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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For years Ive wanted an inverter in my work truck large enough to run a welding machine and I finally got one! I own a company that installs access control systems on security gates and doors, and have a small amount of welding to do on about half of the jobs I do. I used to carry a gas powered welder in the back of my work truck but lost that convenience when I bought the PM. I downsized to an inverter based DC welder that will run off of household current and that has worked wonderfully for about a year now, but it still draws a good bit of power and I have to be careful with it if I only have a 15 amp circuit to run it off of. I bought an AIMS 4000 watt pure sine inverter with a 20 second 12000 watt surge and this thing is BAD!! Ive got 4/0 cables to a 100 amp hr battery designed for electric cars, an ACR switch for automatic charging while the engines running, but isolates when engine is off. I have a manual battery switch on the dash to connect or disconnect the batteries together, giving me the ability to jump myself off with the inverter battery with the flip of a switch. An LCD screen is mounted at the back door of the van that has inverter controls on it, along with voltage and output gauges. Today I cranked up the welder all the way and burnt a couple rods, the output gauge never rose over 70%!! So this will definitely be all the power Ill ever need. It also has a built in charger so I can plug in at night if I havent driven far enough to fully charge the battery. The company highly recommends plugging in to shore power because the built in charger will do a much better job than the alternator.
 

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That looks like a very good solution. Would you mind sharing the wiring and any separate parts that you bought? I was considering a large boat house battery.

Thanks,

John
 

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Clean install. I have a 110 V Lincoln 125 amp flux core and never considered running it off an inverter I'll have to see what it draws. I always had a old Miller gas driven (Onan twin) stick welder that I too let go when we moved a few years ago. When we go far out in the desert we carry a shield and a pound of dc rod and cables to hook 3 batteries in series JIC! Never needed 'em. Why sticks?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That looks like a very good solution. Would you mind sharing the wiring and any separate parts that you bought? I was considering a large boat house battery.

Thanks,

John

From www.theinverterstore.com I bought these items
-4000 watt low frequency pure sine inverter
-3' pair of 4/0 cables
-500 amp inline fuse kit
-digital display
From eBay
-blue sea ML ACR auto charging relay

Battery world
-group 31 'Discoverer' brand AGM battery

Wiring is pretty straightforward. Of course big cables from big battery to inverter. One wire from cranking battery positive to ACR , cable from ACR to big battery. From big battery negative to chassis. Small multi conductor wire from ACR switch to dash for manual control switch. LCD display uses an Ethernet cable (supplied) to plug in to inverter. Ground cable from inverter to chassis and done!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Clean install. I have a 110 V Lincoln 125 amp flux core and never considered running it off an inverter I'll have to see what it draws. I always had a old Miller gas driven (Onan twin) stick welder that I too let go when we moved a few years ago. When we go far out in the desert we carry a shield and a pound of dc rod and cables to hook 3 batteries in series JIC! Never needed 'em. Why sticks?

Years ago I used to haul a wire feed to job sites and the wire always got tangled in transport and they're heavy. My inverter welder weighs about eight pounds. Thermal Arc 95S.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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From www.theinverterstore.com I bought these items
-4000 watt low frequency pure sine inverter
-3' pair of 4/0 cables
-500 amp inline fuse kit
-digital display
From eBay
-blue sea ML ACR auto charging relay

Battery world
-group 31 'Discoverer' brand AGM battery

Wiring is pretty straightforward. Of course big cables from big battery to inverter. One wire from cranking battery positive to ACR , cable from ACR to big battery. From big battery negative to chassis. Small multi conductor wire from ACR switch to dash for manual control switch. LCD display uses an Ethernet cable (supplied) to plug in to inverter. Ground cable from inverter to chassis and done!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

What brand/model of inverter is that? All I saw on that site was the AIMS inverter/charger at 4000w.
 

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How long can it run on a 100amp-hr battery?

The 4000w inverter at 12v can draw over 300 amps (4000/12). So, IF the battery can take 3C current draw, it would last 20 minutes to 100% DOD or 10 minutes at 50% DOD. I would also think that it would generate some heat.
 

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In post 1 it is mentioned that a shore power battery charger is better for a battery than charging from the alternator. Why is this?
 

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Battery manufacturers specify how to charge their batteries to maximize efficiency, chronological age and cycle capacity. Many AGM battery manufactures specify a minimum and maximum amperage (generally 0.2C to 0.3C) and also charge voltage for either two or three stages of charging. Three stage smart charges are specified for maximum life which consists of bulk, absort and float. Float is designed to merely replace what the battery is using when at rest. Also, good battery chargers allow for the charge voltage to be adjusted for temperature, which is also what battery manufactures specify.


Alternators are not generally designed to allow for custom programming to fit particular battery types and they regulate amperage based on the needs the alternator itself (shut down when overheating) and needs of ancillary electrical loads as well as primarily charging the SLI (starting battery).


Alternators are also primarily not designed as chargers as much as they are designed to maintain a full charge on a battery.
 

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Some really good info here.
I've been thinking of getting one for awhile to run tools and charge cordless batteries on the go. This post helped me wrap my head around exactly what I need.
Thanks for the post!
 

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Dummy question. I've read when looking at isolators that the 2 batteries on either side should be the same size and type. What do they mean by this? No one ever does this it makes no sense. I understand that if they aren't the same size and type then they could equalize to half full each. What's their point?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Dummy question. I've read when looking at isolators that the 2 batteries on either side should be the same size and type. What do they mean by this? No one ever does this it makes no sense. I understand that if they aren't the same size and type then they could equalize to half full each. What's their point?

The guy at battery world actually sells and installs solar house systems,and knows more about batteries than anyone Ive met. He said the ACR switch will work fine but I wont get a fully charged battery with it. A fully charged battery is technically 14.6 or 14.7 volts. A battery is considered discharged or dead at 10. So technically a battery reading 12 volts is only half charged. Our starters only require 12 volts for a second or two to start our engine, then the alternator is designed to keep the battery at a level high enough to start the engine and power the electronics in the car. I ran the van all day today with the batteries connected and didnt use the inverter, and the gauge shows the batteries are about 80%. If I plug in the shore power, theyll be at 14.6 or 7 in an hour or so.
 
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