shorepower

gjgm

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where is a good source of the components-circuit/rcd breakers and chargers? The 240v- its only for use while on board for heater or whatever, but I d like to be able to run the 12v boat applications without flattening the battery too . Do the chargers top up the battery, and so the 12vs? And if so, is there something special about the charger I need to look into?
 
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A lot depends on your budget. You can get all in one units that can charge multiple battery banks and supply your 240V via RCDs and circuit breakers. Otherwise you can get a consumer unit for about £50 for the mains, and then a simple battery charger.

For the charger you really want a switched-mode charger. These will drop the voltage to around 13 when the battery is charged up, then will 'float' the batteries to keep them topped up and also supply the power (up to their rated amps) for your 12V needs. If you dont need to charge separate battery banks in isolation, you can get one of these for less than £50. I find YachBits to be th cheapest for this kind of equipment.

I added this kind of setup to my boat last season, and it is wonderful. I barely use the 240V supply in the boat, in fact I only use it for a small kettle to save the gas. The beauty is that you can freely use the 12V stuff without worrying about the batteries, and when you head off you know your batteries are fully charged. Very easy to install too.
 

William_H

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If you like to haunt car boot sales (swap meet we call them)(or trash and treasure) you can often find a 12 volt regulated power supply with a current rating marked on it which may suit your needs.
The power supply should be set (if not they are usually adjustable) to 13.75 volts. This will emulate the alternator on an engine. ie it will charge the battery and supply current to your services.

The p[roblemn is that they are typically rated at 2 or 3 amps up to 5 amps for a big one. That may or may not suit your requirements.

There is the danger that it can get overloaded if you connect a very flat battery an ampmeter would be good to monitor load on the power supply. A resistor or light bulb of about 50 watts in series with the power supply will limit the cahrging current.

This is of course a cheap skate solution but well may suit your needs olewill
 
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