So unfortunately, I set it up to charge and then went to bed after the measurements that I took above. So I wasn't able to see the ramp down. I did check the water level before I charged it and they were fine. Per your recommendation, I also checked water levels this morning after taking it off of the charger and they appear unchanged.
I checked on the battery again this morning and the charger has switched to "charger/maintaining" mode:
Measuring the battery with and without the charger show 12.79:
From the Trojan users guide, this appears to be a 100% charge.
I'll test the battery this evening and tomorrow to see that it is staying at 12.79 or thereabouts.
And finally, the charger is an cheap charger from
Walmart. It's a Schumacher XC10. Price online shows $30, but I don't believe that I spent that much. Maybe I did.
Now, if my multimeter would just consistently work. Either my 9v batteries are crap or its finicky. I even busted out the manual for it this morning to make sure I wasn't doing something wrong. It doesn't always "clear" itself when I turn it on and switch to VDC 20. I'm going to pickup some new batteries from the store and am keeping the meter itself inside where it's warmer than the garage.
Glenn, you're right that I'm sure glad it wasn't 7v! This makes all of the difference between holy pile of crap and hey, this might actually work.
RPAspey, I actually think I'm not against the idea of a hydrometer now. I've got a lot more confidence in understanding this stuff over the last few posts/exercises. The Trojan users guide also strongly recommends one for measuring state of charge. If you're willing to find an Amazon product (that's eligible for prime shipping), I'd be interested to see what you recommend.