I've gone back and reread the Stan Honey article in the West Advisor.
The West Advisor: Marine Grounding Systems
I've also gone back an reread the thread that I've mentioned several times on Proper AC and DC Grounding.
Proper Grounding for AC and DC
Summary of Stan Honey's position
Stan Honey urges everyone (with inboard engines) to use the engine as the DC ground. He also urges everyone to run the AC grounding wire (the green wire) to this same DC grounding point on the engine (the inboard engine). Conscious of the issues that this create in terms of galvanic corrosion
to metals on the exterior of the boat, such as the through-hulls, he urges everyone to install a galvanic isolator
between the shorepower inlet and the AC breaker/panel.
When it comes to grounding for lightning protection, Stan Honey urges everyone to ground the mast
with 4AWG wire to a nearby keel
Stan Honey, therefore, urges everyone to have two separate grounding systems: 1.) DC and AC grounding sytem grounded together via the engine (the inboard engine); and 2) the lightning grounding system grounded via the keel bolt/grounding bolt.
It is worth noting that the position of Don Casey
, Complete Illustrated Sailboat Maintenance Manual
(2006) is similar to Stan Honey's.
Summary of Nigel Calder's Position (as quoted in thread "Proper Grounding for AC and DC")
In the initial posting
for the thread "Proper Grounding for AC and DC" I quoted Nigel Calder's position on the subject of grounding. Nigel Calder states that it is a common practice to use the engine as the DC ground. He urges everyone, however, to use a single
grounding point or "Common Grounding Point," as he calls it for DC, AC, and Lightning. This single
grounding point should be connected to an immersed ground plate or strip made of copper. He explains all this and includes a sample diagram on pp. 232 and 233 of Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual
So where do I stand at present?
Given that I do not have an inboard engine that I can use as a ground for DC and AC, it seems that the best course of action is for me to follow the suggestions of Nigel Calder (and some others on this forum), and put DC, AC, and Lightning on a single point. This might create problems in terms of corrosion
, but I suppose I could combat this with the galvanic isolator suggested by MiTiempo. A number of people in the thread "Proper Grounding of AC and DC" say that corrosion is of secondary importance to the protection one receives by having the DC and AC grounded together, especially if there is a problem with the grounding of the dockside connection at the marina.
So, that's my thinking . . .