Rewiring Mast. What Gauge? - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
 Not a Member? 


Like Tree10Likes
  • 1 Post By overbored
  • 1 Post By CorvetteGuy
  • 5 Post By Maine Sail
  • 2 Post By rhr1956
  • 1 Post By overbored
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 07-12-2013
budvar's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Tri-Cities, Wa. USA
Posts: 39
Thanks: 23
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 0
budvar is on a distinguished road
Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

Thanks for all previous help. You guys are great.

I'm rewiring my U.S. Yacht 25' mast. Mast is down. Have all new LED lights to install. Have the crimper, marine heat shrink connectors. Have 50 feet of 14 ga. 14/4.

My question. Is this too heavy or extravagant? I'm a nurse (always overbuild in things we don't know much about). I am going to Fisherman's supply this weekend, can pick up 16/4 if needed (if available), and can use the 14/4 to rewire the interior.

Thanks!
Chris
Pasco, Wa.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #2  
Old 07-12-2013
overbored's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Dana Point, Ca
Posts: 1,007
Thanks: 1
Thanked 41 Times in 41 Posts
Rep Power: 5
overbored is on a distinguished road
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

14 is a bit large 18 would be more than enough. remember the fuse or breaker is sized to protect the smallest wire in the circuit not the device at the end of the wire. so if the leads supplied on the LED are smaller then #16 wire you need a breaker sized for the smaller size wire.
budvar likes this.
__________________
"FULL TILT" SOVEREL 33
"GOLD RUSH" PRINDLE 16
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #3  
Old 07-12-2013
CorvetteGuy's Avatar
72 C&C Corvette
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: PHYC
Posts: 318
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 4
CorvetteGuy is on a distinguished road
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

14 gauge is a bit big for led mast lights. I would get 16 gauge for that and use the 14 for any 110v lights or recepticles you have on the interior.
budvar likes this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #4  
Old 07-12-2013
Maine Sail's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Maine Coast
Posts: 5,539
Thanks: 13
Thanked 149 Times in 115 Posts
Rep Power: 15
Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

The bare minimum size for the wire used under ABYC standards would be 16GA. This is as much about durability as voltage drop. With 16/4 you won't have any voltage drop issues with LED but if someone were to ever convert back to incandescent then it very likely would not meet the max 3% drop for nav lights. If these are LED USCG Cert fixtures then you won't be worried about anyone swapping bulbs.

I won't put 16GA in a spar for navigation lights. The weight of the wire is often loading the strands and mast wire can get beat up pretty well. I just spent a day a few weeks ago re-wiring a spar because small wire was used and the mast was incandescent. He had also lost the wind instrument and I found one of the small 18GA wires in the bundle had snapped where it was attached to the top of the spar.. I generally leave 16GA for non-critical stuff like stereo speaker wiring...

I would stick with your 14GA. If the wire is in a conduit, not swinging free, then 16GA could certainly work but I prefer 14 GA +.....
__________________
______
-Maine Sail / CS-36T


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




© Images In Posts Property of Compass Marine Inc.


Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #5  
Old 07-12-2013
rhr1956's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Heath, TX
Posts: 487
Thanks: 1
Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts
Rep Power: 5
rhr1956 is on a distinguished road
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

I ran 14 ga when I rewired back in the spring. The LED lights didn't need it, but I wanted a beefy wire inside the mast...just because.
rugosa and budvar like this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #6  
Old 07-12-2013
overbored's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Dana Point, Ca
Posts: 1,007
Thanks: 1
Thanked 41 Times in 41 Posts
Rep Power: 5
overbored is on a distinguished road
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
The bare minimum size for the wire used under ABYC standards would be 16GA. This is as much about durability as voltage drop. With 16/4 you won't have any voltage drop issues with LED but if someone were to ever convert back to incandescent then it very likely would not meet the max 3% drop for nav lights. If these are LED USCG Cert fixtures then you won't be worried about anyone swapping bulbs.

I won't put 16GA in a spar for navigation lights. The weight of the wire is often loading the strands and mast wire can get beat up pretty well. I just spent a day a few weeks ago re-wiring a spar because small wire was used and the mast was incandescent. He had also lost the wind instrument and I found one of the small 18GA wires in the bundle had snapped where it was attached to the top of the spar.. I generally leave 16GA for non-critical stuff like stereo speaker wiring...

I would stick with your 14GA. If the wire is in a conduit, not swinging free, then 16GA could certainly work but I prefer 14 GA +.....
I get the large wire is less likely to break. so how are the ABYC saying to connect the small wire pig tales that come on most of the new LED light fixtures. what about the breaker size, if you use a 15 amp breaker like most panels come with the 14 ga is good but the small pig tale will become fused link at the fixture end and the smaller wire is still a place for breakage. the smaller wire is more likely to be the one that will chafe through where it passes through the aluminum mast. also not finding that any of the LED lighting fixtures are ABYC approved
budvar likes this.
__________________
"FULL TILT" SOVEREL 33
"GOLD RUSH" PRINDLE 16
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #7  
Old 07-13-2013
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 10
Thanks: 3
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 0
kedujo is on a distinguished road
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

This project is in my near future also. Would you post more info on the LEDs you chose, and anything else you think is relevant to the project?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #8  
Old 07-13-2013
Maine Sail's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Maine Coast
Posts: 5,539
Thanks: 13
Thanked 149 Times in 115 Posts
Rep Power: 15
Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

Quote:
Originally Posted by overbored View Post
I get the large wire is less likely to break. so how are the ABYC saying to connect the small wire pig tales that come on most of the new LED light fixtures.
Those wires would be connected with a properly sized step down butt connector and should never see any load..


Quote:
Originally Posted by overbored View Post
what about the breaker size, if you use a 15 amp breaker like most panels come with the 14 ga is good but the small pig tale will become fused link at the fixture
An 18 or 20 gauge wire will absolutely not become a fused link to a 15A breaker. The max ampacity tables show 20A for an 18GA wire and they then allow for 150% of that rating. I have physically blown fuses far larger than the ABYC ampacity rating and in a dead short the fuse pops without even heating the wire jacket. As an example I blew a 300A MRBF on 15' of 8GA wire using a liFePO4 battery bank capable of throwing 20,000+ amps into a dead short. The max ampacity for 8GA wire, at 100%, is 80A.... The wire never even got hot before the 300A fuse blew... Of course you can always change a breaker to a 5A or 10A version, and I do this quite often in circuits that can be "loaded" variably such as house lighting with incandescent bulbs, fans etc. or 12V Outlets or nav stations etc.. A nav light circuit will not be variably loaded and won't be pushing 15A for long durations, which could eventually begin to heat the wire. All we are really protecting for in a nav light circuit is a dead short from chafe etc...


Quote:
Originally Posted by overbored View Post
end and the smaller wire is still a place for breakage.
Properly installed this wire should never even move let alone take any load.


Quote:
Originally Posted by overbored View Post
the smaller wire is more likely to be the one that will chafe through where it passes through the aluminum mast. also not finding that any of the LED lighting fixtures are ABYC approved
A proper install may require those pig tails to be heat shrunk with heavy walled shrink if they pass through something sharp. That pass through should also be de-burred so it is not sharp...

A proper instal of a tri-color or all-round also requires it to be visible yet many are occluded by a wind instrument or VHF whip...

There are many ABYC A-16 / USCG approved nav lights from reputable companies such as Hella, AquaSignal, Lopo, Marine Beam and others... If it says USCG 1nm, 2nm etc. then it also meets ABYC A-16...
__________________
______
-Maine Sail / CS-36T


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




© Images In Posts Property of Compass Marine Inc.



Last edited by Maine Sail; 07-13-2013 at 10:51 AM.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #9  
Old 07-17-2013
budvar's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Tri-Cities, Wa. USA
Posts: 39
Thanks: 23
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 0
budvar is on a distinguished road
Re: Rewiring Mast. What Gauge?

Didn't mean to open up a big can of worms, but thanks, all!

Kedjujo: For the LED's, I went with Marinebeam, and Dr. LED. Can't say how I'm satisfied yet, as am installing this weekend. Prices weren't too bad, though. Check out their websites.

Chris
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Mast rewiring 101 bruceyp Electronics 0 04-29-2013 12:48 PM
Rewiring mast on Newport 30 ironworker Gear & Maintenance 3 03-19-2011 07:41 PM
O'Day 322 Selden Mast rewiring ospreyPDX SailNet FAQ 0 01-06-2010 05:02 PM
Rewiring the Mast Duke 7184 Gear & Maintenance 13 11-27-2006 07:54 PM
Rewiring the Mast Duke 7184 Gear & Maintenance 0 11-25-2006 12:30 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 06:15 AM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.