Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on Cruisers Forums. Advertise Here
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 06-07-2019, 17:08   #1
er9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2014
Boat: 1980 (Canning) Mariner36
Posts: 498
Please explain this panel wiring.

this is a small switch panel on my friends Ranger 29. I wont call it a distribution panel. it looks more like a dozen individual switches connected in series to my newbie eyes. im trying to figure out what the hell the electrician did.

clearly all the +12v terminals are jumpered together (left side terminal of each switch) and the negatives (middle terminal on each switch) run all over the place. some are connected to a neg bus, some are just cut and go nowhere, some i havn't been able to track down yet. i spent all afternoon just trying to track down as many of the neg. wires as i could.

my question is, with this sort of arrangment...how do you energize the individual circuits? for example there are switches for all the deck and running lights. how would you energize each individual circuit considering that the +side of each switch is alraedy taken up by the jumper cable?

none of the circuits currently work. i didn't have time today to try and track down where the +connections from the switches lead to but am curious to know what sort of arrangement would be used for this type of setup?

there is no obvious bus for the +wires and have no idea where they terminate.

on my boat it seems the entire distribution panel is energized. i connect each individual circuit to a +12v wire at each individual switch/fuse and all the negatives from each switch/fuse go to a common negative bus bar.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	20190706_142423.jpg
Views:	391
Size:	407.8 KB
ID:	195458  
__________________

er9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:20   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: New Zealand
Boat: 50’ Bavaria
Posts: 956
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Don’t think of the switches as having positive and negative sides. They are all positive. One side of each switch is wired together, and this is the live supply to all of the circuits. The other side of each switch goes to the load, and provides the positive supply to that load. The negative wire from the load will go off to a negative bus bar somewhere.
__________________

Tillsbury is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:31   #3
er9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2014
Boat: 1980 (Canning) Mariner36
Posts: 498
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tillsbury View Post
Don’t think of the switches as having positive and negative sides. They are all positive. One side of each switch is wired together, and this is the live supply to all of the circuits. The other side of each switch goes to the load, and provides the positive supply to that load. The negative wire from the load will go off to a negative bus bar somewhere.
ah ok thank you. that clears up some confusion but brings up another question. if i put a multi-tester between the two +terminals on each switch should i get a battery voltage reading? for example if i put a multitester across the two +terminals on a couple of the switches i get a 13+ volt reading but on the rest there is no reading.

im assuming the switches that are giving me a voltage reading are wired incorrectly? from my current level of ignorance...you dont get a voltage reading on a multi tester unless you are measuring both a + terminal and a -neg terminal. it would seem to me a couple of the switches might have a negative wire connected on the second (middle ) terminal on the switch.
er9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:31   #4
Senior Cruiser
 
mabowers's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: In the air or on the water
Boat: Southern Cross 39
Posts: 60
Images: 14
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

It's not "positive" and "negative" sides of those toggle switches. There is a supply and load side. The supply is all in parallel to a positive voltage source, the load side is switched and feeds whatever circuit, which is grounded on other side of the circuit (to a ground bus & hence to the negative side of the battery). Some of the switches also have illumination voltage supplied to them.
mabowers is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:32   #5
Senior Cruiser
 
mabowers's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: In the air or on the water
Boat: Southern Cross 39
Posts: 60
Images: 14
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by er9 View Post
ah ok thank you. that clears up some confusion but brings up another question. if i put a multi-tester between the two +terminals on each switch should i get a battery voltage reading? for example if i put a multitester across the two +terminals on a couple of the switches i get a 13+ volt reading but on the rest there is no reading.

im assuming the switches that are giving me a voltage reading are wired incorrectly? from my current level of ignorance...you dont get a voltage reading on a multi tester unless you are measuring both a + terminal and a -neg terminal.
If the switch is "ON" you should read no (or very low) voltage drop across it. If the switch is "OFF" (open) you will read battery voltage. (actually, this depends upon there being a completed circuit through whatever the load is. that is, if a switch feeds a burnt out light bulb, you would read 0 volts whether or not it was turned "ON".)
mabowers is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:36   #6
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: New Zealand
Boat: 50’ Bavaria
Posts: 956
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by er9 View Post
ah ok thank you. that clears up some confusion but brings up another question. if i put a multi-tester between the two +terminals on each switch should i get a battery voltage reading? for example if i put a multitester across the two +terminals on a couple of the switches i get a 13+ volt reading but on the rest there is no reading.

im assuming the switches that are giving me a voltage reading are wired incorrectly? from my current level of ignorance...you dont get a voltage reading on a multi tester unless you are measuring both a + terminal and a -neg terminal. it would seem to me a couple of the switches have a negative wire connected second (middle ) terminal on the switch.
It will depend on the load, and whether that device has another switch somewhere (e.g. cabin lights). You should be measuring voltage from the switch to a known negative bus bar. The live side should always show battery voltage. The load side will only show battery voltage when the switch is enabled.

The other connectors will be for lighting, as mentioned above.

Again, there are no negative connections on a switch panel. The negative wires all go to a common negative bus somewhere else.
Tillsbury is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:42   #7
er9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2014
Boat: 1980 (Canning) Mariner36
Posts: 498
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mabowers View Post
If the switch is "ON" you should read no (or very low) voltage drop across it. If the switch is "OFF" (open) you will read battery voltage. (actually, this depends upon there being a completed circuit through whatever the load is. that is, if a switch feeds a burnt out light bulb, you would read 0 volts whether or not it was turned "ON".)
ok i guess i have to do some more work tracing where each wire goes to then and tracing the negatives. i do know that the interior lights neg is just hanging there unconnected and there is no voltage reading at the switch. none of the navigation lights work or give me any sort of voltage reading when switched on. some bulbs look ok so i guess i need to investigate a bit further and see if the negative wires were disconnected somewhere.
er9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:46   #8
er9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2014
Boat: 1980 (Canning) Mariner36
Posts: 498
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tillsbury View Post
It will depend on the load, and whether that device has another switch somewhere (e.g. cabin lights). You should be measuring voltage from the switch to a known negative bus bar. The live side should always show battery voltage. The load side will only show battery voltage when the switch is enabled.

The other connectors will be for lighting, as mentioned above.

Again, there are no negative connections on a switch panel. The negative wires all go to a common negative bus somewhere else.
thank you. the load side of each switch did measure battery voltage when i tested with multitester negative lead on the bus bar. i will test them all tomorrow with each switch turned on and see what i get.

everything worked until an electrician came and rewired the batteries to the selector switch. now nothing works on the panel so im trying to learn/figure out what happened. thanks for the help.
er9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 17:49   #9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Ocean Gate, NJ
Boat: Morgan M28O/I
Posts: 30
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

In your pic, it appears the supply side (+12v) is the left terminal of each switch since they're all jumpered to each other, the center terminals are the "LOAD" side, and the right side terminals are for an indicator light (note the tiny wires leading from those) that lights up when that circuit is energized. It looks like only 3 switches have indicator lights. Note I am ASSUMING all of these switches are the same!
BTW, I only see 8 switches here...am I missing something???
__________________
Jim & Barb
s/v: the Merry Bee
Ocean Gate, NJ
MerryBee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 18:21   #10
Registered User

Join Date: May 2011
Location: Toronto
Boat: Sandpiper 565
Posts: 4,099
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by er9 View Post
everything worked until an electrician came and rewired the batteries to the selector switch. now nothing works on the panel so im trying to learn/figure out what happened. thanks for the help.

Is the battery switch set correctly? If yes, trace the wire that's common to all the switches back to the battery switch.

I have to confess - your descriptions so far don't give me the impression that you're very familiar with electrical systems. Please be very careful, and respect your limitations.
Lake-Effect is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2019, 20:47   #11
er9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2014
Boat: 1980 (Canning) Mariner36
Posts: 498
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lake-Effect View Post
Is the battery switch set correctly? If yes, trace the wire that's common to all the switches back to the battery switch.

I have to confess - your descriptions so far don't give me the impression that you're very familiar with electrical systems. Please be very careful, and respect your limitations.
thank you. noted. I'm very careful and dont do anything until I'm 100% certain its correct. tracing wires etc is easy though. I confess wiring switches still confuses me though.
er9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2019, 09:05   #12
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 42
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

If your electrical switches have an indicator light to show whether they are on or off then that’s which would need a negative wire attached to it
vanderd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2019, 09:18   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 42
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

If your electrical switches have an indicator light to show whether they are on or off then a negative wire would need to be attached to it
vanderd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2019, 09:29   #14
Registered User
 
Spot's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Minnesota, USA
Boat: 21' trailer sailor & 8' sailing dinghy
Posts: 225
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Are they like this?
How to Wire an Illuminated Rocker Switch


__________________
Big dreams, small boats...
Spot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2019, 09:30   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 20
Re: Please explain this panel wiring.

Is it my imagination, but the bottom left connector in your photo looks like it is charred. If so, this connector should be replaced asap as it could be a fire hazard. Also, I find it interesting that someone used adhesive lined heat shrink barrel connectors to attach to a short piece of wire with the terminal connector on it, as opposed to just putting the end fitting directly on the wire. The more connections/joins on a wire, the more potential for resistance and problems. Adhesive lined heat shrink is the way to go though....
__________________

DenisHeinrichs is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
lease, wiring

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
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
Can Someone Please Explain to Me . . . Dockhead Marine Electronics 20 08-09-2010 01:31
explain or define this for me please frans duplessis Other 3 24-03-2009 04:41
Someone please explain this to me. Aquah0lic General Sailing Forum 30 14-02-2009 01:16
Polars, please explain ameardevil Multihull Sailboats 2 11-08-2008 18:57
Can someone please explain this to me? disco192 Marine Electronics 20 16-05-2008 15:00



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:11.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.