Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 29-08-2008, 10:15   #1
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Nevada City. CA
Boat: Sceptre 41
Posts: 3,745
Images: 9
Electrical Connections

Hello all:

I recently figured out what was wrong with my autopilot. The potentiometer needed to be replaced. I have the part and am going to replace it this weekend. I have a question though. I know that everytime that you splice a wire there is the potential for a problem but I wanted an easier way to remove the drive unit fro the autopilot. currently it is a continous wire from the control head to the drive unit. I was thinking of adding a splice and a connection so that I could take the unit out without cutting the wires. There are five wires. Three light guage wires that read resistance and two #10 wires for pwer. I was thinkg of getting a high quality Marine plug (Does anyone have a recomendation?) Then I though maybe I should just get a block that will connect five wires. The connections will be in the Lazeret which is generally dry but must be prepared for wet condtions.

1)Do you think it is a good idea to put the splice in?

2) What would you use for the connection?
__________________

__________________
Fair Winds,

Charlie

Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
Joseph Conrad
Charlie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:24   #2
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,150
Hi Charlie,
I would install a terminal block so your auto pilot wires can easily be disconnected in the future again if necessary.

If you are concerned about any resistance, a linemans splice that is soldered with heat shrink over the splice would work.

As far as your crimp connections go, they can have very little resistance if done correctly, now and in the future as well. Use some marine grade heat shrink connectors like the Ancor connectors you get at West Marine. On the bare metal parts, apply some Tef-Gel (you can get this at KKMI right near you) or some silicone grease (dive shop or Grainger) to displace any moisture that might get on your bare metal connectors or your terminal block. In my experience the TefGel holds up forever compared to the silicone grease which gradually goes away in a moist environment.

Lineman Splice 22 AWG wire pre-solder condition
Lineman Splice 22 AWG wire post-solder condition
__________________

__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:31   #3
Senior Cruiser
 
sandy daugherty's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2008
Location: near Annapolis
Boat: PDQ 36 & Atlantic 42
Posts: 1,178
There are plugs with enough connectors, used for mast base connections. However, unless you are going to be disconnecting and re-connecting these wires every year, I think you would be better off with heat-shrink butt connectors. If you have a heat gun, and can afford them, there are heat-shrink butt connectors with a dab of very low temp solder in the middle which flows below the melting point of the plastic! If the wires read resistance then you don't want to shorten them very much. The easiest way for an inexperienced person to reconnect these wires would be with a small block providing you anchor the ends mechanically to counter stress and vibration.
__________________
sandy daugherty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:34   #4
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Nevada City. CA
Boat: Sceptre 41
Posts: 3,745
Images: 9
Thanks David and Sandy:

I may not have to disconnect these items for years but would like to have the ability to do it should I need to. I think the terminal block is a good way to go and the Tef Gel will make me more comfortable in the moist environment.
__________________
Fair Winds,

Charlie

Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
Joseph Conrad
Charlie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:35   #5
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,150
Sandy, I have to respectfully disagree about the butt connectors. I have seen too many fail or create resistance. The USCG does not like to see them in inspected vessels for this reason. Its always better to do a continuous run of wire if possible.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:37   #6
Senior Cruiser
 
S/V Antares's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Annapolis, Bahamas
Boat: 1983 Gulfstar 36
Posts: 1,249
Images: 1
NAPA auto stores sell a 10 boz can (With brush top) of silicon paste under $10. less than 1/2 maine prices. "A little dab will do you"
__________________
Will & Muffin
Lucy the dog

"Yes, well.. perhaps some more wine" (Julia Child)
S/V Antares is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:47   #7
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,150
I have always wondered why West Marine does not carry TefGel or silicon grease? From a rather conspiratorial perspective, could it be they would then sell less stuff that replaces parts that failed from corrosion? Don't know, but it does make you wonder why they refuse to sell something so basic to boating. I wrote them an email asking if they would stock these two products years ago. It was ignored.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:58   #8
Moderator Emeritus
 
Ex-Calif's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Singapore
Boat: Maxi 77 - Relax Lah!
Posts: 11,514
Images: 4
It may not be appropriate for this "semi-permanent" connection but I wired our tiller pilot and a couple fo other things using high quality audio connectors. For bulkhead connections there are wiide variety of male bulkhead fittings in 2-3-4-5 and 6 wire versions of several sizes (diameters). The beauty is there is a cap on a lanyard that you screw on to cover the male fittings when the unit is removed. Just like most mast butt connectors.

For frequently disconnected inline connections I use something similar to a microphone connector. I use one on the tiller pilot. I made a Y cable so that I can plug the tiller pilot into the bulkhead power and the other leg of the wire accepts the GPS input using the inline connector.

We really never use GPS to steer the boat but I wanted to prove it works...
__________________
Relax Lah! is For Sale <--- Click
Click--> Custom CF Google Search or CF Rules
You're gonna need a bigger boat... - Martin Brody
Ex-Calif is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 10:58   #9
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Chesapeake Region and Maine
Boat: 42' Bob Perry sloop
Posts: 4,038
Images: 4
David,

Try again. They've a new CEO who's a boater, I'm told. He's been making some significant changes (but there's still a long way to go!).

Bill
__________________
btrayfors is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-08-2008, 12:33   #10
Senior Cruiser
 
S/V Antares's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Annapolis, Bahamas
Boat: 1983 Gulfstar 36
Posts: 1,249
Images: 1
David, Tef-gel was sold by West Marine for a while. It is made by Ultra safety Systems in Fl. The inventor of this great stuff is x nasa and a great guy, Basic genius that looks like he came out of a homeless soup kitchen, Makes robotic equipment in his sleep Among other cool stuff He developed a way to super homoginize TFT in a paste. Te.f-gel

West can be difficult. They treat vendors like crap. It would not supprise me if Bob just told them to go fly a kite.
__________________
Will & Muffin
Lucy the dog

"Yes, well.. perhaps some more wine" (Julia Child)
S/V Antares is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2008, 20:08   #11
Senior Cruiser
 
colemj's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Presently on US East Coast
Boat: Manta 40 "Reach"
Posts: 10,049
Images: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
I have always wondered why West Marine does not carry TefGel or silicon grease? From a rather conspiratorial perspective, could it be they would then sell less stuff that replaces parts that failed from corrosion? Don't know, but it does make you wonder why they refuse to sell something so basic to boating. I wrote them an email asking if they would stock these two products years ago. It was ignored.
I bought TefGel at our local West Marine last year.
__________________
colemj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2008, 20:12   #12
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,150
Quote:
Originally Posted by colemj View Post
I bought TefGel at our local West Marine last year.
Wow....that's news to me. I will ask them next time I am in the store.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2008, 21:55   #13
Eternal Member
 
Chief Engineer's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: North of Baltimore
Boat: Ericson 27 & 18' Herrmann Catboat
Posts: 3,798
What wrong with Fire nuts or colored electrical tape?
__________________
Chief Engineer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2008, 22:12   #14
Senior Cruiser
 
senormechanico's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2003
Boat: Dragonfly 1000 trimaran
Posts: 5,826
Charlie,

Solder them, use shrink tubing and fogeddaboudit!
Steve B.
(retired electronics tech and boat owner since 1968)
__________________
senormechanico is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2008, 23:05   #15
Registered User
 
JiffyLube's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Oceanside, Ca.
Boat: Islander Freeport 36
Posts: 567
Images: 8
Sinace WM is under a new top managment you might try asking them again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
I have always wondered why West Marine does not carry TefGel or silicon grease? From a rather conspiratorial perspective, could it be they would then sell less stuff that replaces parts that failed from corrosion? Don't know, but it does make you wonder why they refuse to sell something so basic to boating. I wrote them an email asking if they would stock these two products years ago. It was ignored.
__________________

__________________
JiffyLube is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Battery cable connections? gbanker Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 25 18-10-2008 10:27
Windlass motor connections stuffinbox Anchoring & Mooring 11 18-11-2007 14:50
Rope to Chain Connections ? GordMay Health, Safety & Related Gear 29 13-10-2007 23:12
Perkin 4-108 hot water heater connections RETTSIE Construction, Maintenance & Refit 1 05-07-2007 07:04
Mast: base wiring connections mgbfan79 Marine Electronics 2 31-03-2007 09:39



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 16:06.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.