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Old 05-08-2022, 15:11   #76
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Re: Electrical Panel replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joli View Post
We're interested in making the move to digital switching. The idea of main power lines run down both sides of the hull and feeding a digital switch that can be controlled by a NMEA network is tempting. It would allow for wire reduction and a simpler system. With something like a bypass module added to the mix I don't really see the risk. The boat is already very integrated with NMEA 2000 tying everything together and we rely heavily on electronics to drive the boat in all conditions. Black boxes run much of the boat today.

Some items like windlasses and bow thrusters are wired directly to the batteries with fuses within 6 inches and breakers further down stream.

Anyway, we're exploring.
This is an idea I've been thinking about, off and on, for many years. Seems like you would need main power lines down each side of the hull with NMEA switches for each 12V device (lights, fans, pumps etc etc, anything not centrally located.
  • Are there PGM's to turn a remote switch on and off?
  • Can each item be identified uniquely?
  • Can you place switches centrally and a local switch also (turn on cabin light centrally or in the cabin)
  • Could you have several switches on the backbone, in various places, to control a device (turn on the deck lights from the helm or dodger or nav table)
  • could one switch be electronic so that you could rotate a dial, select from a menu, or punch in a device name and control any device one the boat from one place with a single switch?
  • could the system have error codes if a device does not take any current, (like burned out)? Or unusually high current?
  • Can the NMEA also light up an led on the panel so you see what is on anywhere?
  • The switches need embedded breakers and manual options in the event that the NMEA2000 backbone is down. Switches could be designed and built modularly.
  • The system needs connectors which can be added to a cable run for another switch when you install another device.
  • Are there already produced switches that respond to NMEA PGN's?
  • We might need a 120v (or 240v) cable run and switches which could handle that voltage. Perhaps all the cable runs should be 240 volt and the switches include a converter to 12V (or 24v) (modular). Then your stove, your cabin lights, your whatever, could be powered by one run of electricity.
)

Once I thought about Bluetooth control but NMEA 2000 seems better.

My "simple" little boat has four cable runs with bundles bigger than my arm. I'd think that reducing that to two or four heavy cables would be better and if it was 240v then the cables could be quite small.
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Old 05-08-2022, 17:04   #77
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Re: Electrical Panel replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
This is an idea I've been thinking about, off and on, for many years. Seems like you would need main power lines down each side of the hull with NMEA switches for each 12V device (lights, fans, pumps etc etc, anything not centrally located.
  • Are there PGM's to turn a remote switch on and off?
  • Can each item be identified uniquely?
  • Can you place switches centrally and a local switch also (turn on cabin light centrally or in the cabin)
  • Could you have several switches on the backbone, in various places, to control a device (turn on the deck lights from the helm or dodger or nav table)
  • could one switch be electronic so that you could rotate a dial, select from a menu, or punch in a device name and control any device one the boat from one place with a single switch?
  • could the system have error codes if a device does not take any current, (like burned out)? Or unusually high current?
  • Can the NMEA also light up an led on the panel so you see what is on anywhere?
  • The switches need embedded breakers and manual options in the event that the NMEA2000 backbone is down. Switches could be designed and built modularly.
  • The system needs connectors which can be added to a cable run for another switch when you install another device.
  • Are there already produced switches that respond to NMEA PGN's?
  • We might need a 120v (or 240v) cable run and switches which could handle that voltage. Perhaps all the cable runs should be 240 volt and the switches include a converter to 12V (or 24v) (modular). Then your stove, your cabin lights, your whatever, could be powered by one run of electricity.
)

Once I thought about Bluetooth control but NMEA 2000 seems better.

My "simple" little boat has four cable runs with bundles bigger than my arm. I'd think that reducing that to two or four heavy cables would be better and if it was 240v then the cables could be quite small.
I think the advantage would be you run power (maybe a 4 Gage wire) from the batteries along each side (this is where our current bundle of wires run) and terminate on a digital switching unit. Then to the next digital switching unit... We would probably have 3 digital switches per side. Negative would go to a terminal strip and the feeds from the digital switching would go to a terminal strip.
These would feed whatever device you want. You can also add physical switches powered by the digital switching. A control could be placed anywhere. We already have NMEA running around the hull in these wiring runs.

https://www.maretron.com/products/mpower.php
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