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Re: Proper way to tap into 12VDC wire?
Most boat builders, and marine electrical installers, will run a port/starboard lighting run and perhaps a third over head run. Each light is then pulled off the main feed in a parallel manner often using a two position bus bar.. Running an individual wire from the panel to the light is nice but not necessary if the lighting circuit is sized appropriately for the allowable voltage drop.
Is there a bus bar that allows you to clamp down on the supply wire without cutting it? Seems cumbersome to cut the supply wire each time you tap into a light on a run. Or...do you wrap the supply wire around one of the terminal screws? How about covers (these are hot lines, albeit, 12V) and corrosion? Do you have any pictures of a clean application?
Some even ran one main feed up one side to the v-berth then across the v-berth and back down the other side of the boat. Ericson for example did this on many of their boats. By the time you get to the end with incandescent bulbs the voltage drop gets pretty high if the wire is not sized right....
That's the case on my Yankee, and I'm planning on re-wiring the lights (for other reasons). Thinking about running supply wires on Port and Starboard from the same switch (Limited panel space). Eliminates about 40 feet of wire (round trip).
Last edited by L124C; 04-07-2013 at 06:05 AM.