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Old 01-31-2012, 07:46 AM   #1
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Battery Wire

Looking for any pointers and suppliers for buying battery wire for my Winter Project. I was originally thinking to stick with Quick Cable from Grainger, but it doesn't appear that they carry the marine wire and they only sell it in 25' lengths.I'll still use them for the QC lugs though.

If I properly tin the ends and adhesive shrink them, do I really need the smaller stranded marine wire? It's not going thru any places where it can get nicked but one and I will sheath it there.

Where are some good places to get good wire at a competitive prices should I go with marine grade?

Thanks,

Tom-
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Old 01-31-2012, 08:13 AM   #2
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RE: Battery Wire

Welding cable is often used. I wouldn't put it in a "wet" location. (the wire that is)
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Old 01-31-2012, 08:55 AM   #3
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RE: Battery Wire

One downside of using anything but tinned marine wire is that if you ever try to sell the boat and the surveyor notices that it doesn't say marine wire on the insulation he will write it up as a must fix. Now you're doing the job over, or paying for it in a negotiated price change of the boat.

Bestboatwire.com (I think that's the name) has the right wire for much less $ than I've found anywhere else. If you're going to do it, you may as well do it right even if it stings the wallet a little more right now.

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Old 01-31-2012, 09:21 AM   #4
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RE: Battery Wire

I have purchased wire here. Reasonable prices and fast shipping.

*

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Old 01-31-2012, 09:25 AM   #5
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RE: Battery Wire

Quote:
2bucks wrote:
One downside of using anything but tinned marine wire is that if you ever try to sell the boat and the surveyor notices that it doesn't say marine wire on the insulation he will write it up as a must fix.
If a "surveyor" ever tried to pull that stunt he would find himself ingloriously tossed ashore and reported to his accreditation group as ignorant and incompetent.

There is no requirement for "tinned wire" or a label reading "marine wire" in ABYC or CG regulations.

You guys need to stop imposing non existent regulations on yourselves and giving little plastic hammer surveyors the idea that they write rules and can get away with economic murder because their clients don't know any better.

From much of what I read here, many owners can save themselves the cost of an ABYC standards book pretty quickly when confronted by a so called surveyor or when doing their own work.

Also, download 33CFR 183 and read it. Look up the standards referenced in the reg.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:18 AM   #6
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RE: Battery Wire

Thank you Rick.

I once had a surveyor "write me up" on a survey because I had a fire extinguisher mounted in the cockpit*(protected from the elements). He told me that once BOAT US saw it they would send me a cancellation notice.

I never got that notice by the way.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:18 AM   #7
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RE: Battery Wire

Quote:
dvd wrote:
I have purchased wire here. Reasonable prices and fast shipping.
Interesting... Looks EXACTLY like this site:

http://gregsmarinewiresupply.com/Zen/ (new tab)

That makes me a tad suspicious.

Nevertheless, I was going to seal up the lug ends with shrink anyway. The only issue I might have is the flexibility because I don't know how tight some of the bends might be and the thinner stranded wire is a bit more "bendy". ;-)

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Old 01-31-2012, 03:17 PM   #8
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RE: Battery Wire

Hmmm. It is the same company -- different website name, same geographical address and contact info. Dunno. I've ordered from them and received excellent service.

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Old 01-31-2012, 03:22 PM   #9
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RE: Battery Wire

genuinedealz.com.

Best prices I have found.

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Old 01-31-2012, 05:12 PM   #10
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RE: Battery Wire

Quote:
RickB wrote:2bucks wrote:
One downside of using anything but tinned marine wire is that if you ever try to sell the boat and the surveyor notices that it doesn't say marine wire on the insulation he will write it up as a must fix.
If a "surveyor" ever tried to pull that stunt he would find himself ingloriously tossed ashore and reported to his accreditation group as ignorant and incompetent.

There is no requirement for "tinned wire" or a label reading "marine wire" in ABYC or CG regulations.

You guys need to stop imposing non existent regulations on yourselves and giving little plastic hammer surveyors the idea that they write rules and can get away with economic murder because their clients don't know any better.

From much of what I read here, many owners can save themselves the cost of an ABYC standards book pretty quickly when confronted by a so called surveyor or when doing their own work.

Also, download 33CFR 183 and read it. Look up the standards referenced in the reg.

*Notice I didn't say it was right, I said it happens. Most of us won't spend the cost of an ABYC book to*"prove" the issue,*and the insurance company simply requires you to fix every exception the surveyor writes.

Generally speaking, it's the buyers surveyor who writes the report and you the seller don't even see it unless the buyer wants you to. You may be there to make sure the surveyor is "ingloriously tossed ashore"*if the surveyor mentions it while doing the survey, and you hear it,*but that's an if.

Obviously if they attempt to re-negotiate the price then you'll have your say about what you think of the surveyor. Whom the buyer believes is*correct and whether the buyer is interested in fighting the surveyor and the insurance company in order to buy your boat is another hurdle to jump over.

There are plenty of windmills to tilt at, this ain't one that piques my interest.

Ken

*

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Old 01-31-2012, 08:12 PM   #11
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RE: Battery Wire

If the buyer's surveyor decides to rewrite the rulebook there is no reason for you to fear your insurance company. If the buyer gets a snit about an item described by an incompetent surveyor as not meeting some "standard" then simply ask the buyer to have his "surveyor" show him the rule that your boat does not meet. It really is that simple. Your insurance company is not involved in a third party survey report, and you don't have to jump through home made hoops to satisfy a non existent "requirement."

If your surveyor tells you that your boat doesn't meet some standard, simply ask him to show you that standard. If the guy can't, then terminate the survey and pay him for the time he has spent. You don't need to deal with incompetent surveyors. If you somehow miss something that makes it to your insurance company and you know that the survey is wrong, (and as an owner you should either know or know where to find out) point that out in writing and reference the standards that actually apply.

You might think this is "tilting at windmills" and maybe you have thousands to throw away on incompetent surveyors makiing up rules that your insurance company blindly follows, but I don't think having some idiot throw my money away is not worth bothering with.

As a boat owner who pays the bills, you have a right to getting what you pay for from surveyors and contractors. You wouldn't let a yard waste your money on the wrong parts or other products, would you? Why so cavalier about a so called surveyor sticking it up your stern?

And for Heaven's sake, don't perpetuate the myths by posting warnings about stuff like that. After a while people begin to believe it is true ... even surveyors.
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Old 01-31-2012, 09:59 PM   #12
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Battery Wire

Part of my problem is I am a bit worried about off-the-shelf (ie: Auto Zone) battery cable, and it doesn't appear that "quality" marine dealers carry anything but the high-dollar tinned stuff. Sure would be nice if we had the option of non-tinned. That said, after seeing what I saw at West Marine in the electrical display, I am worried about Anchor brand anything. What I want is Quick Cable, but I can't find a per-foot dealer of it. *sigh* The search continues.


-- Edited by GonzoF1 on Tuesday 31st of January 2012 11:00:17 PM
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:44 PM   #13
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RE: Battery Wire

Tom, I would love to quote you on your battery cable. If you would send a list of what you need to hopcarmarine@yahoo.com I'll get right back to you. Like most marine dealers we only stock tinned wire but if you've been looking at Ancor wire I think you'll like the price I quote. I may even be able to get non tinned wire for you if that is what you want. The reason non tinned wire disappeared from marine dealers shelves is because Ancor did such a good job of marketing the idea of tinned wire that now boaters just won't buy enough of the non tinned to make it worth stocking.
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Old 02-01-2012, 07:31 AM   #14
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Battery Wire

Quote:
skipperdude wrote:
genuinedealz.com.

Best prices I have found.

SD

That is the vendor I use.

*

As for the queston "If I properly tin the ends and adhesive shrink them, do I really need the smaller stranded marine wire? It's not going thru any places where it can get nicked but one and I will sheath it there."

No, you can use romex from the home center.* It will work for a few days, a few weeks, possibly a few months, but if you're going to all the trouble and expense to wire your boat, why not do it properly so you don't have to worry about a failure or fire at a later date.

Marine cable is made the way it is for a reason.* Nobody is trying to cheat you by charging more for marine cable, it costs more to make cable that will survive the vibration and moisture that is typically found on boats.*

My suggestion - do it right or don't do it at all.
http://genuinedealz.com/

Will have everything you need and will even install the lugs on the cable for a dollar or so each.

-- Edited by rwidman on Wednesday 1st of February 2012 08:36:00 AM


-- Edited by rwidman on Wednesday 1st of February 2012 08:37:55 AM
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Old 02-01-2012, 08:30 AM   #15
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RE: Battery Wire

I would suspect that the ABYC would actually require it if it were actually a better/safer product to use. But according to what I have read, they do not. If you can point to where it says different, I'd love to see it (and be proven wrong). I am beginning to suspect that much of the industry is scamming us into using fully tinned wire. I've been working with and around electricity all my life. When I put on the thinking cap, how could moisture ever get to the middle of a 10' piece of wire? If the wire gets a chuck taken out of it that breeches the insulation to the stranding. THAT is why the ABYC states things like protection for wire passing thru bulkheads and properly anchoring wire as it travels thru the boat. It would take YEARS for ambient moisture to wick up a properly constructed cable (or submersion). The welding cable that has been in my boat for nearly 30 years doesn't have any major damage to it and I don't think it has been THAT well taken care of.

It's not that there are NOT place it would be an advantage, but in my case, I don't think it is.

I don't want to, in any way, start a flame thread about this. I just don't want to be forced - better yet... marketed into buying "marine grade" anything, when it's clearly not an advantage and a waste of money.

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Old 02-01-2012, 08:59 AM   #16
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RE: Battery Wire

In rigorous industrial applications, far more so than marine, tinning is not a discussion just application/design, covering*material makeup, extra non-conducting strength improvers*and thickness. Copper wire can suffer during manufacturing if drawn on the wrong equipment, at the wrong temperature or tensile pull.*

When I worked in the copper business, the knowledge and history from 120 years ago on how to make copper windings for motors and generators was remarkable. I never read anywhere that tinning was a godsend whereas the advantages of Ag in some applications were well known.

"Marine grade" can be a trap in some cases with the unwary willing to accept a crummy standard cast exhaust mixing elbow but insisting on tinned marine wire.*

Now, what is a better surveyors tool, a little plastic or a little brass/bronze hammer?
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Old 02-01-2012, 09:33 AM   #17
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RE: Battery Wire

I've dealt with this guy for both of my boat projects. Great prices, great service.

http://gregsmarinewiresupply.com/
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Old 02-01-2012, 10:06 AM   #18
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RE: Battery Wire

Quote:
RickB wrote:
If the buyer's surveyor decides to rewrite the rulebook there is no reason for you to fear your insurance company. If the buyer gets a snit about an item described by an incompetent surveyor as not meeting some "standard" then simply ask the buyer to have his "surveyor" show him the rule that your boat does not meet. It really is that simple. Your insurance company is not involved in a third party survey report, and you don't have to jump through home made hoops to satisfy a non existent "requirement." If your surveyor tells you that your boat doesn't meet some standard, simply ask him to show you that standard. If the guy can't, then terminate the survey and pay him for the time he has spent. You don't need to deal with incompetent surveyors. If you somehow miss something that makes it to your insurance company and you know that the survey is wrong, (and as an owner you should either know or know where to find out) point that out in writing and reference the standards that actually apply. You might think this is "tilting at windmills" and maybe you have thousands to throw away on incompetent surveyors makiing up rules that your insurance company blindly follows, but I don't think having some idiot throw my money away is not worth bothering with. As a boat owner who pays the bills, you have a right to getting what you pay for from surveyors and contractors. You wouldn't let a yard waste your money on the wrong parts or other products, would you? Why so cavalier about a so called surveyor sticking it up your stern? And for Heaven's sake, don't perpetuate the myths by posting warnings about stuff like that. After a while people begin to believe it is true ... even surveyors.
*Rick, you missed the point entirely. It's not YOUR surveyor. You can't fire the BUYERS surveyor. The BUYER decides who to believe. Is he going to jump thru hoops to question HIS expert because YOU said they're wrong? Not in this lifetime.*

It's not YOUR insurance company. It's the BUYERS insurance company. You don't have the option to prove to HIS insurance company that*HIS expert, and theirs by proxy,*is wrong.

Let's use an example. You've had your boat on the market for 2 years now. The market is soft. The prices are already lower than you ever thought they would be. You finally got a buyer that made an offer you could live with. It wasn't a full price offer, but you've been paying moorage, maintenance and service on the boat for 2 years that it's been for sale. His surveyor came back and said your battery wire wasn't up to snuff. He said it needed to be marine wire.

Your buyer is buying his first boat. He doesn't know the difference between marine wire and marine corps. His surveyor, the*non-biased expert which his broker, another boat expert,*recommended, said it was a problem and that he could be stranded somewhere in his new boat because the wire had corroded inside where it couldn't be seen, and now his engines won't start. He's told that a marine service call to have a mechanic come out and get his boat started, or to be towed back home could be in the thousands of dollars if this isn't fixed correctly. The experts have already*told the buyer that*they can't always tell everything about a boat, and that they aren't responsible if they missed anything or misstated anything about the boat, it's written right in the survey.

The buyer says he believes his two experts whom he is paying for their opinions.*Is he really going to believe you, because you brought out some book he's never heard of, pointed to a page with some sort of standard that he doesn't understand*and as the seller whom he instinctively distrusts, just because you're the seller, are telling him his experts are wrong?

Are you going to walk away from the $150,000 sale or are you going to give the buyer $1,000 to rewire the batteries that you saved $150 on by buying non-tinned wire?

It's not about right or wrong. It's not about telling that incompetant surveyor where to go. It's all about what actually happens in the real world with real surveyors and real buyers. There are lots of boats for sale and the broker makes just as much money from selling another boat as he makes from selling yours. He's probably going to take the buyer back to another boat they already looked at and convince him to make an offer on it.

The surveyor makes twice as much money when the buyer drops your boat and looks at another. He gets another complete survey job.

Can anyone point to a spot that they can't believe this scenario? Do you really think that because you can prove them wrong that you'll get a chance to? Are you willing to bet the cost of another months mortgage, moorage and maintenance on the $150 you saved?

Now, it's your boat, you can certainly do as you like. I'm just pointing out a possible outcome of saving money now and paying it back with gangster vigorish later.

ken

*

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Old 02-01-2012, 05:35 PM   #19
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Battery Wire

I got the point very clearly. If someone is surveying my boat I am going to be looking over his shoulder. If I see him make a note or if his client (the buyer) comes back and tells me I have to drop the price because his surveyor told him some non-existent requirement was not met I would ask him to have his surveyor prove that to him and offer to adjust accordingly if he can prove it, and when he can't my response is to just say "sorry Charlie, you have been taken for a ride by an amateur and I am not going to pay for the gas."

How far are you prepared to go playing this silly game? Will you call a halt when some surveyor tells a buyer that the wire should be silver and all terminals must be gold plated? Are you going to balk when the surveyor calls for full shielding and explosion proof j-boxes or intrinsically safe devices in your paint locker?

Like someone else mentioned, Ancor started this nonsense with tinned wire as a marketing ploy and a lot of people are still drinking the Kool-Aid.

My response to the buyer who demands I do something that is not a legal requirement is to tell him to find another boat. Who knows what else the idiot will come back with long after the sale. I don't need to waste time with those kind of buyers. They simply are not worth it.

For those in Seattle, there used to be a great marine surplus store on Harbor Island that sold navy surplus ship parts and is one of the biggest marine wire suppliers in the PNW. They sell by the foot and sell partial rolls left over from shipyard projects. This is the real deal marine wire as used on military vessels and commercial ships and meets or exceeds every standard in the industry and is about a 10th the price of boat store wire. None of it is tinned.


Just remembered it, Hardware Specialty is the place ... worth a visit just to look at the stuff. It is the nautical equivalent of what Boeing Surplus used to be.

-- Edited by RickB on Wednesday 1st of February 2012 06:43:10 PM
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Old 02-01-2012, 05:56 PM   #20
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RE: Battery Wire

I'm going to tilt at different windmills. It simply isn't enough money for me to not follow what I know to be a standard item on a surveyors checklist. When you rant long enough, at enough surveryors to get the practice stopped, I'll even say thank you. Until then I'll continue to buy tinned wire when I need it, and marine fuel hose when I need it, just because it makes a sale easier somewhere down the road.
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