It just doesn't seem to be working. I think the generator portion is damaged. What should I look for?
1. Start simple and check the fuses.
2. Unwire the D400 from the regulator. Spin the blades by hand and measure the output with a multimeter or ammeter. If there is any reading at all (it will not be high at all, as your only spinning the blades by hand), it lets you know that the generator is generating.
3. Check the regulator. Do a visual inspection along with checking to make sure there's output.
Do I need a pole?
Yes. Find a welder near you and ask for them to create a sturdy pole (the shorter the better) for your vessel.
42mm ID, 50-70mm OD.
If you already have a pole that doesn't fit the 42mm ID, you can find a local marine welder to weld a top pole section to fit the D400. A simple job. It will need to be at least 4", as the delrin sleeve is 3" tall.
Will we hear/feel any vibrations?
No. If you're worried, you can insert a piece of rubber in between the foot of the pole and the transom/hull to stop any potential vibrations. If there are vibrations, make sure there is no wobble in the pole (too long, not enough support), the blades are aligned and spinning smoothly (some tighten blades to disc too hard and then it needs to be replaced), etc.
I've got the wind generator all setup and there seems to be a slight wobble of the blades (and perhaps a bit of noise). What's wrong?
The hub bolts have probably been over-tightened. These are the bolts that secure the hub center to the alternator shaft. These bolts should be smeared with a nut-grade (i.e. can be dismantled) thread lock and screwed in until they are just ‘snug’. If over tightened, they can skew or even distort the hub center. This pulls the rotor out of plane causing a ‘shimmy’ as it rotates. Easing the bolts off should solve the problem. If not, a new hub center would be required (which can be ordered). The noise should disappear when the blades run true.
Note, these assembly points are stressed in the product manual.
WIRING (see also mounting)
What size wire do I need?
We will always tell you to get the maximum thickness wire you can possibly get through the ultimately tiny wire-runs you have aboard. Start with 2-gauge - if there's no way that's going to snake around the boat, move to 3-gauge and so on... You can only control so much. The thicker the wire, the less resistance, the more efficient it is.
Can it be wired so that we can remove the whole wind generator (for purposes of hurricane or travel lift problems).
Yes. If you plan ahead, you can wire the Euroblock to just below the deck where the wires come into the boat. That way, you can - if need be - disconnect the wires to the wind generator and pull them up through the pole behind the wind generator itself.
I want TWO D400's (yes, people do buy two)! Can I use the same regulator or wire them together?
No. Each D400 will run independently from each other as separate systems. You will receive (2) packages including all parts (regulators/diversion loads/stop switches).
Can I get just the D400 - without the regulator?
No. Absolutely not. We've seen bad things (fires) due to the D400's energy producing capabilities wired to other controllers (Xantrex, for example). They just can't handle it. The regulator we provide is not pretty, but it's specifically designed for the D400 and does its job - really well.
I want to use a different regulator/controller (because of looks, usually). Do you recommend others?
No. And here's why: The Flexcharge is made for the D400. The problem is the isolation - which is why we have the contactors on the NCHC. Other regulators do not isolate the wind generator as the NCHC does with its contactors. Without this configuration, other charging sources (ie. alternator, AC charger, solar panels, etc.) can "see" the diversion load and "think" it is a discharged battery so they keep putting out power. As much as 40 amps just going up in heat! That is why we use the NCHC with diversion option. Outback and the other regulators work fine with solar, because you can just shut solar panels off - they're simple. A wind generator requires a diversion load to absorb the excess power produced when the batteries are fully charged. So when the wind is still blowing and the wind generator is producing, the diversion load must be isolated from the rest of the system as recited above.
DIVERSION LOAD & STOP SWITCH
What's the purpose of the Stop Switch?
There is no brake inside the D400 generator. The blades will always spin - there's no stopping them unless you manually tie them down. As the regulator/controller senses that your batteries are full, it will automatically divert all of the energy produced from the wind generator to the diversion load. The stop switch is the manual way of diverting all of the D400's energy into the diversion load when, for whatever reason, you do not want that energy to get to the batteries.
How hot does the diversion load get?
The diversion load takes the electrical energy produced by the D400 and transforms it into heat energy that will be released as radiated heat from the diversion load. It takes A LOT for the diversion load to get hot - sustained tropical storm winds, for example. When it gets hot, it can burn you. It comes with a wire mesh cage to keep things away from it. Installing the diversion load in the engine room = good idea. Installing diversion load in a crowded locker where things are constantly moving around and can come into contact with it = bad idea. Some install it on the ceiling (heat rises) with a heat insulator in between ceiling and diversion load - just an idea.
Can I use my solar panel controller?
No. You will need two separate systems (better idea anyway). Your solar has its own regulator/controller system and your D400 will be completely separate with its own.
Can I use my excess energy to heat my hot water (hot water element)?
I suppose. What do you call hot? Luke warm (cool) water is your best bet, unless you would like take a shower in the middle of a tropical storm/hurricane. Those who prefer to wash in the ocean, then rinse with luke warm water and the potential customers of the hot water heater element. If you don't fit that category, don't get it.
Can the hot water heater element be used for 12VDC as well as shore power?
No. We have tried to design a SAFE way of doing this, but have not gotten there yet. 12VDC only. So, if you wanted hot water and you have a hot water heat element directly tied to your wind generator, you will have to boil the luke warm water that you might get.
A hurricane/tropical storm is headed our way - YIKES! What can I do?
If you didn't wire as the question above, turn the wind generator at a 90 degree diagonal to the wind so the blades slow/stop, grab a blade and pull it down parallel to the pole. Tie this blade to the pole to keep the blades from turning.
Do you use third-party shipping?
No. Tried and didn't work out.
Do you offer any discounts?
Occasionally we offer discounts. Boat shows are the general rule, although sometimes not.