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Old 11-19-2019, 06:29 PM   #1
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mainship 34 2005 trawler lighting question

Hi Mates, I just realised the my 2005 mainship 34 trawler ( Bought in May this year in Australia ) has two docking lights at stern below all round light facing back! I wonder is this the normal light arrangement in US? pls see the photos. The other question is it normal they are on all the time when I switched on " bridge main" on Main DC Distribution Panel?
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Old 11-20-2019, 06:52 AM   #2
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All 34Ts I've seen have these lights. There should be a switch for them by the upper helm labeled SPREADER LIGHT (if I recall correctly).
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Old 11-20-2019, 10:16 AM   #3
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The one is a navigation light. AKA, underway and at anchor.
The other 2 are spreader lights.
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Old 11-20-2019, 11:39 AM   #4
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Not Docking Lights. Just Spreader Lights. Feel free to use for anything you like. No, they should not be tied to the Uppe rHelm Breaker. There should be a switch dedicated to them.
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Old 11-20-2019, 04:31 PM   #5
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The upper helm switches are not well labeled. I believe the red circled switch is the one for the spreader lights. This is on my 400, which might be similar to the 34.
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Old 11-20-2019, 06:48 PM   #6
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Yep, mine aren't labeled either. I've never been able to discern what the "bridge main" breaker does. Everything on my FB works wether it is on or not.

Mainship wiring is less than ideal.
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Old 11-20-2019, 06:54 PM   #7
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Yep, mine aren't labeled either. I've never been able to discern what the "bridge main" breaker does. Everything on my FB works wether it is on or not.

Mainship wiring is less than ideal.
Maybe pull the panel and see how the main breaker is wired into the panel. Strange that things work whether it is on or off.
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Old 11-20-2019, 08:24 PM   #8
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All 34Ts I've seen have these lights. There should be a switch for them by the upper helm labeled SPREADER LIGHT (if I recall correctly).
Thank you again. The other question: Is it normal that "DC Main" on DC Distribution Panel doesn't over ride the " Bridge Main" ?
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Old 11-21-2019, 06:41 AM   #9
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Thank you again. The other question: Is it normal that "DC Main" on DC Distribution Panel doesn't over ride the " Bridge Main" ?
That is something I never bothered to dig into. My pattern was to turn them both on or both off.
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Old 11-21-2019, 10:19 AM   #10
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Yep, mine aren't labeled either. I've never been able to discern what the "bridge main" breaker does. Everything on my FB works wether it is on or not.

Mainship wiring is less than ideal.
That is not factory. In fact, Mainship actually does an excellent job of wiring. It is very easy for a DIY who isn't familiar with 12V to accidentally make the bus on the bridge 'hot' by wiring a positive to the wrong side of the bus (inbound side rather than outbound side).

I would be dissecting the upper helm wiring. When this occurs, it is almost always done with a gauge of wire that is only sized for a single circuit, not the entire helm.

If you always turn on the upper bridge breaker, then the draw comes from the main positive that feeds the bridge. However, if you forget, then you could over load the circuit that is accidentally feeding the bridge.

I would make this project a priority because I strongly suspect this is not wired correctly.
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Old 11-21-2019, 03:06 PM   #11
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That is not factory. In fact, Mainship actually does an excellent job of wiring. It is very easy for a DIY who isn't familiar with 12V to accidentally make the bus on the bridge 'hot' by wiring a positive to the wrong side of the bus (inbound side rather than outbound side).

I would be dissecting the upper helm wiring. When this occurs, it is almost always done with a gauge of wire that is only sized for a single circuit, not the entire helm.

If you always turn on the upper bridge breaker, then the draw comes from the main positive that feeds the bridge. However, if you forget, then you could over load the circuit that is accidentally feeding the bridge.

I would make this project a priority because I strongly suspect this is not wired correctly.

On my boat it was done at the factory, or possibly the dealer. My boat had one owner prior to us, he basically never used the boat in 8 years (160 hours on the engines) and made zero additions, repairs or upgrades. Heck, the plastic wrap was still on the mattress. I know that I haven't made that modification either. I guess it is possible that the electronics installer may have done something like that when the boat was new. I've had to go back and clean up a few things that were kind of funny with that. Ie, the autopilot control head and brain stayed on all the time, there was no switch wired into the system.



I've never worried about it too much, I just leave the bridge main breaker on. The DC main doesn't override the bridge main on my boat either.


I get what you are saying though, and see how it could be an issue. I'll take a look at it. Thanks for the heads up.


My biggest issue with Mainship's rigging is that they rigged every boat the same. My boat has miles of factory installed unused wiring in it. Most of the switches on my upper helm (radar, loran, depth etc.) are wired but aren't used. Also, the rigging tube from the ER to the FB is a terrible design. Accessing the lower end is really tough, and the tube is CRAMMED with wire, much of it unused as per my above. I had a devil of a time running a transducer cable up there when I replaced my electronics.


My cabin lights are also wired kind of squirrely. The wall switch in the fwd cabin for the overhead lights doesn't do anything at all. It's got wires running to it, and when I check it for continuity it is functioning, but the lights turn on and off at the fixture no matter which position the wall switch is in. Even with the switch not installed they still work, so it's obviously not part of the circuit. Tracing the wiring would involve tearing up the walls and headliner, so I just live with it.


There is an AC outlet in the summer kitchen. My boat didn't come with an electric grill in the summer kitchen though there is a breaker for one on my panel. I assume the grill plugs into that outlet, so the breaker should turn it off, but I can't find that the breaker does anything at all and the summer kitchen outlet is tied in with the "outlets 2" breaker.



There is a wired sender on the port fuel tank, but it's not tied to the fuel gauge, only the stb tank is wired to the gauge, so there is no way to tell how much fuel is in the port tank which is problematic because the genset pulls from that side. I could open the crossover valve and treat both tanks as one big one, but I prefer not to do that.



It's stuff like that that makes me say the wiring is less than ideal. Maybe my boat was rigged by the B team in St. Augustine.
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Old 11-21-2019, 03:21 PM   #12
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My cabin lights are also wired kind of squirrely. The wall switch in the fwd cabin for the overhead lights doesn't do anything at all. It's got wires running to it, and when I check it for continuity it is functioning, but the lights turn on and off at the fixture no matter which position the wall switch is in. Even with the switch not installed they still work, so it's obviously not part of the circuit. Tracing the wiring would involve tearing up the walls and headliner, so I just live with it.
That is very odd. It's like they tied the light circuit into the positive lead to the switch, not the switch itself. This is relying on the onboard switch on the light fixture itself. Were switched lights stock in 05? They weren't in 99. This sounds like a PO tired of groping around for the light switch.

That is why the courtesy light for both staterooms and the head is at the top of the stairs. Hit the courtesy light going down the stairs regardless of your destination. Then each space has enough light to find and hit the ceiling lights for that space. It's almost like they PO was trying to solve a problem that didn't really exist.

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There is an AC outlet in the summer kitchen. My boat didn't come with an electric grill in the summer kitchen though there is a breaker for one on my panel. I assume the grill plugs into that outlet, so the breaker should turn it off, but I can't find that the breaker does anything at all and the summer kitchen outlet is tied in with the "outlets 2" breaker.
The electric grill would have needed it's own 15 or 20 amp circuit. The outlet and grill would have been on different circuits. Provided the external outlet is GFCI, then I doubt the number of outlets exceeds the spec for a 15 amp circuit.


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There is a wired sender on the port fuel tank, but it's not tied to the fuel gauge, only the stb tank is wired to the gauge, so there is no way to tell how much fuel is in the port tank which is problematic because the genset pulls from that side. I could open the crossover valve and treat both tanks as one big one, but I prefer not to do that.
If you have two fuel gauges, then this is easily rectified. I can't imagine why the factory would wire the sender and simply not connect the gauge. Again this sounds like a PO or mechanic in the middle of troubleshooting.
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Old 11-21-2019, 04:31 PM   #13
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That is very odd. It's like they tied the light circuit into the positive lead to the switch, not the switch itself. This is relying on the onboard switch on the light fixture itself. Were switched lights stock in 05? They weren't in 99. This sounds like a PO tired of groping around for the light switch.


My guess is that they are stock, they appear to be.


That is why the courtesy light for both staterooms and the head is at the top of the stairs. Hit the courtesy light going down the stairs regardless of your destination. Then each space has enough light to find and hit the ceiling lights for that space. It's almost like they PO was trying to solve a problem that didn't really exist.








The electric grill would have needed it's own 15 or 20 amp circuit. The outlet and grill would have been on different circuits. Provided the external outlet is GFCI, then I doubt the number of outlets exceeds the spec for a 15 amp circuit.


Makes sense. I guess the grill was hard wired. I think being a factory line build Maniship put all the wiring into each boat, whether it was going to be used or not. I understand the cost savings, but it gets in the way later.





If you have two fuel gauges, then this is easily rectified. I can't imagine why the factory would wire the sender and simply not connect the gauge. Again this sounds like a PO or mechanic in the middle of troubleshooting.

I have a single gauge at each helm. There is a switch at the lower helm that activates either the lower or the upper gauge, but it is only fed from the stb side sender.



In a related note, the sender on my stb tank has failed, but it is impossible to remove without cutting a hole in the floor of the cabinet under the galley sink. I'm going to do that eventually but in the meantime I just track engine hours and keep plenty of fuel in the tanks. I also might install a gauge in the ER that reads off of the port tank. No need to look at it all the time, so it doesn't have to be at the helm. I've considered sight gauges, but I don't really want to cut into the tanks.



Our boat's PO bought it new then didn't do anything at all to it. He is quite wealthy, lives in 4 different houses and bought it as a toy that he never played with. When we bought the boat it was in the yard where it had been since it was new. I kept the boat there for a few months after we bought it and got to know the yard manager. He told me that no one ever did anything to the boat other than a couple of oil changes. So I doubt there was much fiddling with the electrical system going on. Even the batteries were original to the boat...8 years old.



Our buyer's broker, who is a good friend, found the boat for us. The PO was hot to buy another new boat and just wanted ours gone. We offered him 30% below his asking price and about 25% below market value, cash, boat gone in 36 hours. He took it with no negotiation. Our broker is also a surveyor, and like I said, a friend who I trust. He and I went over the boat very carefully but didn't do a formal survey. It was risky, but 7 years later it has worked out OK. A few issues related to marine age/lack of use, but overall a very sound boat.


But yeah, I'm pretty sure most of the messed up stuff came from Mainship.
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Old 11-21-2019, 09:58 PM   #14
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I have a single gauge at each helm. There is a switch at the lower helm that activates either the lower or the upper gauge, but it is only fed from the stb side sender.



In a related note, the sender on my stb tank has failed, but it is impossible to remove without cutting a hole in the floor of the cabinet under the galley sink. I'm going to do that eventually but in the meantime I just track engine hours and keep plenty of fuel in the tanks. I also might install a gauge in the ER that reads off of the port tank. No need to look at it all the time, so it doesn't have to be at the helm. I've considered sight gauges, but I don't really want to cut into the tanks.



Our boat's PO bought it new then didn't do anything at all to it. He is quite wealthy, lives in 4 different houses and bought it as a toy that he never played with. When we bought the boat it was in the yard where it had been since it was new. I kept the boat there for a few months after we bought it and got to know the yard manager. He told me that no one ever did anything to the boat other than a couple of oil changes. So I doubt there was much fiddling with the electrical system going on. Even the batteries were original to the boat...8 years old.



Our buyer's broker, who is a good friend, found the boat for us. The PO was hot to buy another new boat and just wanted ours gone. We offered him 30% below his asking price and about 25% below market value, cash, boat gone in 36 hours. He took it with no negotiation. Our broker is also a surveyor, and like I said, a friend who I trust. He and I went over the boat very carefully but didn't do a formal survey. It was risky, but 7 years later it has worked out OK. A few issues related to marine age/lack of use, but overall a very sound boat.


But yeah, I'm pretty sure most of the messed up stuff came from Mainship.
Hi, I also have a single gauge at both helms. But the gauge won't be activated unless the engines started. Is it normal?
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Old 11-22-2019, 06:44 AM   #15
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Hi, I also have a single gauge at both helms. But the gauge won't be activated unless the engines started. Is it normal?
Depends upon the gauge readout. Not uncommon to have the various gauges not coming up unless the engine is running ie oil pressure, temp, water temp, etc.
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:33 AM   #16
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On my boat it was done at the factory, or possibly the dealer. My boat had one owner prior to us, he basically never used the boat in 8 years (160 hours on the engines) and made zero additions, repairs or upgrades. Heck, the plastic wrap was still on the mattress. I know that I haven't made that modification either. I guess it is possible that the electronics installer may have done something like that when the boat was new. I've had to go back and clean up a few things that were kind of funny with that. Ie, the autopilot control head and brain stayed on all the time, there was no switch wired into the system.



I've never worried about it too much, I just leave the bridge main breaker on. The DC main doesn't override the bridge main on my boat either.


I get what you are saying though, and see how it could be an issue. I'll take a look at it. Thanks for the heads up.


My biggest issue with Mainship's rigging is that they rigged every boat the same. My boat has miles of factory installed unused wiring in it. Most of the switches on my upper helm (radar, loran, depth etc.) are wired but aren't used. Also, the rigging tube from the ER to the FB is a terrible design. Accessing the lower end is really tough, and the tube is CRAMMED with wire, much of it unused as per my above. I had a devil of a time running a transducer cable up there when I replaced my electronics.


My cabin lights are also wired kind of squirrely. The wall switch in the fwd cabin for the overhead lights doesn't do anything at all. It's got wires running to it, and when I check it for continuity it is functioning, but the lights turn on and off at the fixture no matter which position the wall switch is in. Even with the switch not installed they still work, so it's obviously not part of the circuit. Tracing the wiring would involve tearing up the walls and headliner, so I just live with it.
That's pretty odd, on mine, a 2004, the main stateroom wall switch definitely controls the ceiling lights.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dougcole View Post
There is an AC outlet in the summer kitchen. My boat didn't come with an electric grill in the summer kitchen though there is a breaker for one on my panel. I assume the grill plugs into that outlet, so the breaker should turn it off, but I can't find that the breaker does anything at all and the summer kitchen outlet is tied in with the "outlets 2" breaker.
I have the electric grill at the summer kitchen and it is plugged in underneath, however it is tied in to the same breaker as the range, which I thought was odd since I bet they both pull a few amps.


Quote:
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There is a wired sender on the port fuel tank, but it's not tied to the fuel gauge, only the stb tank is wired to the gauge, so there is no way to tell how much fuel is in the port tank which is problematic because the genset pulls from that side. I could open the crossover valve and treat both tanks as one big one, but I prefer not to do that.
I leave the crossover open...what is your reasoning for not wanting it open?



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It's stuff like that that makes me say the wiring is less than ideal. Maybe my boat was rigged by the B team in St. Augustine.
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Old 11-22-2019, 12:37 PM   #17
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and then, there is my one mysterious light switch. I turn it on, nothing happens on my boat but, my neighbor's engine starts up.
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Old 11-22-2019, 02:32 PM   #18
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and then, there is my one mysterious light switch. I turn it on, nothing happens on my boat but, my neighbor's engine starts up.
Ah, so you are the culprit!
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Old 11-22-2019, 03:37 PM   #19
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We have owned our current boat for over 4 years. There are several switches that I still donít know what they are hooked up to. But so far whatever they activate has not been needed...
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Old 11-22-2019, 04:13 PM   #20
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That's pretty odd, on mine, a 2004, the main stateroom wall switch definitely controls the ceiling lights.




I have the electric grill at the summer kitchen and it is plugged in underneath, however it is tied in to the same breaker as the range, which I thought was odd since I bet they both pull a few amps.




I leave the crossover open...what is your reasoning for not wanting it open?
I think there are good reasons to do it both ways, I've debated both sides in my mind. So I'm in no way saying you should switch. But here's why I keep it closed.

Port motor pulls from and returns to the port tank, as does the genset. ATB pulls from and returns to stb tank. It's easy to envision and easy to trace.

If one tank got dirty (that happened to me once) then both aren't contaminated.

My boat is prone to listing. As we burn fuel with the genset it lists to stb. Liquid finds its own level, so fuel would actually flow from the emptier side to the Fuller one. Or at least that's how Ive seen it work on my boat.

So I keep it closed. It could be the wrong move, it's just how I do it.
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