 24 volt alt
that opens up the possibility of buying a used webasco heater most I have found are 24 volt

Any Ideas?[/QUOT

How can you connect two battery chargers in series? I thought they were 110 volts AC in and 12-13.5 volts DC out?
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  #9  
Old 09-21-2010
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Christian Christian is offline
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Wink

The chargers put out the same DC Voltage 14.4 volts and all DC can be added togeather.
For instance you can put a battery of 12 volts in series with a 12 volt charger to get 24+ volts.
Think of your chargers (must be equally sized in Amps) as two batteries. They when put into series will create a 24 volt charging system. 24 volt will require smaller wirring as well.
Half of the 24 volt system can still be mated to the 12v Starting circuit. The other set will require genny or shore power to charge or perhaps a diode between the two sets so charging might work? not sure there...
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  #10  
Old 09-21-2010
1derer 1derer is offline
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Default Possible solution

I've been exploring this
http://www.wanderlodgeownersgroup.co...ead.php?t=7681
and am not yet done exploring it. If you find out any more about it than I have so far, maybe we'll all get off easy.
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