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Old 21-04-2019, 13:20   #1
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Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

We have a solar panel that requires that the frame be grounded so I would like to use a round three-wire cable such as common bilge wire (I know they make three wire solar cable but I have the bilge wire on hand). I want to be able to avoid wicking between the jacket and the three internal wires where they exit to the MC-4 connector and the grounding nut.

Outside of using a watertight junction box does another method to weatherproof that connection/wire bundle exist?

I've tried using silicone sealant and shrink tubing but that just makes a mess.
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Old 21-04-2019, 17:55   #2
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

I've had good luck with applying multiple thin coats of liquid vinyl (Liquid Lectric, etc.) to build up a form-fitting penetrating seal on wiring. Plenty of overlap, clean surface prep, paint, dry, repaint, dry...repaint...until you've got a substantial vinyl seal.

Something like Goop or AquaSeal (both urethane glues) or E2000 (similar but available thinner) would probably also do the job.

There are also "coax seal" products, similar to butyl tape, that will self-fuse and form durable seals.
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Old 21-04-2019, 18:47   #3
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
I've had good luck with applying multiple thin coats of liquid vinyl (Liquid Lectric, etc.) to build up a form-fitting penetrating seal on wiring. Plenty of overlap, clean surface prep, paint, dry, repaint, dry...repaint...until you've got a substantial vinyl seal.

Something like Goop or AquaSeal (both urethane glues) or E2000 (similar but available thinner) would probably also do the job.

There are also "coax seal" products, similar to butyl tape, that will self-fuse and form durable seals.
CRC Soft Seal, Spray it on the wire after fitting your terminal, it will wick up the wire between the strands then set into a semi solid wax.
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Old 22-04-2019, 05:51   #4
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

Adhesive-lined heat shrink provides weather-resistant insulation and strain relief of electrical connections and splices, for sealing and protecting wire bundles and harnesses. Use the highest Shrink Ratio (available) that will fit.
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Old 22-04-2019, 06:01   #5
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

Do a search for "Electrical Potting Compounds". This is what is commonly used to waterproof electrical connections in underground distribution. You can put heat shrink over the outside after it has cured for both extra protection as well as aesthetics.
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Old 22-04-2019, 09:36   #6
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

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Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Adhesive-lined heat shrink provides weather-resistant insulation and strain relief of electrical connections and splices, for sealing and protecting wire bundles and harnesses. Use the highest Shrink Ratio (available) that will fit.

That would be my recommendation as well... no muss, no fuss
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Old 22-04-2019, 19:49   #7
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

I have found spray coating the heat shink while the coating is still tacky works well. Also allows more variation. Not found adhesive heat shink readly available in lengths, only as part of a terminal.
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Old 23-04-2019, 01:07   #8
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

Use hot melt glue and heat shrink.

Liberally coat the plug and cable with hot melt glue using a glue gun. Slip the heat shring over the cable and plug and shrink it then continue to heat until the hot melt remelts and the heat shrink,. shrinks and squeezes excess hot melt out. Allow to cool and trim off excess hot melt.

Doing it this way squeezes the liquid hot melt into any cavities where the pre glued heat shrink will not.
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Old 23-04-2019, 02:21   #9
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Re: Protecting Round Cable from the Elements

Genuinedealz, Inc. is an excellent on-line electrical supplier, and carry Adhesive-Lined Heat Shrink Tubing:
Phone: (912)264-8327 Direct
Fax: (912)265-8202
Email: sales@genuinedealz.com
Web ➥ Heat Shrink Tubing Adhesive Lined Genuinedealz.com
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