Originally Posted by Ketcham
I wanted to thank everyone here. Ed at FICM repair was exceedingly knowledgeable and took the time to provide his insight, so much so I had to cut the conversation short due to my personal work schedule.
http://www.nationsstarteralternator.com ... asp?ID=251
Because of reasons stated in this link, I chose the 370 Amp XP. The XP has advantages:
In addition the XP allows a voltage regulator (in this case limiting to 14.2V) which is more ideal for gel type batteries I have powering the diesel motor. Higher voltages stress this type of battery design.
Are you sure that alternator will fit in the smaller case? I do agree that the 370 would in theory might run cooler but if for some reason you had a short or an unusual high load, I do agree with Joe, you better ramp up to some big bus wire and/or fuse it. These guys that have those thumper stereos in there vehicles require massive power supplies and engineer for it. I just think it's a bit much for what we really need. YMMV and it will be interesting to follow what you decide to install and the performance you get out of it. Please don't take it as I'm shooting down your ideas...I'm no expert.
Secondly are you really running Gel batteries Ketch? If so in most cases you really need a specific voltage regulator and the solar (if you have it) will need to be adjusted for that as well. I ran gel batteries in my bass boat and got rid of them...rather burned them up quickly because they require a specific charging voltage as compared to wet cell and AGM types. This depending on the manufacture and design
manufactures require a lower voltage with Gel cell types (below 13.8 @ around 70*) where AGM's can take a slightly higher voltage at the same temp. Unfortunately I used a standard car charger on my bass boat and it cost me in the end. I've seen that the MK (East Penn/Deka IIRC) series claim they can be charged at a higher voltage. It gets back to finding out what the manufacture requires. Gel types do have advantages.
Just because it's on the internet doesn't mean it's correct...in my case I guess it was with the brand I purchased for my boat.
Here is a typical internet point of view, mind you I don't have the background to state whether is valid.
http://solarcraft.net/articles/gel-vs-a ... batteries/
Could be a load of high amp horse hockey.