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Old 31-07-2014, 09:33   #16
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Re: Boat Rewire

Great ideas! I don't think i will be doing any night sailing soon, so I suppose I could just rip it out and start over. I will leave the mast wiring until I can get my hands on a Bosun's Chair.

You recommend another type of panel? I thought that a zinc plated piece of sheet metal would be a good fit. I already drew out a mock up on cardboard to make sure it can all fit (i traced the backs of the switches, not the front).

It will be nervous to rip everything out and just be looking at a boat with zero electrical, but I guess that's what needs to be done!

I was also thinking about just running the wire in easy to access spots, still concealed, but I don't think I will run the wires like the factory did.

I bought a label maker that you write on a tiny part and then it has a clear sticky coating that wraps around the label and wire a few times. Used them before and loved them!

I purchased a large spool of Ancor wire off Amazon. Great price and got it in two days! Hard to beat sometimes...

Knotty, are those labels etched in to the panel? If so, how do you make a new one for additions? Just curious. Maybe in the future, I will get a beautiful looking panel like that, but for now, Just a piece of metal or plastic will do with little labels.

Idora, if I ever decide to sell, that's exactly the case. I know that if I put great quality in my work, this will never have to be done again. I'm sure anyone could appreciate that.


Thanks again for all the input. I've just joined this forum this week and so far, it has been the biggest help ever!
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Old 31-07-2014, 10:13   #17
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Re: Boat Rewire

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailerMatt View Post
...I thought that a zinc plated piece of sheet metal would be a good fit...
I purchased a large spool of Ancor wire...
Quote:
Originally Posted by SailerMatt View Post
...I am building my own panel, with a toggle switch for everything, a volt meter, two battery switches (on/off only) for two banks and a emergency connector switch. That along with inverter power switch and smart charger, it will be on a piece of zinc plated steel from Home Depot. $4...
Forget the zinc plated steel and toggle switches. Get a proper CIRCUIT BREAKER panel from Bass or Blue Sea. Forget about wiring every circuit from the same roll of wire. Don't guess at this stuff. Do your own due diligence. If you need a computer program to sketch your electrical schematic or wiring diagram, then you don't understand it.

Rip everything out and start from scratch.
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Old 31-07-2014, 10:15   #18
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Re: Boat Rewire

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Originally Posted by SailerMatt View Post
Knotty, are those labels etched in to the panel? If so, how do you make a new one for additions? Just curious. Maybe in the future, I will get a beautiful looking panel like that, but for now, Just a piece of metal or plastic will do with little labels.
They're etched right in. I just left the extra's blank. I have a Brother label maker that I can add later. Doesn't look the best but it works. I will paint the etched letters with glow in the dark paint when I install it. That's the plan anyways.
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Old 31-07-2014, 10:25   #19
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Re: Boat Rewire

Hello and thanks for the advice!

Unfortunately, I cannot justify the cost of a prefabbed circuit breaker or panel. I don't have the need for circuit breakers, as I think fuses work just fine: at least for my situation. For the panel, if it is prefabbed, and I want to add circuits, I would either have to order a larger panel now, guessing, or I can just drill a new hole in the sheet metal for a switch.

I'm using a same roll of wire because it keeps cost down. I don't need to have different colors. The wire I am using is 14/2, so that's all the color I need. I will just add labels. It's simple and effective.

I don't need to "guess" necessarily. I just think having a diagram or schematic will help down the road and not have to keep everything in your head. Writing down things will always help.

Thanks for the advice on ripping everything out. Have you done something like this before? What was your experience and how long did it take you? I am just going down to the boat tomorrow and removing all the circuits. First everything for the cabin, and then redoing the engine wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Forget the zinc plated steel and toggle switches. Get a proper CIRCUIT BREAKER panel from Bass or Blue Sea. Forget about wiring every circuit from the same roll of wire. Don't guess at this stuff. Do your own due diligence. If you need a computer program to sketch your electrical schematic or wiring diagram, then you don't understand it.

Rip everything out and start from scratch.
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Old 31-07-2014, 10:26   #20
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Re: Boat Rewire

It certainly looks wonderful! I'm sure your very happy with it!

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They're etched right in. I just left the extra's blank. I have a Brother label maker that I can add later. Doesn't look the best but it works. I will paint the etched letters with glow in the dark paint when I install it. That's the plan anyways.
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Old 31-07-2014, 10:37   #21
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Re: Boat Rewire

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...For the panel, if it is prefabbed, and I want to add circuits, I would either have to order a larger panel now, guessing, or I can just drill a new hole in the sheet metal for a switch.

I'm using a same roll of wire because it keeps cost down. I don't need to have different colors. The wire I am using is 14/2...
When replacing an electrical distribution panel, you include spare breaker positions for future expansion.

You really should learn something about electricity before beginning this project. 14/2 cannot possibly be used for all your circuits.
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Old 31-07-2014, 11:13   #22
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Re: Boat Rewire

Good idea about the breaker positions. And I don't have a lot of amperage running through the boat. I think it would be the perfect wire.

The only different wires will be for the battery. And some smaller wire for various gauges.
I don't mean to use 14 gauge for the whole boat, but it will be the majority.

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Old 31-07-2014, 11:16   #23
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Re: Boat Rewire

It's 14 gauge wire, with just positive and negative wires.

Do you recommend something else?

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Old 31-07-2014, 12:34   #24
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Re: Boat Rewire

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Originally Posted by SailerMatt View Post
It's 14 gauge wire, with just positive and negative wires.

Do you recommend something else?

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He is simply recommending the size of the wire be appropriately based upon the amperage it will be carrying. Which sounds like was your plan.

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Old 31-07-2014, 14:57   #25
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Re: Boat Rewire

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Originally Posted by SailerMatt View Post
Hello and thanks for the advice!

Unfortunately, I cannot justify the cost of a prefabbed circuit breaker or panel. I don't have the need for circuit breakers, as I think fuses work just fine: at least for my situation. For the panel, if it is prefabbed, and I want to add circuits, I would either have to order a larger panel now, guessing, or I can just drill a new hole in the sheet metal for a switch.
I once made a cheap panel out of an 1/8" thick piece off plexiglass, drilled holes for all my switches, then painted it black. It cost me $11, not including switches. It will be easier to work with than sheet metal.

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Old 31-07-2014, 16:03   #26
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Re: Boat Rewire

Black Plexiglas is easier. But aluminum makes a better panel.
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Old 31-07-2014, 16:31   #27
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Re: Boat Rewire

SailorMatt, Im going thru a complete rewire on my boat as well. I would reccomend this book.
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Old 31-07-2014, 16:32   #28
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Re: Boat Rewire

the link didnt work, its Claders Marine electrical and mechanical
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Old 31-07-2014, 17:44   #29
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Re: Boat Rewire

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I ended up using expresssch...

All the tools I looked at had a "limited" number of objects. I have managed to make a few custom ones for my schematic. If you decide to use expresssch PM me an email address and I will send you the library of objects I have created - switch panels, various gauges, alternator, starter, BMV602, ACR, solar panels etc.

Attached is my schematic - work in progress. While the tool didn't save tons of time the first go around, revisions and modifications are much faster.

I found changing the grid layout to 1mm allowed a high level of precision in laying out runs and stuff.
Thanks for the link. Is expresssch a program?
If so, does it require lengths of wire runs, anticipated amps required for devices etc? I'm very curious, I have very little electrical knowlege and have a growing passion to rewire my Westsail. I used to be very intimidated with this subject but over the past few years am very excited for the project.
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Old 31-07-2014, 18:03   #30
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Re: Boat Rewire

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Black Plexiglas is easier. But aluminum makes a better panel.
Terra,
Why does aluminum make a better panel.
My un-educated guess would assume using metal conducting panels a poor choice.
Isn't plastic the safer? Easier to work with? Will it become brittle over the years?
Thanks
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