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Old 06-16-2021, 11:17 AM   #1
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Installing Victron Quattro Inverter/Charger

Has anyone installed one of these in their rig? I'm in the process and would like to know how others have done things. I think I waded a little too far out into the pool and am a little over my head.
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Old 06-16-2021, 11:32 AM   #2
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Has anyone installed one of these in their rig? I'm in the process and would like to know how others have done things. I think I waded a little too far out into the pool and am a little over my head.
Very large, very expensive, and probably more suited to either a LARGE yacht or an off grid home/cabin.

That said, they do have 240 volt split phase capability and could well be the answer one is looking for if they have a LARGE RV and want 50 amp service.

Bear in mind that this will require a large battery bank and accompanying solar array.

Whether or not it's practical will depend on how big your "equipment space", room for batteries, and available space for solar panels, is. My guess is that the only practical path for batteries would be LiFePo4 "Lithium" due to the amount of usable energy vs size/weight vs Lead Acid. That alone will be a significant expense.

As for "wading too far into the pool and being over your head" that only depends if you have a large enough wallet to use for flotation"
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Old 06-16-2021, 11:48 AM   #3
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I think I waded a little too far out into the pool and am a little over my head.
Story of my life, man. I find that it helps me to create a diagram document of what my end goal is. It shows all of the pieces of equipment and all of the wiring connections.

It' invaluable because for me, I get stupid and end up trying to connect things wrong while I'm doing the actual work. I refer back to my diagram over and over and over.

IMO, start there.
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Old 06-16-2021, 11:52 AM   #4
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I installed a Victron MultiPlus Inverter/Charger on the last rig (sob). The MultiPlus is not able to do two phase like the Quattro but very well built. If you don't have any experience with electrical wiring perhaps you should find someone.
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Old 06-16-2021, 12:53 PM   #5
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Quattro System

Hi,

I installed two 5KW Quattro's in our Class A rig. 8 Battleborn 24VDC batteries in parallel with heavy copper BUS bars. Since I had a 120VAC generator had to configure inverters so that when not on 50A shore power one inverter charges the batteries and provides 1/2 the load, the other inverter runs off the batteries and provides power to the rest of the AC loads.

Choose to mount the batteries and inverters in the bedroom closet as it doesn't see the extremes in temperature that would be present in the basement storage cabinets.

If you want to discuss it give me a call.

(Nine Two Eight) 201.4905.

Marc
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Old 06-16-2021, 01:04 PM   #6
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Yup, I'm also in process of upgrading to 800+Ah of lithium and 1.2kw solar too. And yes, I've gone way over budget on this project and still don't see the light at the end of the tunnel. Prices on everything have skyrocketed.

I've figured out and can handle the batteries and solar but the Quattro (and figuring out some of the stock RV wiring) has stymied the progress. Not to mention parts and supplies unavailability.

The diagraming is a good idea and I started doing that but it gets complicated pretty fast. I should probably take the time to re-diagram after my rough draft that looks like a pre-schooler made!

I've worked on residential wiring, car and old 30a boat, tractors, wiring successfully, designed my custom whole house generator transfer switch system, etc in previous lives but this RV stuff is making my head hurt. Maybe I'm just getting old. Also having a hard time tracing lines through the rats nest of wire looms, zip ties, electrical tape, etc.

One question maybe someone smarter than me can explain, why does a 120v 66a 8k Onan genny have 4 conductor output? Shouldn't that be for 240v w/2 hot lines? Is it some sort of split phase thing with 2 60v lines? Or is it for load sharing on the wires and is 120v with 33a per leg? Or? If I had my batteries in, I'd start it up and put the meter on it but batteries aren't back in yet. I'm trying to figure out how to wire those 4 conductors to 3 lugs on the quattro.
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Old 06-16-2021, 01:21 PM   #7
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Yup, I'm also in process of upgrading to 800+Ah of lithium and 1.2kw solar too. And yes, I've gone way over budget on this project and still don't see the light at the end of the tunnel. Prices on everything have skyrocketed.

I've figured out and can handle the batteries and solar but the Quattro (and figuring out some of the stock RV wiring) has stymied the progress. Not to mention parts and supplies unavailability.

The diagraming is a good idea and I started doing that but it gets complicated pretty fast. I should probably take the time to re-diagram after my rough draft that looks like a pre-schooler made!

I've worked on residential wiring, car and old 30a boat, tractors, wiring successfully, designed my custom whole house generator transfer switch system, etc in previous lives but this RV stuff is making my head hurt. Maybe I'm just getting old. Also having a hard time tracing lines through the rats nest of wire looms, zip ties, electrical tape, etc.

One question maybe someone smarter than me can explain, why does a 120v 66a 8k Onan genny have 4 conductor output? Shouldn't that be for 240v w/2 hot lines? Is it some sort of split phase thing with 2 60v lines? Or is it for load sharing on the wires and is 120v with 33a per leg? Or? If I had my batteries in, I'd start it up and put the meter on it but batteries aren't back in yet. I'm trying to figure out how to wire those 4 conductors to 3 lugs on the quattro.
Could it be that it's just two 120 v wires, a Neutral, and a Ground?. Like the power cord for a 50 amp service?
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Old 06-16-2021, 01:24 PM   #8
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Generator mystery

I suppose the 4 generator wires are Hot (Black), Neutral (White), Ground (green or bare copper), and perhaps a second Hot wire. (Probably Red) Also Check the Neutral wire to see if it's a largher wire gage than the others. Single phase means that if there are two hot wires that the current in the Neutral will be the sum of all hot wire currents often necessitating a larger wire gage.

I found the folks at Northern Arizina Wind and Sun to be most helpful. If you have not yet purchased all the panels and Victron components then contact them for a good price and support.

Marc
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Old 06-16-2021, 01:55 PM   #9
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I suppose the 4 generator wires are Hot (Black), Neutral (White), Ground (green or bare copper), and perhaps a second Hot wire. (Probably Red) Also Check the Neutral wire to see if it's a largher wire gage than the others. Single phase means that if there are two hot wires that the current in the Neutral will be the sum of all hot wire currents often necessitating a larger wire gage.

I found the folks at Northern Arizina Wind and Sun to be most helpful. If you have not yet purchased all the panels and Victron components then contact them for a good price and support.

Marc
In a single phase 3-wire system the current in one hot lead is at it's peak when the current in the other is at zero. Thus the current in the neutral is never more than the max current in either hot lead. Yes, voltage between the two hot wires does add and is twice what the individual voltage is.

Just part of the normal confusion with Single Phase, Split Phase, 2-Phase, 3 phase, terminologies.
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Old 06-16-2021, 07:53 PM   #10
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Shore power vs. Generator with Victron Quattro's

Split phase AC from utility is two legs of 120VAC with respect to the neutral. 240VAC between the two hot wires.

A single phase 120VAC generator is a single or multiple paralleled hot wires, a neutral and a ground.

In a two Victron Quattro inverter system configured with each inverter suppling power to 1/2 the RV loads, shore power having a 50A 120VAC assures the Victron inverters are 180 degrees out of phase, each powering 1/2 of the system loads. Yet when plugged into a 30A 120VAC pedestal with a "Dog Bone" adapter to the 50A RV plug both inverters are in phase which the Victron units setup for the 50A pedestal compatibility don't allow. Likewise when running on a 120VAC generator only one inverter can be powered, This inverter uses excess incoming power to charge the batteries, The other inverter uses battery power to supply energy to it's AC loads.

A better alternative for the generator is that it be a 220VAC (split phase 120V) configuration to keep both inverters 180 degrees out of phase, BUT this will still mean that the Dog Bone adapter in 30A campgrounds will only power one inverter.

This stuff is very confusing.. I recommend contacting the Victron experts at Northern AZ Wind and Sun who can better explain this and help to architect and configure a system that will meet your needs.

Marc
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Old 06-16-2021, 08:31 PM   #11
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Split phase AC from utility is two legs of 120VAC with respect to the neutral. 240VAC between the two hot wires.



A single phase 120VAC generator is a single or multiple paralleled hot wires, a neutral and a ground.



In a two Victron Quattro inverter system configured with each inverter suppling power to 1/2 the RV loads, shore power having a 50A 120VAC assures the Victron inverters are 180 degrees out of phase, each powering 1/2 of the system loads. Yet when plugged into a 30A 120VAC pedestal with a "Dog Bone" adapter to the 50A RV plug both inverters are in phase which the Victron units setup for the 50A pedestal compatibility don't allow. Likewise when running on a 120VAC generator only one inverter can be powered, This inverter uses excess incoming power to charge the batteries, The other inverter uses battery power to supply energy to it's AC loads.



A better alternative for the generator is that it be a 220VAC (split phase 120V) configuration to keep both inverters 180 degrees out of phase, BUT this will still mean that the Dog Bone adapter in 30A campgrounds will only power one inverter.



This stuff is very confusing.. I recommend contacting the Victron experts at Northern AZ Wind and Sun who can better explain this and help to architect and configure a system that will meet your needs.



Marc
One question. Why, when AC power is available is one going to be running an Inverter?
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Old 06-16-2021, 10:52 PM   #12
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Victron Inverter

When on 50A Shore Power hookup, the Inverters are acting as battery chargers and the load is provided by the shore power connection. The problem is when there is a single 120VAC input...

Since 1/2 the loads are powered by each Quattro unit and since the Quattro is configured for a 180 degree phase shift its impossible to power both inverters in phase like would happen if powered by a 120VAC generator or Dog Bone Adapter to a 30A AC power receptacle.

I hope this helps... If not Contact Victron or Notrthern AZ Wind and Sun.
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Old 07-12-2021, 11:35 PM   #13
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So I finally got it all working off a single Quattro. Because of the wiring in the RV I had to do some Jury Rigging but it's all functioning great now.
First, we added a few waterproof junction boxes to the generator output, AC distribution panel feed, and shore power cables. We took out the automatic transfer switch since the Quattro has one built-in. But that eliminated the surge protector too so we added a Southwire surge protector above the shorepower reel which has an awesome optional display panel that shows amperage and voltage on each leg.
For anybody that comes after trying to do the same:
We ran the shore power and generator cables direct to the quattro to AC-IN-2 and AC-In-1, respectively. But only connected the hot L1 (Black), ground and neutral (white) wires to the corresponding quattro lugs.
Then you take the Red L2 hot wires from shore power and generator and splice them together into the main AC feed cable red L2. We had to put those in nonmetallic waterproof conduit with water tight fittings.
So that way, the quattro energizes L1 of the panel and the shore power or genny directly energize the L2 leg.

I realized that even though our coach is 240v there are no 240v appliances so we could run it as above as if it is a dual breaker panel 120v system. Also, once I took the cover off the AC dist. panel, I found the diagram on the back that shows the dist panel is supposed to be divided into a main panel and aux panel for external AC loads and inverter AC loads only. Problem was the aux panel still is 240v/dual leg. But we just combined the two hot leads that feed the aux side of the panel onto the one 120v output terminal post of the quattro so it energizes both legs and all breakers on that side.
After testing and labelling (some were wrong from factory) all the AC distribution load wires/breakers, we moved some around so that the "on the road" critical loads (fridge, main cabin aircond, outlets, TV, microwave and awning (for auto rectract)) were on the same leg of the breaker panel powered by the inverter. So now those all have power while we are running on batteries only. Instead of having the Aux side of the panel powered from the Quattro AC-Out-2 terminal, as they recommend, we just stacked it ontop of the AC-Out-1 so it will always be powered and the quattro has plenty of amp capacity to handle all this. Though I do need to program it to limit the generator power input to 60a vs the 66.7 it is capable of.
So that is my wiring scheme as best as I can describe it. I really like the quattro now that I figured it out. I wish they would make a 240v version but until then, this works. I also would do a 24v or 48v battery system if I had it to do all over again.
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Old 07-13-2021, 07:28 AM   #14
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So I finally got it all working off a single Quattro. Because of the wiring in the RV I had to do some Jury Rigging but it's all functioning great now.

First, we added a few waterproof junction boxes to the generator output, AC distribution panel feed, and shore power cables. We took out the automatic transfer switch since the Quattro has one built-in. But that eliminated the surge protector too so we added a Southwire surge protector above the shorepower reel which has an awesome optional display panel that shows amperage and voltage on each leg.

For anybody that comes after trying to do the same:

We ran the shore power and generator cables direct to the quattro to AC-IN-2 and AC-In-1, respectively. But only connected the hot L1 (Black), ground and neutral (white) wires to the corresponding quattro lugs.

Then you take the Red L2 hot wires from shore power and generator and splice them together into the main AC feed cable red L2. We had to put those in nonmetallic waterproof conduit with water tight fittings.

So that way, the quattro energizes L1 of the panel and the shore power or genny directly energize the L2 leg.



I realized that even though our coach is 240v there are no 240v appliances so we could run it as above as if it is a dual breaker panel 120v system. Also, once I took the cover off the AC dist. panel, I found the diagram on the back that shows the dist panel is supposed to be divided into a main panel and aux panel for external AC loads and inverter AC loads only. Problem was the aux panel still is 240v/dual leg. But we just combined the two hot leads that feed the aux side of the panel onto the one 120v output terminal post of the quattro so it energizes both legs and all breakers on that side.

After testing and labelling (some were wrong from factory) all the AC distribution load wires/breakers, we moved some around so that the "on the road" critical loads (fridge, main cabin aircond, outlets, TV, microwave and awning (for auto rectract)) were on the same leg of the breaker panel powered by the inverter. So now those all have power while we are running on batteries only. Instead of having the Aux side of the panel powered from the Quattro AC-Out-2 terminal, as they recommend, we just stacked it ontop of the AC-Out-1 so it will always be powered and the quattro has plenty of amp capacity to handle all this. Though I do need to program it to limit the generator power input to 60a vs the 66.7 it is capable of.

So that is my wiring scheme as best as I can describe it. I really like the quattro now that I figured it out. I wish they would make a 240v version but until then, this works. I also would do a 24v or 48v battery system if I had it to do all over again.
They just came out with a dual input / dual output multiplus for our rigs. Now getting a hold of one is still a question mark.

https://www.victronenergy.com/invert...s/multiplus-ii

I looked at the quattro but didn't want to rearrange everything as you've described. I don't like trying to make something designed for another purpose fit my application. We'll see how long I end up having to wait.
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Old 07-14-2021, 02:12 PM   #15
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BattleBorn has those multi-plus's in stock. When I talked to another "technical consultant" there, they said, "Oh yeah, we sold you the wrong unit (Quattro). It won't work for a 240v coach, what you need is two multi-plus units." (2 for the extra capacity to run aircond). But, even though they sold me the wrong unit, they were still going to charge me a restocking fee of upto 20%! So I figured out how to make the quattro work.
One cool thing about the quattro is that it has a built-in Starter/Chassis battery trickle charger. I didn't see that on the multi-plus. But if I could start over, I would go with dual multi-pluses if you can make enough room.
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Old 07-14-2021, 03:03 PM   #16
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Victron System

I chose the two Quattro implementation as I wanted all devices to be usable while boondocking with either the batteries or genny providing power. The 2KW of solar panels keep, the batteries topped up as long as the AC load isn't excessive.
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