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Old 02-12-2011, 01:03 AM   #1
Ozz
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Battery boxes, battery spacing

I am consistent.
I generally have to do things twice, or more, before I get it right.
Battery box:
The venting I have just will not work, first the original Montana vent is designed for one battery, second, there is only one vent hose. You need enough air volume to suck clean air into the battery box, and a vent to circulate nasty air out of the battery box:
Two vents. The reason there is just one vent in the original one-battery box is that where the cables come into the battery, the air gets sucked up from that air space. With a relatively tight top on my box, I got no circulation.
This is needed for two reasons,
Nasty air: explosive gasses, and cooling of the batteries, those suckers get HOT!
Another mistake I made is that the batteries need about 1" of air space between them, otherwise they won't get cooling air circulation.
Overheating shortens the life of the batteries greatly.
I have to re-do the cables I already made. Live and learn.....

https://picasaweb.google.com/Jimsue1...eat=directlink

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Old 02-12-2011, 01:40 AM   #2
bncinwv
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Good info Ozz, ironically I was just thinking about whether or not a second vent was needed for a second battery installation. I also need to do research to see if there is a double box available for dual installations. Definitely adding a second battery this Spring and your input is already being absorbed (as always!!).
Bingo
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Old 02-12-2011, 02:23 AM   #3
nosticks
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Ozz, I too am adding a set of 6v golf carts. I built the box a few weeks ago but have not purchased the batteries. I put it in the Monty for a trial fit to position it and the Perko Battery selector cable lengths etc but did not bolt it down. I don't recall if I left enough space between the two 6v batteries. I need to check that. Unfortunately I screw glued the box together, so expanding it won't work out too well if it is necessary. On the vent, my dealer has the Monty vents that match the original in stock for the top, but for the bottom or side of the box I was looking to use the round circular siding vents from Home Depot. Good idea on the shower liner, I was going to glass the inside with resin and cloth, now I think if I have to re size the box, I'll go the shower pan liner route.
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:06 AM   #4
Ozz
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Dave, that is one sweet-looking rig!
With only 2 batteries, I think I would try and slide by with them close together, as for the inside of the box, see if you can get some scrap rubber roof pcs from a local roofing company. That's what I did, I used Black pcs from a Rubber company here in town.
Lowe's has the spray-on rubber adhesive, works super. Spray the inside floor and walls, spray the rubber, stick it on.
Then spend the next hour getting it off your fingertips... WD-40 works good for that.
I would also think you could get by with the original vent with just 2 batteries, but you should cut a hole in the bottom of the box, about 3 or 4" up for vent. The Hydrogen gas is light, it will get sucked up.
(From what I read, use your own judgment on this.)
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:34 AM   #5
SlickWillie
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So, am I the only one with a OEM sealed battery box? Bottom drain, top vent hose.

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Old 02-12-2011, 06:58 AM   #6
Jolu
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Ozz,
I am not sure the batteries get all that hot. Mine are butted up next to each other and I have checked them from time to time and they do not get hot. My main reason for checking them was to see what happens when I equalize them. I can hear them boil but they do not get hot. They do go through the equalize cycle.
I have used the solar charger equalizer cycle and the inverter/charger equalizer at different times to equalize the batteries.

Most of the solar systems I have seen only use one vent for the battery box. I think two would be better. I have used only one vent for almost a year now and it seems to vent ok. It is not all that difficult to run another tube and vent. The hardest problem is finding those square vents like the Monty has.
I spoke with Starlight Solar in Yuma and bought one of their battery boxes for four batteries and they thought only one vent was enough.
When I get back home I will install the new battery box and will probably go with a second vent tube.

The Battery Mat is a handy item to use for the batteries to sit on. The mat absorbs any acid spill or leakage and will save the battery box and you can clean the mat.
Water Miser Battery Caps are very helpful when checking your water levels and they can be left in place when equalizing.

Joe

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Old 02-12-2011, 07:15 AM   #7
Ozz
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I think it depends on usage, we have had a system here at the house, I had 10 locked together tight, I will take a picture of the distorted battery case, I used mine for days on end, recharging with a battery charger.
I guess that is why they recommend a battery temperature sensor, mine did got hot here at the house.
It all boils down to making the batteries last as long as possible and being as efficient as possible. I imagine most systems work just fine.
My overheated, distorted warped battery cases lasted 10 years, but they look funny...
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Old 02-12-2011, 08:30 AM   #8
Jolu
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The battery sensors that comes with the charge controller and the inverter/charger will hopefully help and keep the battery temp in check.
This type of charging adds a whole new definition to smart charging.
It is always in the back of mind what happens if one of the sensor cables goes bad or the sensor itself goes bad. When I do the equalize charging my habit is to be around to observe things.
Joe
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:59 AM   #9
Ozz
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Joe, it's always a good habit to keep one eye on the Robots....
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:40 AM   #10
Ozz
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Here is some information on battery mass and heat, and pictures of my poor old house batteries.
My old Trace DR 2412 charged at 120 amps, my new Magnum charges at 140 amps, so I bought the optional battery minder.
http://tinyurl.com/4cu7vaq
For optimum battery charging, a unique temperature compensation circuit utilizes an optional remote probe to automatically adjust charge voltage to battery temperature. In the inverter mode, if your batteries run seriously low, an adjustable over-discharge protection circuit automatically turns off the inverter to protect your batteries. Other design features protect against undercharging, overload, and accidental connection of an AC source to an AC outlet.
Thermal mass means that because they have so much mass, they will change internal temperature much slower than the surrounding air temperature. A large insulated battery bank may vary as little as 10 degrees over 24 hours internally, even though the air temperature varies from 20 to 70 degrees. For this reason, external (add-on) temperature sensors should be attached to one of the POSITIVE plate terminals, and bundled up a little with some type of insulation on the terminal. The sensor will then read very close to the actual internal battery temperature.
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Old 02-12-2011, 11:08 AM   #11
carlson
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Well it was 2005 when I built the battery boxes, plywood, and I sprayed them with vehicle undercoating. Let it dry and it has worked great.
The plywood tops to the boxes is screwed on tight.
I drilled 4 1" holes in the bottom of the battery box and front compartment floor.
I took the original vent hose still connected to the front vent, and got additional hose.
I put a coupling on the hose, into the top of box 1 with a "TEE", then to the second box again into a "TEE", the I drilled the top of the box to put the TEE into.
After the last tee, the hose curls around and to the original hole from the 12 volt battery box.
I put in the system where you can filled the batteries with distilled water from the outside, a hand squeeze bulb connect to the hose.
Has worked great.
The other thing I have done is to put in a A B battery switch.
When we are parked and on electric power, I have the battery on A which is a OPTIMIZER, deep cycle battery, no need to be vented, it is a gel battery.
Then about every two weeks, I switch to B the battery bank for a day or two.
Once a month, I unplug from power, and run off the battery bank, inverter for a day, to cycle the battery bank.
Also with the A B switch, if we are dry camping, and run out of power, I can switch to the single battery to get me out of trouble.
Good luck
E. Sven
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Old 02-12-2011, 11:27 AM   #12
Ozz
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Sounds like a sweet system, I love your TV.
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Old 02-12-2011, 01:34 PM   #13
bncinwv
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I think I have decided on an OEM double battery box, an isolator switch, and I think that the existing single vent will suffice. Went to the rig today to try to get the generator started again, filled propane tanks, got there and the battery was dead. Will go back tomorrow with the portable generator to charge the thing and see what happens. The battery being dead has reinforced the decision to go with a two battery (staying with 12v since we don't boondock) system and the isolator switch will let me completely turn the batteries off and preserve the charge. Hopefully tackle the job in the next couple of weeks. Ozz is inspiring me to get back in productive mode with the rig, got a lot to do to get ready for the camping season.
Bingo
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Bingo and Cathy - Our adventures begin in the hills of WV. We are blessed by our 2014 3850FL Big Sky (previous 2011 3750FL and 2007 3400RL) that we pull with a 2007 Chevy Silverado Classic DRW CC dually.
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Old 02-12-2011, 01:45 PM   #14
Jolu
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Ozz you are right, he does have one sweet truck. He is a couple of rows over from me and I get to look at his rig everyday.
Joe
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Old 02-14-2011, 05:52 AM   #15
carlson
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Not to get off of battery boxes.
But thanks for the at a boy on the truck.
It has been a great investment.
It is a 2007 chassis, so 2006 emissions.
So people said I was stupid as the truck I got has a Mercedes 250 hp engine.
People say that you need at least a 300+ hp to be able to pull grades.
Yes, I do go up hill slow, but I am retired, at the end of the day I will be at the same place you are, maybe a little later, but we travel in comfort.
We travel from NH to MN to AZ twice a year.
It is our go to town truck, have never had a problem going anywhere or parking anywhere, maybe father out in the parking lot, but that way we get our exercise.
We get 10 mpg hauling, but around town without the rig, we get 15 mpg.
The truck is owned by our company so we can right off all travel, I do fire apparatus fire pump testing, in NH and AZ.
Have a great day, 74 degrees in AZ and no rain since January 7.
E. Sven
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Old 02-14-2011, 07:14 AM   #16
RickW
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Those M2s are sweet. They were on my short list before when we decided we wanted a Jeep instead of the truck for our destination vehicle. When that happened all the MDTs got marked off the list.
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Old 02-14-2011, 10:01 AM   #17
carlson
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Again sorry to get off battery box.
RickW
SWEET!!!!
That is the way to go!!
Last year we recreational double towed the YJ jeep on the back of the 3400RL on the M2, from NH to MN to AZ and back.
Did not get stopped once.
Talk about a freight train, 85' long, yes 85'
E. Sven
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Old 02-14-2011, 12:17 PM   #18
Ozz
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Carlson, no problem at all. I enjoy reading about the big trucks.
Speaking of big trucks... Me being a Ford man and all:

Oh, to keep on topic so I don't get in trouble on Valentines day, I worked on my battery box with a few finishing touches today.

Sue and I in front, the sandwich cooler in the middle seat, and the cats in the rear seat.



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Old 02-15-2011, 04:07 AM   #19
Lee F.
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I just talked to my local Line-X dealer who did my truck bed. He said he will spray the inside of my plywood battery box for $10.00 if it's done when he is doing another vehicle. Seems like a no brainer to me.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:40 PM   #20
BrokenElbow
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I saw this 2x6v battery box in one of the members mods and got one for myself. I am going to install the 12v box vents that came with the Monty in this box, it should work well. It did for the member who did it. http://bluesea.com/products/4021
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