My last post about my endeavours received a helpful comment from Brian off NB Harnser
My observation was about voltage of the two respective battery banks as reported via the newly installed Smartgauge. The voltages were lower under charge than on Waterlily and were lower than the output reported via my multimeter off the back of the alternator.
What I forgot was that on Waterlily there is an Adverc charge controller fitted. Plus as Brian pointed out Percy would/should have a split charging controller and suggested it may be a simple diode type. From follow up reading and as Brian suggested the diode type install does consume voltage. This would explain why more was showing on the back of the alternator than was showing into the batteries. (I am still assuming that if the alternator was giving out 14.5volts then under charge the batteries would show 14.5 volts rather than their current charge state?
So it appears at this part of my learning Percy is simple (I knew that) but never considered the electrics as I had rather stupidly assumed that they were similar to Waterlily.... Alternator charges the battery bank. I forgot the charge controller/relay/diode install on both boats.
Rightly or wrongly this is how I do my learning. I could just take it into the Streethay or Mercia and say.... fit me a Smartgauge, but where would be the fun in that.
Thanks Brian for your advice (I will add you to my blog roll, not sure how I missed you off) I will hopefully get to Percy this week and have a good look at the charge controller as to date I had paid it no attention.
Question is now I know I may have an inefficient charge controller do I look to add a Smartbank or Adverc controller? I recall on two separate occasions RCR engineers advised to disconnect the Adverc unit as it 'overworked' the alternator. Sometimes you could detect the changes to the loads the unit was applying by the alternator working harder and the engine note changing...
Problem is now I know that there is in effect a loss of charging current meaning my charging is less efficient. I feel for now I need to understand the relationship between demand and supply on the batteries, I can only really do this over a period of time being on the boat.....;-)