Click for Ocean Alexander Click for Abeking Click for Abeking Click for Lurssen Click for Mag Bay

Problems with Smart Y Converter Box

Discussion in 'Electronics' started by Danvilletim, Oct 4, 2021.

You need to be registered and signed in to view this content.
  1. Danvilletim

    Danvilletim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    774
    Location:
    isleton, ca
    Hi All. We are tucked away in a new berth for a couple months and we only have 50amp at the dock. And the power is 208v. The Charles Iso Transformer is boosting it to 210-220 but that's it. We are tripping the pedestal at the dock way too much and the boat's service batteries are getting hammered.

    I've never used a 'bahamas box' before. I picked one up at sailor man that was "bench tested". Is this box good? Is using such a box always problematic?

    What can I look for? Suggestions?
  2. Ken Bracewell

    Ken Bracewell Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2006
    Messages:
    1,544
    Location:
    Somewhere Sunny
    It's been a very long time since I've used one, but I always had good luck with it. It will assure that your two 50-amp plugs are in-phase before combining them to your 100-amp cord. No (or very minimal) additional amperage draw.
  3. Danvilletim

    Danvilletim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    774
    Location:
    isleton, ca
    Okay.. Maybe a got a box that isn't working as well (its used). Or its another issue.
  4. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,568
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    These smart Y box work well. I ve used them many times and will deliver 100amps from twin 50s. As long as it clicks and the green light comes on it should be working

    your problem is that you only have 208v at those outlets and the Charles can only do so much. At the same time while the voltage is boosted you are loosing amps.

    What size boat, 95’? A single phase 100amp is not enough and you re going to have to reduce the loads. Shutdown one chiller and a water heater if you have two, etc. and possibly run a gen when cooking.

    having spent 2 1/2 months juggling loads before i discovered I could just hook up to 480VAC, I feel your pain :)
  5. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Messages:
    9,819
    Location:
    Satsuma, FL
    Yep, your overdrawing current from the dock using the booster transformers.
    Lots of stuff will still run on 208Vac. Have you tried?
    115Vac is still there so smaller stuff is fine.
  6. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Messages:
    9,819
    Location:
    Satsuma, FL
    A/C compressors will be labeled 200 to 250Vac. SMX controllers may L-AC on you and can correct with a setup adjustment.
  7. d_meister

    d_meister Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2010
    Messages:
    427
    Location:
    San Diego, CA.
    There may be issues with the dock wiring. I've found that some marinas don't have 2 phase running down each side of a dock. In order to find two phases to get my smart-Y to work, I had to get the second connection from across the dock with a 15' shore cord.
  8. Danvilletim

    Danvilletim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    774
    Location:
    isleton, ca
    Chillers want 230v. I’m only running one chiller and have never had it pop on one chiller. The big difference is the Bahamas box.

    I have the boat down to one chiller, half the air handlers etc. still pops.

    I intend to do a full electrical survey. I have heard other 92 Paragons have had issue with charles iso boost.
  9. Danvilletim

    Danvilletim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    774
    Location:
    isleton, ca

    Wow. How would figure that out? I’m assuming your smart y wouldn’t fire up at all?
  10. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Messages:
    9,819
    Location:
    Satsuma, FL
    Just to make sure, your Bahamas Box you metion, is your new/used dual input to single out put adapter?
    And checking, your ships connect is 50 or 100 amp?
  11. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Messages:
    9,819
    Location:
    Satsuma, FL
    You may also just have a tired shore breaker.
  12. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,568
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    The box will not connect unless you have two 50amp cords coming in and the phases are ok. When the breakers are turned on you will hear a click after a couple of seconds as the relays engage and the green light comes on. Indeed sometimes you have to find the right combo of outlet

    I have always found that most marinas on the east coast are lagging behind in shore power. When I used to go up that way with a 70 footer I often couldn’t not find two 50amps
  13. d_meister

    d_meister Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2010
    Messages:
    427
    Location:
    San Diego, CA.
    Yes, it was a known good "Y", so I checked the hots on the dock plugs and saw they were in phase. Fortunately, the maintenance man was there and told me about running the other phase on the other side of the dock. A jumper wire with my meter showed that 200+ volts was available. from both sides of the dock combined. This was with a 35A, 120V x 2-to-50A 240V Smart Y, but there could be similarities for 3-phase 100A.
    After making up a short 35A shore cord for use under those circumstances, I was surprised how often I needed it. I ran that boat along both coasts of the U.S. and the Caribbean , so it came in handy.
  14. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Messages:
    9,819
    Location:
    Satsuma, FL
    Just remembered, no matter what you do, you will only get 208Vac. Just some boost in amps.
  15. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,568
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    Yes, same principle to power a single 50amp from a pair of 30amps (not 35 amps) than to power a single 100 amps form a pair of 59 amps

    Both smart Y will only activate if both sources are connected and if the phases are ok

    the only difference is that the 2/30 to 50 will only get you half the power (30amps) whereas the 2/50 to 100 will get you the full 100 amp. So, as long as voltage is good you will get the same amount of power.
  16. Danvilletim

    Danvilletim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    774
    Location:
    isleton, ca
    I tried a second smart y box today and similar results. I turned off all chillers and it held. I’m starting to think the iso booster might be something to worry about.
  17. Ken Bracewell

    Ken Bracewell Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2006
    Messages:
    1,544
    Location:
    Somewhere Sunny
    Could be weak breakers on the shore pedestal.
  18. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,568
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    If the iso transformer was working fine before what are the odds? Marina breakers are often overlooked by maintenance staff... at what amperage does it trip.
  19. Danvilletim

    Danvilletim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    774
    Location:
    isleton, ca
    This marina is known for low power. Even boosted I’m only getting 215-220. It’s tripping at about 75amps per leg. Again a 208v marina. Might just be super crappy marina power but I would think I could get away w one chiller.
  20. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,568
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    Is there really reason you want to stay in a marina with bad shore power? I know some places may be very nice and have great pluses but shorepower ai really critical.