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  #11  
Old 01-10-2003
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geohan is on a distinguished road
Electrical Upgrade

Electrician Jim: Will a GFI in the shore power line insure against stray-current electrolisis? Thanks and Cheers, George
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  #12  
Old 01-10-2003
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peterpan2k is on a distinguished road
Electrical Upgrade

Absolutly not! in fact it will ensure that the boat is earth grounded. be sure that no 110 system is connected to any part of the 12v or boat bonding system. if it is your boat will become a lightning rod as well as a battery.
Jim
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  #13  
Old 01-16-2003
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windship4 is on a distinguished road
Electrical Upgrade

perterpan2k,
I''ve never heard of a three stage automatic charger boiling batts.
Automotive taper chargers do not provide a 3 stage charge and that is what deep cycle batts require.
Isn''t it true that marine alternaters have coated windings and interior electronics to guard against corrosion?
True, external regulaters are no more dependable than internal ones but external regs can usually be adjusted or shut down so batts won''t get hurt during a long motor or can be increased to charge batts quicker.
If a boat is treated as if it were a car, sooner ar later there''s going to be problems. Furthermore, I take great pride in providing my boat with the best money can buy or the best of my capabilities.

Dennis
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  #14  
Old 01-18-2003
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mfatic is on a distinguished road
Electrical Upgrade

OK... I''m confused. I just replaced the old AC copper bar terminal, tube fuse system on my boat with a Blue Sea panel (that I got a great deal on from SailNet, BTW). I used 12ga marine grade wiring, some of it shielded. I used the right crimper and ends and all that. It works great.

My question is that the boat came with shared grounds for AC and DC. Seems odd to me, but it''s worked for 25 years. Should I sever the ground connections?
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  #15  
Old 01-18-2003
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peterpan2k is on a distinguished road
Electrical Upgrade


This is what I discovered. I was having a serious electrolosis effect. I was going through zinks monthly. Thru hulls were litterly burning the wood around them. I nearly lost my rudder because several of the bolts had burned thru the wood. This was caused by a 30 volt dc current that was coming from the dock. It might have been from a phone or some other low dc source. However, I detected it with a digital volt meter connected between the dock power cord and the common ground of the boat. Once i seperated the grounds (AC from DC) and disconnected the green wire from the case ground the voltage totally dissapeared. The electrolisis ceased amediately. Conclusion! Keep them appart and interupt any dc flow of current to your boat. As long as you never come between 110 and the earth you''ll never feel a shock. Even holding a live wire in your bare hands. (Never do this intentully unless your a trained professional like myself!)
As for 25 years. You will never know what was going on where it had been connected to in the past. Most Docks have had to come up to code. Unfortunattly! The code doesn''t take into considder the differances between a house and a boat with two seperate electrical systems and the extranious conditions in a harbor.
Jim W.
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  #16  
Old 01-19-2003
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Electrical Upgrade

Dennis
i have to add water to my batteries regularly. 3 stage charges will indeed boil a battery dry. I have one and it is working properly. most maintenance free batteries are destroyed by these chargers in a year, two at best. I have plenty of fellow dockers that have boiled thier''s dry as well. you can buy equally automatic chargers at Wal-Mart. as to alternators, believe what you want. You swallowed the bait. the only differance is that marine alternators are sealed to prevent ignition. That''s unnecessary for diesel engines. Any regulator that can be adjusted is ancient technology. if long runs in cars hurt batteries then what would Sears do. I make alot of money fixing marine alternators. I''ve been at this for over 35 years. P.S. You know what they say about pride?
Jim
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  #17  
Old 01-21-2003
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thefantasea is on a distinguished road
Electrical Upgrade

Below is a cut and paste of a section of ABYC website. Considering your goal, this seems like a good place to start.

Boatowner''s Illustrated Handbook of Wiring
Charlie Wing''s book is a user-friendly manual for on-board electrical projects, from fixing loose connections to rewiring your boat. The author de-mystifies the wiring of sail and power boats. DC and AC wiring materials and techniques are all covered, as are batteries, alternators, inverters, generators, corrosion control, and alternate energy installations (solar, wind and water). There are detailed instructions for wiring marine electronics and dozens of weekend projects such as installing cabin and navigation lights, burglar alarms, battery charge indicators, bilge alarms and much more. This 320 page hard bound book contains 450 illustrations.

Price: $26.95/Member; $29.95/Non-member (plus $6 shipping; Additional shipping fees will be charged for orders outside the U.S.; Maryland residents please add 5% sales tax.

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  #18  
Old 01-27-2003
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Electrical Upgrade

Perhaps, after reading this, you''ll understand why Tony hired a proffessional Marine electrician.
It''s NOT that difficult, if you KNOW what you''re doing.
Most don''t.
Charlie Wing and Nigel Caulder have written excellent books on the subject, which still leave much to be desired.
I didn''t notice anyone (on this thread) mention a Galvanic Isolator (120VAC Shore Power) - but did note the advice to not connect AC Ground. This can KILL YOU !!!
CONNECT THE AC Ground !!!
Don''t solder joints - crimp and seal with epoxy-lined heat shrink.
Watch for March issue of "Good Old Boat".
Do LOTS of research.
Good luck
Gord
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  #19  
Old 02-12-2003
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Electrical Upgrade

In all of the above messages, I have not seen one suggestion to mount a circuit breaker between the batteries and the boat circuit panel. In most boats, the batteries are installed low down in the boat with a battery selector switch alongside. This part is OK. However, the next part of the supply, the cable from the selector switch to the boat''s circuit breaker panel, is a source of danger. Depending on the number of batteries connected, the short circuit current can be in the vicinity of several hundred amps. Enough to burn a hole in the bottom of your boat or anything that the cable is touching.
I have actually installed three circuit breakers in my supply system. One is supplied from my battery selector switch and is rated at fifty amps. This supplies my normal boat circuit breakers for lights, instruments, refrigeration etc. the other two circuit breakers are supplied directly from my house battery and are rated at five amps each. One supplies the auxillary to my stereo radio so that it remembers the radio stations that I have programmed. This way, my favourite stations are always at hand and I don''t have to look for them. The other breaker is also supplied directly from the house battery and supplies my automatic bilge pump. This may seem to be a bit of overkill, but just imagine what can happen to your boat if that main supply cable from your batteries to your circuit panel is damaged? What is going to turn the current off?
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Old 02-12-2003
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Electrical Upgrade

Windancer, I agree. The proper designs I have seen in many installations actually have high-amp fuses as close to the Positve battery lead as possible to protect against shorts "somewhere downstream".

This does not elliminate the need for distribution circuit breakers. Just ''another'' protection for what "might" happen.
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