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[ Active Members: 2 | Guests: 137 ]  [ Total: 139 ]  [ Newest Member: colrhino ]
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 Doing Brain Surgery on a SeaRay 270DA
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Author Previous Topic: Novice DC Electric Question Topic Next Topic: Wix oil filters instead of OEM (Volvo Diesel)  


RO# 385

Posted - Mar 31 2010 :  22:13:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I had fuse blocks and feeds scattered all over the boat. I had extra bilge pumps, assorted helm accesories. I really did'nt like the way the hot buss was set up either as it was weak on the buss bar. So I decided to do brain sugery. I was going to remove the old panel and install a new Blue Sea 360 panel. So I ordered a custom panel. What a work of art. I had "ignition protected CB's installed. I split the hot buss in two with one to the #1 battery and the other to the number two battery. I put two bilge pumps on number one buss one, the others on number two buss. The hot buss CB's were ganged together by a 3/8 inch thick tinned buss bar.

Here is the old panel where I started from and a Perko switch.

Here is the new panel after I wired it up, note the exposed buss bars.

So decided to insulate the exposed buss bars with some mica. Here is the result.

I made a frame for the panel as I needed it to be "lifted off" the original mount to create clearance behind. I made the frame out of Starboard, then I hinged it on another frame. Here it is all mounted up.

By removing the upper and lower screws, the panel pivots on the hinge for easy maintenance.

Now the beauty of this thing is it is easily maintained, it is scalable as I have 7 more positions for new circuits, it is backlit, and it has power on LEDs for each breaker. Each side is rated for 100 amps on the hot bus. The other non ganged breakers represent the switched DC items. I added a new 50 amp switched DC buss (doubling the capacity of the existing bilge harness) and a new 20 amp hot buss under the helm (for things like the clock, CO detectors etc)

One of the things that aggravates me about the "Perko Switch" is you have to leave the helm to control them. So I purchased new Blue Sea ML series remote control battery switches. I installed 4 of them. One for the two main batteries, one for the genny battery and a parallel that ties the genny battery to the main DC so I can jump the main engine off the genny battery or vice versa. This required all new DC wiring from the batteries to the DC panel. So I created a new panel to handle this.

As you can see, each of the batteries flow to a switch, off each switch, the hot side goes through some Blue Sea 185 series breakers (to comply with ABYC 7 inch requirement.) The switched side goes to a BEP 703-500 buss bar.

The net result of this is I removed, get this, 7 feet of cable run from each battery. Talk about a power difference!

Obviously you need to control these switches and the control circuit wiring could have been problematic. I used AMP CPC connector to keep the wiring straight. I can disconnect the control wiring easily from the control board.

I also used this connector between the helm control switch panel and the control wiring making the entire control circuitry modular.

Here is the helm control.

So now I can control each battery and the interconnect between them and the main DC system from the helm. No more "Perko Switch!"

As an added benefit, you can lock you the ML battery switch to prevent accidental engine actuation with a simple nylon tie wrap

A few more things to do. I have new custom labels coming to finish off the panels. I have to reinstall my Blue Sea digital DC multimeter.

What amazed me, is everything worked perfectly on the first power up on the bench, and after installation in the boat. The difference in the DC power delivered to the accesories is amazing. The bilge blowers blow like a hurricane. Amazing what removing 7 feet of battery cable will do!

"The trouble with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money."... Margaret Thatcher

Homeport: Lake Lanier, GA


RO# 3238

Posted - Mar 31 2010 :  22:44:08  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sometimes, being a bit OCD is a good thing!

Pretty. And functional.

As to reducing cable length ( and/or increasing wire dia ) most folks do not understand wiring enough to know about wire losses. Shortening a high current cable can make a dramatic difference. I know that on my boat, after I brought it up to my standards, all the mechs though that my voltmeter was off, due to the high readings under virtually all conditions!

I'm sure you will be glad you did it.


I once mentioned the above statement to a craps dealer and she quickly responded, "No, that should be 'CDO'. It needs to be in alphabetic order...'"


"No matter where you go, there you are." -- Buckaroo Bonzai
"There is nothing, absolutely nothing, half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats." - Kenneth Grahame

Homeport: MS Gulf Coast Go to Top of Page

marathon man

RO# 23428

Posted - Mar 31 2010 :  23:02:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sweeeeeet! Very nice work.

Homeport: Ketchum, Grand Lake O' The Cherokees Go to Top of Page


RO# 10503

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  00:19:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
In all my years of installations, I don't think I ever did anything that good looking.

Homeport: AL. Go to Top of Page


RO# 5128

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  05:42:32  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nice looking work GB, but can it fly?

Homeport: Moore Co. NC Go to Top of Page


RO# 23427

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  07:52:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Very nice job

2004 Regal 3860 Hard Top
"Sol Poniente"

2004 Regal 3060
Twin Volvo 5.0 GXI, DP

Homeport: New Orleans, La. Go to Top of Page


RO# 12803

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  09:53:55  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Even though the wiring is in a water tight air tight box there will be no problems with icing on the terminal connections.


Homeport: Go to Top of Page


RO# 20095

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  12:06:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I've run into GeeBee on the dock a few times over the last week or so and have seem him working on his boat. I just can't wait for him to show the pics where he's added the wings to her and the new engine package he has added to her (he mentioned something about an old jet he had laying around).

He was even nice enough to loan us a few lifejackets for a sea trial on a boat I'm selling on his dock since the owner had stripped all the jackets off the boat prior to sea trial!!! Thanks again Greg- they should be closing tomorrow so you may have some new dock neighbors this weekend.

~~Let's see...1987 Bayliner 4588 & 1995 Boston Whaler 17' Dauntless, and a few other water toys~~

Homeport: GA Go to Top of Page


RO# 12803

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  14:05:36  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Judging by the craftsmanship I think it wiil fly. He did an excellent job of the wiring. Thanks for the pictures GeeBee.


Homeport: Go to Top of Page


RO# 385

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  14:54:15  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Woodstock, my pleasure on the life jackets....uhhh...did I give you my banking info for direct deposit of my share of the commission since I saved the sea trial Just kidding.

Well guys I do admit being a little OC but....oh excuse me, I have to wash my hands again.

"The trouble with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money."... Margaret Thatcher

Homeport: Lake Lanier, GA Go to Top of Page


RO# 12640

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  16:00:20  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looks great Greg glad to hear your out and about.


And always remember, life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by those moments that take our breath away.

George Carlin

Homeport: Go to Top of Page


RO# 4570

Posted - Apr 01 2010 :  18:16:24  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey .. I can promise you if Greg did it it is perfect!!!


Homeport: Fayetteville, Ga Go to Top of Page


RO# 7934

Posted - Apr 19 2011 :  14:17:42  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Beautiful Job GeeBee... Wish mine looked like that but it would cost more to redo it than the boat is worth!!!

Willie: Look Ma no paddle!

Homeport: Tampa Bay, FL Go to Top of Page
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