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Old 01-20-2009, 12:40 AM   #1
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SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

I have a used SMB that has a single aux deep cycle under the gaucho. Everything runs on shore power (micro, outlets). I want to add a second battery and have all the outlets/micro run off an inverter from the two aux batteries. Does anyone have a wiring diagram I could see to help me set this up? Any recommendations on a inexpensive quality inverter large enough to handle? Any place to get a double vented bx to replace my single box? Thanks in advance for your help.
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:25 PM   #2
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

Do you plan to run 12 volt circuits also? The problems with inverters is they pull amps to operate which helps deplete the charge of a battery faster. My 2000W inverter pulls an extra 3 or 4 amps on top of what the device uses. But I would not be W/O an inverter. I'll PM some info to you that has some links. Check your messages.
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Old 01-20-2009, 09:10 PM   #3
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

I am not sure I would like the idea of having a battery in the passenger compartment....

Are you talking about using regular deep cycle 12v batteries?

We have two 4D batteries, and we like the capacity and capability that it gives us. They are located behind the rear axle under the van.

When it comes to an inverter, it will be the items you want to run that tell you what you need. In your case, it may be the microwave that tells the story. They can have some high power needs.

We went with a Prosine 2000w inverter and have been able to run anything we needed to and have had no problems along the way. It also provides clean true sinewave power for sensitive electronics. ....but it would not be considered cheap....
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Old 01-20-2009, 10:28 PM   #4
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

The battery box under the goucho is sealed and vented to the outside. It is only a single, though, and I want to add a second battery. I have the largest Diehard platinum deepcycle. Supposedly they are sealed and do not need a vented box, but I'm not sure I trust it.

What I am trying to get at on the inverter is it I want all the outlets, etc to run through the inverter. I would love to have it where, when on shore power everything runs on shore power, but when on battery it all runs off the inverter. I want it to be switchable. I want a cleaner install than having an inverter out when I am on battery alone. For instance, when tailgating, I do not want to have to have a big inverter out to run a TV. Any ideas?
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Old 01-21-2009, 12:00 AM   #5
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

Cobaum, I agree that the "inside" battery box is perfectly safe, especially with AGM or gel batteries. Also agree it's better to vent even a sealed battery. Our 1993 SMB has both house batteries under the dinette seat, each in its own vented plastic box. Been okay for 16 years and 85k miles. You can vent the new box into the old box and not cut a new hole in the side or floor of the van. For several battery box choices, try Dyers RV. Here's their home page: http://www.dyersonline.com/

Good luck!
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Old 01-21-2009, 08:47 AM   #6
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

Cobaum,

I don't have any wiring diagram, and with all the difference SMB to SMB, I am not sure how much good it would do...

We tailgate with McBeast quite a bit (see album when they are back). We have run two TVs (one 36incher on AC), the microwave, and a couple of laptop power supplies and not had a problem. If you are looking for an inverter to install that will give you the capability to tailgate in a similar manner, then you want to make sure you have enough wattage capability. 2000w seems like it would be plenty, and has been for us.

How much does your microwave use?
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Old 01-21-2009, 04:04 PM   #7
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

I have an inside sealed box with a 4D AGM. I'd rather have in front of the underfloor storage with the other one, but that's for consideration of space.
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Old 01-21-2009, 10:48 PM   #8
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

Quote:
Originally Posted by cobaum
What I am trying to get at on the inverter is it I want all the outlets, etc to run through the inverter. I would love to have it where, when on shore power everything runs on shore power, but when on battery it all runs off the inverter. I want it to be switchable. ....... Any ideas?

I wired our van to manually do that. Shore power comes into a breaker panel (one 15 amp breaker) then to a 20 amp GFI outlet (this makes it that all 110v shore powered outlets are GFI protected - my Tripplite manual says not to run their modified sine wave 110v through a GFI), then the hot wire from the GFI into a three way switch. The hot wire from the inverter also runs into the three way switch. The output of the three way switch goes to all 110 volt outlets on my single circuit (one in restroom, one in mid-console, one in kitchen area, and one inside front console). We select what type of power we want (shore 110v or inverter 110v) prior to turning inverter on or plugging into shore power. Have thought about ganging in a second three way switch for the neutral wire so that both the hot and neutral are switched BUT have not done it yet. If I could I would like to do that w a single switch but have not found a single switch that would do both functions.
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Old 01-22-2009, 12:22 AM   #9
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

On mine all the outlets go through the GFI outlet, so if the GFI is tripped they all go out- so one GFI protects the whole van, well as far as outlets are concerned.

I'm not sure the exact method but the invertor is set up to pass shore power through and can be set to power share, meaning to take some of the amperage load. So when I'm plugged into my 15a garage the first 15a comes from the house and if I pull additional amps the invertor will kick on and use battery power to generate the additional amps, keeping the circuit from tripping.
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Old 02-01-2009, 11:53 AM   #10
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Re: SMB dual aux battery setup/inverter

Cobaum,

What I believe you are looking for is a Parallax ATS 301, http://www.parallaxpower.com/ATS.htm

I am basically building my van from the ground up so I have had to research all this extensively! I wanted the same thing...when not connected to shore, all AC works via the inverter, but when connected to shore, all AC works via shore and bypasses the inverter completely. I picked up the ATS 301 from Camping World for about $75. I purchased a "subpanel" from Home Depot for about $10 and all my AC will use the subpanel as their primary breakers, (AC plugs, Microwave, Air Conditioner). I have not yet completed the install but am confident this will be the ideal situation given the equipment I have, (Parallax 7300 converter and Tripp-Lite 3000W inverter).

I chose to go with two 6V flooded batteries as my house batteries. They are the Trojan T-105's and provide 225 Amp-Hours. I wired them in series to give me 12V. I am also using a Perko dual battery switch, (http://www.sportsmansguide.com/net/cb/c ... tid=282433), so I can manually select which battery bank I am on, (the two starter batteries for my diesel or the two house batteries, all, or off). This setup works really well for me because I don't have to worry about anything failing like the dual battery solenoid that I believe SMB uses. I built an aluminum battery box that mounts on the drivers side frame rail basically where the gas filler is. I installed the remote battery fill system, (http://www.campingworld.com/shopping/it ... stem/27035), so I don't have to drop the batteries to fill them when needed, very convenient!

Attached is a rough sketch of what I am doing with the ATS 301, etc. Again, the secondary breaker panel will run to all the equipment and the ATS 301 acts as the time-delay switch between the inverter and shore. I did have to change the wiring on the ATS 301 so the inverter was the default. I can provide details on this and pics of the battery box if needed.

Hope this helps!

Jason

Attached Thumbnails
Parallax Wire Diagram.JPG  
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