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Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-25-2006, 9:10 PM Reply   
I have been busy working on finishing my new charging system.

Balmar 94-210 alternator
Balmar Digital Duo Charge
Balmar Max Charge regulator
4 Sea volt 92 amp hr battery's
1 Blue top optima
1 Blue Sea battery switcher
30 feet of Red 0 agw
30 feet of Black 0 agw

Im still waiting on the custom pully's. I am having the water pump and crank pully's turned.
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Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-25-2006, 9:18 PM Reply   
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Im doing things a bit diffrent on this charging system.

The main charge feed off the back of the alternator will charge the large bank first. Then the extra charge will spill over and threw the digital duo chagrer that will top off the blue top Optima.
Im using the battery switch to remove one battery bank from the other. The switch will connect diectey to the Optima as to use it in the event the main batterys are so dead the boat wont start. The Optima will never see use/draw unless the boat wont start.

The large battery bank will do everything It will run the boat and power the stereo ect.

No more solonoid.
Old    Craig (yosquire)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-25-2006, 9:29 PM Reply   
So the Optima Blue Top is just a backup battery?
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-25-2006, 9:38 PM Reply   
Yupp. The blue top just dose nothing unless Im dead. The Balmar DDC takes the charge from the main battery bank and breaks it down to a charge rate that the blue top Optima likes. When the Optima reaches full charge it go's to a float charge to keep it toped off. The DDC will not let voltage drain backwards from the Optima and into the large battery bank. And there will be no chance of the large battery bank draining the Optima because the battery switch keeps both banks away from each other unless I have the switch set to both.
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       04-25-2006, 10:08 PM Reply   
Very nice. I think things should be done with one of two objectives. Either make it look really trick or make it look like it came from the factory that way. This project demonstrates your ability to do things as if they were done at the factory.

Looking at the switch baseplate. Looks good but you probably could have done it with 3/4 plex and saved yourself some labor. After making my second dash plate out of plex I realized that it saved me a ton time. It routered out as easily as particle board but the finish ended up much smoother so I didn't need to sand it as much, no filling, and it's completely waterproof unfinished. The painting prep was also easier. No waiting for bondo to dry. You can also drill and tap it for mounting purposes.
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-26-2006, 7:43 AM Reply   
Ill explain my Photo's
#1 Alternator gound 0 agw
#2 The O Agw power and ground running to the alternator
#3 The old charge wire 2 agw and the new charge 0 agw wire
#4 Hogging out the mounting foot
#5 Battery switch
#6 New Smart regulator
#7 Battery bank A
#8 Front of motor w/o pullys
#9 Drivers side battery and switch
#10 Emergency starting battery

I went with the welding wire to connect the battery's. Its not as Bling but its suposed to transfer current better, It has allmost no shielding on it. The Sitnger wire used at the shop has a thick skin to help stop noise comming threw the wire. Because my wire/batterys are not running near any of my amp's I didnt think the thinner shiled on the welding cable would transfer any noise threw my system. We will see. If I have a buzz or humm Im gonna be pissed LOL.

Looking forward to getting this thing going.
I will next have to program the onboard regulator and the Digital duo charge

Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-08-2006, 8:28 AM Reply   
I got my custom pullys back from the machine shop. He did a sweet job. Top and bottom pully's made from 6061 for only $715 what a deal, J/K LOL The 3 grove pully's have the stock 3/8 belt driving the raw water pump on the inside, and the second 2 groove's are the larger 1/2 in belt's. I kept the Raw water pump 3/8's so iit blows up for any reason Im not looking for a 1/2 in water pump pully. So back to the good New's Im super happy with the charging system. I had some time on the water and tested they system out. Everything went perfict for the get go. I tested it on the fake a lake at home and right away it worked perfict. 14.3 volts @ 60-70 amp's I ran it this way for about 45 mins and checked everything before heading to the lake. I ran the stereo all day with out starting up to charge. It droped down to about 12.3 volt's by the end of the day. I threw the amp clamp on the main charge leed to see what the alternator was doing and I was happy to see 170-180 amp's at 13.3 volt's just above Idle 1200 rpm's I was thinking wow that alternators working hard. This was after about 45 min's of running I touched it to see if it was warm and It wasent. I could put my hand on it and it only seemed warm from the motor heet. I was suprised. I thought that the thing would have been smoking hot pushing 170 amp's. Here are some pic's
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Old    Luke (lukeduke95)      Join Date: May 2002       05-08-2006, 9:04 AM Reply   
oooohhhhh weeeeee. Good lookin!

Did you feel your batteries to see if they felt hot from the charge?
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-08-2006, 9:21 AM Reply   
Luke: No I didnt check. The charging system has a temp senc that's attached to the center of the main battery bank that retards the charge if the batterys get warm. Fully automatic
Old    Flux (flux)      Join Date: Jun 2003       05-08-2006, 9:27 AM Reply   
That is a sick sick setup. 170 Amps at 1200 RPM?? Wow.

I really dig the custom belt pullies, although I thought you would have anodized them. :-)



Old    Bob (bob)      Join Date: Feb 2001       05-08-2006, 10:17 AM Reply   
Grant how many alternators have you been through to this point that would cause you to go to this extreme level of charging? I did have to fabricate some brackets for mine when I went to the high amp (95)alt because they didnt make a high amp kit for the standard frame that fits in the merc 5.0 I/O. Fortunately for me im running the serpentine and not the 1/2" belts, pulley swap was all that was needed. Those pulleys look sweet even though they are not anodized.
Also what is the reason you didnt go with the golf cart batteries, the maintenance and lack of requirement for the AGM's? I know the golf carts would have been cheaper and have more storage but there size is odd.
Old    Craig (yosquire)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-08-2006, 11:13 AM Reply   
whow...170 amps.

That's the only intelligent thing I have to say today. :-)
Old    Nate (norcalmalibu)      Join Date: Jun 2004       05-08-2006, 12:10 PM Reply   
So whats the final bill of this charging system upgrade? Way overkill but very sweet non the less.
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-08-2006, 12:26 PM Reply   
Bob: I guess I have been threw like 3 diffrent alternator set up's before I got to this point.
For my set up golf carts are no good. Space and not being able to lay them on the side and having to keep checking is lame. But for other set ups they work great.
Nate:Im guessing I spent almost $2500. It might seem like overkill to someone not familiar with how a system like this go's threw power. Like alot of stuff I have been doing It dosent seem normal at first but over time I bet you will see more and more people up grading their marine battery and charging system's.
Old    Rooster (rooster_cogburn)      Join Date: Feb 2006       05-08-2006, 3:01 PM Reply   
~Watch me send Grant into a customizers coma~

So Grant what's with the sticker on the Port Bling-o-meter, couldn't you have made that out of carbon fiber or something?
Old    Craig (yosquire)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-08-2006, 3:49 PM Reply   
Grant,

If you didn't own Sound Illusions, would you still have built your killer charging system to this extent? I guess I'm wondering if you help justify it as Product/Service Research & Development and advertising?

(Message edited by yosquire on May 08, 2006)
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-08-2006, 4:19 PM Reply   
Craig: I dont own Sound Illusions, Clay does. I build thing's because I need or want them. I share project's with people to show them what Im doing and get Idea's and direction. Lots of times I have posted projects in the work's and got some great ideas how to make it beter. As far as advertising, Yea I can just see people lining up to drop $3,000 on a "OverKill" charging system.
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       05-08-2006, 5:36 PM Reply   
Cost of Alternator $1200
Cost of Pulleys $700
Cost of controls $600

Being able to wakeboard and party with your friends all day while rockin' the tunes without having to worry about your batteries going dead, PRICELESS!
Old    Joe Mitchell (mitchj)      Join Date: Aug 2002       05-08-2006, 7:55 PM Reply   
Grant your charging system looks awsome !!!!!!
Old    walt            05-08-2006, 8:03 PM Reply   
Nice job Grant !
Old    8tens (Ben Kerran) (rukie)      Join Date: Jan 2006       05-08-2006, 8:29 PM Reply   
I am with Mikeski.....absoloutely PRICELESS. I personally would seriously consider going this route to get rid of the headaches associated with drained batteries. Thanks to Grant for doing all the leg work associated with a charging system of this caliber.
Old    Sparky Jay (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       05-08-2006, 8:45 PM Reply   
Super sweet as usual Grant. I'm starting to believe your "bar" has no height limit. lol
Old    E Double U (three6ty)      Join Date: Feb 2004       05-08-2006, 9:25 PM Reply   
Grant ,
I AM DISAPPOINTED!!!

Cost of Alt -$1200
cost of Pulley $700
Cost of controls - $600
Charging System without L.E.D's Worthless!!!!! J/K

It looks awesome as always!!!

Have you guys heard on anything with Carbon Fiber Yet? Any other options for covering dash item and grab handles???
Old    Rob (lowdrag)      Join Date: Jan 2006       05-09-2006, 2:40 AM Reply   
Nice, I especially like that mounting plate for the Perko switch.

One question about the two batteries mounted in the bow tilted to the side like that. Knowing that they'll take a fair amount of pounding up there, are you worried at all about one of them cracking along the seem where the top and bottom of the battery is sealed and leaking fluid out onto the carpet?
Old    Ken (coorslight)      Join Date: Mar 2005       05-09-2006, 6:31 AM Reply   
Grant - What was the voltage at idle, or around 750 rpm's? With my upgraded alternator I get 14.4 at 900-1000, but would love to have the voltage back at idle. (Been thinking about dual alts.)
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-09-2006, 6:58 AM Reply   
Here is a more accurate cost break down.
Balmar 94-210 alternator $1200
Balmar Digital Duo Charge $200
Balmar Max Charge regulator $250
Balmar Alt Tem Senc $40
Balmar Bat Temp Sence $40
4 Sea volt 92 amp hr battery's $720
1 Blue top optima
1 Blue Sea battery switcher $40
30 feet of Red 0 agw $60
30 feet of Black 0 agw $60
Nick nack's $50
Pully's $715
Total $3,321

Mike Exactley, Im glad some people know the value of not running out of juice, LOL

guy's thanks for your complement's, Joe M What's your voltage @ Idle. My alternator dosent seem to do much @ Idle. It seems charging starts at around 1200 Rpm's My Idle is around 800. Balmar said that because Ski boats have sutch a large Rpm range making the pully smaller and bumping up your low Rpm charging range would make the alternator spin way to fast at higher rpm's So Ill keep the pullly I have.

Rob: The batterys are sandwiched between the floor and the seet bace they arent going anywhere. If they were ketching air then yes I would be worried

Ken: when my batterys are fully charged im seeing 14 volt's with 40-50 amp's Thats what the 10th pic was when I first fired up my boat. When my batterys are discharged Im seeing 13 and 170 amp's (11th and 12th pic above)
Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       05-16-2006, 9:20 AM Reply   
I was able to put a few more day's/hr's on my system and Im pleased to report its awesome.
I cant tell you how happy I am to have the system charging while the boat is idleing along and the system is pumping. Normaly with the old system I would be under way (Idle Speed) 800 rpm's and if the system was pumping the voltage would dip to 12 volts and some times lower and thats with 5 fully charged up battery's. Now Im seeing 13.2 13.8 volts at 800 rpm's and thats while the system is pumping. On plain Im seeing over 14.volts with a heavy load.
Yes they system was expencieve and it wasent easy to do, but It did or does exactley what I wanted it to do. As far as beinging Overkill "sometimes you need a cannon to kill a fly" LOL

(Message edited by grant_west on May 16, 2006)

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