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Alternative to Dual Battery

Overland1

Administrator
Staff member
Originally I wanted a dual battery specifically so if my fridge killed the battery in the middle of the woods I wasn't walking out. The other benefit of a dual system is you can usually combine them while winching if you're running the winch an extended amount of time. Since I'm not rock crawling this isn't a concern of mine.

The downside is price and weight. A good system including electronics and battery tray can be several hundred and plus the cost of two new deep cycle batteries. Then you're also adding another 50 pounds just for insurance.

After thinking it over I found a great alternative. I picked up an Antigravity Micro-Start. It's a small battery pack that can be used to start the battery multiple times and is rechargeable. The beauty of the Micro-Start is the size, it's something that can be tossed in a bag when not needed and at $85 it's hard to beat for price. I've used it several times and it does indeed do what they claim.

If you've been thinking about a dual battery system take a look at this first.

http://www.amazon.com/Antigravity-Batteries-Micro-Start-XP-3-Multi-Function/dp/B00GT2FUB2/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1412031033&sr=8-1-fkmr1&keywords=micr-start+xp-3

 

nuclearlemon

Active Member
a few rising sun people are running single deep cycle group 31 (semi truck) batteries and have no issues when camping/wheeling with fridge on, but they are getting up and driving within a couple of day. longer might cause some worry.

we just got in jumper pack/inverter setups to sell after techs at our pueblo store raved about them. they will start a semi truck, so i figure they gotta be good. have to wait til payday, but i plan on getting one then.
 

DaVikes

Active Member
It gets great reviews on Amazon. But it seems to defy the laws of physics. When I look at it I think there must be some downside. It also makes me wonder if it's possible to parallel two or three together and replace the car battery. I would think that a car manufacturer would do it just for the weight savings.
 

Overland1

Administrator
Staff member
When I looked into it months ago there was something about the battery that was good for bursts like jumping but no very good at continues use. I can't remember exactly what the problem was but basically it can't be used to replace a car battery.
 

Brad

Administrator
Staff member
I am planning on getting one just in case. Even though my plan is still a dual battery. The winch I am putting in is a power hog (warn xd9000).
 

mikeinCO

Active Member
And I was just thinking about a dual battery set up after seeing some rigs this past weekend, nice timing Ben! Might have to give this a try and it will fit in the kit bag that stays in the truck. Do you know if you need to keep it trickled or is it a charge and forget for 6 months?
 

Overland1

Administrator
Staff member
I used mine on the trail a couple weeks ago and it does slowly lose it's charge. However after 6 months of no activity it was only about half drained and still had plenty of juice for at least the 2 jumps we used it for and probably an additional 1-2 more. If you can remember to throw it on a charger a couple times a year you'll be fine. It also has a cigarette lighter charger so after you use it you can recharge it while on the move.

I know several people who carry them now and everyone has been happy.
 

nuclearlemon

Active Member
i have the rockford ones that we sell where i work. i let it sit for a few weeks and it still had plenty of juice to try to fire up the marshmallow. no clue on any longer than that to. i would assume that after a while and the older they get, they wouldn't hold a charge. the rockford comes with a cig lighter charger, so i plan on "topping it off" when i go on long runs so it's ready if i need it.

http://www.tooltopia.com/rockford-ppjs2976dlx.aspx?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=paid_search_google_pla&scid=scplp7931804&gclid=CLjSoJW-l8UCFQGNaQodTIEAbg
 
I was going to do dual batteries too until I saw the Micro Starts. I plan on getting a single Odyssey to replace my current battery, and one of the XP-10s. should be a pretty solid setup, even when I add the fridge.
 

Wheelman

Active Member
Until the MicroStart, only single battery set up that I was ever comfortable with for backcountry work was on the one in my Series Land Rover(s). Those trucks are equipped with a hand crank which actually can be used to start the engine as long as there is a scintilla of energy left to power the ignition. The MicroStart looks look like a great alternative to a dual battery system. Combined with a small solar charger, this could be a great way to save some serious weight over the front axle while still maintaining a decent level of redundancy.

About a decade ago, when my wife was about five months pregnant with our first daughter, we were bird hunting in far northwestern Maine in a remote area. After a long walk up an abandoned tote road, we returned to the truck, a '95 two door Tahoe, only to find a battery too weak to turn the engine over. That two door Tahoe was among the rarest of birds... 5.7 V-8 and an honest-to-god five speed manual transmission. Fortunately, I had parked it on the top of a very small knoll. After balancing the demands of chivalry against the very practical need to bump start it on the first try, we decided who was going to drive and who was going to push. We would still be walking out if that Tahoe had been equipped with an automatic transmission.

When I install my MicroStart, I am going to mount it to a surface and hardwire the charging circuit (with a separate switch) so that I can keep it topped off without over charging it.
 
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Morris Yarnell

Well-Known Member
This is a great idea to reduce weight and not have to shoehorn in a second battery but it is another thing I am unfortunately not able to use. My system is 24V and although it is a two battery system they are in series to accomplish the 24V working voltage. Some pinzies have been changed over to 12V by their owners but at considerable cost in replacement parts like rewiring the starter and charging system, ignition system, coil and voltage regulators, blast resistor, distributor and wiring. Lighting is relatively easily accomplished by replacing just the individual bulbs. I have 24V bulbs in the trailer but when hooked to the Jeep they are just a little less bright. I have LED lighting in some locations that work from 12 to 36 volt.
It isn't economically worth the trouble to change over to be able to fit in a 12 volt radio, less expensive way is to use the system I already have and install a voltage reducer to power any non-military type items.
 

Morris Yarnell

Well-Known Member
Ben, that's a thought but probably not, because at $90+ each for them, it would ultimately be easier for me to keep my batteries charged and monitor them on a yearly basis. Charging them has to be done with them separated. The military 24V chargers are very spendy.
I have replaced the Optima set once since getting the pinz 9 years ago. The pinz originally came with water cell batteries and I changed them out for Optimas because they don't spill.
As a last resort I could use my aux battery that I keep for the ARB and use it to help the battery that is the most charged to get me started...or do that down the hill thing if I am conveniently pointed that way. Usually I am not.
 

Dotcom

Member
I picked up something very similar at Walmart on sale a few weeks ago. They were on sale for 20.00 marked down from 79.00 so I grabbed 3, one for my son who killed his battery in his jeep on a regular basis and 2 for the truck as they are also good flashlights and have usb power ports. The kid had to jump his jeep yesterday and it fired right up no problems.
 

Morris Yarnell

Well-Known Member
Thanks.
Looked it up on Amazon. Very positive customer reviews. They list several types but they all seem to be about the same result when used.