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Old 12-17-2017, 11:02 AM   #1
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Broke a battery terminal

After all the work for the new flooring, the new battery boxes, cleaning and routing all the cables and wires.... I was checking things over last night and saw 2 large cables on a negative post of one of the 6V batteries that looked like it was loose. Upon further close investigation, the battery post is cracked at the base. Aaaaaaaaaaaarrg!

We're not cruising for a few months. Does anyone see a problem with leaving this battery hooked up at the dock?

Dave
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Old 12-17-2017, 11:17 AM   #2
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After all the work for the new flooring, the new battery boxes, cleaning and routing all the cables and wires.... I was checking things over last night and saw 2 large cables on a negative post of one of the 6V batteries that looked like it was loose. Upon further close investigation, the battery post is cracked at the base. Aaaaaaaaaaaarrg!

We're not cruising for a few months. Does anyone see a problem with leaving this battery hooked up at the dock?

Dave

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No, possible dead short or fire danger IMHO - when charging.

How old are the batteries? How many in the bank? Maybe just disconnect all but one if needed for pumps. Then use a small safe charger for that one.

Or bite the bullet and replace all in bank now.
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Old 12-17-2017, 11:54 AM   #3
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Ouch, what a pain!

Any ideas how it happened, so we can learn from your experience?

What make/model batts?
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Old 12-17-2017, 11:55 AM   #4
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I have 4 6V batteries, 2 in each bank, the 2 banks in parallel. All batteries are less than 2 years old.
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Old 12-17-2017, 12:00 PM   #5
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Ouch, what a pain!

Any ideas how it happened, so we can learn from your experience?

What make/model batts?
Interstate 6VHDU batteries. I'm going to assume it was my fault, as I had to wrangle those big cables pretty good, just had to much preload on them.

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Old 12-17-2017, 12:07 PM   #6
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Well lesson learned then. 8-)

I've heard of people using welding cables - much more flexible at heavy gauges - for things like jumper cables.

I wonder if OK, if just used for a short distance from the batt to the first buss bar / distribution point, easy to inspect as part of battery maintenance checklist.
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Old 12-17-2017, 12:20 PM   #7
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You're probably aware Interstate's not really true deep cycling? rated for maybe 5-600 cycles at 50% DoD

At that low price end of the market IMO the Duracell branded FLA GCs sold at BatteriesPlus or Sam's Club would be a big step up in quality, actually made by Deka/East Penn and likely lots cheaper!

The Trojan T-105s, especially RE version even more so, but those cost a fair bit more.
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Old 12-17-2017, 12:52 PM   #8
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Don't trust a broken battery lug. If it breaks no telling where it could go. Maybe cause a short to a pos. lug and you would have a serious problem.

Even if not shorted directly to a Pos. lug any sparking that results could explode a battery from the gassing.
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Old 12-17-2017, 04:38 PM   #9
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Well lesson learned then. 8-)

I've heard of people using welding cables - much more flexible at heavy gauges - for things like jumper cables.

I wonder if OK, if just used for a short distance from the batt to the first buss bar / distribution point, easy to inspect as part of battery maintenance checklist.
ABYC specifically rejects welding cables, they do not meet all the necessary requirements.
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Old 12-18-2017, 06:13 AM   #10
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For the low loads of sitting , drilling the top of the post and tapping the bottom and installing a COPPER bolt to hold it together should work fine.

Hardly OK for diesel starting amps , or even an inverter for an air cond , but to just charge to make up internal losses or an occasional bilge pump , why not?
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Old 12-18-2017, 06:18 AM   #11
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I have been informed that welding cable does meet ABYC requirements in the sense they arent specifically rulled out and any specs mentioned wouldn't necessarilly rule them out.

Anyone have the ABYC section on wire handy? AND, knows all the othe required specs?

Not to say dont use marine cable in upgrades, but I will bet there us a lot of welding cable still out there in older boats and I have no idea what some of mine is from Taiwan...but it is still serviceable and no need to replace for the sake of replacement.
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Old 12-18-2017, 06:25 AM   #12
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Does ABYC allow non tinned wire for boat permanent wiring?

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Old 12-18-2017, 06:48 AM   #13
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yes on the untinned from other threads, unless changed within the year or so.
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Old 12-18-2017, 06:55 AM   #14
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I have been informed that welding cable does meet ABYC requirements in the sense they arent specifically rulled out and any specs mentioned wouldn't necessarilly rule them out.

Anyone have the ABYC section on wire handy? AND, knows all the othe required specs?

Not to say dont use marine cable in upgrades, but I will bet there us a lot of welding cable still out there in older boats and I have no idea what some of mine is from Taiwan...but it is still serviceable and no need to replace for the sake of replacement.
Welding cables are not specifically mentioned as to be exclude. They only mention what are the requirements that should be met (ul1426, saej378, saej1127, number of strands etc).
Not sure if a welding cable meets these.

L
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Old 12-18-2017, 07:36 AM   #15
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thats always the trick....matching specifications, not just certifications as often the requirements aren't "XYZ" certification but "must meet" (or similar language) certification.
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Old 12-18-2017, 09:20 AM   #16
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Welding cables are not specifically mentioned as to be exclude. They only mention what are the requirements that should be met (ul1426, saej378, saej1127, number of strands etc).
Not sure if a welding cable meets these.

L
Welding cables are designed to be more flexible and have more / smaller conductors. The problem is that they tend to wick more water via capillary attraction into the wire if left open on the ends.

In theory, a boat battery cable should be flexible enough to route but not move much from then on. I know having it flexible when changing batteries is nice but at what cost / risk?
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Old 12-18-2017, 09:37 AM   #17
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I think "old school" welding cable is natural rubber, and you don't want that. But, the newer stuff is much more likely neoprene or EPDM, both with good flex, oil, fuel, and water resistance.
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Old 12-19-2017, 11:44 AM   #18
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"I know having it flexible when changing batteries is nice but at what cost / risk?"

Clamps with rubber covering are quite cheap , and would not be a PIA if only need removal for battery exchanges.
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Old 12-30-2017, 02:11 PM   #19
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Broke a battery terminal

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_E View Post
After all the work for the new flooring, the new battery boxes, cleaning and routing all the cables and wires.... I was checking things over last night and saw 2 large cables on a negative post of one of the 6V batteries that looked like it was loose. Upon further close investigation, the battery post is cracked at the base. Aaaaaaaaaaaarrg!

We're not cruising for a few months. Does anyone see a problem with leaving this battery hooked up at the dock?

Dave


When I was working I had molds for battery post a + & a -. Occasionally a post on the equipment would be damaged, I cut off whatever was left of the original post. Then I would use a small wood screw about 1 long, screw that into whats left of the old post. Then use a jumper cable one clamp on the good post and a small carbon rod in the other. Use the carbon rod to melt the lead around the screw and add lead till I had a new post. Lay wet rags over the battery before starting this, Ive replaced dozens of post on dozers, scrapers and similar excavation equipment.
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Old 12-30-2017, 03:50 PM   #20
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ABYC standards change from time to time as do land based building codes. You are not required to upgrade your boat to meet current (no pun intended) wiring standards.

For that matter, on a recreational boat you are not required to follow ABYC standards. It's a good idea to follow them though, they are safety standards.
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