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Off-topic but I need HELP !!

Old 04-14-2018, 05:33 PM
  #1  
solentlife
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Default Off-topic but I need HELP !!

My yacht has twin battery system ... basically two 100A/hr car batterys in a 1 - 2 - off system.

I can choose any or both batterys to provide power for my diesel starter and domestics.

The problem is the starter / indicator panel has apparently swapped over !!

Correct panel indications / sequence :

Engage power switch ...
Panel is live and Red LED should light up.
Flick on (down) Alternator 'live' switch - this energises exciter lead. Buzzer starts warning that switch is on.
Start diesel
Give it a few extra RPM and exciter lead is then reversed by alternator charge - Red LED goes out and Buzzer stops indicating alternator is charging batterys.

But now without any wires coming of or changes :

Engage power switch ...
Panel is live and Red LED should light up.
Flick on (down) Alternator 'live' switch - Red LED goes out ! No buzzer at all.

I checked Exciter lead ... all connected as should be.

If I start diesel - I don't think alternator is kicking in ... but cannot be sure.

If I pull the plug in back of Alternator which has the exciter / charge leads connections - the Red LED lights up and Buzzer sounds.

I'm wondering if the bridge circuit on back of alternator may have shorted ?

Any ideas guys and gals ? Before I remove Alternator and give to 'shop' to test ?

Nigel
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:59 PM
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Panther
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Sounds like Alt not charging OR a dud battery.
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:47 PM
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solentlife
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Originally Posted by Panther View Post
Sounds like Alt not charging OR a dud battery.
Batterys are fine ... new.

Alternator will be going to 'doctor' .............

Nigel
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:47 PM
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hayofstacks
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Alternators are really pretty simple, you really only need a steady 12v signal to kick start it, if you start it up with lower then 12v a lot then it can eat them up quick.
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Old 04-15-2018, 05:45 PM
  #5  
dereckbc
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Nigel sounds like you might have a wiring issue. The switch you have is most likely a SPDT. or maybe a DPDT. Does not make a lot of difference which one.

For simplicity lets assume SPST. On that would be C or Common contact, C1 and C2. The C or common contact is the Load side of the switch and all your boats electrics connected to that side. C1 should only be battery 1, and C2 only battery 2.

I am guessing your alternator charge and/or sense wire is connected to one of the batteries on one of the C1 or C2 contractors when it should be on the Load or C side of the switch. . Either that or you alternator has died.
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Old 04-15-2018, 07:12 PM
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solentlife
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The main Battery switch ... a standard boaters 1 - BOTH - 2 OFF rotary switch.

The batterys connect as common negative and each + to a terminal on the rotary switch.

+ve power then goes to starter solenoid where power is also tapped of for the domestics and starter panel.

The Alternator receives its 12v exciter feed from the SPST switch on the starter panel. Reason for the switch is to isolate the 12v from the alternator when engine not running, its a sailboat and electricity is a precious commodity on board as it only charges when connected to shore or running the engine.

My gut feeling is a shot bridge circuit on back of the alternator ... because if I disconnect the leads of the alternator - the Red LED and Buzzer come on ... as they should when no 12V from the alternator.

Nigel
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Old 04-15-2018, 09:41 PM
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Makes sense Nigel.
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Old 04-16-2018, 06:10 PM
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Wildflyer
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This might help the non boaters. I have had 3 boats with twin batteries so I know how much frustration a boat can be.

I would start by removing every connection, sanding or scraping clean and replace.
Some times in a boat a connection can be physically tight but yet not making electrical connection. Battery posts are great for doing this.
After every thing is working again spray a protective material on them. On basic wiring behind the dash board, I use Corrosion X, on the battery terminals I use a purple coating made for that, sorry can't remember the name, just auto parts store stuff.
The Corrosion X is a clear spray, you don't know it's there but it works great.

BOAT = Break Out Another Thousand ($ is implied, use your own currency)
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