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Old 11-01-2006, 06:59 PM   #1
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HF Battery Charger

Just wondering if anyone had ever used something like this for a charge controller? Obvious advantages are its cheaper and can be pulled out to be used at home. Don't know about the quality.

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=93996

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Old 11-01-2006, 08:07 PM   #2
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I'm using a CTEK MULTI US 3300 on my Tradewind. I've been very pleased and it does fine for the simple set-up I have. As far as quality, I have no issues. Porsche, Mercedes, and Harley Davidson recommend them. Got it for around $69, it's a small lightweight thing, and I can quick connect to a pigtail on the trailer battery or use the clamps for charging whatever. My model doesn't have engine start capability. It's a Swedish product and on the European brochure the XS 3600 compares to the US 3300.
CTEK datasheet.pdf
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Old 11-02-2006, 09:13 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugarfoot
I'm using a CTEK MULTI US 3300 on my Tradewind.[*snip*]
From the brochure, that 7000 model looks pretty nice. I'm adding CTEK to my list of widgets to investigate -- thanks!

dmaiden, that HF charger looks a bit high-amperage to me. I'd have to keep an eye out to avoid baking my batteries at 10A and higher, and 2A also seems high for a maintenance mode.

Cheers,
-jd.
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Old 11-02-2006, 09:53 AM   #4
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thanks JD. amps and watts are Greek to me.
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Old 11-02-2006, 10:35 AM   #5
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"Charge controller" is usually used in the context of DC to DC as in solar panel to battery. I am also confused by the "HF" designation. what does that mean?

Vector makes good battery chargers. Wal Mart sells them, too.

Your batteries can handle 20 amps of charging for every 100 amp hours of battery. For most modern Airstreams with two batteries that means you will get fastest charging with a 40 amp charger. Forget the linked ad claim of 2 hours to a full charge as that won't happen even with a properly sized battery charger.

While this battery charger does boast a float for maintenance, that is not its forte. And it is maintenance during storage that is a big deal for most RV's. You best bet for this would be something like the Batttery Minder, Here's some links:
Which Battery Charger is right for you?
Battery Testing and Charging
Battery Information
Car and Deep Cycle Battery FAQ, Battery Manufacturers and Brand Names List, and Battery References and Information Links List
ecoZen Battery Dictionary
Battery Minder, BatteryMinder Battery Chargers $39.90
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Old 11-02-2006, 10:38 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5cats
dmaiden, that HF charger looks a bit high-amperage to me. I'd have to keep an eye out to avoid baking my batteries at 10A and higher, and 2A also seems high for a maintenance mode.
-jd.
I think these chargers operate 3-stages, similar to the Progressive Dynamics Intellipower. They have a bulk phase, absorption phase, and trickle/float phase. The difference is they have three different flows, so if you set it for 10A, it will drop to a lower flow during the absorption and trickle phase to prevent baking the batteries.

I don't think I would use one in place of a converter though.
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Old 11-02-2006, 11:02 AM   #7
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I went with this Power Tender Plus.

"Power Tender Plus WATERPROOF, Shock & Vibration Resistant, Lightweight (LESS THAN 4 POUNDS), compact charger designed for either portable operation or permanent mounting. Charges and maintains both flooded and sealed, maintenance free, AGM, lead acid batteries. Float / Maintenance function maintains batteries at proper storage voltage without the damaging effects caused by trickled chargers. The Power Tender PLUS is easy to use, it’s rugged, its compact, it's packed with power, and it’s backed by the reputation of the undisputed battery charger industry leader, DELTRAN."

http://batterytender.com/default.php...0c3d34d53b743d
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Old 11-02-2006, 11:26 AM   #8
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Bryan,

HF is for Harbor Freight
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Old 11-02-2006, 12:58 PM   #9
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" HF is for Harbor Freight" - thanks - shoulda' known that. I guess I got confused with ham radio (high frequency battery charger?) on my mind.
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Old 11-02-2006, 04:18 PM   #10
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Hi,
I've owned and used this charger over the past year on my TV/ MC as well as friends batteries.

I've been very happy with it.

I found mine at Sams Club.

Michael
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Old 11-03-2006, 12:33 PM   #11
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Another model

Here's another by HF that seems to address some of the concerns of members here. You electrical types, what do you think?

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...@sbcglobal.net
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