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Old 04-17-2016, 02:00 PM   #1
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Recommendation re Electrical book please

Hi,

In my bid to increase my knowledge on all things "boat" can I have recommendations on a good book to learn the finer points of electrical systems on a boat, both DC and AC.

I've rewired houses and cars but never a boat....!!

I'm trying to learn about all the major items on a boat. My plan is to do my own mini survey when we go boat hunting, hopefully to reduce the number of paid surveys...

Thanks
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Old 04-17-2016, 02:40 PM   #2
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Nigel Calder's "Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual" has been the boat owner's engine and electrical systems "bible" for decades. He updates it regularly.

Amazon has the current edition it in both hardcopy and kindle
http://www.amazon.com/Boatowners-Mec.../dp/B006QA720O

It's one of two books that no boat owner should ever be without...the other is "Chapman's Piloting and Seamanship," currently in it's 68th edition.
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Old 04-17-2016, 02:49 PM   #3
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Thank you Peggie, was looking on Amazon and there seemed to be a lot... I thought there maybe a favourite....
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Old 04-17-2016, 04:07 PM   #4
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The Cruising Handbook is for sailboat owners who cruise the world (or dream of doing so)...If you just google Nigel Calder's name you'll quickly see that one you want is the "Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual." The 4th edition ("E4" edition) appears to be the newest.
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Old 04-17-2016, 04:16 PM   #5
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Advanced Marine Electrics and Electronics Troubleshooting

Boatowner's Illustrated Electrical Handbook: Edition 2
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Old 04-17-2016, 04:48 PM   #6
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X2 on the Calder book. The most referenced book in my fairly complete nautical library. The 12 Volt Bible For Boats is another very good one, but I consider it an adjunct to the Calder book, or the one to get if you have an all DC boat.
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Old 04-17-2016, 08:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Hi,

...My plan is to do my own mini survey when we go boat hunting, hopefully to reduce the number of paid surveys...

Thanks
Agree w Calder recommendation.
Also good info on TF re DIY surveys...
Search should find some.
I did my own w checklists found here on TF. Very helpful so find the real candidates for the pro's.
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Old 04-17-2016, 09:00 PM   #8
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I have the 12 volt bible, it's a great introduction to the principles and concepts of a DC system.
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Old 04-18-2016, 01:06 AM   #9
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I have the kindle edition of Calder's book and would rather have a hard copy. I find it is clumsy to flip back and forth between pages and the figures and tables are harder to view.


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Old 04-18-2016, 01:24 AM   #10
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... My plan is to do my own mini survey when we go boat hunting, hopefully to reduce the number of paid surveys...
A really good idea. Make a checklist form with space to make notes as you inspect; it helps you check everything you need, you can go back to your notes when comparing boats, and if you see several boats of the same model it`s a big help. Hope it goes well.
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Old 04-18-2016, 02:23 AM   #11
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Marine Survey 101, Do your own marine survey
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Old 04-18-2016, 08:04 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haylands View Post
Hi,

In my bid to increase my knowledge on all things "boat" can I have recommendations on a good book to learn the finer points of electrical systems on a boat, both DC and AC.

I've rewired houses and cars but never a boat....!!

I'm trying to learn about all the major items on a boat. My plan is to do my own mini survey when we go boat hunting, hopefully to reduce the number of paid surveys...

Thanks
Many banks finance and insurance require a survey and the have a preferred list. Also surveys can be broken up, a quick walk thru to get an idea. Lasts 1 to 30 minutes. We did several of those from not getting out of the car to a quick look see with a little rapping and tapping. Then a more detailed enough to a resonable evaluation. Then a full suvey and out of watet. So its not all or nothing. Do Not use a surveyor recommended by broker or owner.

If you know house AC and auto DC you probable know enough for a do it a self survey. Be more concerned about structue and mechanical as they are the big expensive areas.
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Old 04-18-2016, 08:52 AM   #13
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hmmmm....

I have always understood that battery acid wont harm fiberglass. But the surveyor in your leak thinks it eats it.
Quote:
Oh yeah .... the acid is dripping through the deck on to the hull below and eating through the fiberglass.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:16 AM   #14
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A great book for sizing up a boat pre-survey is the first half or so of Pascoe's Mid-sized Power Boats. Some of the best money I've spent in boating; made the shopping and editing process so much more efficient. Ann enjoyed it too and learned a lot along with me that has been useful ever since.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:52 AM   #15
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Here is a good start...

http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/d...?do=file&id=36
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Old 04-18-2016, 11:44 AM   #16
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I have the kindle edition of Calder's book and would rather have a hard copy. I find it is clumsy to flip back and forth between pages and the figures and tables are harder to view.
I don't think you're stuck with one or the other...so why not buy the hard copy too? That would give you the ability to have two pages open at once, which could come in very handy you need to look at two diagrams at the same time or a diagram and an explanation.
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Old 04-18-2016, 12:28 PM   #17
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Thank you all very much for taking the time to suggest books and the useful help re surveys, we won't be in a position to buy a boat until early next year, due to commitments, so I will be using the time to read, read, read... hopefully, make the whole process of boat buying more positive...
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Old 04-18-2016, 02:41 PM   #18
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While there are good books on the subject, please don't make the mistake of thinking that reading a book or two will make you a marine electrician. These guys take years of schooling to become proficient and skilled in their trade.


In my limited experience, the surveyor surveys everything except the engine and the cost is based on the boat's length. I doubt you could get a discount by eliminating the electrical part.
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Old 04-18-2016, 03:13 PM   #19
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While there are good books on the subject, please don't make the mistake of thinking that reading a book or two will make you a marine electrician. These guys take years of schooling to become proficient and skilled in their trade.


In my limited experience, the surveyor surveys everything except the engine and the cost is based on the boat's length. I doubt you could get a discount by eliminating the electrical part.
I don't intend on replacing a survey, or part of it, with anything I do.

If I am empowered with a knowledge of all boat systems then hopefully I can weed out the boats that are not worth having a paid survey on... having read a lot of surveys and a lot about surveys one of the most popular items for serious and expensive problems seems to stem from electrics...

I am totally proficient in the latest regulations regarding house electrical systems but there are some differences with the methods used on a boat, mostly around earth bonding and the sighting, support, and methods of connecting and running cables. Plus the integration or separation of AC and DC systems. Hopefully the publications listed above will give me the info I require.

I am working my way through all the systems on boats, hopefully I'll know enough to save us some $'s on wasted surveys....

I don't for one minute think I know as much as a surveyor or time served craftsman but knowledge is power, as they say...
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Old 04-18-2016, 06:45 PM   #20
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Hi,

In my bid to increase my knowledge on all things "boat" can I have recommendations on a good book to learn the finer points of electrical systems on a boat, both DC and AC.

I'm trying to learn about all the major items on a boat

Thanks
The other great resource I forgot to mention is...
Compass Marine How To Articles
An online DIY guide to do many tasks aboard - especially those electrical / electronic related.
RC has done a great job of sharing his knowledge w/ us boaters. He's a professional ABYC certified electrician and can supply many of the components - I've purchased some from him as a "thanks" for his unselfish contributions...I figure if there is a price difference it's a small reward for his very worthwhile efforts.
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