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post #18 of Old 11-01-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Custom Engine Panel Design

Originally Posted by Barquito View Post
Glad to hear others do not think it is crazy to have my blower and ignition switches inside the cabin.

I'm just guessing, but I bet if you mounted a buzzer directly to the inside of an expanse of flat fiberglass, it would act as sounding board and be pretty loud.
I do think that's a little least for me I like the security of knowing I can start the engine from the cockpit when I need too. This is partly due to my lack of experience but for example when I sail on and off the mooring occasionally I like to have that backup there in-case I blow something.

Hmm so what I was picturing is that the panel would be enclosed on all sides including behind. That's because the panel is just in a locker and I want to protect it from things back there. So I could change the plan to mount the buzzer interally pointing out into the locker which would protect it better and give me more space..

Originally Posted by Maine Sail
Thanks for the reply I'll take your suggestions seriously, especially on the gauges.

Digikey sells over 5000 rockers starting at $0.30@quantity 1. Sorting for IP67 narrows that down to 300. So this isn't your average cheapo rocker it's, the best I can find (silver contacts, brass with silver plating terminal). Good enough? Not sure.

1) It's hard to resist this because the tach already has the information for hours and voltage so why not get a device that can display them? It adds no complexity to the system and I agree that simplicity is major goal.

What brands of guages do you have experience with, is VDO not good?

2) Ok I think I'll take this suggestion and mount it internally behind.

3/4) So my two reasons for no temp/oil guages were 1) no extra wires 2) additional anxiety/distraction of having one more piece of information to worry about. 2 is a crappy reason and I can deal with 1.

My only comment is that while your right about temp alarm - you never know if it's working, the oil alarm sounds every time you turn the engine on or off. So it's one of a few things on my boat that I have faith in. (And I've been pretty good about testing the temp alarm by forgetting the seacock or having the impeller blow)

But anyway, ok I think I'll trade the buzzer for temp and probably oil. Again any recommendations for brands?

5) Key in locker, another good idea.

6) Well these switches will be wired in parallel to the existing switches. So if they fail I can just pop down below (unless they fail short, then the fuse will blow). I just like the idea of not having to go below to do things that will inevitably come up while sailing. My guests are almost always inexperienced leaving me with the full burden or operating the boat. I'm looking to make it as streamlined and simple as possible.

Actually as an aside I agree that running extra wires is a pain. Voltage drop is a huge problem with 12V power. So I've been toying with the idea of designing a custom circuit board that's the equivalent of a relay (but current and temperature protected) meaning the engine panel switches wouldn't be carrying current only signals. There is a huge class of power IC's designed for industrial/automotive applications that are fantastic at switching/protecting/limiting 12V and I've been wanting to a PCB for the boat for years (pcb hardware design is what I do). But that's a bit outside the scope of this panel discussion.
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