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Old 27-08-2015, 11:11   #16
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cadence View Post
I'm not sure heat shrink is the answer. Telephone and power companies have used an encapsulant (sp?)
for years. The rubber type coating you can buy for coating plier handles, and such, works well over a butt connector.
For a boat, heat shrink IS the answer. Companies don't use it simply 'cuz it's too labor intensive, so they use the shortcut or mass produced product that may cost more in materials but is much less labor intensive.
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Old 27-08-2015, 12:50   #17
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

After using various connectors over the years that seem to sometimes cause no problem and others seem to always need repair, I now solder when joining two to one, electrical grease and then shrink wrap, never had a fail with this technique.
A good portable gas soldering iron is a good investment, great for sealing synthetic chord/ rope as well.



Sent from my iPad.......i apologise for the auto corrects !!!
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Old 27-08-2015, 13:06   #18
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
For a boat, heat shrink IS the answer. Companies don't use it simply 'cuz it's too labor intensive, so they use the shortcut or mass produced product that may cost more in materials but is much less labor intensive.
Stu,

?

I just suggested an encapsolent , my spelling still stinks. Under ground cables have used that for years. Is it makes someone happy like me do both heat shrink then coat it.

Salt air I our enemy.
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Old 27-08-2015, 13:47   #19
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

I also had my nav light connections and also windlass controller connections in the anchor locker. I had no permanent luck until I drilled a few small holes in the rear of the anchor locker bulkhead and moved all the connections aft into the forward cabin. Now there is no way salt water can get into the wires. If you can, I suggest trying to move all connections out of the anchor locker where in my experience you can never win the battle with moisture.

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Old 27-08-2015, 14:41   #20
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

I also prefer a strip/bus bar. It offers a convenient point to test, trouble shoot, update or rig sometime temporary from. It's likely at night in some crappy conditions that I'll notice a running light not working and I want it to be as easy as possible to trouble shoot and fix.
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Old 27-08-2015, 15:41   #21
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

When sourcing heat shrink connectors, be aware there are two different types.

The common heat shrink connector is simply a standard compression connector (or splice) that has a heat shrink jacket in place of the usual
plain plastic sleeve.

The better heat shrink connectors have an interior filling of expanding glue that melts as the outer jacket shrinks, resulting in a much more watertight
seal.

I have used the expanding glue style butt splices in wet and difficult areas for years with good results.
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Old 27-08-2015, 18:41   #22
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

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A low temp hot glue gun will ensure you get that perfect seal. .
Do you actually use the standard glue? This seems like a great idea. Is this durable?
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Old 27-08-2015, 18:57   #23
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

All good ideas however I have a different take on wiring up running lights.

I have run the 2 wires of EACH light (port, starboard, stern) right back to the switch panel. There the negative wires are terminated on the negative bus bar while the 3 positive wires go to individual poles on a 4 pole switch. They then go to individual fuses and finally to the positive bus.

This way each light is protected by an individual fuse yet operated by one switch. The fourth pole of the switch goes to the compass light.
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Old 27-08-2015, 21:26   #24
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

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Do you actually use the standard glue? This seems like a great idea. Is this durable?
Seems to be, three or four years now, mine you I'm in fresh water but it's still sealed.

First got the idea when my daughter left a small craft glue gun plugged in and the hot glue ran over the work table and into drawer where I had some old wire.
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Old 28-08-2015, 06:20   #25
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, wildsailor.
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Old 28-08-2015, 09:42   #26
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

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Originally Posted by ex-12m-guy View Post
When sourcing heat shrink connectors, be aware there are two different types.

The common heat shrink connector is simply a standard compression connector (or splice) that has a heat shrink jacket in place of the usual
plain plastic sleeve.

The better heat shrink connectors have an interior filling of expanding glue that melts as the outer jacket shrinks, resulting in a much more watertight
seal.

I have used the expanding glue style butt splices in wet and difficult areas for years with good results.
yes, the heavy duty ones with that goop in them are bulletproof. That's what I was referring to (poorly!) when I said "heat shrink". There is also that self amalgamating rubber tape used in high voltage applications... once wrapped on it's tougher than anything else. Commercial electricians use it on 600 volt cable the size of battery cable.
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Old 30-08-2015, 07:19   #27
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Re: Wiring up Running lights

The self-fusing tape is Scotch (3M) number 23, available in various widths. For those unfamiliar with this material, it comes in a roll with "liner" of clear plastic tape that prevents the tape from fusing into a solid mass.

To apply the tape, cut off the desired length, peel off the clear liner tape, and stretch the black tape about 25% before wrapping a joint. After the tape is applied, it can be molded by hand to conform to most any shape. The tape will fuse into a solid coating over the space of a few hours.

The tape is EPR rubber, and is intended for outdoor use. It is marvelous stuff, but unfortunately quite expensive.
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Old 30-08-2015, 09:41   #28
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Re: Wiring up Running lights


Well, if you really want to do it right... 3M makes (made?) heat-shrink connectors like this for NASA. Gas-tight, water-tight, permanent connectors. What you see are three rings of solder inside the heat shrink, which is also generously adhesive lined. You insert one wire from each end, hold up an infra-red heat source, and the solder melts, forming a positive electrical connection, then the outer jacket shrinks, providing the gas-tight seal. No air, no water, nothing gets through. No extra products or steps needed.


Damfino what they are properly called, I don't have the original box at hand.


Of course that starts the whole solder-vs-crimp debate again, but NASA used to require the damned things, and I'm told very little vibrates as badly as a Saturn rocket in full acceleration.(G)
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