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Prius as backup generator with midnight classic as voltage converter possible?

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  • #91
    If the fuse blew, wouldn't that mean the pump was running ? Don't cook your electronics. If you are sure the cooling is not needed, go ahead....
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount (2) | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister

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    • #92
      I've settled onto the wind setting for now. I'm still enjoying the silent prius generator every night. I have the output amps limited 38 amps. As long as it stays in absorb mode it works great. I pushed its limits many times doing different testing . But like I said before if the house draws more power than the classic can keep up with it will switch to bulk mode and that's when the cycling problem starts. It seems as if it's really bad for the classic in bulk. Sometimes if I've drawn the battery voltage down way too far and it's actually stuck in the cycling mode even when I turn off the heavy loads I'll have to change the absorbed voltage down and then slowly back up again.

      I'd like to try having 2 classics hooked to the Prius but tech support says they'll interfere with each other. I'll probably try it anyway after my next paycheck I'll order another classic.

      I was looking at voltage converters. They seem pretty cheap even compared to the discounted classic and I'm thinking they might be more foolproof but I don't like their simplicity. I enjoy the classic being able to see all of the charts on my phone. And being able to easily dial in the exact output voltage I want. Maybe I'll use a voltage converter to step the voltage down and then feed that into the classic. That way the classic gets a nice steady incoming voltage so even when the Prius is going through its voltage swings cycling its engine on and off the classic will continue getting the steady ness it needs to behave.

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      • #93
        I was thinking when writing the code for the adreno to turn the Prius off when its engine is not running in order to save the stand by power I could take it one step further. stack up the voltage converters or midnight classics or whatever in order to pull out 15000 Watts out of the Prius. And when it's running pull out dang near all its live generation power available and then when it shuts off disconnect completely so I'm no longer pulling any power from the Prius at all. I think it's internal combustion engine will deliver watts more efficiently at the higher load. So I dump the power into the house batteries and I'd be cycling the house batteries instead of the Prius battery. Then as the house battery voltage drops & the adreno (or AGS) decides it needs a charge it would start up the Prius again for a short 15000w burst.
        It'll be months before I experiment with this. I'll need stronger house batteries that can handle higher charge rates. Right now my house batteries are shot and technically I shouldn't be putting more than 20 amps into them.

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        • #94
          I read that the Prius generator creates three-phase AC and it's the wrong frequency for what we need. And it's voltage changes as well. I read an article where people tapped into it and used it successfully but for other purposes like driving electric motors just for proof of concept.

          The Prius has its own onboard very nice converter changing that unstable power to a nice DC high voltage charge for its battery. I say unstable but really the Prius is completely in charge and I'm not interested in rewriting and re-engineering all the code in its entire engine management system. I think tapping into it at the HV DC point like I'm already doing is the way to go for us.

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          • #95
            Originally posted by Carmat76 View Post
            Thanks!

            And about that inverter pump. Don't run without it. I've been watching my Prius go through its cycles and there are times when I hear it's cooling fan turn on for no reason other than I suspect it was because the inverter pump commanded it to. I've been a mechanic for 25 years and I have a pretty good idea of when the fan should be coming on and off. And this Prius fan turns on at times different than a regular car. It even comes on sometimes when the engine isn't even running especially when It's been sending heavy loads to the house.

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            • #96
              My typical daily consumption in the winter is 20kWh. When I run the generator, I target bulk charging. If a few days pass without good solar potential I’ll push the generator into the absorb stage. Anyway, I plan on using the Prius and Classic to bulk charge and this will coincide with daytime / evening power draw. Any thoughts about that scenario travissand?

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              • #97
                Originally posted by Carmat76 View Post
                My typical daily consumption in the winter is 20kWh. When I run the generator, I target bulk charging. If a few days pass without good solar potential I’ll push the generator into the absorb stage. Anyway, I plan on using the Prius and Classic to bulk charge and this will coincide with daytime / evening power draw. Any thoughts about that scenario travissand?
                You'll have the cycling problem and it could be hard on the classic and burn it up. Just turn down the voltage on your absorb setting so that it actually reaches the absorbed voltage.

                Occasionally go out there and increase the voltage. Or
                do it over the network through the midnight local app on a desktop computer. It's an annoying dance to have to do. Especially when someone turns on a heavy load in the house you end up having to reduce the absorbed voltage way down to match the actual battery voltage to get the cycling to stop and then raise the voltage again. This is why I want to try using 2 classics. That way they'll be capable of delivering more power than I would ever be consuming in the house and I'll avoid entering the bulk stage at all.. when I get my lithium batteries I suppose I'll be customizing the classics output voltage every time I start the Prius.

                This bulk charge resting cycling problem is in reality a large problem for us. I sure wish they would add a DC converter mode in a firmware update. I would imagine they would sell thousands more classics to a whole different Market of people if they did that.

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                • #98
                  I wonder if anyone's wrote their own code for their own custom mode on a classic before? Is it open source or hackable enough?

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                  • #99
                    Originally posted by travissand View Post
                    I wonder if anyone's wrote their own code for their own custom mode on a classic before? Is it open source or hackable enough?
                    Since you mentioned open source and hackable,you may want to investigate using a Tesla high voltage charging module with an open source and hackable controller that allows for flexible setting voltage, current, etc.

                    https://github.com/damienmaguire/Tesla-Gen3-Charger

                    My understanding is that it has been used to charge Prius batteries successfully.

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                    • For limiting the current feeding the Classic 250, could we use an auto reset breaker, say 15A and have a properly sized resistor in parallel with the this breaker? As MPPT sweeps it would finally trip the breaker and be left with less current passing through the parallel path.

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                      • Originally posted by solardreamer View Post

                        Since you mentioned open source and hackable,you may want to investigate using a Tesla high voltage charging module with an open source and hackable controller that allows for flexible setting voltage, current, etc.

                        https://github.com/damienmaguire/Tesla-Gen3-Charger

                        My understanding is that it has been used to charge Prius batteries successfully.
                        Damien Maguire has made a lot of great videos and contributed a great deal of knowledge to the DIY electric car community.
                        9 kW solar. Driving EVs since 2012

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                        • The problem with an auto-reset breaker, is the lifetime, maybe 50, maybe 100 resets before end of life
                          Powerfab top of pole PV mount (2) | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
                          || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
                          || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

                          solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
                          gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister

                          Comment


                          • Maybe an Arduino and a relay etc... might work?

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                            • Travissand, I received my Classic 250 late yesterday and now I’m travelling for 1 week. Maybe, at your convenience, you could give me your latest settings to copy? I would appreciate the setup details. I was planning on using a run of shielded number 10 wire left over from a deep well install. I would pass high voltage DC from the car to my small ‘battery house’ (25’ cable length) and install my Classic beside the other 2 Classics connecting my solar panels. My DIN rail have a place for another breaker. Should I feed my Classic output into bank direct or add it to my current 48v bus?

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Carmat76 View Post
                                Travissand, I received my Classic 250 late yesterday and now I’m travelling for 1 week. Maybe, at your convenience, you could give me your latest settings to copy? I would appreciate the setup details. I was planning on using a run of shielded number 10 wire left over from a deep well install. I would pass high voltage DC from the car to my small ‘battery house’ (25’ cable length) and install my Classic beside the other 2 Classics connecting my solar panels. My DIN rail have a place for another breaker. Should I feed my Classic output into bank direct or add it to my current 48v bus?
                                running the classics output directly to the batteries will help eliminate the false overcurrent protection triggers. the length of wire between your battery and the inverter will act as a sort of softening resistor so when there's heavy loads that start up the classic will have an easier time reacting and limiting itself properly without hurting its fets. I think this is especially important because this particular classic you're using will be majorly over paneled in a way. I'm seeing a small improvement in the cycling problem and don't see the overcurrent protection engaged as often when I ran the positive from the classic directly to the battery positive instead of the bus bar where I originally had it. My shunt (whiz-bang jr) is mounted to the bus bar so in order to be able to read the current going in and out of the battery properly I had to run my negative to the bus bar. Maybe I'll relocate The wiz bang closer to the battery at some point and see if I can get further improvement.

                                Just like you're planning I also have 25 feet of 10 gauge going from the car to the classic. I had to clear the codes every time I started it up for a while. It was giving me the high-voltage leak code. Strangely though I no longer get the code now that I twisted the wires connecting the classic and the Prius. I've only got about 10 twists in the 25 foot length. It's regular solar wire like you would run between the panels and the charge controller. And I used the regular solar panel connectors in the Prius end so I can detach quickly when I want to go for a drive.

                                Using the classics local app on the laptop I set up these numbers on the wind mode
                                Step one 195 volts 0 amps
                                Step 2 196 volts 4 amps
                                step 3 197 volts 8 amps
                                Step 4 198 volts 12 amps
                                step 5 199 volts 18 amps
                                step 6 200 volts 30 amps
                                Step 7 202 volts 36 amps
                                step 8 210 volts 37 amps
                                Step 9 220 volts 38 amps
                                step 10 230 volts 39 amps
                                step 11 240 volts 40 amps
                                step 12 245 volts 41 amps
                                Step 13 246 volts 42 amps
                                step 14 247 volt 43 amps
                                step 15 248 volt 44 AMP
                                step 16 249 volts 45 amps.

                                The way the wind mode works it forces you to raise the amperage on the higher step numbers. The system gave me some trouble trying to get the numbers I've shown above. I think I had to work from right to left or left to right or something and then as I worked one step at a time it changed the voltage of all the other steps until I finally got finished. the numbers above where the end result.

                                I messed around with different amperages trying to figure out a way to avoid the cycling when in bulk mode and there were definitely numbers I tried that made the problem worse but these are by no means the best numbers to use. you might try experimenting and if you come up with something working better let me know and I'll try it as well. At least these numbers are a good place to start as I mess with it for several hours over the course of days to come up with what I've got there now.

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