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Old 01-02-2015, 22:04   #166
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

Wow!


And all these years, I thought WWIII would erupt out of conflict in the Middle East! How naive of me!
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Old 02-02-2015, 09:40   #167
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

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How do you write on black cable?
I'm going to play this straight. Black cable is an issue. I use a permanent black marker I get from K-Mart to mark a small line. It shows up on the lug of course. I can see it on the black cable if I put it where light reflected off of it will show the mark against the black cable. It is purplish and has a sheen.

What I don't get is why some of you get all worked up about all this. No body forces anybody to do anything on your own boat. Put out your information. Tell everyone why you feel that way and go on.
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Old 02-02-2015, 10:08   #168
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

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Originally Posted by exMaggieDrum View Post
I'm going to play this straight. Black cable is an issue. I use a permanent black marker I get from K-Mart to mark a small line. It shows up on the lug of course. I can see it on the black cable if I put it where light reflected off of it will show the mark against the black cable. It is purplish and has a sheen.
My boat is old enough that black signifies negative. So, if I see a black cable I know that's what it is. Common practice if you're using a wire of cable for some other purpose than it's color would indicate is to mark both ends with the appropriate colored electrical tape or heat shrink tubing.

If memory serves me my boat's original battery cables are all black with the positive ends marked red as above. Stuff I've added I use the appropriate colored cable or wire.

If someone really wants to label cables, nice writable heat shrink labels are available from on-line vendors.
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Old 02-02-2015, 10:52   #169
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

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Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
My boat is old enough that black signifies negative. So, if I see a black cable I know that's what it is. Common practice if you're using a wire of cable for some other purpose than it's color would indicate is to mark both ends with the appropriate colored electrical tape or heat shrink tubing.

If memory serves me my boat's original battery cables are all black with the positive ends marked red as above. Stuff I've added I use the appropriate colored cable or wire.

If someone really wants to label cables, nice writable heat shrink labels are available from on-line vendors.
Ron - just to make sure you know what I was referring to - it was not on how to mark negative cables with a permanent black marker. That would not be recommended. I was only speaking to how I mark the orientation of the cable to the lug when I am assembling them for installation.

As to your comments, the heat shrink labels can work (depending) as well as other types. Almost every type of labeling I have seen does tend to fade after a few years though. When I am running new cable I always run black for negative and red for positive, unless I am working on a European boat which uses yellow for negative.

If the appropriate color is not available then you have to mark the hell out of it to make sure it is obvious what it is for. Of course, if it is connected to the battery negative you can assume that is what it is for, or if to the back of a battery switch, or in general, all those places that are normally positive or negative. When in doubt use your meter.

The biggest problem with using a non-obvious color is not at the ends where you normally put labels on. The problem is when you are tracing a cable through bundles or through or under bulkheads, tanks, etc. That is a problem even if you use the standard colors if you have more than one going in the same general direction. I have used the wire tracing gear but it is a hassle to set up because you have to disconnect at least one end of the cable and sometimes it just is not sensitive enough or you can't get the probe where you can see it.

What I do is tried and true - I use my eyeballs where I can but even that doesn't help sometimes when you have more than one wire so I almost always go a small section at a time and get a little slack in the cable and tug and pull with my finger on the other side to see/fell which wire I am working on. I triple check this. It can be time consuming and a real PITA. And then I label both ends, and then I draw a diagram to save. I have literally spent hours doing this on mine and other boats.

I have seen, and have used, black heat shrink (to seal the cable) on red wire if that is all I have to denote a negative but this is easy to mix up (or v.v. red heat shrink on a black cable). I like to use red on red and black on black so if I do have one that is different it at least tells me to check it out.
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Old 02-02-2015, 13:31   #170
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

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Originally Posted by exMaggieDrum View Post
When I am running new cable I always run black for negative and red for positive, unless I am working on a European boat which uses yellow for negative.
Yellow is the new black in US DC wiring. You may also run into blue or gray in European DC negative, which has been the most common there.

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Old 02-09-2015, 03:45   #171
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

wow. what an exciting old thread. who said copper is copper did not first read this. Welding cable comes in at least three grades. Hopefully you get the one with insulation that holds up while at sea, or lake. It has many very fine strands of bare copper. Locomotive cable has few very heavy strands. Could be a problem making turns with that. It also has insulation that is half as thick as marine grade. Is that why it is designated for use in conduit? It is tinned, however.
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Old 09-07-2016, 07:54   #172
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Re: Batt To Inverter Cable Length Question

I can't resist hitting this dead thread with the two 10 foot lengths of 4/0 tinned marine cable with crimped ends and shrink wrapped. They cost me less than $210 delivered to my door on the third day after ordering. Bonus; I did not have to buy a $175 crimper.
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