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Old 22-07-2008, 16:35   #1
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Shor power connection question

I am replacing the old breaker box in my boats shore power system. It is located in the front of a cockpit locker on the bulkhead. I need to run new wires, 5' to the new panel in the cabin.
My question is, how to make the connection to the old wires in the box. I am replacing the old breaker box, with a junction box.
I read Nigel Calder's book, and Don Casey's book on sailboat wiring, and neither mentions anything about the way to connect the wires. Casey, mentions that connections in the 110 volt, shore power wiring should be done in a junction box, but thats all he says.
before I reach for the wire nuts, I thought I would ask here.
I also called Charles Marine, and Marinetics, and both didn't know!
Thanks for any info, Cliff
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Old 22-07-2008, 17:00   #2
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Never use wire nuts on your boat. Find a three way power strip, secure it in the junction box and make all connections with the proper connectors. I am not sure though what you mean by replacing a breaker with a junction box. This is a no-no and breakers should be replaced with the correct size marine breakers. This is NOT something to enter into lightly since a mistake can be disastrous. If you are not sure what you are doing seak professional help.
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Old 22-07-2008, 17:07   #3
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Continuous cable to panel inside of vessel.

Wire nuts....I know you were kidding....everybody around here uses 2 yards of friction tape for each connection
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Old 22-07-2008, 17:14   #4
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3 way power strip? Any sugestions? I have never seen one.

I am replacing the old breaker box, with a breaker panel, and need to extend the wires 5' to the new panel location. The junction box is to enclose the connections for the old and new wires.
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Old 22-07-2008, 17:45   #5
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Run Continous Cable From Shore Power to Panel

A junction Box is just another problem waiting to happen.
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Old 22-07-2008, 17:56   #6
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Absolutely run new wire in a continuous run to the breaker box.
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Old 22-07-2008, 17:56   #7
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Run Continous Cable From Shore Power to Panel

A junction Box is just another problem waiting to happen.
Yep.
...........
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Old 22-07-2008, 19:01   #8
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Best, best best, by far, far, far is a continuous run of cable from the shore power plug to the distribution panal, but people already told you that...

If for some reason you must make a connection (think long and hard before you make that decision) proper sized, marine rated, heatshrink crimped butt connections done with a racheting crimper is one approach. Alternatively, a terminal strip rated to the appropriate voltage and amperage (put inside a box) is another valid technique.

Done properly either of these approaches will most likely cost MORE that that single run of wire direct from the shore power inlet to the distribution panal. So just do it right.

And if you DO really have any wirenuts onboard your boat, throw them overboard right now before you are ever tempted to use them.
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Old 23-07-2008, 02:02   #9
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Well crimped butt connectors with heat shrink is how to connect two wires, but old wire never makes a good connection, so just replace the whole run. It makes no sense to spend good money to fix up your panel and then skimp on something like this. And those wire nuts... when the come near a boat, they are then called fire nuts.
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Old 23-07-2008, 06:33   #10
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The wire nut comment was meant as a joke, for those who didn't get it!

I was just trying to save buying 12 more feet of wire for $48, when the orig. wire was fine.

When we go cruising again in a year or two, that $48 could buy us a coulpe of gallons of diesel fuel!
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Old 23-07-2008, 07:32   #11
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Or not spending it will at least maybe cost you a hassle and at worst start a fire if not done correctly. Pick your spots to save money and the electrical system is not one of those spots IMO.
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Old 23-07-2008, 19:04   #12
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I've been selling 10/3 wire for $2.00 a foot on E-Bay
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Old 23-07-2008, 19:29   #13
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Alternatively, a terminal strip rated to the appropriate voltage and amperage (put inside a box) is another valid technique.
There is a small problem with this unfinished statement. The connections at the terminal strip should have a captured connector on them. Either a ring terminal, a captured spade. Or if it's a screw clamp terminal strip a pin connector.

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Pick your spots to save money and the electrical system is not one of those spots IMO.
AMEN Mr. Baier.
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Old 23-07-2008, 22:15   #14
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There is a small problem with this unfinished statement. The connections at the terminal strip should have a captured connector on them. Either a ring terminal, a captured spade. Or if it's a screw clamp terminal strip a pin connector.
I guess I left that out, imagining (wrongly!) that it was obvious. :P
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Old 23-07-2008, 22:50   #15
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The wire nut comment was meant as a joke, for those who didn't get it!

I was just trying to save buying 12 more feet of wire for $48, when the orig. wire was fine.

When we go cruising again in a year or two, that $48 could buy us a coulpe of gallons of diesel fuel!
..and with a boat fire you could roast hot dogs. That's cheaper than buying charcoal.
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