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post #1 of 6 Old 08-25-2008 Thread Starter
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Garmin GPS - Wires too Short

Hi all. I just installed my new Garmin 540 on the front of the cockpit, rather than on my pedestal because the stock wiring loom is too short. I have searched the internet to find longer wire sets, but have struck out so far. Any suggestions? BTW, this is a great unit.

Thanks.

Odyssey, '79 CSY 44 Cutter
Channel Islands, CA


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post #2 of 6 Old 08-26-2008
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How much further do you need to go? What are you trying to connect it to (other than power)?

IIRC, there is nothing stopping you mounting a terminal box somewhere convenient and using normal wiring from there onwards - for the power, at least.

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post #3 of 6 Old 08-26-2008
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not much information to go on but I have only ever really encountered 3 types of cable running to or from a GPS,

1. Power Supply, As Hartley pointed out a junction box closer to the unit could be installed and you can continue your cable run from there to your distribution panel with no problems though I would suggest you make sure your cable guage is correct, adequate fuses and ferrites installed etc.

2. GPS Antenae Cable, This is normally a Co-Axial cable similar to what you have on a TV set, i believe the cables are "coded" RG-385 etc. for there gauge, this can be found written on the cable insulation and then can be purchased from the usual suppliers of such things as well as the necesseray twist on plugs to extend the existing cable (though I would recommend replacing the entire cable rather than joining it that is not always possible with most GPS's due to the mushroom being moulded, I have only been able to do this with the older Northstar GPS aeriel).

3. NMEA or Similar to your laptop, chartplotter etc., Normally 9pin Serial if I am correct and again cable / plugs available seperatly or a good electrical store like RS will make these up for you at whatever length you require.


Hope that helps.
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post #4 of 6 Old 08-26-2008
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If you contact Garmin, they may be able to point you in the right direction or even have a specific part for this issue.

Which wires are too short??? The NMEA 0183 wires? The power wires? The wires to the mushroom GPS antenna??

The NMEA 0183 wires can generally be extended using twisted pair signal wire. The twisted pair wire helps shield the NMEA 0183 signal from interference and degradation.

The power wires can be extended pretty easily using either bullet/spade in-line connectors or a terminal block.

The GPS mushroom wires are the most complicated of the three sets of wires to extend, but also can be extended using the twisted pair signal cable, or coaxial cable.
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Originally Posted by montenido View Post
Hi all. I just installed my new Garmin 540 on the front of the cockpit, rather than on my pedestal because the stock wiring loom is too short. I have searched the internet to find longer wire sets, but have struck out so far. Any suggestions? BTW, this is a great unit.

Thanks.

Sailingdog

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post #5 of 6 Old 08-26-2008
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I recently installed a 545 and the length of the transducer really ticked me off. I thought the power/NMEA was long enough (3 or 4 feet, right?) because it could make it all the way through a pedestal guard to below where I could hook up power. But the transducer side was half the length of the other. Why?!! I had to splice in some more coax to get that down below.

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post #6 of 6 Old 08-26-2008 Thread Starter
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Thanks, guys. I can certainly extend the power wires and the others. I'm not currently using an antena, it has an internal one that seems to work fine. I must be getting old, but thanks for reminding me of the obvious solutions.

montenido

Odyssey, '79 CSY 44 Cutter
Channel Islands, CA


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