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Old 12-03-2019, 06:06 PM   #1
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Step-up Converter 12vdc to 24vdc - Recommendation?

Replacing my old Vosper stabilizers. Turns out all the new stuff runs 24vdc to the electronics. Any recommendations on top-quality 12vdc to 24vdc converter? I'm not sure of power requirements - assume 20a/480w would be adequate. I see Newmar makes one. And there are a few designed for aircraft. Amazon has some very inexpensive items, but assume these are not for mission critical application.

Thoughts?

Peter
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Old 12-03-2019, 06:42 PM   #2
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Victron Orion would be my choice. They should have whatever you need to make the jump.

I would use the Orion 12/24-20

https://www.victronenergy.com/dc-dc-converters
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:20 PM   #3
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Maybe I'm reading wrong, but victron seems more of a battery charger versus a pure DC-DC converter? Maybe it doesn't make a difference?
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Old 12-04-2019, 12:54 AM   #4
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Actually the Victron Orion products are more of a power supply than a battery charger. Some of the Mastervolt ones will do both.
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Old 12-04-2019, 08:49 AM   #5
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Maybe I'm reading wrong, but victron seems more of a battery charger versus a pure DC-DC converter? Maybe it doesn't make a difference?
While Victron makes battery chargers, the Orion is a DC to DC converter. Like DDW said, much more aligned to a power supply.

If you hook the Orion up to a 12v battery on the output side the battery will charge as the orion is putting out 12+ volts.
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Old 12-04-2019, 09:47 AM   #6
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I'd go with the American made, owned and supported NewMar myself.

What piece of equipment exactly are you trying to power? What does it draw?
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Old 12-04-2019, 01:31 PM   #7
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Victron Energy Orion is a good choice as others have mentioned. We also used Analytic Systems units and they seem to hold up well. They are out of Canada and a bit harder to source in the states.
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Old 12-04-2019, 05:55 PM   #8
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Without knowing how much power you need you can’t be sure you’re buying the right thing. That said, I’d be very careful what you buy. You want something high quality with some extra capacity for surges,etc. it looks like Newmar makes some of the power supplies you’re looking for.

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Old 12-04-2019, 11:07 PM   #9
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Well, it's a BS situation. Wesmar sold a new set of stabilizers. Their online configuration tool asked 12v or 24v. My 36-foot boat of course has 12v. But they sent a 24v system. They wont exchange and they have no solution except to say I should install two 12v batteries and a 24v charger (great solution). They state 10A @ 24v so I need a power supply.

FYI - Naiad has this figured out. Wesmar? Not so much. I am soooo sorry I bought from Wesmar. I can figure this stuff out. But really sorry I have to on a new system I. The $25k range.
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Old 12-04-2019, 11:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by mvweebles View Post
Well, it's a BS situation. Wesmar sold a new set of stabilizers. Their online configuration tool asked 12v or 24v. My 36-foot boat of course has 12v. But they sent a 24v system. They wont exchange and they have no solution except to say I should install two 12v batteries and a 24v charger (great solution). They state 10A @ 24v so I need a power supply...
On that info,they didn`t supply what you ordered. Is there a 12v and a 24v system? Sounds like they delivered goods not in accordance with the contract. Have you sought advice on your position?
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Old 12-05-2019, 06:15 AM   #11
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Assuming you are unable to correct your order, I assume the 10A x 24V is just for electronics comms? Presumably the fins are hydraulic?
If just for comms, do you know how much battery power is consumed when using stabilizers? 240 watts continuous seems a lot. When you understand this requirement you could (easily) figure the needed battery size. Pair 2 (small) batteries and charge each separately with duplex charger and/or 2 feeds from alternator. - no need for 24V charger.
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Old 12-05-2019, 07:37 AM   #12
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All I know is what Wesmar tells me - they spec a 10A/24V circuit. The manual only shows power rating for the display which is not anywhere near that draw, but there are other 24v connections for gyro and actuators. Obviously, someome at Wesmar designed the system and knows this information, but that person is currently behind the curtain. Odd - my experience is that specialty manufacturers bend over backwards to assist Not Wesmar.

Wesmar states they only make 24v systems these days - they used to make 12v controllers but made design changes several years ago that necessitated going with 24v. My guess is fewer boats that install Stabilizers have 12v. As mentioned, Naiad also uses 24v but for 12v boats, provides a 12v to 24v converter. Some internet sleuthing indicates these converters are often used go power avionic systems in small aircraft and helicopters, so presumably they are reliable. But they need to be sized properly.

Wesmar's position is I got what I paid for and I need to figure out how to provide 24V/10A. They provided a hand written sketch on scratch paper describing addition of two batteries in series with 24v charger. When I asked about power draw, I got the vague answer of "we recommend a 10A circuit at 24V."

Very disappointed in what I thought was a quality company.
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Old 12-05-2019, 08:19 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mvweebles View Post
Well, it's a BS situation. Wesmar sold a new set of stabilizers. Their online configuration tool asked 12v or 24v. My 36-foot boat of course has 12v. But they sent a 24v system. They wont exchange and they have no solution except to say I should install two 12v batteries and a 24v charger (great solution). They state 10A @ 24v so I need a power supply.

FYI - Naiad has this figured out. Wesmar? Not so much. I am soooo sorry I bought from Wesmar. I can figure this stuff out. But really sorry I have to on a new system I. The $25k range.
You ordered them online? Interesting. So they're hydraulic powered with 24 V for the controller? I can't even measure the electric draw on my Wesmars (trouble free after 15 years) so power needs can't be much. This shouldn't be viewed as a big deal except for the ordering aggravation.

Suggest you consult with a local capable marine instrument guy. There may be an easy way to do this work around that is boat specific.
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Old 12-05-2019, 08:34 AM   #14
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You ordered them online? Interesting. So they're hydraulic powered with 24 V for the controller? I can't even measure the electric draw on my Wesmars (trouble free after 15 years) so power needs can't be much. This shouldn't be viewed as a big deal except for the ordering aggravation.

Suggest you consult with a local capable marine instrument guy. There may be an easy way to do this work around that is boat specific.
For my initial inquiry into Wesmar, I was shunted to a configuration page - they have no idea if the inquiry is for a cruise ship or a recreational vessel such as mine. That information is then routed to a sales person, who then can assist with either selling direct or via an installer. So it's not an "Amazon-esque" faceless transaction, there are emails and phone calls along the way.

You are right about finding a decent tech. I am just stunned that Wesmar disowns the solution and leaves it to the installer. The only information Wesmar would provide is they spec a 10A/24V circuit, and then went on to school me on how that converts to 12V/20A of power.

BTW - ABT doesn't even sell DC stabilizers - they apparently use 120VAC controllers. As mentioned, Naiad also uses 24V but provides a 12V-24V step-up converter as part of their system, a $500 option. I may reach out to Naiad to see exactly what they use, but was hoping to avoid the situation of going to Naiad to solve a Wesmar problem. But who knows, Naiad may get a kick out of the inquiry. I would if I took the call.

This thread has morphed - I may start a new thread to see if there are any Wesmar techs out there.
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Old 12-05-2019, 08:57 AM   #15
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I would tend to believe what Sunchaser says about real power draw. It makes little sense to be drawing 240 watts while running with stabilizers engaged. You would be consuming about half of your alternator output just to power the stabilizers. So, my guess is the 10 amps is way over-rated for the application. But, regardless, you can buy a perfectly good 12V-24V DC converter on Amazon for about $20. We used to run a 5 amp unit continuously to power a laptop (18V) - lasted for ever. Plus, if in doubt about longevity, buy a spare.
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Old 12-05-2019, 09:12 AM   #16
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I would tend to believe what Sunchaser says about real power draw. It makes little sense to be drawing 240 watts while running with stabilizers engaged.
I totally agree. Below is cut/paste from email from Wesmar. Attached is the spec page from the manual that states 10W on the display, but gives no power rating on the other control components - I doubt the feed is from the display head, but who knows. Maybe it is.

Here is the Wesmar response in its entirety. Mostly a CYA response with a remedial lesson in Ohms Law:

For the DSP5000 a 24VDC power supply is typically sized for a 10 Amp draw.

If you wants to use a 12VDC power supply, it will need to be sized for a 20 Amp draw plus any addition to take account of the efficiency of the voltage converter your use.

Thus, if your converter is 95% efficient, you will need to ensure that your 12VDC system can supply 21 Amps to the 12 to 24V step up converter.

Also, the system was designed to run on 24VDC to reduce the current draw on the boats electrical system.

So If you choose to pursue a 12 to 24V step up converter, it is highly recommended that you review the impact on the boats compete electrical system.
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Old 12-05-2019, 09:14 AM   #17
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Oops - forgot the attachment showing specs from install manual - shows only 10W of draw, but some components have no power rating. See attachedClick image for larger version

Name:	Wesmar Tech Spec Table.jpg
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:04 AM   #18
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I'd think you may want to measure the actual draw somehow. DC-DC converters typically will have a minimum load that they like before they go out of load regulation. If you install one that is too large, the voltage regulation on the output may be poor. If it really is 10W @ 24V, obviously that is 0.5A.

I think what I'd do faced with this is install the stabilizers and controls, leaving space for the DC-DC converter. Do some sea trials with a couple of borrowed 12V batteries hooked up temporarily while measuring the draw. They should run it for a couple of hours even if it really is 10A. Then order the appropriate converter. I wouldn't look at the converter as a big roadblock in the project, it will be a small expense and easy install compared to the rest of it. I've got the opposite problem, 24V system with a few 12V components - one of which is the main propulsion engine. I use three 24 - 12V converters, they have been for the most part trouble free.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:46 AM   #19
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I'd think you may want to measure the actual draw somehow. DC-DC converters typically will have a minimum load that they like before they go out of load regulation. If you install one that is too large, the voltage regulation on the output may be poor. If it really is 10W @ 24V, obviously that is 0.5A.
Based on input from a member on a different CF thread, I was given contact info for a Wesmar tech who was very helpful. He was able to confirm the Newmar 12V to 24V @7A Step-Up transformer would be adequately sized. It's about $280 so not a lot of money.

In an appendix at the back of the Wesmar manual, they have a section on upgrading an older system to the newer DSP5000 digital controls. When upgrading, the system uses 8A@24v for all the controllers, but a new system requires 5A@24v. Why this is buried in an unrelated appendix as opposed to the spec tables at the front of the manual is curious, but hey - mistakes happen. Of course, hours of head-scratching and days of delay could have been avoided if Wesmar would have had a better response than "Install two batteries and a 24v charger." It's the right answer for a hi-current thruster. Wrong answer for a stabilizer system. Yea, mistakes happen - what sets apart is how they are dealt with. In my opinion, Wesmar customer service has really fallen-down on this part.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:23 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by mvweebles View Post
Based on input from a member on a different CF thread, I was given contact info for a Wesmar tech who was very helpful. He was able to confirm the Newmar 12V to 24V @7A Step-Up transformer would be adequately sized. It's about $280 so not a lot of money.
Seven amps at 24V sounds reasonable for the continuous average draw, but the solenoid valves for the hydraulics might draw quite a bit more on an instantaneous basis. Can the Newmar handle that? An easy way to solve it is put a couple of small 10 Ah motorcycle batteries wired in series to serve as a damper.

Not sure if the Newmar supply will keep them charged though if it is tightly regulated at 24V. That is one advantage of the Victon supply.

Anyway, I totally agree that Wesmar should own up and provide a recommended workable solution beyond the two batteries and a two output charger solution. That won't work so well unless you power the charger from an inverter while underway.

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