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Old 11-22-2014, 02:03 PM   #21
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

am i misreading this lithium battery info. based on this I would have to say lithium batterie are now less expensive than AGM ?
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Old 11-22-2014, 02:28 PM   #22
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

I wouldn't say cheaper than AGM, but it looks like a 180 amp 12.8 volt battery would be made of 4 cells and cost about $1000. I think that would put them at somewhere just under 3X the cost of good AGM batteries, so they are getting there.

The tech article in the link is very interesting. The no balancing would be nice if it really holds over time. It sounds like their testing may have been on one bank for less than a year, so that may be iffy. They also were very specific about how to charge and discharge and how important it is, but it sounds like they were doing the monitoring manually, which probably won't work for most folks, especially on the discharge side, where forgetting something on and letting the van sit could ruin the very expensive batteries. On the charge side, chargers are available that will do what the want, constant current to a voltage and then constant voltage to .05C current, but the chargers tend to not shut off at that point, like desired, but go to float, which they don't want. You would also need some sort of low battery shut off.

I was a bit surprised at the size of the battery. Nearly as big as normal stuff, but much lighter.

As more folks get into this technology, the prices will continue down, and some innovative companies will come up with good and practical controls that work well with all the other stuff in an RV, and are still affordable by the masses.
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Old 11-22-2014, 03:16 PM   #23
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster
I wouldn't say cheaper than AGM, but it looks like a 180 amp 12.8 volt battery would be made of 4 cells and cost about $1000. I think that would put them at somewhere just under 3X the cost of good AGM batteries, so they are getting there.

The tech article in the link is very interesting. The no balancing would be nice if it really holds over time. It sounds like their testing may have been on one bank for less than a year, so that may be iffy. They also were very specific about how to charge and discharge and how important it is, but it sounds like they were doing the monitoring manually, which probably won't work for most folks, especially on the discharge side, where forgetting something on and letting the van sit could ruin the very expensive batteries. On the charge side, chargers are available that will do what the want, constant current to a voltage and then constant voltage to .05C current, but the chargers tend to not shut off at that point, like desired, but go to float, which they don't want. You would also need some sort of low battery shut off.

I was a bit surprised at the size of the battery. Nearly as big as normal stuff, but much lighter.

As more folks get into this technology, the prices will continue down, and some innovative companies will come up with good and practical controls that work well with all the other stuff in an RV, and are still affordable by the masses.

Booster-the plug an play lithiumbattery-smart battery-are not just the lihium batteries but have devices in the case to balance the lithium batteries inside and to basically replace your current batteries with lithium using any charger system you have-the devices in the case protect them from any negatives your charger has for lithium batteries

Roadtrek-based on the video-is building an 8oo amp battery pack-they are probably bottom balancing- the one for the prmaster appear to be wired in parrallel and the one's for the e-trek appear to be wired in series for the different inverters they use (24 volt,48 volt,orpromasters 2000 12 volt.)


heres a video about bottom balancing

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Old 11-22-2014, 03:34 PM   #24
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

gerrym51, I think you misunderstood what I was referring to, which was the tech link to a PDF for the batteries in the earlier post by rtz, where they referred to getting rid of the balancing circuit, but they still talked about needing good charge and discharge protection, which isn't included in the batteries listed in the link

The Smart Batteries appear to work well, from what we have heard, but as Davydd has said, folks like ARV are going away from them because of cost considerations. I assume Roadtrek is doing the same thing. Roadtrek would still need to have a specific charger with ending amp cutoff at full and some kind of battery low cutoff to prevent battery damage, I think. They would probably also have to include high and low temp lockout of charging to be sure the batteries are protected.

Unless I am reading the information incorrectly, you couldn't just get the batteries in the link, bottom balance them, and put them in your van without some other charge and discharge protections.
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Old 11-22-2014, 04:07 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by booster
gerrym51, I think you misunderstood what I was referring to, which was the tech link to a PDF for the batteries in the earlier post by rtz, where they referred to getting rid of the balancing circuit, but they still talked about needing good charge and discharge protection, which isn't included in the batteries listed in the link

The Smart Batteries appear to work well, from what we have heard, but as Davydd has said, folks like ARV are going away from them because of cost considerations. I assume Roadtrek is doing the same thing. Roadtrek would still need to have a specific charger with ending amp cutoff at full and some kind of battery low cutoff to prevent battery damage, I think. They would probably also have to include high and low temp lockout of charging to be sure the batteries are protected.

Unless I am reading the information incorrectly, you couldn't just get the batteries in the link, bottom balance them, and put them in your van without some other charge and discharge protections.

i agree i think-you couldnt buy the base battery- i think you could buy the smart battery because all the protective devices are built in


as for the other point-of course Roadtrek needs a compatible charger/temperature device/ etc. Jim Hammill has been discussing lithium batteries for awhile. the battery box appears to be metal. will that radiate outside cold to the batteries-probably- will that also enable 12 volt tank warmer to work -maybe-will that also enable thermocouple warmer attached to engine to warm it when engine running and alternator working-maybe. i am not a technical expert by any means(i'm a pharmacist). but things keep improving constantly
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Old 11-22-2014, 07:41 PM   #26
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Advanced RV had been installing the Smart batteries as shown here. They had also installed more batteries in the large center storage compartment if greater than 400 ah.



They have changed their strategy but I don't think necessarily because of cost but just more advanced technology as they report in their newsletter I posted previously. The Smart batteries seem to be designed to be drop in substitute batteries for standard AGM or wet cell batteries. Now Advanced RV builds up a composite of individual 100ah 3.2v batteries in configurations of 400ah, 600ah and 800ah. They are put in a box that attaches to the bottom of the van floor and is inaccessible unless you drop the box. It looks as if Roadtrek is doing something similar. Advanced RV has its Silverleaf control system that handles just about everything in the van including giving read outs of every single battery cell in voltage and temperature. The battery management system is set to stop discharge at 20% and also stop overcharging. I am not sure if it is automatic or settable but the van engine will autostart to charge the batteries but it will do that.

The new floor configuration looks like this. Batteries are underneath just forward of the large basement compartment where an Onan generator would have normally been installed. Now I will have three basement storage compartments instead of batteries in them and no Onan generator.



I think if you want more than a couple batteries or 200 ah the way to go will be lithium ion batteries mainly for space considerations, location opportunities and weight factor in a van. And if you want 600 ah or more it will be the only way to go. Advanced RV knows that. I suspect Roadtrek knew it all along but has been doing a lot of Rube Goldberg designing with AGM systems I suspect will be a maintenance headache down the road. I do suspect lithium ion will take a lot of sophisticated battery management because there is no forgiveness at either end at discharge and overcharge.
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:06 PM   #27
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:24 PM   #28
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Quote:
Originally Posted by gerrym51
the great thing is based on what we have been reading is that an 8 pack (800 amps)of these batteries cost a manufacturer like roadtrek about 120.00 dollars for each 100 amps they can furnish a buyer with a large capacity lithium bank for much better prices than in the past
I think I missed something. Where can you get a 12 volt, 100AH for $120. You can get the 3.2 volt single cell for that, but it takes 4 of them to make a 12v battery of 100AH. If I can get them for $120, it will be well worth building a control and safety circuit for them.

On the 1/3 the cost for building your the batteries instead of using the Smart batteries that I attributed to Davydd. It was actually pattonsr that mentioned it, in Davydd's discussion. http://classbforum.com/phpBB2/viewto...F3+cost#p21915
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:28 PM   #29
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:34 PM   #30
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Those lithium ion batteries are individual cell 3.2v each so you would have to put four together to create a 12v (12.8v) battery.
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Old 11-25-2014, 11:12 PM   #31
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Quote:
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This is the floor plan that appeared on the video. Plan is flipped from traditional Roadtrek design of bathroom on the passenger side. Wet bath behind the driver looks better designed for showering. Driver seat turnaround looks tight. Refrigerator on driver's side. Closet/pantry between refrigerator and bath? That looks like an induction cooktop. I imagine the bed could infill with the back cushions or flip futon style for one large bed. Receptors front and back for stowable tables. Make the bed up and move the bikes forward or outside. Of course the plan could ultimately be a slight of hand teaser move away from the true plan. Roadtrek seems to be into those games of late.

Interesting to see Roadtrek and Pleasureway upfitting ProMasters. Sprinters are very fancy and well built cargo (and expensive) vans but the Fiat Ducato/Ram ProMaster is better suited for RV conversion due to a lower floor (lower roof), larger body and lower price point. In Europe 80% of all van conversion and RVs are built on this chassis. That said, Ram's reliablity is not proven yet. Curious to see Roadtrek's offer this december. As mentioned by Jim Hammill in Mike Wendland video they seem to be taking the opportunity to do quantum leap in term of design, comparing to the very conservative attitude they had over the last decade. It's a chance for Roadtrek to position itself toward a more design oriented generation. Their grandma's kitchen cabinets, even stained in dark charcoal is definetely not appealing for new RV markets.

We are part of the few courageous customers (or fools!) to invest in the first ProMaster van conversion. Ours was built by a very reputable Quebec van conversion company http://www.safaricondo.com/en/. We just had our first 100 days with the new beast, and it's very very convincing. Contrary to Roadtrek's layout, Safari Condo adapted the most popular and proven layout initiated by Adria in Europe 15 years ago on the Fiat Ducato chassis. The layout is interesting because it offers a front dinette area with swivel seats, and a rear area with 3 options, either a large fixed bed with electric lift (our choice), a conventional sofa bed, or a rear dinette converting in a bed. Two areas separated by the toilet/shower cubicle. It's a very practical, loads of storage space under the fixed bed, very large shower area. We ordered the van with 400W solar, no generator, and it works perfectly for extended boondocking.

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Old 11-25-2014, 11:29 PM   #32
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

GEorgeB-does your van have lithium batteries?
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Old 11-25-2014, 11:29 PM   #33
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GEorgeB-does your van have lithium batteries?
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Old 11-25-2014, 11:34 PM   #34
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Not yet! Only two 190 Amp/hour AGM's But I'm convinced the Lithium route is the solution. You have to implement a more sophisticated battery management. The risk of overcharging is very dangerous with Lithium.Remember Boeing's mishaps.

The 400W solar panels on top are working very well to feed the two 12v fridges


This is the closed battery compartment
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Old 11-26-2014, 12:07 AM   #35
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

If you remember, we posted this van (Safari) months ago.

Personally, I like the rear treatment in this van. I think key to selling these vans to the younger demographic is to have the rear area useful to haul sports equipment or to use to haul other junk, such as trips to the Costco or builder's supply. I also like the refrigerator placement, it's an interesting idea. I believe an option on this one is two refrigerators, which is another novel idea.

Other vans we discussed have a twins arrangement in the rear, where they fold up against the wall allowing a large cargo area similar to this van. Some have that, plus the drop down bed - so real sleeping for 4 is possible. But, of course, no room for their luggage or food.

Frankly, the shortcomings with all these vans on the Promaster is going to be tank size. You can have bigger tanks, or a generator, or large battery bank. You can have two of these things, but not three. Just is not enough room for everything.
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Old 11-26-2014, 12:20 AM   #36
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Wincrasher -you keep talking about tank sizes. tell me what size tanks and what B van has tank sizes you like that has all 3 things
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Old 11-26-2014, 12:40 AM   #37
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

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If you remember, we posted this van (Safari) months ago.

Personally, I like the rear treatment in this van. I think key to selling these vans to the younger demographic is to have the rear area useful to haul sports equipment or to use to haul other junk, such as trips to the Costco or builder's supply. I also like the refrigerator placement, it's an interesting idea. I believe an option on this one is two refrigerators, which is another novel idea.

Other vans we discussed have a twins arrangement in the rear, where they fold up against the wall allowing a large cargo area similar to this van. Some have that, plus the drop down bed - so real sleeping for 4 is possible. But, of course, no room for their luggage or food.

Frankly, the shortcomings with all these vans on the Promaster is going to be tank size. You can have bigger tanks, or a generator, or large battery bank. You can have two of these things, but not three. Just is not enough room for everything.
Our ProMaster XL 21' has 26 GAL. Fresh, 24 GAL. Grey and 12 GAL. Black. No generator, Spare tire underneath the chassis. Battery compartment in the van, under the bed. There might be some room left behind the spare for a future battery bank ?
See specs in metric of all the Safaricondo vans http://www.safaricondo.com/pdf/carac..._safari_en.pdf

See the underneath of the van
Two grey tanks combined into one in the middle. The black tank on the left. The fresh tank is in the van, protected from freezing.



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Old 11-26-2014, 01:28 AM   #38
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Is that a Timbren setup to handle the extra rear weight and maintain ride height?
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Old 11-26-2014, 02:19 AM   #39
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Is that a Timbren setup to handle the extra rear weight and maintain ride height?
No it's the standard 3500 ProMaster setup.
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Old 11-26-2014, 02:31 AM   #40
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Default Re: Roadtrek is making a ProMaster model...

Quote:
Originally Posted by gerrym51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Davydd
This is the floor plan that appeared on the video. Plan is flipped from traditional Roadtrek design of bathroom on the passenger side. Wet bath behind the driver looks better designed for showering. Driver seat turnaround looks tight. Refrigerator on driver's side. Closet/pantry between refrigerator and bath? That looks like an induction cooktop. I imagine the bed could infill with the back cushions or flip futon style for one large bed. Receptors front and back for stowable tables. Make the bed up and move the bikes forward or outside. Of course the plan could ultimately be a slight of hand teaser move away from the true plan. Roadtrek seems to be into those games of late.



These are the lithium ion batteries they showed in the video. They look the same or similar to the ones that showed up in the Wendland new CS video. There are eight batteries there in what looks like a stainless steel container I am guessing it would latch to the underside of the van. Once put away you really do not have to tend the batteries. The is no water to check and no acid corrosion on the connections to deal with. If they last 5,000 cycles like Advanced RV thinks then you will never deal with them.



With as many batteries they show, if they go with the Promaster and if they furnish an induction cooktop and possibly a compressor refrigerator there would not be much need for an Onan generator. Propane would be questionable but they won't have a diesel heating/hot water option. So, I would guess propane would still be there unless I am missing some other kind of heating option besides electric. Electric could be possible. We rarely run our heater except for some morning wakeup comfort for a very short time and they may have enough battery power for that. It could be like air conditioning -- if you really, really need it, get smart, and seek an electrical hookup campground. Trust me, Mr. Wendland will be plugged in when he does his winter camping rally this January at Tahquamenon Falls.

If they deliver this at $79,000 it will be their low budget option aimed at a younger market, the single person or possibly family weekender/short vacation market. With two safe seats maybe just the active younger market as evidenced by the bicycle inside tease and the fact one could even stuff kayaks and paddle boards inside the clear through aisle. It just doesn't seem adequate for extended travel by retiree or near retiree Baby Boomers. There are load limitations and simply physical limitations with a lower floor for as large of capacity tanks the Sprinters are providing. The biggest appeal of a Promaster will be the length. So far the extra 2-3" width makes it possible to sleep crosswise but no one has pushed that idea yet and in truth climb over sleeping is probably everyone's last choice desire.

Is this goodbye Ranger? Maybe Chevy in all if they decide to add the Ford Transit in the mix at a later date?

davydd-i like you counted 8 batteies.-Roadtrek had been using 6 agms in the back and 2 in another location-because of size of agms.

any idea about the amp hours of these 8 batteries - totally and singly- I have no knowledge when it comes to lithium batteries

also with lithium batteries is multiple big alternators still needed -just wondering

does anybody have an opinion or a guess what size lithium battery is being put in the metal box in roadtreks promaster video. at first i though t it was 100 amp batteries but the more i look at it it seems they may be 180 amp batteries or 360 total in the box

these are the 180 amp i'm talking about

http://www.electriccarpartscompany.com/ ... p_295.html
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