What to do about a 220V electrical system? - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 29 Old 05-03-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

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Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
Mostly correct but North American gauges are 10 for 30 amp inlet, 6 for 50 amp inlet. Circuits are 12 or 14 gauge for 15 amp circuit.

AC circuit breakers will NOT be ok as the amperage doubles when the voltage is halved. They will all have to be changed.
Thanks for the catch on the circuit breakers - you are of course correct. I corrected the original. On the 10 gauge and 12 or 14 gauge I don't know the right answer - I consulted the specifications to get the numbers I posted. You may be right and if the wires were the sizes you suggest I would agree that it is OK.

Fair winds and following seas...

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post #12 of 29 Old 05-03-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

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Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
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You can get a step-up transformer if your battery charger won't take 120 VAC in.
...
Dave = don't you mean a step-down (from 220 to 110?)

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post #13 of 29 Old 05-03-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

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Originally Posted by svzephyr44 View Post
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Dave = don't you mean a step-down (from 220 to 110?)
No -- with a 220 VAC boat cruising the US you get a step-up transformer (120 to 220) to plug into shore power.

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post #14 of 29 Old 05-03-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

All the wires will be the same gauge no matter if its 220 or 110. They wiring grids are the same, remember they are production boats... They are not going to have two different grids to try and save $5 of copper.


I sailed for 9 months in the USA on 220 volts... I never needed a converter because I have solar

The only thing that works on shore power is the charger and the hot water heater, isnt it?

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post #15 of 29 Old 05-03-2014 Thread Starter
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

Lots of good info gents, much appreciated, I'll pass it on to my buddy.
Mark - depends on the boat...mine has a dozen 110V outlets so you just can plug in whatever you want while dockside, plus an air conditioner, in addition to charger and HW heater. I know some boats also have 110V fridge/freezers.
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

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Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
No -- with a 220 VAC boat cruising the US you get a step-up transformer (120 to 220) to plug into shore power.
Yes, you are of course right. I though we were talking about a 110v boat cruising in Europe. Just another senior moment.

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post #17 of 29 Old 05-03-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

Shouldn't need to place a transformer on the dock. A good isolation transformer can solve the problem, but at a price. The added benefit is there is zero risk of shore connection related corrosion as the shorepower is not physically connected to the boat. The Mastervolt GI 7.0 MultiTap is one of the best. Its specifications are below, right column. It outputs 230 volts and input is either 90-145 volts or 180-255 volts. Effective anywhere in the world.


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post #18 of 29 Old 05-04-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

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Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
Shouldn't need to place a transformer on the dock.
In my experience units are placed on the dock to avoid any wiring changes to the boat. They simply have a cord set at both ends. In some places you can actually rent them for your stay. I am not making any judgement about right and wrong, just reporting what I have seen. They are also big units so finding them a home near the shore power inlet area can be a problem for some.

In talking to other cruisers the frequency problems and the high/low voltage problems were the reasons given for selecting dual battery chargers verses transformers.

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post #19 of 29 Old 05-04-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

An isolation transformer is the best solution for any boat to prevent galvanic corrosion as there is not a physical connection between the shorepower and the boat. Much better than a galvanic isolator. The one I showed also converts any shorepower connection to the proper voltage in this case - 230 volts.

You can mickey mouse all kinds of solutions but this is the best permanent solution.

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post #20 of 29 Old 05-04-2014
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Re: What to do about a 220V electrical system?

Spot on. Spend a little more, a few good switches and a transformer where you can use either winding as the primary and you have step up, step down or just isolation.

Zen is a matter of recognizing reality.
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