Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis?? - SailNet Community

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Old 04-09-2012
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Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

HI,
We have a Xantrex charger\inverter (CI) we are just getting around to installing. We have it pretty much set up and are ready to install the 30 amp double pole breaker and then this will be finished.
We have 0000 battery cables going to the CI.
In the manual it states to be ABYC compliant that the chassis grounding cable that goes to the DC negative bus should be one size smaller.
I called Xantra support and they said 00 would comply. I asked about using a #10 wirer and he could not say it would not work only that it was not ABYC compliant.
We do have a galvanic isolator installed.
My question is do we really need to use a 00 cable to be safe?
I am not sure that the 00 cable would even fit in the set screw provided for attaching it to the chassis.
I was thinking more like a #10 wire.
Thanks,
Chip
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Old 04-09-2012
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

Chip, I've never heard of a reason that a ground cable had to be smaller than anything else in the system. If it won't fit the terminal, that's something else again. I'd either pare it down or pigtail it to fit, and not worry that my ground wire was too robust.

Just one man's unprofessional opinion.
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Old 04-09-2012
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

OK I stated the facts wrong. What new.
The manual says (it is in PDF and I cannot copy the print) the ground wire can be one size smaller than the DC positive.
I will look at the attachment again on the CI. Also I will just need to spring for the large 00 cable I guess about 10í of it. Am also running low on bus attacments, may need to add another 400 AMP bus! wa wa
Chip
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Old 04-09-2012
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

Chip

I agree on the large chassis gorund cable. A proper lug on the cable with the right size hole should work - I think it is 1/4".

What is the green part of the red wire in front of the inverter?
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Old 04-09-2012
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

Chip

Where is your inverter installed? I worked on a Xantrex Freedom inverter on an Islander Freeport 36 and it was in the starboard cockpit locker against the forward bulkhead - this location wasn't my choice as it was already there. Tough to shoehorn yourself into this cockpit locker for access though.
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Old 04-10-2012
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

I'm confused about the use of the terms "DC chassis grounding."

The manual states:

Grounding
For safety purposes, the chassis of the
inverter/charger must be connected to your AC
ground system. Use 8 AWG bare copper or
green insulated wire, strip one end and use a
screwdriver to secure it to the chassis ground
bonding lug on the side of the unit. This wire
will connect to the ground in your AC electrical
system.

Please help me understand DC chassis grounding.
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Old 04-10-2012
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

Stu

It is there in case the chassis gets energized because of an internal fault in the AC circuitry - it gives it a safe path to ground.
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

To make this a long story.
Islander started making Freeports in 1978, our year. 1978 and 1979 were in my opinion the best years.
The later years they are still fine boats just less storage etc. Catalina Yachts started to put Islander out of business and they started to eliminate things on the boast to cut costs. Examples are the engine went from a Perkins to VW, the keel went from lead to iron. Cabinets were eliminated, the stairs and storage became a ladder. What year the boat you worked on would determin where the unit was located? On and on, the grab rails became smaller in dia and some eliminated, the area behind the nav station was eliminated and became just one large lazerett with no access from inside the boat. So our boat being a 78 has the access to behind the nav station from inside the boat which is separated from the lazerett. Also being a 1978 boat there not places to put things like a microwave (we do not have nor want one), water maker, AC\Heat and large charger\inverter etc. This makes choices limited. We chose an all in one unit for a couple reason and space was one.
We chose this location because of the heat and noise from the charger\inverter. We will be leaving in less than 6 months for cruising in Central America for an extended period and are trying to eliminate as much heat in the living area as possible. It is also out of the rain and weather.

Access is a bit tight but there does not need to be much access after it is running. We have a Link 2000 that remotely controls it. This unite we bought some years ago and never got it running. Our 485 watts of solar power supplies all our needs including hot water. We also have a wind generator installed but not completely wired yet. But we figure it is time to hook this up. Of course it has long gone out of warranty and as happens with electrical stuff a new model was released about three months after we bought it. Support has gotten much better though. So there you have it more than you wanted to know about this thing.
Also it can NOT be in the same area as the batteries.
So there you go.
I knew someone would as about the green tape on the cable. It is funky and looks way un-cool.
It was to combine two cables together to reach the batteries. We had re-located the batteries and were ordering new 0000 battery cables. Not all had been completed at that photo time , it is an old picture.
Since then that cable has been replaced. I’ll take some newer pictures. This one I am including is a bit newer I think.
This area is accessible from the lazerett if open and there is a cover to keep the rain out of the area.



This is a more recent picture. We are still doing a lot of wiring so it is still a mess.


Cabinet behind the nav station looking from inside the boat. There is a louvered door that covers this area.
Chip

Last edited by SanDiegoChip; 04-10-2012 at 11:55 AM.
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

Chip

The boat I worked on had a Perkins. House batteries under the galley sole and start battery under the forward inboard seat of the port settee. The inverter was on the same bulkhead as yours, but on the cockpit side. A Wallas furnace was also in the cockpit locker outboard near the hull.

Is your main electrical panel above the inverter, its back accessible from the cockpit locker?
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Re: Am I asking for trouble grounding chassis??

Quote:
Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
Stu

It is there in case the chassis gets energized because of an internal fault in the AC circuitry - it gives it a safe path to ground.


Brian, that's exactly my point in my last post, he said DC chassis ground, but you and I seem to be in agreement on AC chassis ground. This is NOT a 0000 or 00 wire requirement, which was his OQ.

I think Chip is misinterpreting the instructions about chassis grounding.

For Chip, can you better describe the issues you had with your Link 2000 not working. You kinda NEED it to equalize the house bank. Without it, all you have is the inverter switch on the unit. Do you have the remote panel instead? It would be really great for your intended cruise to have a battery monitor, and we love our Link 2000. Or am I misinterpreting "never got it working?"

The Link 2000 manual can be found thru a link here: Reply #20

Electrical Systems 101

That topic also has a discussion of the Link algorithm on page 1.
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Last edited by Stu Jackson; 04-10-2012 at 08:56 PM.
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