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  #11  
Old 02-15-2008
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Tim,

Tim,

I've used it and you need to consider a few things.

1) Liquid electrical tape gives minimal strain relief

2) It's very messy

3) It's thicker than you would think and does not flow into nooks and crannies the way one would assume it should.

4) Adhesive lined heat shrink, when done correctly, actually forces, from the shrinking/squeezing action, the adhesive into the nooks and crannies better than Liquid Electrical Tape from my experience.

5) Adhesive lined heat shrink will give you real strain relief and move the flex point out away from the crimp which should add far better longevity.


Battery World Portland or Ed's Batteries are the places to buy all your marine wire, connectors and adhesive lined heat shrink tubing & batteries in this area!

Even with my deep Hamilton Marine commercial discount and my West Marine / Port supply commercial discount Battery World still blows them away price wise for connectors, tinned wire, batteries and heat shrink!

I re-wired my battery bank last summer and replaced every cable right back to the engine and alternator. Total cost for all supplies including the wire, heat shrink & battery lugs was $104.00 at Battery world. The same gauge wire, lugs and heat shrink at WM, with my discount, was going to be over $225.00....
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Last edited by Maine Sail; 03-04-2010 at 06:06 PM.
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Old 02-15-2008
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Thanks Maine Sail, excellent information, especially on where to get my supplies. I did not even know I could get the marine grade wire anywhere other than WM or Hamilton.
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Originally Posted by maccauley123 View Post
Thanks Maine Sail, excellent information, especially on where to get my supplies. I did not even know I could get the marine grade wire anywhere other than WM or Hamilton.

Don't go telling everyone though or they'll figure out they could make more margin.. They mostly sell direct to boat yards and such but you can buy there too.. It is not a retail operation though so know what you want when you walk in...
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Old 02-15-2008
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I'd have to second what Halekai said. The trick is getting ADHESIVE-LINED heat shrink tubing, which is a bit tougher to find than regular heat shrink tubing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by maccauley123 View Post
I have heard of brush on electrical tape being recommended over heat shrink tubing. Because it goes on as liquid it fills in the connection very well and when it hardens creates an exception seal.

Any experience with this?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maccauley123 View Post
I have heard of brush on electrical tape being recommended over heat shrink tubing. Because it goes on as liquid it fills in the connection very well and when it hardens creates an exception seal.

Any experience with this?
Not with that method, but I know a guy who pulls shrink wrap over soldered joints and then heats it to seal the solder. Will be interesting to see how that method holds up. In the meantime, I also go with a good crimp.

CD -- thanks for the new discussion on this topic! New info always comes out with a fresh start.
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The reason why crimping is by far the superior method of making a good electrical connection is that a properly compressed connection (that means, the right tool, for the right size connector and the right pressure applied to the crimp) will make the wires & connector pretty much become one. Some people refer to this as a "cold weld".

This is what a proper crimp looks like if you cut it half
http://www.aeroelectric.com/articles/CrimpTools/GL.jpg

As you can see, the wires & connector become one. It eliminates all voids between wires, thus keeping any air out. This prevents corrossion, which is the #1 problem in electrical connections. Corrosion increases the resistance of the connection, which leads to overheating.

Check out this article "This is NOT a crimper"...good information
http://www.terminaltown.com/Pages/Page7.html
This one also has a lot of good information.
http://www.aeroelectric.com/articles...rimptools.html

While soldering does "seal" most of the connection area, mechanically, it is a fairly weak connection, especially with all the vibrations on a boat, which add to crimping being better.
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Another real problem with soldering and why the ABYC code recommends crimping over it is that in the case of a circuit or wire with high electrical loads, the solder can often heat up enough to soften... combine that with wires that are vibrating... you can get a loose hot live wire inside a boat... that's bad. A crimped connection, done properly, isn't ever going to come apart.
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I personally do not have experience with the liquid tape stuff. Comming from the electrical industry, I can tell you that no one uses that stuff on the residential, commercial, industrial or utility business, so I would have my doubts as to how good it is.

Yes, adhesive lined heat shrink is the way to go. It is great, it will seal the heck out of a connection, but just be careful not to burn the heat shrink. The stuff is quite expensive at WM, and please keep in mide that it is also size specific, so use the correct size or it will not seal.
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Liquid tape is very good for certain applications.
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Dipping the ends of a cut rope come to mind, but not much electrically... have any examples???
Quote:
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Liquid tape is very good for certain applications.
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