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  #31  
Old 09-03-2018, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by cal2vin View Post
Iím not trying to power the system on the alternator alone. I realize I canít expect the alternator to charge a giant house bank. Thatís why I use shore charging as well.

So how would I get the power from the batteries to the amps? I used the largest gauge possibly accepted for each amp. And actually went up to 1/0 ga runs to each of the JL HD series which wanted a smaller gauge if I remember correctly. My runs are all below 6 feet. The batteries sit right next to all the amps.


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I realize that you're not using only the alternator to power the system, but if you crank the stereo and discharge the batteries, the load added to the alternator will exceed its capacity.

The question is- how far are the batteries from the alternator and how large is the charging cable (this MUST be larger if the alternator is upgraded to higher capacity).
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  #32  
Old 09-03-2018, 05:28 PM
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So how would I get the power from the batteries to the amps? I used the largest gauge possibly accepted for each amp.
I dont see an issue with you cable gauge. If I had to make a suggestion, Id make 4 short 4ga runs to a ground distribution block, then a large trunk line to the battery. Less terminations at the end. less chance of any voltage drop due to different length ground cables.
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  #33  
Old 09-03-2018, 06:14 PM
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I realize that you're not using only the alternator to power the system, but if you crank the stereo and discharge the batteries, the load added to the alternator will exceed its capacity.



The question is- how far are the batteries from the alternator and how large is the charging cable (this MUST be larger if the alternator is upgraded to higher capacity).


Ooo yea I had definitely planned on increasing the cable sizes from the alternator. Probably to the 4/0 gauge wires from knukoncepts. The distance is probably 10-12 feet max. Iíd have to measure. Wouldnít 1/0 gauge be sufficient though for a 200 amp load off an alternator even at that distance? I like to go overkill when I can so if the space would permit Iíd go to 4/0 gauge anyways. If I wanted to try keep vsr functionality. BEP makes a VSS thatís rated to accept much higher amperage. 275 amp continuous I think. Thatís just something I ran across though. Not sure how plausible it is.


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  #34  
Old 09-03-2018, 06:28 PM
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4/0? thats like the enough gauge to supply a small town! where would you need that?

The issue is not a VSR that has a higher amp capacity, its with its basic function. It does not want to stay combined to large bank thats deeply depleted.
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  #35  
Old 09-03-2018, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by MLA View Post
4/0? thats like the enough gauge to supply a small town! where would you need that?

The issue is not a VSR that has a higher amp capacity, its with its basic function. It does not want to stay combined to large bank thats deeply depleted.


So you think 1/0 would be enough for a 200 amp alternator. Everything Iíve read points to yes. So no VSR with large banks. Your preferred method in this scenario is keeping it manual with the 1, 2, both switch? Turn it to both when engine is running then keep it on house bank at all other times? Do you have any recommendations for an automated method? What about a high current relay and trigger it to combine when the key is on and separate with the key off. I actually already have that wiring ran. I used the boats original stereo turn on lead to trigger a relay in the small ground wire powering the vsr (per instructions from the manufacturer guidelines to have an optional ďstorageĒ mode). So I could just swap it out to a simple relay triggered by my ignition source?

My Stereoís red wire ignition lead is just wired to the battery direct so the key doesnít have to be on to run the stereo.


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Last edited by cal2vin; 09-03-2018 at 11:00 PM.
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  #36  
Old 09-04-2018, 10:15 AM
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With everything wired to the common post, the alternator will contribute to whichever bank you have the switch turned to. If you run the large house bank way down while at anchor, you can isolate it from the alternator and the stereo will still play when the engine is running.

You can leave the head unit's red IGN on a constant, but id move it the boat side of the switch rather then actually battery direct.

Im not a fan of continuous-duty solenoids, but it would do a similar job as the VSR just without the smarts to it.

I think 1/0 is more then enough for an alternator. It likely only runs to the starter, so its a short run. Id be surprised if the main battery cables are less then 2/0.
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  #37  
Old 09-04-2018, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by MLA View Post
With everything wired to the common post, the alternator will contribute to whichever bank you have the switch turned to. If you run the large house bank way down while at anchor, you can isolate it from the alternator and the stereo will still play when the engine is running.

You can leave the head unit's red IGN on a constant, but id move it the boat side of the switch rather then actually battery direct.

Im not a fan of continuous-duty solenoids, but it would do a similar job as the VSR just without the smarts to it.

I think 1/0 is more then enough for an alternator. It likely only runs to the starter, so its a short run. Id be surprised if the main battery cables are less then 2/0.
The alternator wire is the charging lead and doesn't power the starter- that is connected directly to the battery because the alternator can't output enough current for a starter, which needs around 150A. The 1/0 is for the batteries, but if the run is too long and/or the batteries and amplifiers need more than it can supply, it would be too small.

Main battery cables installed at the factory are usually 8 ga or 6 ga because that's enough for recharging the battery after cranking the starter (which is the main job of the alternator, not powering a huge audio system and a bunch of accessories).

Regardless of what is there, a current draw test is needed to find out what is actually needed. The batteries present a heavy load to the alternator when they're depleted- don't underestimate the effect on the alternator's life span when a storm comes up and the system has been cranked for hours. Alternators fail when they fail, on their schedule, not ours.
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  #38  
Old 09-04-2018, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by cal2vin View Post
Ooo yea I had definitely planned on increasing the cable sizes from the alternator. Probably to the 4/0 gauge wires from knukoncepts. The distance is probably 10-12 feet max. Iíd have to measure. Wouldnít 1/0 gauge be sufficient though for a 200 amp load off an alternator even at that distance? I like to go overkill when I can so if the space would permit Iíd go to 4/0 gauge anyways. If I wanted to try keep vsr functionality. BEP makes a VSS thatís rated to accept much higher amperage. 275 amp continuous I think. Thatís just something I ran across though. Not sure how plausible it is.


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The charging lead goes from the alternator's output post to the starter- I don't know where you're going with the longer one but if you try to connect a 4/0 to the alternator, you better make sure it doesn't cause the charging post to snap off.

You seem to think the relay will help power your system- energy doesn't come from switches and relays and you need to look at the path from the alternator to the cranking battery, then look at how it's trying to recharge the house batteries. You can't create energy- it's a fundamental law of Physics. If you prevent current, the energy is lost as heat- another form of energy.

You need to analyse the energy used by the audio system before even thinking about how many batteries and the gauge of cabling that are needed. Anything done outside of that is just guesswork and that's a waste of time & money.

Don't bother with name brands- just use materials that work. Go to a welding supply house for cabling- it works and is a lot less expensive. If you want to dress it up after the fact, go ahead but it's not going to make anything sound better.
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  #39  
Old 09-04-2018, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by JimN View Post
The charging lead goes from the alternator's output post to the starter- I don't know where you're going with the longer one but if you try to connect a 4/0 to the alternator, you better make sure it doesn't cause the charging post to snap off.



You seem to think the relay will help power your system- energy doesn't come from switches and relays and you need to look at the path from the alternator to the cranking battery, then look at how it's trying to recharge the house batteries. You can't create energy- it's a fundamental law of Physics. If you prevent current, the energy is lost as heat- another form of energy.



You need to analyse the energy used by the audio system before even thinking about how many batteries and the gauge of cabling that are needed. Anything done outside of that is just guesswork and that's a waste of time & money.



Don't bother with name brands- just use materials that work. Go to a welding supply house for cabling- it works and is a lot less expensive. If you want to dress it up after the fact, go ahead but it's not going to make anything sound better.


The switches and or relays are for automation purposes. Not to help power anything. Knukoncepts has been the most flexible easy to work with wire thatís why I prefer it. Stuff from welding shops isnít that much cheaper and the stuff Iíve tried is so dang stiff. Iíll take a closer look at how the alternator is wired to each bank.

Has anyone done or heard of a high output alternator replacement on any of the newer mastercrafts with ilmor engines. I know there are quite a few large systems floating around. Any alt upgrades? 200+ amp?


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  #40  
Old 09-04-2018, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by JimN View Post
The alternator wire is the charging lead and doesn't power the starter- that is connected directly to the battery because the alternator can't output enough current for a starter, which needs around 150A. The 1/0 is for the batteries, but if the run is too long and/or the batteries and amplifiers need more than it can supply, it would be too small.

Main battery cables installed at the factory are usually 8 ga or 6 ga because that's enough for recharging the battery after cranking the starter (which is the main job of the alternator, not powering a huge audio system and a bunch of accessories).

Regardless of what is there, a current draw test is needed to find out what is actually needed. The batteries present a heavy load to the alternator when they're depleted- don't underestimate the effect on the alternator's life span when a storm comes up and the system has been cranked for hours. Alternators fail when they fail, on their schedule, not ours.
LOL, you crack me up. How in the heck did you get from my post that the alternator makes the starter turn over
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