West Mountain PWRgate back ordered for months, any good alternatives?

RenoHuskerDu

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I'm building a UPS power supply for my shack with large FLA at the heart. This PWRgate unit keeps popping up in forums as the best out there, but it's back ordered for months. West Mountain PWRgate

There are chyneze knockoffs on the web with savage reviews about short life. I don't want to go that route.

Can anyone recommend another good 12 backup power distribution system? Basically, its function is to keep the attached FLA floated, switch over to battery power in case the 12v power supply quits (110v power out), and allow for optional integration of solar panels.
 

prcguy

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I had forgotten about the West Mountain Power Gate and just completed a battery backup/charging gizmo for a remote controlled radio. I used a relay with 12v coil that is energized by the power supply and when AC power fails it switches to battery. I have a 16A Schottky diode in series with a 1 ohm resistor from the power supply to the battery for charging.

The diode isolates the power supply from the battery when AC is present so the radio only draws from the power supply and the 1 ohm resistor limits charging current to about 10A including the minimal voltage drop across the diode. It’s been running a few days now and works perfectly and only cost me about $10 as I had the relay laying around.

The West Mountain Power Gate is very interesting but it costs way more than it should considering it doesn’t have a low voltage cutoff for the battery. If power is out for an extended time your battery will be toast. My circuit doesn’t have low voltage cutoff either but it’s 10 bucks compared to about $140.

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RenoHuskerDu

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Excellent info, thank you. The West Mtn PWRgate is now up to $190 btw ... ouch
 

prcguy

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None of the battery backup modules shown so far have any battery low voltage cutoff. I can’t tell you how many batteries I’ve ruined for repeater backup because the power outage was greater than my battery capacity. You need something that will disconnect the batteries when voltage gets below a critical point like 10.5V, otherwise it gets real expensive. Or greatly over design the battery capacity to give ample time for intervention, meaning you can manually shut down and swap out batteries or consider solar charging to keep your equipment going no matter what.
 

PreferredCustomer

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None of the battery backup modules shown so far have any battery low voltage cutoff. I can’t tell you how many batteries I’ve ruined for repeater backup because the power outage was greater than my battery capacity. You need something that will disconnect the batteries when voltage gets below a critical point like 10.5V, otherwise it gets real expensive. Or greatly over design the battery capacity to give ample time for intervention, meaning you can manually shut down and swap out batteries or consider solar charging to keep your equipment going no matter what.

See suggestion in above posting.
 

k6cpo

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None of the battery backup modules shown so far have any battery low voltage cutoff. I can’t tell you how many batteries I’ve ruined for repeater backup because the power outage was greater than my battery capacity. You need something that will disconnect the batteries when voltage gets below a critical point like 10.5V, otherwise it gets real expensive. Or greatly over design the battery capacity to give ample time for intervention, meaning you can manually shut down and swap out batteries or consider solar charging to keep your equipment going no matter what.
This is why my club uses Bioenno LiFePo batteries exclusively for backup power for our repeaters. The Bioennos have a battery monitoring circuit built in that cuts off the battery when it reaches a certain discharge point. The other nice thing about the Bioenno batteries is their almost flat discharge curve. They deliver the same amount of power consistently until they reach the cutoff point. Then they are done...
 

PreferredCustomer

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This is why my club uses Bioenno LiFePo batteries exclusively for backup power for our repeaters. The Bioennos have a battery monitoring circuit built in that cuts off the battery when it reaches a certain discharge point. The other nice thing about the Bioenno batteries is their almost flat discharge curve. They deliver the same amount of power consistently until they reach the cutoff point. Then they are done...

Ok. Can't use the Astron BBM then because it is designed for sealed lead acid batteries.
 

mmckenna

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Can anyone recommend another good 12 backup power distribution system? Basically, its function is to keep the attached FLA floated, switch over to battery power in case the 12v power supply quits (110v power out), and allow for optional integration of solar panels.

Newmar makes some modules that will handle charging a battery, if you didn't want to go the route of building your own:

If you wanted an entire pre-built system, Newmar makes 12volt power plants that will do everything you'd ever need, including draining a chunk of your bank account:


I have used these before at radio sites. You can use the internal battery, or a larger external battery:

The Newmar products are pretty good and I've had some of their stuff running for 12 years now, non stop.
 

k6cpo

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Ok. Can't use the Astron BBM then because it is designed for sealed lead acid batteries.
I wasn't saying to use the Astron with LiFePo batteries. I was commenting on the previous post about battery cutoffs. Regarding the West Mountain Radio Epic Powergate that was the original topic of this thread, my club is in the process of standing up another repeater and I was tasked with building the box for the back-up battery, which will be a Bioenno. We decided to use the Epic Powergate to keep the battery charged and provide automatic cut-over to the battery in event of a power failure. I purchased one from Powerwerx and their site is currently showing the Powergate as in stock.
 
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