2 batteries on a Bigfoot trailer - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-07-2019, 11:08 AM   #15
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Name: Tony
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony O View Post
Your comment triggered a thought and also gave me an idea: Keep one 30 lb bottle and build a platform next to it that an extra battery sits under. A smaller 20lb bottle would sit on top of the platform. That way the pigtail connecting the two propane bottles would still be useful; with such an arrangement two batteries could still be connected together. I'm looking for my measuring tape...

Comments???

OK, measurements are as such: a 30# propane bottle is 24" tall; a 20# bottle is 18" tall. A standard group 27 battery in a battery box is 11" tall. Since a standard deep-cycle, lead acid battery must stand upright a sealed AGM battery would have to be used because they can safely be mounted on their side. The AGMs I have are 7" thick x 13" wide x 12" tall.

With minimal alterations, the above measurements would allow fabrication and installation of a 1/8" thick steel platform next to a 30# LP bottle to place a 20# LP bottle on top, allowing for placement of a second AGM battery underneath the platform. This arrangement would keep the original single battery in its place under the Bigfoot factory fiberglass shroud. It would be a tight fit, but doable.
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Old 02-07-2019, 11:20 AM   #16
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I like where this is going.

For what it's worth my trailer has only ever had two 20# tanks (I guess I thought that was standard). I live in my camper for most of the year and this has never been an issue. More than enough propane storage.
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Old 02-07-2019, 09:20 PM   #17
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Name: Martin
Trailer: Bigfoot 27.5 Front bed
Missouri
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There is a variable not mentioned, on a 2005 17.5 the battery and lp platform are plates welded to the bottom of the 4" high frame. On my 2008 27.5 the platform sits about 3" below the 5" frame thus creating more room for the taller tanks and possibly stacking batteries, it appears the prior owner had done something similar as there are marks and cut outs in the cover where mounting bars may have been there. It was not there when I purchased the trailer from the dealer.

On my trailer with this platform lower than the bottom of the frame it also goes under the cargo box likely far enough you could mount 2 or 3 batteries side by side behind the lp tanks if you wanted to deal with that inconvenience. Its too cold and dark to mess with photos but hopefully you can imagine what I am describing.

Another possibility is mine has the prewired box for a generator mounted about 6 feet back of the front of the body, there would be plenty of room for extra batteries there and there is wiring that runs to the back of the trailer for when you are using the generator. Not sure if a 17 would have same generator mount set up. It would be a hassle to get batteries in and out but maybe not more than trying to service a reluctant generator in the same spot. There would be slightly less weight on the hitch as this would be closer to the axle(s).
Final possibility if you have the front cargo box would be to put your batteries there and build a platform over them for other cargo, wouldn't work for me as I have severe arthritis and couldn't access them there, but if your healthy and strong....?
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Old 02-13-2019, 11:59 AM   #18
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When I bought my 24' 'Sticky', it was standard with 2 x 20 lb LPG bottles. I paid extra to equip it with 2 x 30 lb bottles, being accustomed to older trailers LPG usage. Experience has taught me that the 2 x 20 lb bottles would have been adequate, because there are NO continuous burn pilots on my 24'.
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Old 02-13-2019, 01:07 PM   #19
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Name: Mike
Trailer: 2005 Bigfoot 17.5'
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I went to (2)6 volt batteries under the dinette seat on my 18'. Lots of room under the cowl now to get the propane tanks in and out, tongue weight is reduced, and batteries are kept warm in cooler weather. Way more capacity than one 12v deep cycle.
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Old 02-13-2019, 01:15 PM   #20
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But questionable as to more than 2 x 12 volt, and if you lose 1?
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Old 02-13-2019, 02:26 PM   #21
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There was a technical discussion a while back of the merits of 6v vs 12v, above my head mostly, but the concencus mostly was for the 6v pairing. Your point about losing one is a valid perhaps? Although a pair of 12's in parallel..if one went bad it would quickly bring down the other unless isolated. Good thought though, that hadn't considered .
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Old 02-13-2019, 02:42 PM   #22
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hmmmmm

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Originally Posted by Mike_L View Post
Sorry, I can't offer much help with this. My trailer came with one battery but space for two. No cover, the batteries are housed in separate battery boxes. These battery boxes are readily available and easy to install.

I've tried both the two 6 volt batteries wired in series and the two 12 volt batteries wired in parallel arrangements and found little difference in performance.
As an example, two 220 amp/hr 6 volt batteries wired in series yields 220 amp/hr of 12 volt power.
Two 110 amp/hr 12 volt batteries wired in parallel also yields 220 amp/hr of 12 volt power.
The 6 volt batteries must be evenly matched. If one fails, both have to be replaced.
The 12 volt batteries can be used separately. If one fails, the other one is still usable so you only have to replace one.
I used both for 7 plus years before their performance dropped.

I recall a situation where the breakaway switch on my trailer was "accidentally" activated. I awoke the next morning to my "low battery" alarm as the single 12 volt battery I was using had been discharged by the electric brake being activated all night.
Had I been using two 6 volt batteries in series (or both 12 volt batteries in parallel) I would have had no power, not good for boondocking in the back country.
Using one 12 volt battery, I had the other one to use while my solar panels recharged the other one. This was the deciding factor for me.

I'm struggling to understand how with two 12V batteries wired in parallel, a drain on one managed to leave the other intact? And, of course your calculation of 2 x 220Ah 6v batteries in series would have the same power as two 110Ah 12v in parallel is correct but the difference to me is that 12V batteries are typically not true deep cycle, their plates are significantly thinner than in a 6v, and it's not common to find 12V batteries with a true 20h rating of 110Ah. Your mileage may vary.
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Old 02-13-2019, 03:14 PM   #23
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Trojan Battery has several deep cycle choices for you.
Google "Trojan battery maintenance" for answers to all your questions.
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Old 02-13-2019, 04:59 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by semievolved View Post
I'm struggling to understand how with two 12V batteries wired in parallel, a drain on one managed to leave the other intact? And, of course your calculation of 2 x 220Ah 6v batteries in series would have the same power as two 110Ah 12v in parallel is correct but the difference to me is that 12V batteries are typically not true deep cycle, their plates are significantly thinner than in a 6v, and it's not common to find 12V batteries with a true 20h rating of 110Ah. Your mileage may vary.
My interpretation of his 'One drained, one intact' indicates he has an isolation switch, to guard against draining both batteries.
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Old 02-13-2019, 09:48 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Lloyd (aka Santa) Coltman View Post
My interpretation of his 'One drained, one intact' indicates he has an isolation switch, to guard against draining both batteries.

That makes sense and would work to safeguard one battery but then you don't really have 220Ah available for system use. When isolated, you'd have a 110Ah system for one purpose and a 110Ah system for all other needs and you really still have the risk that one or both could be run too far down. I suppose the same safety could be provided on either a 12V parallel or a 6V series system by including a low-voltage disconnect that leaves enough juice to take care of you.
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:50 AM   #26
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"to learn all the different ways it can be done"

one "different" solution in a B17 is to put them under the right dinette seat like I did. Once I gave up on locating on the tonge (for a couple of reasons) I looked around and came to the conclusion that these trailers are heavy on the left side already and the area under the right dinette seat forward was sort of difficult to access/use anyway. The trade-off is lots of new outside storage space in the propane locker for landing gear, blocks, etc
I've been happy with the way it all works...no regrets.

(custom battery box screwed down to the floor, vented to outside)


I'm surprised some are rehashing the two 12V vs two 6V debate. I thought that one had been settled a long time ago! guess not
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