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Discussion Starter #1
I was just wondering if anyone has seen/done a dual battery set-up that incorporated an on-board battery charger. (No, I don't mean the alternator, I mean the kind that you plug in to 115/120 VAC shore power.)

Kussmaul makes one (http://www.kussmaul.com/091-171.html), but it's about $750, so I'm looking for something a bit more in the "I can afford it" range. Ideas?

Thanks!
-Radar
 

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Never seen or heard of anyone doing that.... I would think that using the alternator would be cheaper. THat charger still draws power from the alternator to power it to charge the second battery... so how is that any different?
Did you look at National Luna DIY - Split Charge System?
Only $375 and it includes the wiring.
Check it out.
http://www.sierraexpeditions.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=543

And if you needed AC, just get a converter.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The Kussmaul charger will allow both batteries to charge when the vehicle is running, but also has 115VAC inputs to charge both batteries when the vehicle is parked and not running - which my truck does a lot (as well as the fire engines and ambulances for which Kussmaul makes many of their products).

So, I suppose what I'm actually trying to find is a less expensive set-up where you can charge both the starting battery and the accessory battery when the vehicle is not running (e.g. with some sort of 115VAC powered battery charger/manager).

The National Luna stuff looks good, but doesn't appear to charge unless the vehicle is running.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Could you simply use a Battery Tender (http://batterytender.com/power-tender-plus-12v-at-5a.html) or similar product to charge BOTH batteries that were on a National Luna dual-battery set-up? Or does that only charge one battery at a time? I'd think it just did one, since I presume the batteries are isolated when the vehicle is off.

Maybe you could use two Battery Tenders, one for each battery?
 

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It kinda depends on how you have your dual batteries setup.

In mine I have the alternator connected to the aux battery (used for winch, lights etc.) then though an isolator (that has very low voltage drop of maybe one hundreth of a volt (0.01) if even that much) then on to the main battery which runs the normal loads of the truck.

My little battery tender (home made) usually stays connected to the aux battery which charges both batteries in the arrangement I have but I can only get away with that because of the isolator I used.

Most isolators are silicon diode based which drops 0.6V so won't allow a hookup like mine to work. Not one that would work very well for the main battery anyway.

I also have an on board solar setup also connected to the aux battery, that charges both batteries as well. While the solar charger is sit to top out at about 12.5 V (it's made for flooded wet cells and isn't adjustable) I have the tender set to 13.6V for the Odyssey batteries that I run. Most AGMs like to see a 13.6V float charge.

The solar charger is there for backup and for when the truck is away. It wasn't quite enough to keep AGM type batteries entirely happy but it was enough to keep the parasitic drain the truck imposes from killing off the charge on the battery entirely when its left parked for extended periods.


The Kussmaul charger will allow both batteries to charge when the vehicle is running, but also has 115VAC inputs to charge both batteries when the vehicle is parked and not running - which my truck does a lot (as well as the fire engines and ambulances for which Kussmaul makes many of their products).

So, I suppose what I'm actually trying to find is a less expensive set-up where you can charge both the starting battery and the accessory battery when the vehicle is not running (e.g. with some sort of 115VAC powered battery charger/manager).

The National Luna stuff looks good, but doesn't appear to charge unless the vehicle is running.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
First off: Holy crap, Dick foster?!? Long time, no hear (read?)! Good to hear from you. I hope all's going well for ya' out west.

Thanks for the info. Your set-up is similar to what I'm looking for, but instead of using a solar set-up to charge both batteries, something that uses old-fashioned 115VAC shore power.

The solar set-up sounds pretty interesting, though. I actually found a dual solar battery controller (http://www.morningstarcorp.com/en/sun-saver-duo) that looks like it does what you were describing, but even has 13.7V float capabilities.

Where did you put your panel(s)? Not a lot of real estate on top of the Tacoma...
 

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Have done this quite alot. I use pro-mariner products. They have a lot to choose from just depends on your application. These chargers are expensive but.....they are superior to a lot of products out their. I would, if you have not already, install a battery disconnect switch to help with your discharge while your truck sits.

Cam-shaft.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'm working on upgrading the alternator right now, but am gathering the info for the dual battery set-up. I purchased the NOCO GEN1 charger and am planning to mount it (though I'm still trying to figure out where it will fit best). From what I understand, when I do the dual battery set-up, attaching this charger to the aux battery and letting it run through the isolation relay (I'm planning on using a Blue Sea 7622) will allow it to charge both batteries. Is this right?

Where did you mount your charger?
 

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x11venty alot :cool:

I'm working on upgrading the alternator right now, but am gathering the info for the dual battery set-up. I purchased the NOCO GEN1 charger and am planning to mount it (though I'm still trying to figure out where it will fit best). From what I understand, when I do the dual battery set-up, attaching this charger to the aux battery and letting it run through the isolation relay (I'm planning on using a Blue Sea 7622) will allow it to charge both batteries. Is this right?

Where did you mount your charger?
Looks like I ran across this a bit late, but wanted to put the info out there anyways:

http://www.chargetek.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/CT500-1_ds.pdf

Model CT500-1 has isolated dual output charging (5A each or 10A total), can be used on two separate systems or even to charge two 12V in series if you want to. We have these hooked to battery backup systems in ~20 pumping stations, no issues over the past 5 years. A quick check of pricing showed to be ~$100.
 

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That looks like that could fit the bill. Nice find.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks, Tacomi! I already got the NOCO installed (and it's working great!), but this looks like a good dual-charging option.
 
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