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Old 15-10-2013, 21:05   #1
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Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

Can someone give me a brief overview of what I can expect in this undertaking?

I'm looking to install a shore power plug in as well, but more importantly I want to be able to run my heaters, lights, running lights, etc.
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Old 16-10-2013, 01:52   #2
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Re: Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

i have the owners manual for a P30 which has a wiring schematic included . it is posted here:
Owners Manual | S/V Voyager

the P26 was similar sans inboard engine

had the boat surveyed a few years ago and the surveyor mentioned the orginal is not up to current wiring standards
I think he mentioned ABYC standards
maybe someone with more knowledge can fill in the blanks
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Old 16-10-2013, 13:01   #3
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So I have my owners manual as well and it does have the schematic, but if that schematic is not up to snuff then what's the next best plan of action?
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Old 16-10-2013, 17:36   #4
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Re: Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

Get a general introduction to boat wiring, like The 12 Volt Bible or a Gerr or Calder book.

It's not like house wiring (particularly if you are adding shore power into the mix) and it's not what I would call intuitive and you are better off using the right materials (tinned wire, proper insulated connectors) and the right tools (die-type crimpers and proper strippers and adequate metering).

I would suggest a good place to start would be Maine Sail's excellent "Compass Marine" set of illustrated articles, many of which deal with electricity versus boats:

Compass Marine "How To" Articles Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at pbase.com
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Old 16-10-2013, 17:45   #5
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Re: Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

Even if you have an outboard, with or without an alternator, battery management, as well as a good Victron battery monitor would do you well.

Good luck.

Basic Battery Wiring Diagrams This is a very good basic primer for boat system wiring: Basic Battery Wiring Diagrams

This is another very good basic primer for boat system wiring: The 1-2-B Switch by Maine Sail (brings together a lot of what this subject is all about)
1/BOTH/2/OFF Switches Thoughts & Musings - SailboatOwners.com

You might also be interested in this:

Electrical Systems 101 Electrical Systems 101
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Old 16-10-2013, 18:01   #6
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Re: Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

12 volt is pretty easy stuff, read up and go for it. Battery>large fuse at battery> Pos and neg cables to distribution blocks and battery switch> wire to 12v fuse panel> wires to appliances.. etc
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Old 16-10-2013, 18:12   #7
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I love this forum. Thanks for the resources guys, I'm stoked to have purchased the boat two weeks ago and started to sail
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Old 17-10-2013, 06:05   #8
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Re: Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, twiggsmcgee.
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Old 17-10-2013, 14:17   #9
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Re: Setting up 12V on my 78 Pearson 26'

i'll just add: the Pearson schematic is just that: a schematic and should be the place you begin to layout on paper all the circuits and components you would like to have. This will give you a detailed idea of the panel you will need, the pairing of wires, etc.
In my earlier post i mentioned that the older Pearsons do not meet ABYC standards. I believe the primary reason is because of the way the electrical system is grounded. Pearson (or at least the ones i am familiar with) are grounded to thru-hull fittings. This is considered a no no by today's standards.

If your boat has no wiring, i would start with the 12v DC side. This is fairly simple stuff and will get you up and running relatively quickly. The AC shorepower side can always be added.
On my 76 P30, the shore-power is a completely independent system. simple and it works just fine. it consists of (a) the shorepower connection, (b) a breaker panel (c) two 120 receptacles down below (d) water heater which i removed. The only time i seem to use the shorepower is during winter lay up, to power tools, battery charger, and a small electrical heater when I'm working on her.

I did buy a small inexpensive inverter that i plug into the 12v dc side and find this really useful for charging things like a cordless drill, phones, etc. I would highly recommend an invertor and if i ever get around to it, I'll install a permenant one wired to one of the 120v receptacles.

the other thing i would consider doing is adding one or two 12v "cigarette lighter" receptacles. there is only one now at the companionway. I would add one at the forward bulkhead in the main cabin and maybe one in the v berth. everyone has phones to charge, kindle's, and i run a netbook aboard and always seem to be short of places to plug in.

Figure out what you want and get a breaker panel with spares for future flexibility.
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