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Old 04-14-2019, 01:13 PM   #21
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About the only time I would be charging them is when the inside of the trailer is over 32°F. Each battery has built in protection that prevents charging when too hot or cold, and shuts them down when the amp hours gets down to 10%. Battleborn suggests removing them if the expected temperature is under 4°F, which I hope to avoid for a long time!

The batteries are their GC2 sized 12v versions, which means I can put 2 of them in the Escape battery box. While only 100 amp hours each, they can be drawn down to 10% capacity, and provide 13.7V or so right to the end, giving me close to the equivalent of 4 AGM batteries, my original plan. The 4 AGM batteries would weigh 260 pounds; the 2 lithium weigh 62 pounds Since I'm close to the GVW of the trailer (I know, I need to get rid of stuff) saving 200 pounds would be helpful.

There are still a couple of gotchas - I'll need to change the converter to a 35 amp version that does lithium batteries (PD4635LIV) because the 55 amp WFCO converter will not charge the lithium batteries fully, and because I have a 700 watt propane generator that would overload using the current converter since the lithium batteries do not have an absorption stage & draw the full output of the converter until the BPS determines they are full.

I will also change out the solar controller for the same reason - the GoPower controller does not do lithium well. I'm still deciding between a Victron SmartSolar MPPT 100/30 with Bluetooth dongle or 50 amp version with built in Bluetooth. And, since I'm doing all that, I will also change the battery monitor from the Trimetric to a Victron. Anyone looking for a good deal on a slightly used battery system?

I will post photos of the process, as well as how well it all works. Even though the batteries are warranted for 10 years to be within 80% of their initial amp hours, I know I can't justify the cost; I'm mostly doing it to stop firing off the propane detector, and for fun.
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Old 04-14-2019, 11:53 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
About the only time I would be charging them is when the inside of the trailer is over 32°F. Each battery has built in protection that prevents charging when too hot or cold, and shuts them down when the amp hours gets down to 10%. Battleborn suggests removing them if the expected temperature is under 4°F, which I hope to avoid for a long time!



The batteries are their GC2 sized 12v versions, which means I can put 2 of them in the Escape battery box. While only 100 amp hours each, they can be drawn down to 10% capacity, and provide 13.7V or so right to the end, giving me close to the equivalent of 4 AGM batteries, my original plan. The 4 AGM batteries would weigh 260 pounds; the 2 lithium weigh 62 pounds Since I'm close to the GVW of the trailer (I know, I need to get rid of stuff) saving 200 pounds would be helpful.



There are still a couple of gotchas - I'll need to change the converter to a 35 amp version that does lithium batteries (PD4635LIV) because the 55 amp WFCO converter will not charge the lithium batteries fully, and because I have a 700 watt propane generator that would overload using the current converter since the lithium batteries do not have an absorption stage & draw the full output of the converter until the BPS determines they are full.



I will also change out the solar controller for the same reason - the GoPower controller does not do lithium well. I'm still deciding between a Victron SmartSolar MPPT 100/30 with Bluetooth dongle or 50 amp version with built in Bluetooth. And, since I'm doing all that, I will also change the battery monitor from the Trimetric to a Victron. Anyone looking for a good deal on a slightly used battery system?



I will post photos of the process, as well as how well it all works. Even though the batteries are warranted for 10 years to be within 80% of their initial amp hours, I know I can't justify the cost; I'm mostly doing it to stop firing off the propane detector, and for fun.


Way to lead the charge, Jon!
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Old 04-15-2019, 11:24 AM   #23
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Plus the Li Batteries are rated to be recharged 3,000-5,000 times.........that should last awhile
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Old 04-15-2019, 12:23 PM   #24
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Love the Lithium solution, Jon. Can’t wait to follow ur install and performance in the field. The Battleborn’s are on sale right now as well. I’m looking at doing this soon as well and will move the batteries inside under the U dinette bench and off the tongue.
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Old 04-29-2019, 03:43 PM   #25
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There are still a couple of gotchas - I'll need to change the converter to a 35 amp version that does lithium batteries (PD4635LIV) because the 55 amp WFCO converter will not charge the lithium batteries fully, and because I have a 700 watt propane generator that would overload using the current converter since the lithium batteries do not have an absorption stage & draw the full output of the converter until the BPS determines they are full.


Hello Vermilye
We are thinking about splurging on battle born Lithum ion bateries for our 19 and I noticed that for your switch to Lithium you are suggesting you will upgrade your WFCO converter(WF8955) with PD4635LIV. Why are you not upgrading with the PD recommended PD4655LIV?
The reason I ask is that this is excaty what we will be doing but we were thinking of the PD4655 because that is indicated on a PD site
https://www.progressivedyn.com/lithi...acement-units/
Thank ou for sharing your thoughts,
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Old 04-29-2019, 05:01 PM   #26
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Hello Vermilye
We are thinking about splurging on battle born Lithum ion bateries for our 19 and I noticed that for your switch to Lithium you are suggesting you will upgrade your WFCO converter(WF8955) with PD4635LIV. Why are you not upgrading with the PD recommended PD4655LIV?
The reason I ask is that this is excaty what we will be doing but we were thinking of the PD4655 because that is indicated on a PD site
https://www.progressivedyn.com/lithi...acement-units/
Thank ou for sharing your thoughts,
Bear101
The reason for going with a smaller converter (the 35 amp) is because I purchased a Ryobi 900 watt propane generator. It only does 700 watts continuously, and since I plan to use it only when there is a string of cloudy days it top off the batteries, the larger converter would draw too much. One of the good/bad things about lithium is the batteries are either in the bulk charging phase drawing the full output of the converter, or in float. Since I will only be using the generator when the batteries are down, the converter will be drawing 655 watts at 120V until it switches to the float mode.

If you are using a 2K generator (or none at all) the 55 amp version is good.
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Old 04-29-2019, 07:36 PM   #27
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Thank You Vermilye
We do not have a generator currently but I have been looking at the Honda 2200i with a propane adapter kit. Which should work with the 55 version. Cheers!
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Old 04-29-2019, 09:01 PM   #28
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If you are using a 2K generator (or none at all) the 55 amp version is good.
So to reiterate-- you wouldn't need to change out the WFCO converter if you were charging the lithium batteries only via solar and sometimes line voltage. Line voltage won't charge the new batteries to 100% with the WFCO converter, but the solar panels will, given the right conditions. Is that right?
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Old 04-29-2019, 09:21 PM   #29
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So to reiterate-- you wouldn't need to change out the WFCO converter if you were charging the lithium batteries only via solar and sometimes line voltage. Line voltage won't charge the new batteries to 100% with the WFCO converter, but the solar panels will, given the right conditions. Is that right?
Hi Mike Lewis
I think what Vermilye is saying here is that if you want to fully charge the lithium batteries from shore power then you can carry out the conversion I indicated modifying the WFCO charging station with the addition of the PD4655LIV and it will work but just not with his generator. For the solar charging of lithium he also made a change because the GoPower controller does not charge lithium batteries well.
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Old 05-01-2019, 08:29 PM   #30
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I will also change the battery monitor from the Trimetric to a Victron.
I was mulling this over today while driving to Savannah. The battery monitor may not matter. Since the lithium system can be drawn down to 10% and then will automatically shut down, you will have 180 amp-hours to use willy-nilly without having to worry about battery charge levels or anything. That's quite a bit, and the worst thing that could happen when you use it up is that the DC system would shut down without damaging itself. Given that, you might be able to get by with the rudimentary charge level data shown in the solar controller or the inverter and not really need a battery monitor at all. Yeah, I know you already have one; I'm just thinking out loud.

But I understand wanting a battery monitor that can be read remotely. My experience with products that transmit data via Bluetooth has been that they are mediocre. To me, the tech barely works. So I suggest you pick the Victron monitor that you think has the most robust Bluetooth feature. I predict it won't be robust at all, but that it will sometimes work while the alternative will mostly not work. Unfortunately that has been my experience with Bluetooth.
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Old 05-02-2019, 08:03 AM   #31
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I was mulling this over today while driving to Savannah. The battery monitor may not matter. Since the lithium system can be drawn down to 10% and then will automatically shut down, you will have 180 amp-hours to use willy-nilly without having to worry about battery charge levels or anything. That's quite a bit, and the worst thing that could happen when you use it up is that the DC system would shut down without damaging itself. Given that, you might be able to get by with the rudimentary charge level data shown in the solar controller or the inverter and not really need a battery monitor at all. Yeah, I know you already have one; I'm just thinking out loud.

But I understand wanting a battery monitor that can be read remotely. My experience with products that transmit data via Bluetooth has been that they are mediocre. To me, the tech barely works. So I suggest you pick the Victron monitor that you think has the most robust Bluetooth feature. I predict it won't be robust at all, but that it will sometimes work while the alternative will mostly not work. Unfortunately that has been my experience with Bluetooth.

Regarding the BT capable Victrons, also be aware that they are completely insecure. Our neighbor has one (BMV-712, I believe) and it is both beautiful and snazzy! And I love the phone app. However, anyone within BT range can pair with it *and change any of its settings*. Zero security.
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Old 05-02-2019, 08:16 AM   #32
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The Bluetooth protocol came along late enough that its developers should have known to have security built-in, and they didn't. There ought to be a law...
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Old 05-02-2019, 10:51 AM   #33
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Hi Mike Lewis
I think what Vermilye is saying here is that if you want to fully charge the lithium batteries from shore power then you can carry out the conversion I indicated modifying the WFCO charging station with the addition of the PD4655LIV and it will work but just not with his generator. For the solar charging of lithium he also made a change because the GoPower controller does not charge lithium batteries well.
Correct. Even if I was going to stick with a 2K generator or spend most of my time plugged in, I would want to replace the WFCO converter.

The problem with using the WFCO converter with lithium batteries is that while the specified bulk voltage of the WFCO converter is 14.4V, which is the optimal voltage for lithium, WFCO converters seem to have a difficult time going into the bulk charging mode. The absorption mode produces 13.6 volts, too low to fully charge lithium batteries. Lithium batteries do not use the absorption mode; they are either in bulk or float, so a converter that spends most of its time in absorption at 13.6V is not ideal. While it is possible that the low source resistance of the lithium batteries would convince the WFCO converter to go into bulk, I'd rather not take the chance.

Another problem is the float voltage provided by the WFCO converter is 13.2, which is too low for lithium (recommended float is 13.6V).

Again, my reason for choosing the 35 amp lithium converter is because my generator is only rated at 700 watts (900 peak). A 55 amp converter would draw more than this when the converter is in the bulk mode (where it would be with lithium when I needed the generator). the 35 amp converter draws 650 watts input at 35 amps output.

By the way, the Ryobi 900 watt propane generator was delivered. Quiet for a generator, starts easily, and appears to do what I want. As I mentioned, once I start the conversion to lithium, I'll start a thread to let people know how it goes. I don't plan to start until after I get back from the Spring Fling in New Hampshire.
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Old 05-08-2019, 10:55 PM   #34
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The Apple App Store has a Victron app for their solar controllers that will run on Apple laptops, fyi. According to the description it can communicate with the controller via either the controller's Bluetooth interface or its USB connection. Using it via the USB connection would be a way to avoid BT insecurity. That's good to know.
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Old 05-08-2019, 11:52 PM   #35
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Using it via the USB connection would be a way to avoid BT insecurity. That's good to know.

Only if you can turn the BT off. Otherwise any Joe with a smart phone can walk by your rig and hook in. If they were only able to read data that would be one thing, but as I’ve tested with my neighbor’s rig, it’s a full read/write access with no authentication or verification. Kind of a shame as everything else about the Victron seems really nice.
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Old 05-09-2019, 10:59 AM   #36
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According to Victron's overview datasheet, their SmartSolar controllers have Bluetooth built-in and their BlueSolar controllers do not and need the Bluetooth dongle. Both models have their VE.direct dataport and should be able to use their (extra cost) data-to-USB cable. So to avoid BT security issues it appears that one would buy the BlueSolar controller and the data cable to interface with a laptop.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:06 AM   #37
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Regarding installation of the Battle Born lithium batteries-- It seems to me that you could remove the Escape 21's battery box altogether, as you wouldn't need it for the lithiums. There could be several different ways of securing the new batteries, e.g. screwing down footman loops on the trailer floor then strapping the batteries down with a nylon strap. The batteries aren't that heavy so that should hold them in place. Then you could add more lithiums in the future until you run out of space or money.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:18 AM   #38
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6 digit pin code required

https://www.victronenergy.com/live/v...smart_pin_code
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Old 05-09-2019, 12:37 PM   #39
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Thanks. I looked at the hardware manuals and datasheets; I didn't think to look for the software manual.
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Old 05-09-2019, 12:38 PM   #40
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That's cheating! You read the instructions!

Enjoy,

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