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Old    Mark (mta1221)      Join Date: Apr 2007       02-16-2011, 5:56 PM Reply   
I am looking for a Perko switch, an extra battery, and a charging system to add to my boat. There are so many choices on the Perko website and i'm not sure which one is right. What is AFD, and do I need it? Do we have non-unitized alternators? Is everyone running Medium duty, or heavy duty? I know I need a selector switch, not a disconnect switch.

http://perko.com/catalog/category/battery_switches/

I have a '99 Moomba and planning on adding 1 amp and some good tower speakers.

Old    Sparky Jay (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       02-16-2011, 6:36 PM Reply   
No you don't need A.F.D. (alternator field disconnect) and your alternator is unitized with a built in regulator. www.balmar.net is a company with nice stuff and their site has some good info. I also would recommend a Balmar TSP (transient spike protector) to take the hit if your battery selector switch should crap out while the engine is running or somehow it gets bumped to the off position while the engine is running. You could blow the diodes in the alternator without the TSP. It's a worth the $20 for a little extra insurance. Don't buy a cheap switch either, (I don't like Perko) spend the money on a good one.

Last edited by wake_upppp; 02-16-2011 at 6:39 PM.
Old    Murphy Smith (murphy_smith)      Join Date: Dec 2005       02-17-2011, 7:32 AM Reply   
Mark - can't go wrong with this unit.

I have had both and can tell you that the Blue Sea product is better than Perko.

http://bluesea.com/products/7650
Old    Earmark Marine (david_e_m)      Join Date: Jul 2008       02-17-2011, 7:43 AM Reply   
Never had an issue with any battery switch regardless of brand on 1000+ boats. So what exactly is wrong with a Perko discounting any difference in specifications? And what makes the Blue Sea superior?

David
Earmark Marine
Old    Ken W (kenteck)      Join Date: Jan 2005       02-17-2011, 8:28 AM Reply   
I think all switches are good, i don’t really think one is better than the other... they all do the same thing, the question i have is why would you want to manually switch it over? wouldn’t it be nice to run like a battery separator and just be done with it?
Old    Murphy Smith (murphy_smith)      Join Date: Dec 2005       02-17-2011, 8:58 AM Reply   
Here is what I experienced first hand with a Perko vs Blue Sea. There is nothing wrong with a Perko - I just think Blue Sea is a better product.

1.) Material - I had the red casing of the perko switch crack when I went to turn the knob. If you take a look at the housing of the Blue Sea versus the Perko, it is crystal clear that the Blue Sea switch is better made or over made.

2.) Terminal Size and Material - The perko switch offers a copper 5/16 stud and the blue sea offers a tinned copper 3/8 inch stud that is nearly an inch long for multiple cables mounted per stud

3.) The Blue Sea offers a glow in dark display versus the Perko which does not.

4.) The Blue Sea is designed to be able to accept up to 4/0 cables coming in from 3 of the 4 sides. The perko only allows a limited slot for the cables to come in which in turn limits the size of cable you can run.

I can go on and on....like I said, the perko is fine but if you want to step up, check out the Blue Sea
Old    Murphy Smith (murphy_smith)      Join Date: Dec 2005       02-17-2011, 9:03 AM Reply   
Here is a third party review on all battery switches - I don't even care to read so it totally contradict my stance but wanted to get the OP the most info I could.

http://books.google.com/books?id=ptK...page&q&f=false
Old    Razzman (razzman)      Join Date: Dec 2006       02-17-2011, 9:18 AM Reply   
I'll have to agree with Murph on this one, much better product imo as well for the very same reasons. Since I found Blue Sea it's all I use.
Old    Nu Bu (05mobiuslsv)      Join Date: Apr 2006       02-17-2011, 10:00 AM Reply   
+1 to Murphy description. I think the blue sea is a better made, more user friendly product.
Old    Earmark Marine (david_e_m)      Join Date: Jul 2008       02-17-2011, 10:58 AM Reply   
Good info. If you get a Blue Sea remember that you will need both 5/16" I.D. and 3/8" I.D. terminations since batteries commonly use 5/16" posts. The longer posts are handy but don't stack too many ring terminals together. Past a point you are better off using an external distribution block. If you are starting from scratch then go with the Blue Sea. If you have a Perko now I wouldn't be concerned as I've never personally had or witnessed a failure.

David
Earmark Marine
Old    Murphy Smith (murphy_smith)      Join Date: Dec 2005       02-17-2011, 11:23 AM Reply   
Very important point David - this is not a plug and play deal. You may have to make some new connections with battery lug terminals.
Old    Sparky Jay (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       02-17-2011, 6:19 PM Reply   
That's great you've worked on 1000+ boats and have seen no issues with Perko. I however have seen several of the low end Perko"s fail so take it for what it's worth. You get what you pay for. And if it fails while underway as one did while I was out with someone on their boat it can do damage to charging system components.

Last edited by wake_upppp; 02-17-2011 at 6:21 PM.
Old    Mark (mta1221)      Join Date: Apr 2007       02-17-2011, 6:46 PM Reply   
http://bluesea.com/products/7610

So, Is anyone using the "Automatic Charging relays". How do these work? It says it protects sensitive electronics while the engine is cranking. Is a class G/H amp sensitive electronics. Doesn't the alternator "Automatically charge" whatever battery the switch setting is on?
Old    Earmark Marine (david_e_m)      Join Date: Jul 2008       02-17-2011, 6:52 PM Reply   
Those switches are so simple that I can't imagine what could go wrong unless it was installation related. Like over-torquing the switch to an uneven surface or over-tightening a stud that is seated in plastic. I would be brutally critical had I ever experienced a problem that could be traced to the switch itself. But, I'm immediately switching over to the Blue Seas so I don't have to waste any time trying to convince anyone that the Perkos are okay. Consider me converted.
David
Earmark Marine
Old    Nu Bu (05mobiuslsv)      Join Date: Apr 2006       02-17-2011, 7:42 PM Reply   
David you don't need to take the word of the people that use them day in and day out for years during the summer, it's your choice. You install them, we have to live with them. Just another perspective from the Owners of these boats.
Old    Earmark Marine (david_e_m)      Join Date: Jul 2008       02-17-2011, 8:08 PM Reply   
NuBu,
Kind of assumptive on your part. Until a couple of years ago we've had a family home and boat in Michigan. Been going there since the early 70s!

David
Earmark Marine
Old    Sparky Jay (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       02-17-2011, 8:22 PM Reply   
Not sure what the simplicity of a part has to do with design and failure but I couild name dozens of simple parts that fail due to cheap construction and materials. Actually switches are some of the most common parts that fail because of their inherant high use nature. Any part with voltage, amps and heat as ingredients has an increased chance of failure, particularly with lower end, budget based parts.
Old    Razzman (razzman)      Join Date: Dec 2006       02-17-2011, 8:25 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by mta1221 View Post
http://bluesea.com/products/7610

So, Is anyone using the "Automatic Charging relays". How do these work? It says it protects sensitive electronics while the engine is cranking. Is a class G/H amp sensitive electronics. Doesn't the alternator "Automatically charge" whatever battery the switch setting is on?
I've had their #7650 Add-A-Battery setup for a couple of years now and love the setup.
Old    Nu Bu (05mobiuslsv)      Join Date: Apr 2006       02-17-2011, 8:52 PM Reply   
I don't think I assumed anything.
Old    Sparky Jay (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       02-18-2011, 8:53 PM Reply   
I saw no assumption.

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