More often or not, the idiom ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is pretty sound advice to apply to life, let alone vintage VW Split screen campers, but I have been using the rapidly approaching trip to Ninove, Belgium as a motivational target to try to get various bits and pieces on the camper sorted or upgraded. I saw this the other day and it hit the proverbial nail right on the head for where I’m at right now!
Having got the exhaust system sorted, I now wanted to turn my attention to adding some upgrades to the 12v electrical system in the camper. First up was to add a leisure battery to the system. I was recommended one of these bad boys from the good and knowledgable people’s experience on the Split Screen Van Club forum (SSVC).
The consensus was that Numax seemed to offer really good, reliable leisure batteries, plus they had the benefit of coming with a 3 year guarantee (which is reassuring) plus approximately 500 re-charge cycles (around 3 to 4 times more than regular leisure batteries!). I opted to get the dual terminal 110AH Leisure Battery Numax XV31MF CXV for Leisure (Caravan) and Marine Range
- Fully sealed for enhanced safety
- Dual terminals
- Integral state of charge indicator
- Comfortable, reinforced carrying handles
- Anti-flashback safety labyrinths
- Low self discharge rate giving extended shelf life
- Now with a full three-year guarantee
- Significantly enhanced cold cranking ability
- Top of the range batteries, good for both cranking and deep cycle use.
- They are totally sealed for life, therefore clean and safe to handle.
- Made for deep dis-charging also has low self discharge rate when standing.
- You can expect approx 500 re-charge cycles and that’s around 3 to 4 times more than regular leisure batteries.
The battery is going to be too big to fit in the spare battery space in the engine bay, and besides which, this space was already used for the butane gas cylinder for the Canterbury Pitt cooker! Next option was to look at storing it under the rear seats in the van. Rather than just have it stored ‘loose’ under the seat, I was again recommended to look at getting a leisure battery storage box to keep it contained in.
There were a few basic plain empty boxes on offer, but after a bit more research I came across the Numax ‘all-in-one’ battery power box. This turns the battery into a unique 12v power station that quickly, easily and safely stores and distributes power from the leisure battery to a variety of outlets.
The battery is stored inside an impact resistant polypropylene battery box and is then connected up to the internal battery leads. These battery leads run through a battery switch which allows you to essentially turn the battery supply on and off which is a very handy feature in itself. The outside of the lid also houses two different types of power outlets; a positive and a negative wing nut thread for eyelet terminal connection plus a ‘standard’ 12v cigarette lighter style socket connection. The Numax Accubox battery box also comes equipped with a battery power metre that displays the power condition of the installed battery with an LED display. This allows you to have a general idea as to the power left in the battery while out and about.
The box is designed to help you transport a battery during your leisure activities helping to ensure the potentially hazardous battery chemicals do not come in contact with your clothes. It will enable you prepare and store your battery at home, lift (with the lifting handles) and transport your battery more safely and use your battery more quickly, easily and safely during the day. The battery box also comes complete with a robust nylon support strap with a metal buckle, so that the battery could also be used as a remote/portable power supply when out and about! All in all, it is a pretty clever box of tricks!