Power locker in Michigan

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thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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28
So, I have a locker.


image_sdyjir.jpg


And some battries.

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Yes most are from power tools. I mistakenly thought I could repair some and resell them to help fund the project. It's proving harder to resell them in my circle of contacts and so I am switching to running down laptop batteries as I should have done from the start.

The theory here is that this locker should be able to house 14 shelves that hold 3 60 cell packs each. Rather then shelves though it will be more of a rail system to allow for better air flow. I don't foresee me ever getting to fill the locker with 2,520 cells, but I would rather have to option then trying to figure it out later.

With that said I think I will be starting with a 24 volt system perhaps using the PIP2424LV and some solar panels out back somewhere. Maybe on the roof of the house or garage, whichever one I can get away with without to much trouble.With the locker having 14 shelves that would enable me to switch to a 48 volt system rather easily with just some rewiring.

Once the weather here warms up a little bit more I'll be able to get work on the rack/shelf/rail system that I am envisioning and will be back with more pictures once that comes to life a bit.
 

floydR

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Aug 23, 2017
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1,218
The Locker is an excellent idea, I like the locker idea.

Later floyd
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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Upon further review of my plan and a new household monetary goal my power locker is taking a slower road. I originally wanted 24 volt system with the ability to upgrade to 48 volt at some point down the line. Being in the U.S. that made sense seeing how MPP Solar only has a 24 volt version for 120v a.c. I am switching to more of a backup power plan to limit the cost for solar, chargers and inverters. Seeing how the inverter I landed on for back up has a 24 and 48v 1500w true sine wave in the same package and price I feel it's silly not to start at 48volt. I know it's the logical thing, but it sure does put me further away from the goal and my first working pack.
 

Korishan

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Jan 7, 2017
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Better to do it right from the get go. In the long run, it'll be cheaper and easier to set up. :)
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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Progress has been made dispite mother nature deciding that we don't deserve warm weather here in Michigan yet.

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Some fine tuning is still required on the design. It has already changed a few times. I think I'm dialing it in to be not only manageable, but safer as well.
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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And let the bus bar/fusing learning curve begin. I'm trying to flush out a system with I can expand to use in my full 14s80p pack. This one will only be 14s20p

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hbpowerwall

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Love the idea and use of materials!
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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hbpowerwall said:
Love the idea and use of materials!

Thank you, that means a lot.

It gets better too. The wood I used had been repurposed as well. The wood was once a pallet that I believe had a commercial flat top grill shipped on it.
 

completelycharged

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Mar 7, 2018
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The grain pattern in the wood is awesome with the layout you have, almost like the central section has wires running down...

If heat becomes an issue just drill a load of holes in the top and sit one or more small computer fans up there to pull air through from the base. Old computer power supplies that are bing thrown out usually have a 12V fan in, which has ball bearings, so will last for ages... just clean the bfan blades and it will look like new...
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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completelycharged said:
The grain pattern in the wood is awesome with the layout you have, almost like the central section has wires running down...

If heat becomes an issue just drill a load of holes in the top and sit one or more small computer fans up there to pull air through from the base. Old computer power supplies that are bing thrown out usually have a 12V fan in, which has ball bearings, so will last for ages... just clean the bfan blades and it will look like new...
I never looked at the wood grain that way. It was more in my way as it's a softer wood so the screws would deflect off the darker parts. Perhaps a poor choice in building materials on my part for assymbly.

As for the cooling that's why I left the cells as open as possible so should the need arise for cooling it would be an easy retrofit. I never considered putting holes in the top though. May have to if the vents in the door wouldn't be enough.
 

completelycharged

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Just thinking, KISS principle, just open the doors.. I had an old friend (passed) who tought me this in a very unique way. I'm usually up for over complicating a solution..

Either that or you have to make the locker look just as awesome with the doors closed to need a fan...
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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Okay, I need some help now. I have a vision of how I want to wire it all and fuse each string, but I am having a hard time finding hardware that fits the bill.

I want to fuse each string individually inside the locker then run through the left side to the outside where all my controllers and electronics will live and distribute power from there. Using fuses or breakers seems to be of personal preference. I like fuses as that's what I deal with at the day job. Iwould like to find a fuse holderthat is covered, but also doesn't require tools to change or disconnect. I am having a hard time finding one in the US. Does anyone have any good ideas or a good argument to use two breakers?


Then again I may have just realized a fatal flaw in my plan. Any installed fusing or breakers inside would have to be removed to remove a pack for service. I might be able to live with that. I shall have to ponder and/or makes what I need even harder to find.
 

completelycharged

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These are some of the tool free and typical cell solder option - depends on your rating and wiring layout

image_bmlfqe.jpg


These are the cheapest 125V DC rated breakers I have found (typical ratings 3A, 6A, 10A, 16A, 20A, 32A, 40A, 63A 100A, 125A)
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1P-10A-DC-125V-Circuit-breaker-MCB-C-curve/222272613208
The fit/clip on to a "DIN Rai "

These are a push to reset
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AC-125-2...nt-Overload-Protect-Switch-Black/202154602181


Run the wires outside and fuse there. The fuses do not need to be next to the packs.... Use XT60 connectors ot Deans connectors to the packs if you think you will need to remove them frequently..
 

thefixer06

New member
Joined
Dec 19, 2017
Messages
28
completelycharged said:
These are some of the tool free and typical cell solder option - depends on your rating and wiring layout

image_bmlfqe.jpg


These are the cheapest 125V DC rated breakers I have found (typical ratings 3A, 6A, 10A, 16A, 20A, 32A, 40A, 63A 100A, 125A)
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1P-10A-DC-125V-Circuit-breaker-MCB-C-curve/222272613208
The fit/clip on to a "DIN Rai "

These are a push to reset
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AC-125-2...nt-Overload-Protect-Switch-Black/202154602181


Run the wires outside and fuse there. The fuses do not need to be next to the packs.... Use XT60 connectors ot Deans connectors to the packs if you think you will need to remove them frequently..


I don't think I will need to remove them frequently. That is the hope at least. My thoughts on fusing at the pack were more to do with should something fail with the cables running through the sidewall. However if done correctly there should be no movement and it should be a non issue fused on the outside.

Thank you for the links, it's helping confirm I am looking in the correct direction. I deal with a.c. all day, but never this high of current dc.
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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I've made some progress. I decided to go with a disconnect and fuse on each pack then into a combining lug. I haven't gotten that installed yet, but the test pack is in the locker.

I couldn't afford the inverter I wanted at the time and stumbled across a deal for 3 UPS units I couldn't turn down. I knew I only wanted the one, but I didn't know why until I got them home. The one I'm attempting to modify for full time use as an inverter is an APC Smart UPS 1500. So it's almost a 1000w inverter with possibly not much more surge capability.

After advice from Facbook and my own stumbling around on YouTube I have decided I do want to modify the unit itself. From first inspection I can double the amount of fets in the H-bridge, but to do that I need to remove perhaps up to 6 capisitors and possibly one transformer on the board just to get to half of them. Not ideal, but I feel I can accomplish it. The other interesting thing is that the board has no place to populate with more capisitors and already has the resistors to drive the fets so maybe that's good. I am going to keep an eye out for a matching transformer to help with the load too as it appears the larger model has 2 and so my board has a spot for two as well. My thoughts are they will help with thermal conditions and if not I have a spare part.

I did ensure that it does work before completely ripping it apart too. I need to get it back together and perhaps beef up the test pack with more cells to benchmark the UPS before modifying it and of course after wards too. I didn't think of that until I watched knurlgnar24's series on YouTube, but seems like quite a good idea.

So now the question, beef up the test pack which i don't have enough cells to double it or start the main pack build which I don't have enough to be complete either (almost 50 cells per pack now out of 80)? Sourcing cells has stalled out and I haven't scored a big lot lately. A few here and there, but not a big score like I really need and am due for.

Either way I hope to have the UPS fuses and disconnects on the locker within the next week and that should make for a good picture.
 

Korishan

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Jan 7, 2017
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I have an SUA2200NET APC UPS that I'm going to upgrade the FETs as well. I have the FETs, the extra Capacitor, resistors and ceramic caps to put in. But it does require desoldering the heatsinks to add the new parts in. So, for that reason, I haven't done it yet. But, I think I'll do a load test and get efficiencies readings before hand, do the upgrade and get another set of efficiency readings. That way I can compare what I did if it made any difference. I'm sure the heat issue will have been drastically reduced even if efficiency remains the same. Which, that will drastically increase the life of the unit, I'm guessing/hoping.
 

thefixer06

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Dec 19, 2017
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Korishan said:
I have an SUA2200NET APC UPS that I'm going to upgrade the FETs as well. I have the FETs, the extra Capacitor, resistors and ceramic caps to put in. But it does require desoldering the heatsinks to add the new parts in. So, for that reason, I haven't done it yet. But, I think I'll do a load test and get efficiencies readings before hand, do the upgrade and get another set of efficiency readings. That way I can compare what I did if it made any difference. I'm sure the heat issue will have been drastically reduced even if efficiency remains the same. Which, that will drastically increase the life of the unit, I'm guessing/hoping.

Sounds like we are in the same boat. I just stumbled across 4 more of the same size I have for $75 a peice with 2 being the rack mount and 2 stand alone. I'm assuming they have the same guts, but am unsure and would love to be able to test and have the ability to keep moving even if I destroy one.What I am sure of though is the wife won't be happy if I spend more money on this stuff this month.
 
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