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Author Topic: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?  (Read 7586 times)

Offline DaveRen

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Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« on: July 31, 2014, 04:24:55 AM »
I am a newbie to the forum and to the whole exciting world of "free" energy.   I am a retired electronics technician living on Vancouver Island, Canada.

My thinking is:
To move this technology into the mainstream, people need to see a real solution and a real application that works and is obviously beneficial.

I think a good project would be one that could be shown around the RV community that would assist us in "dry camping" without power for extended lengths of time (in cloudy locales.)  This application could extend to folks who have small cabins or boats and maybe beyond - for example for providing electric power for the poor.

So can anyone suggest a project that would produce about 1.5 to 2A at 15vDC (or equivalent) to supply a charge to RV batteries?

The RV batteries are typically standard wet lead-acid, deep cycle, between 100 and 200 amp-hour capacity.

I have done a fair bit of on-line research, but I am a bit overwhelmed with the various approaches.   Some may not even work any better than a standard charger.
So I am seeking advice from you who have tried some things.   I have looked at the Bedini and Newman motors and a few solid state options.   I would prefer something solid state, unless of course, the "motor" option is substantially more efficient.  The motor or circuit would run for several hours per day at times of low power requirements - or continuously for that matter.

If we take the Bedini Motor option as an example; I am under the impression that, using one of these existing circuits,  I perhaps could apply a charge to my RV battery using a smaller 12V "primary" battery.  Once done, I could then swap and recharge the primary battery with the RV battery.   

 If so, that is amazing (like where did the energy come from?)

There are lots of questions:
Can you take current off the charge battery while the circuit or motor is running? 
Does the Solid State option work as well?
Would my RV batteries be damaged in any way?
Would the system quickly "run down" so that neither battery remains charged?

Thanks .......  Dave

Offline mscoffman

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2014, 03:28:02 AM »
Hi Dave,

There are numerous topics here on associated with gathering small amounts of electricity
via various methods. But I favor keeping the source of electrical current separate from the destination
function. Then the two can be combined in an appropriately designed manner. For example knowing how
to charge batteries is well known and there are many small stand alone chargers that can hang on the
vehicle itself. Over the years the functions have become more complex and most modern chargers now
include multistate charging controlled by microcontrollers, so if you can supply one or two amps then
these chargers will do a very good job charging acid/lead batteries. (i'm intentionally leaving voltage unspecified)

The inverse is not obvisously so true. Bedini pulses have been found to break down sulfitization in batteries
rather then to charge them, so they are primarily used in that capacity. One person recently spoke of the need
to not charge and discharge an acid/lead battery at the same time. Another is the tendancy of high voltage
pulses to affect the coupling of voltage to the very sensitive voltage state charge. Where voltage state of
charge is synonamous with charge-termination-voltage which needs to be very precise to stop charging
the battery at precisely the right time. There are not currently alternative charge termination methods available
other then dead-reconing.

I feel so compelled about this as to suggest that if an energy generator needs an acid/lead battery to generate
energy then it should carry its own replaceable "reactor" battery(s) with it in which to do so. The external battery
charger then can be a well designed and inexpesive commercially replaceable unit. The same voltage sources might
also have usb ports for cell phone and pad and portable computer recharging as well.

As to which topics can contribute to be viable energy sources for this function maybe somelse would wish to
comment because I feel a number of sources could contend for this spot in the near future. So if a Bedini
circuit can produce the required energy from dual battery interaction then I say do so. Once you have your
energy stored in a non-critical replaceable storage battery then charge your vehicle with a high quality
standard charger. Have a microcontroller to do this in multiple part sequence until your vehicle battery is
fully charged. It will thank you for it in long-lived performance.


flooded acid/lead, AGM glass mat, VRLA, deep cycle, CCA ,GEL Cell, C/20 rate, equalization charge, chinese crystal cell,
specify gravity...   


Offline DaveRen

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2014, 10:27:03 PM »
Thanks, Mark, for this great explanation!

I hope some other folks chime in on these ideas.

------------------------? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ! --------------------------
First off, can anyone confirm that with a Bedini charger set-up that, using "primary" and "reactor" batteries, they can be swapped and re-charged once the reactor battery is charged?  Thus you have 2 fully charged batteries at the end of the cycle?

I like and understand Mark's idea of keeping the "reactor" battery separate from the RV batteries.   I suspected that long term charging of the RV batteries using high voltage pulses may not be advantageous in the long run.  However, I am not sure of the feasibility of charging the main RV battery from another battery. 

I have come up with a rough idea illustrated below, using a 24VDC system charging the 12V RV battery.  The Controller (or timer circuit) would periodically switch the Bedini charging circuit off while simultaneously switching the charged reactor battery to, in turn, charge the RV battery.   An efficient charge regulator running off straight 24VDC would be used to charge and monitor the RV battery.

There are lots of electronics attached here and I am concerned that, even with low current consumption design,  the losses would be too great to make the circuit anywhere close to "free running" - that with swapping around,  all of batteries would quickly become discharged.    I am not sure what the capacities of the 24V batteries would have to be to provide enough usable current.  Effectively, this idea would involve 3 batteries.

Added "controller controlled" features could include swapping of the primary / reactor batteries for re-charge and handling the charging requirements of the RV battery.   Although I have worked with microprocessors for decades, I have not obtained a talent for programming, so I may initially come up with straight low current timing and digital logic circuits to do this stuff.

What do you think?

- Dave Renfroe

Offline TinselKoala

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2014, 11:30:32 PM »
Short version: Use a PV panel and a good commercial OTS charger.

Long version: Experiment all you like, please. The more the better. But you will find in the end that your Bedini-motor, battery swapping scheme, that Bedini has promoted, will just result in three depleted batteries that will no longer accept or hold a proper charge.

As an electronic technician you know that simple terminal voltage, unloaded, is not a good reflection of the true SoC or energy content in a battery, especially with LAs. Spike charging with a Bedini system will raise the terminal voltage, at the expense of total energy capacity. This has been demonstrated so many times it's actually surprising to me that you don't know it already. It even has a name : "Fluffy charge".

For a "Better than Bedini" system that produces the same kinds of spiky pulses as a Bedini motor, but is much more controllable, is more efficient in energy throughput and has no moving parts, or does (the rotor is optional) please see my MHOP playlist on my YT channel.  This system was suggested by MileHigh and he and I developed it together here in a forum thread.  Feel free to try this system for battery charging. As you can see from the videos, it charges a capacitor just fine. Of course.... it is not OU like Bedini's systems are. Aren't they? Wait.... no, actually they aren't either.

Offline DaveRen

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2014, 04:45:04 AM »
Thanks, TinselKoala, for your input.

re. Solar Power - doesn't work well in the Pacific Northwest under clouds and forest canopy.   Unless you have a lot of (expensive) panels and batteries to capture what little there is.  Anyway, I am just investigating alternatives at this point.

I was aware of the difficult situation of attempting to measure battery capacity - open circuit voltage is not an indicator of the present battery capacity or state of charge.  However, I was confused about the effect of the high voltage pulse charging.  I gather from both Mark's comments and yours that the pulsing charge voltage does not provide "full capacity" (the Fluffy Charge effect.)  Do you think that with enough charge time, the battery would come up to a full capacity charge or do you end up damaging the battery before that happens?  Perhaps I need to delve deeper into Mr. Bedini's claims (or skip the whole idea.)  Like you said; Bedini's system is not really OU if he is killing off batteries.

re.  Your MHOP circuits - very interesting, especially the rotorless version.  Though I am confused about what you are trying to accomplish.  If I used such a circuit, it still would be utilizing high voltage pulses to charge the battery, so I can't see pursuing that from what you said.  Maybe I don't have the whole picture.

Regards .........  Dave

Offline mscoffman

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2014, 08:30:17 PM »

Here is a couple of things I wanted to let you consider. Look these things up on google.

1) BASIC STAMP PIC - microcontroller is the simplest begining computer controller you can
                                            find. People on forum have used this successfully
                                            as a energy microcontoller.   

It is really a mistake to get into free energy without some sort of computer assistance.
For example one of the things done is swapping of the charge battery and discharge battery
after a certain amount of time. Programming this one is very simple. Not only do you
not have to concern yourself with the speed a which the computer runs one often must
slow this down so that it doesn't overun electromechanicals.

2)     '"

This company builds plug and play components perfect for cicuitry of these type of
projects. They worked with Nasa to bring these components to kids. But that doesn't matter.
One thing is very useful is their fiberoptic communications links can keep one from
intertwining wiring from a computer with the electrically noisey power wiring for the

3)   Minn Kota Inc.   - MultiBank Battery Chargers (their are other manf. equivalent to some)

Get to know their full line of products. These chargers allow you to charge battery banks
of 12VDC Battery banks without disconnecting them from each other . From Utility, 12VDC or
24VDC sources for example. The charger circuits are ground isolated. 

4) Reed Relays and Latching Relays and Contactors
There are several important latching relays. Toshiba makes a 5Vdc 1 amp latching relay.
There is a 20A latching relay. Then TE Tyco has inexpensive Latching Contactors
which are heavy duty latching relay for handling muti-hundred amp links.
They form milliohm switches so you don't have to worry about losses or
resistance cause voltage offsets.

Latching Relays are like computer controlled switches. They have two coils and the only
need a short 20-50ms milisecond pulse then the latch either "on" or "off' with no power
required at all when the are not switching. This "no current used" mode is really important
for overunity energy application. Computer controllers can be slowed down to very low
frequency only to pop back up when needed, but have to have their own viable power supplies.


Really, Multibank Chargers and inexpensive latching relays do enormous things in terms of
simplicity reduction in system components and allow conservative designs without excessive
component counts or costs.


In general the de-sulfitation pulse processing comes easy with Bedini stuff. Unfortunately
battery charging comes tougher. Computerization and battery swapping switching will speed
your ability to learn what you have to charge batteries. I feel whimshurst static electricity
is the answer to Bedini battery charging but Bedini designs come to this energy long & slow
opportunistically rather then via engineering design. Use a dummy load (headlamps) to
break through the surface charge on batteries from pulse charging. (and eat into charging
profits) to see their real voltage. This is why you want to totally disconnect Bedini pulse
equipment from batteries before connecting commercial inverters or chargers -
automatically via controller and contactor  switches. Remember what the guy said: "Do not
charge and discharge batteries at the same time". and If the "Battery is full ; then stop
charging it."  Keep your reactor batteries smaller in Amperehours until you learn what
you are doing. Keep your power wiring thick (low gauge #), do good grounding return current
wiring treatment keep your good computer ground independent of power ground except at one


My tendency is to use an Inhotep "Emergency Light" circuit (w solid state switch) to fetch power then use a Tesla Switch circuit
(or Bedini motor) as a kind of a "null charger" to cycle through battery current and merge the fetched power in on top of that.


Offline TinselKoala

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2014, 02:27:27 AM »
@DaveRen: Thanks for viewing the  MHOP videos. The point of the MHOP, which was originally conceived by MileHigh, is to demonstrate that an intelligently conceived and designed and cooperatively developed _truly open source_ project could duplicate the electrical and mechanical performance of a Bedini "north pole motor" or SGM or whatever the current nomenclature is for a unipolar pulse motor of the self-triggered, attractive or repulsive, regenerative kind. The project also functioned as an example of what an Open Source project should actually look like. Every bit of the work, mistakes and mods and results and all, is fully documented in the forum thread and the YT videos, and I myself learned an enormous amount from participating. Perhaps even MileHigh learned a thing or two!
I didn't go as far as demonstrating battery "charging" or ruining with the MHOP but I assure you that the MHOP, when used as a battery "charger" in the same manner that Bedini uses spikes from his motors and chargers, will do the exact same things that his schemes do. And they will do them with  more control and greater "efficiency" if efficiently ruining batteries is your bag. This should be clear from the behaviour of the neons attached to the MHOP and the rapid charging of an external capacitor to voltages 20x the supply voltage or more.

Except, apparently, the MHOP won't bring me any money or fame the way Bedini's have done him.

I encourage experimentation. But there is no need to re-invent the wheel. By which I mean, find out all you can about Bedini's systems, from the pro-Bedini and the anti-Bedini sides. There are plenty of highly vocal people on both sides.  Then, make up your own mind as to the validity of Bedini's claims, and what kinds of experiments you need to do to confirm or debunk those claims yourself.

(And personally, I find the Arduino system to be easier to use and more versatile for beginners than the STAMP system, but at a more fundamental level they are the same: easy programming and interface platforms for microprocessors. If you don't already have some of these things around your lab, get some! They are invaluable for all kinds of control and measurement issues.)

Offline mscoffman

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Re: Battery Charger for RVs and Beyond?
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2014, 04:55:49 AM »

Seems that one just cannot win.