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Old 30-01-2017, 23:05   #1
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Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

Hi guys,
I am in the midst of installing a B&G Vulcan chart plotter into my Parker Dawson 26 trailer sailer. I am switching to the B&G from a Raymarine unit since I wanted to add useful wind data and there was no way to do that on the Raymarine without adding additional gauges which I am trying to avoid.

Anyhow, new plotter is installed and I am getting ready to run wire up to the mast head. Obviously being as I do trailer a single wire slithered up to the top is a non starter. My current mast wiring runs via the compression post, down under the liner and back to the panel. I am not super excited about sending the NMEA cable along this route since that means a long run through places where it is difficult to really secure well plus it ends up on the wrong side of the boat which means another long run around behind the cockpit (center cockpit boat) through the engine bay and back up the other side via a lot of very annoying places to crawl into.

Compared to that, my VHF wire runs through the cabin top using one of these:


which results in the cable having a very short run over to where the electronics are, well secured and tidy.

Does anyone know of a similar type doo dad for NMEA 2000? Maretron sort of makes one but it is quite short and my cabin top is quite thick.

I have toyed with the idea of poking a hole in the compression post and snaking it back out of there but a proper pass through would be much cleaner looking.
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Old 31-01-2017, 08:15   #2
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

Use a scanstrut cable clam and feed the cable through. Simple and avoids another connection.

There aren't many NMEA2k bulkhead fittings. You could also use a Deutsch bulkhead fitting and mating fittings on your NMEA2k cable.

I've just fitted a dozen scanstruts on deck and at the masthead. They are either stainless or anodized aluminum and not the rubbish plastic cable clams which leak like a sieve.
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Old 31-01-2017, 08:25   #3
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

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Use a scanstrut cable clam and feed the cable through. Simple and avoids another connection.
I would do that. They work really well if installed properly.

Don't forget that your N2K mast cable is going to be your backbone, but you can string backbone together with a T fitting. If I were doing it I would put that T piece just above the cable clam so when the mast comes down you disconnect it there. Either just coil up the excess in the base of the mast or trim it and put on a Maretron male fitting. If your cable is mini I would put heat shrink on the Maretron fitting and cable connection as the fittings are sized for micro cable.
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Old 31-01-2017, 08:34   #4
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

You could use a "Forstner" bit and cut back some of the deck thickness enough to use the Maretron through deck fitting. Then drill through the deck using the correct size bit for your fitting. You may have to seal the cut away area after you have drilled into it to prevent core saturation unless you pass through a solid glass area.
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Old 31-01-2017, 18:08   #5
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

The cable clam idea might be just what the Dr. ordered.

Suijin can you expand on what you mean by the masthead cable being the backbone? Am I unable to break the cable from the actual backbone I have on the bulkhead on the way to the device without having to do some magic ju ju?

I thought about the forstner bit idea but my deck is 1 3/4 inch thick right there and even with a recess, that connector would get tough to reach. Besides, that also involves bigger holes and to be honest, I die a little every time I drill a hole in a boat not matter what the reason and drilling an over sized one would just make me xtra sad...
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Old 31-01-2017, 19:21   #6
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

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Originally Posted by Aswayze View Post
[...] my VHF wire runs through the cabin top using one of these:


which results in the cable having a very short run over to where the electronics are, well secured and tidy.

Does anyone know of a similar type doo dad for NMEA 2000? Maretron sort of makes one but it is quite short and my cabin top is quite thick.
How thick is your cabin top? The Maretron Feed-thru accommodates up to 0.875" thickness, according to their spec sheet.
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Old 31-01-2017, 19:22   #7
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aswayze View Post
The cable clam idea might be just what the Dr. ordered.

Suijin can you expand on what you mean by the masthead cable being the backbone? Am I unable to break the cable from the actual backbone I have on the bulkhead on the way to the device without having to do some magic ju ju?

I thought about the forstner bit idea but my deck is 1 3/4 inch thick right there and even with a recess, that connector would get tough to reach. Besides, that also involves bigger holes and to be honest, I die a little every time I drill a hole in a boat not matter what the reason and drilling an over sized one would just make me xtra sad...
Typically, because N2K drop cables are limited in length, the backbone runs up the mast to the wind anemometer which has a built in terminator. If you have a transducer forward of the mast, you just put a T fitting at the base of the mast and run a drop cable forward to it and continue the backbone aft to other devices, and power.
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Old 31-01-2017, 19:42   #8
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Re: Passing NMEA 2000 through the deck

Cabin top is 1.5 inches thick solid glass where I want to pass through at

Ah, so I just run off of the end of my current network rather than off of a T like usual for the wind instrument? I have no NMEA forward of there so that's no big deal.
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