Another question re electrical upgrade: DC-DC, or alternator>inverter>converter
In trying to retrofit my electrical system with new batteries (BTW, Northern AZ Wind & Sun has a 10% off on Battle Born Lithiums this week, July 22-26, 2019, use code JULY10).
I have the old school isolator, with the alternator cable detached from van battery and to the isolator, then two cables to van and house batteries.
And an old Intellipower 9140 40A converter for AC to DC charging (can be used with the Battle Born lithiums, but not ideal). And I have a solar controller but it has no means for changing the profile from AGM to LFP.
I was pretty set on going with the Kisae for solar and alternator charging, omit the SurePower and add the ignition activated relay, and just attach alternator and van batteries wires back together (rather than back to the van battery itself). And maybe upgrade the converter. Might throw in a new switch, but fuses and wiring basically set.
But then I re-read Mike's alternator to inverter to converter description, and remembered that (doh) I had wired in an alternator, big gauge wire and fuses, when I installed a winch. But I hardly ever use the inverter, 600W anymore. It attaches in cabin near the passenger seat via Anderson power poles. Sheesh, I just take the converter's plug out of the AC outlet (shorepower) and plug in my extension cord, plug in the inverter, and bingo, charging at 40A. That's really close to the inverter max of 600W, so I might need to upgrade. And the solar? geez...I hadn't realized that MPPT controllers had dropped so far in price, like about $150 for one big enough for my panel plus a bluetooth dongle. All that's less than the Kisae set up.
So now I'm wondering about a more automatic connection for the inverter. I know Mike's description is pretty old. I've seen transfer relays of the fancier type designed for inverter, shore, and gennie input. The idea is shorepower fails, and it can switch to inverter or gennie (some have autostart, all have delays for generator input, which would seem to work well for alternator input as well). Has anyone ever wired up one of those?
Or is that too fancy and too automatic? I don't see a scenario where I have both shore power and the van running, so a simple relay that could sense when the inverter/alternator came on and then paused for say 30 seconds before sending power to the converter would work.
2001 Ford E250 Sportsmobile with Salem-Kroger 4x4 conversion