Green Ground Wire for AC Panel - SailNet Community

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Old 05-31-2013
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Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

I am in the process of adding shore power to my boat. The breaker is 30 amp, 125 v. I'm using 10 awg to the panel from the shore power plug and 12 awg from the panel to the outlet box. What size of ground wire do I use to go from the AC panel to a common grounding point which is also used by the 12 volt DC system. The grounding point for the DC system is a keel bolt.
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Old 05-31-2013
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

Use AWG10.

Stan Honey has an excellent primer on boat grounds which was published by West Marine, et. al a few years back. You can find it here: Grounding

You should really install a galvanic isolator in the green wire between the boat's inlet and the panel. The fail-safe ones aren't cheap, but are a good investment to protect your boat from stray currents. The Dairyland GI-30 is a good one: http://www.deimarine.com/products/30ampGI for your application. I believe the ProMariner ProSafe FS30 fail-safe also meet the new ABYC standards.

Bill

Last edited by btrayfors; 05-31-2013 at 06:34 PM.
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

Thank you Bill. That answered a lot of my questions. What a great article. Thanks again
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Old 05-31-2013
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

Quote:
Originally Posted by weephee View Post
I am in the process of adding shore power to my boat. The breaker is 30 amp, 125 v. I'm using 10 awg to the panel from the shore power plug and 12 awg from the panel to the outlet box. What size of ground wire do I use to go from the AC panel to a common grounding point which is also used by the 12 volt DC system. The grounding point for the DC system is a keel bolt.
The keel bolt is not your DC ground (unless your boat is very strange). Your DC negative is the negative post on the battery. The wire you see on your keel bolt should be your lightning bond from your rig.
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Old 06-02-2013
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

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Originally Posted by weephee View Post
The grounding point for the DC system is a keel bolt.
The ground as posted above should go to battery negative. From there it goes to the Atomic 4.

While the keel bolt is part of the lightning ground it is not current carrying.
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Old 06-02-2013
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

Thank you for the replies. I now understand that there are two independent systems in the boat. One for lightning protection and one for AC and/or DC systems. I had thought they were all interconnected but now I know differently. Thanks
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Old 06-05-2013
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

This week I traced out the wiring in my boat and found that the lightning protection wires bond the mast, chain plates and keel together and then go to the negative DC buss bar. Also going to that buss bar is the negative cable from the battery. Is this wired correctly ie. should the DC ground be directly attached to the lightning protection cct. or should the lightning ccts be isolated from the DC or AC ccts. Thanks
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Old 06-05-2013
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

weephee,

Read this Grounding - provided above.
I read it as no - your lightning ground and DC ground/system should be isolated from each other.
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

Yes, I read that link but I wasn't sure that is what it is saying. The wiring is original to the boat so I was assuming the two systems are tied together as per what the manufacturer had done but that doesn't mean its correct.
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Re: Green Ground Wire for AC Panel

Quote:
Originally Posted by weephee View Post
Yes, I read that link but I wasn't sure that is what it is saying. The wiring is original to the boat so I was assuming the two systems are tied together as per what the manufacturer had done but that doesn't mean its correct.
Geez, have I ever learned that what the manufacturer did might not be correct/best.

The idea is to provide a path for lightning down into the water, skipping the boat innards (electrically).
Hooking it to the negative buss bar your battery/boat engine etc. is connected to makes no sense to me unless there some Dr Frankenstein thing going on and you want to revive a dead hunk of iron into a Yanmar.
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