Gadget for measuring volts amps Amp/Hr

Submitted: Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 12:14
ThreadID: 32417 Views:3402 Replies:5 FollowUps:3
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Came across Site Link this gadget on a model aircraft supply site in the states. Astro Model 101N Super Whattmeter

Measures battery volts, Amp/Hour rating, discharge and charge amps all in one unit and all at the same time and with the right capacities to suit our purposes. Seems like it would be helpful to resolve many of the electrical questions we have, and save the fiddling with the Dick Smith meters I've done with limited success - and others have done with great success. If I get one it'll be armed with a set of Anderson Powerpole plugs so I can connect it in series with all my other gadgets and check what is going on at each outlet.

Link to the pdf file

I've emailed them to ask what would happen to the unit if the amp hour capacity of the unit (94 Amp/Hr) was exceeded in a duel battery setup for example, and also asked if it can be left on or if it has a duty cycle.

Anyone seen something similar locally??

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Reply By: Geoff M (Newcastle, NSW) - Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 12:50

Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 12:50
I've looked at a few of these modeller type battery monitors. You could look at Model Flight for a local supplier of something similar.
There is a unit on this site that does four channels simultaneously Sterling Power
There is someone importing this gear into Australia (not me) and it's very impressive stuff.

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AnswerID: 164241

Reply By: Member - Mike DID - Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 15:09

Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 15:09
I have one of these Whattmeters and it is excellent for testing batteries and loads.

Keep in mind a few limitations -
- it only measures current flow in ONE direction - it ignores reverse current flow.
- the wires are pretty thin - 3mmsq. You will have to break the case open and do some delicate soldering to change them.

There is a dealer in Australia - I would have to dig up the details.

AnswerID: 164262

Reply By: Member - John B (QLD) - Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 22:51

Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 22:51
hi tim i have fitted a zantrax link 10 ,it is shunted to give true readings with a memory of in - out amps try a marine supplier a bit exe though
AnswerID: 164330

Reply By: ACDC - Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 22:56

Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 22:56
Old technology not very accurate every battery has a different efficiency how does this product compensate for battery inefficiency.
Impedance technology is more accurate as in the latest battery testers etc.
AnswerID: 164332

Follow Up By: Tim HJ61 (WA) - Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 23:05

Saturday, Apr 01, 2006 at 23:05

Soooow, are the Astro Model 101N Super Whattmeter Site Link and "Watts Up" RC
Battery & Power Analyser Site Link

or the Xantrex Battery Monitor link 10

old technology or new impedence technology?

I'm not sure which posting you're referring to.

FollowupID: 419200

Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Sunday, Apr 02, 2006 at 07:43

Sunday, Apr 02, 2006 at 07:43
The Super Whatmeter, Whatts Up and the Link are accumulating currnet meters - they measure the total amount of current flowing in and out of a battery. This tells you the actual amphours that are put into or taken out of the battery.

The Watts Up can only measure current flow in ONE direction.

The Super Whatmeter and Whatts Up are really only designed for Radio Controlled models. The wire is only 3mmsq. Be careful using them in a car because the current sensing resistor is in the Earth lead so they will not work in a car where the load is earthed - e.g. a radio is also earthed via the aerial.

Impedance Capacity testing refers to instantaneous testing of battery capacity without knowing anything about the charge or discharge currents - it doesn't apply to any of these units.

FollowupID: 419217

Follow Up By: Tim HJ61 (WA) - Sunday, Apr 02, 2006 at 12:11

Sunday, Apr 02, 2006 at 12:11
Thanks Mike,

That's really helpful feedback.

My take on these units then is that they are probably really good as a test device when you want to know for example, how much the fridge is drawing, or what is being used through the inverter - i.e. not items that have a separate earth and the gadget can be used in series with the power supply cable for each separate device.

And they are not so good for permanent mounting, due in part to the thin wiring.

Strange how they rate the things at 50A cont and 100A intermittant, then only use 3mmsq wiring.....

FollowupID: 419241

Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Sunday, Apr 02, 2006 at 10:16

Sunday, Apr 02, 2006 at 10:16
I haven't seen these before, but they look really neat.
watts-up meter

Model Flight (Adelaide company who do mail order) stock them and $90 sounds a very good price for what it does.

I looked at the specs - they handle up to 50 amps continuous.

AnswerID: 164364

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