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Old 02-21-2010, 08:09 PM   #1
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Default Backup lifting system for engine compartment

I'm a new Maxum 2600 SE owner. I found out that the engine compartment hatch is operated by a hydraulic lift, that runs on 12VDC (the battery). If the batteries drain, it is not possible to open the hatch (which is where the batteries are).

There is supposed to be a backup lifting system, which is essentially a pair of 12V terminals (+ and -) that can be connected to an external battery to open the hatch, but for some reason they are not present on my boat.

So, I'd like to install something like this on the boat to prevent losing access to the engine compartment. I believe if the batteries were dead, the only way to get inside would be to damage the hatch.

Does anyone know where I could get a wiring diagram that shows the DC power system?

A related question: the previous owner told me that the batteries will discharge even if the DC main is off and the battery switch is off. That seems a little strange - have other 2600 owners seen this?
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Old 02-21-2010, 08:56 PM   #2
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well...bout the only thing that will run after the batt's are shut down are the CO detectors....bout the only thing you can do to avoid that is to install a micro switch on each of the detectors...shut them off and they can't drain the batt's...
for the hatch..bout the only thing I've ever heard of that is with mine....I was told with the hydro lift system that all you needed to do was lift on the hatch..there should be 2 hand grab's ..one on each side...
now I haven't tried it yet...but I need to put that as one of my things to do...I asked the same thing and was told that no aux. pwr supply connection exists on these boats...might not be a bad idea....what I'd do is tag it off the main lift switch....put the connection's down low next to the dc breaker panel...


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Old 02-21-2010, 09:43 PM   #3
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IM,

Did the PO happen to mention how long it takes for the batteries to discharge? Regardless, if the batts discharge when everything is off then something that draws power is connected directly to the battery(s) - by-passing the switches. Could be the CO detectors but I'd be surprized if they draw enough current to discharge a battery (how long does a home CO/smoke detector run on a little 9V battery?). If the boat stays in the water then the bilge pump(s) should be hard wired to the batteries so they always have power so, if they run enough, they could kill the batteries.

Can't help with the hatch lift - mine is manual.

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Old 02-22-2010, 12:47 AM   #4
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The PO emailed the following to me, when I asked him about turning the battery switch and DC main off:

"Regardless of which switch is off, the batteries will still drain current. The batteries should hold a charge for a couple of weeks without signifcant drain--after that, they will start to discharge to the point where they won't power anything. "

I think the CO detector and bilge pumps are hard-wired, but the boat is in dry storage so the pumps should not be running. It's very hard for me to believe that they could discharge that fast.

I'm still very curious why that backup lift connection is not installed - it seems so necessary. I will ask a mechanic about seapuppy's thought, that the hydraulic lift would not prevent manually lifting the hatch without damage. Thanks for your feedback guys.
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Old 02-22-2010, 04:16 AM   #5
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I have a Bennett engine hatch lift system and I had the same question. According to Bennett, because the cylinder is single acting, I would be able to lift the hatch by hand should I have a dead battery or the hydraulic power pack fails to operate.
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:39 PM   #6
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Still not buying it IM. Could be wrong but either some device is drawing down the batts or they are at the end of their useful life and can't hold a good charge. It's easy enough to check though, turn off those two switches, disconnect the + cable from one of the batts, then connect a test light between the + batt post and the + batt cable. if the light lights - there's a draw. Then start turning breakers off, or pulling fuses, one at a time. When the light goes off - that's the circuit that is drawing. Repeat with 2nd batt.

The single acting hydraulic ram makes sense.

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Old 02-23-2010, 01:12 PM   #7
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I'd get the batteries tested. Just because they're reading 12V doesn't mean they're fully charged. Batteries will loose charge over time. Some types (e.g Flooded) will loose charge much faster than others (e.g. AGM). If the batteries have been drawn down as the result of a draw somewhere and this happens more than once, then this will cause a conditioin where they will no longer be able to be fully charged again. It sounds like you really have two problems. You may need to replace the batteries AND find what is drawing down the batteries as well, or else you kill the new bateries too.

I'd be starting with a battery test and a good ABYC certified electrician.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:52 PM   #8
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Dan - great suggestion about the light. In fact, even better I can put a DC ammeter inline and actually measure the current draw. Then I should be able to predict how fast the battery would discharge based on the amp-hour rating.

I agree that either something is wrong, or it's possible the PO is just being ultra-cautious. He is a very meticulous guy, which is one reason why I bought the boat from him. He took very good care of it.

I will ask a mechanic about the lift - whether it's "single acting". In the meantime I can disconnect the hydraulic struts and lift it manually.
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Old 02-23-2010, 03:48 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iceman View Post
He is a very meticulous guy, which is one reason why I bought the boat from him.
Although Becky and I got ours from a broker it's the same reason we bought our 2400 SC3. It was obvious from just looking at it that it had been well maintained by the PO, so much so that I didn't bother with a survey.

Gotta agree with Shrew regarding the battery test. Once you find the draw you probably should still yank the batteries and have them tested regardless of their age. How bad would it suck to have to be towed back from your first outting? Bad, real bad. LOL

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Old 04-02-2010, 02:47 AM   #10
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The owners manual for my 2006 2600SE also states that there are posts located with the battery switch that can be used to connect a battery in order to open the hatch. They are not there!! However, my hatch will open with shore power connected. I do this when winterizing. With no batteries installed, plug the boat into shore power and the hatch will operate. As for the manual handles, either the hatch is WAY heavy, I am pretty weak, or the rams resist being manually extended because I cannot budge it. As for the battery discharge, the CO detector, bilge pumps (3 of them) and the memory for the radio are all directly connected to the batteries. Can you plug your shore power in to keep the battery charger running?
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