main switch arcing problem

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slbaker
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Joined: 11/22/2007
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Whenever I turn on the main power switch (between the battery and the controller)
there is a small short-duration electrical arc created. Since this is probably
reducing the life of the switch, I'd like to prevent or reduce this arcing.

I was thinking of adding a secondary switch (SW2) in parallel with the main switch.
Where SW2 would use a 1k resistor in series to limit the inrush current.
Once SW2 was closed for a second or so then the main switch could be closed without arcing.

Comments? How have other people solved this problem?

BTW, what types of switches are people using for their main power switches?

Thanks,
Scott

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reikiman
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Re: main switch arcing problem

Maybe just leave the resistor connected w/o a switch. In the Alltrax installation manual they specify putting what they call a "precharge resistor" across the contactor. Their specified precharge resistor is about 20k ohms and I believe is meant to keep a little bit of electricity in the controller so that when the contactor closes there isn't the sparking. It's the same situation as what you're describing just at a higher power level.

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slbaker
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Joined: 11/22/2007
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Re: main switch arcing problem

I added a precharge switch with a series 2k. To power on, I first close the
precharge switch and then wait for a second or so and close the main switch.

No more arcing :-)

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