nightfighter

Any Boat Wiring experts?

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Posted (edited)

Since I have the console disconnected to replace the fuel tank, I might as well look into updating 1993 Grady White wiring and switches. Looking for experienced input as this is not my strong suit. The current set up is all plug and play, which is a big pro for doing nothing. On the other hand, I think it would not be too expensive to go with new switches (and a button for the horn, requirement I am told) as most of the cost would be time. Not too many switches needed on a 20 footer.... Would likely look at a six or eight switch unit. What am I missing? I am also pulling out the stereo as I can blue tooth with my phone.... Now is the time to consider what to put in a new dash. Thanks

 

edit; That fuel gauge is coming out and the original Yamaha unit is going back in. The sender failure is what started me down this road a few years ago...

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Edited by nightfighter

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Posted (edited)

18 hours ago, nightfighter said:

Since I have the console disconnected to replace the fuel tank, I might as well look into updating 1993 Grady White wiring and switches. Looking for experienced input as this is not my strong suit. The current set up is all plug and play, which is a big pro for doing nothing. On the other hand, I think it would not be too expensive to go with new switches (and a button for the horn, requirement I am told) as most of the cost would be time. Not too many switches needed on a 20 footer.... Would likely look at a six or eight switch unit. What am I missing? I am also pulling out the stereo as I can blue tooth with my phone.... Now is the time to consider what to put in a new dash. Thanks

 

 

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Those are rocker switches. About 20 bucks a piece. Pricey. Its cheaper and easier just to put in a gang switch. If you can find the room!  Gangs are nice because its all prewired with extras like usb and battery voltage.

 

New Wire Marine is priced reasonable for singles. On their website they will have specs to see if you can make it fit for what you have now.

 


 

 

 

 

 

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Edited by The Riddler

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Tough to find that exact switch! Its probably just a 3 blade switch. 
 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Rmarsh said:

Maybe add a USB charger....I have one and it gets used.

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Absolutely Robert! I am ditching the stereo to play Sirius via Bluetooth.

 

Jeff, this is exactly the type of info i need to move forward. Here is a pic of my console. I will definitely be replacing that fake wood grain panel so can rearrange the cutouts. But I still want it to stay within the protective plexiglass cover. Pic from two seasons ago. Panel was unscrewed.

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Ive been looking for those exact same gw switches. Cant find em anywhere. I cant find a prewired panel thats even close to my opening either. 

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Well stay tuned......This is down on the list, but follows new fuel tank, replacing all hoses stem to stern, new steering, new bilge pump, what else....? Likely new steering wheel. Doing the things I need to do while it is all ripped apart and before the deck gets glassed back in place. If I find a good solution and it will fit in the budget at the time, these might become available.

What do you have?

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3 hours ago, nightfighter said:

of my console. I will definitely be replacing that fake wood grain panel so can rearrange the cutouts. But I still want it to stay within the protective plexiglass cover

You may already have thought this thru , but keep in mind the height of your panel and switches. Don’t want interference with the plexiglass cover. Or the cover switching things on and off because of clearance issues.

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If you want to stick with a circuit breaker system blue sea has some pretty good options that would be a complete panel you'd just need to make one large cutout and pop it in and wire.

You can also look up custom panel manufacturers I know my buddy did one on his whaler and it was very sharp and well done.

I prefer having a fuse panel. I have individual switches because my dash area is a little broken up but they also make switch panels that are similar to a circuit breaker panel, you would just have to run wire from fuse block to each switch I would imagine.

 

Pros and cons to both, if you're not all that comfortable with wiring, then a circuit breaker style will be fairly plug and play for you, just need to know where your power wire has to go and it will piggy back across all of the switches(most likely)

 

It's definitely a worthwhile project it's nice knowing all your wiring is in good shape and if an issue arises you'll be familiar with how the wiring was run and know where to look, which is which circuit, etc

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3 hours ago, wjtoggin said:

It's definitely a worthwhile project it's nice knowing all your wiring is in good shape and if an issue arises you'll be familiar with how the wiring was run and know where to look, which is which circuit, etc

This ^^^^

Worth more than gold.

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Posted (edited)

Lots of good advice from SOLers above

Redid my entire dash 2 winters ago, enjoyed that off season DIY project

All new switches and std size switch face plate from newwiremarine

Not bargain prices, but they were good to work with, web site had switch schematics for wiring options

Behind the dash - added another fuse block, labeled wires, cleaned up all wiring I could get to back there

 

In your case, perhaps consider self fab or could have newwiremarine custom fab a replacement panel, change from woodgrain material to black plexi / black matte to better match the electonics compartment door

Think it through for other opportunities, like the usb charger previously mentioned, complete re-layout, if enough depth behind the dash perhaps room for strutscan wireless caddy, so may possibilities. For the clear cover, perhaps ditch/keep

 

As mentioned above, definitely tinned wiring

Circuits amperage and wire gauge awareness

For all the terminal and butt splice crimps, if you don't already have then invest in a nice crimp ratchet tool. After using I regret not going for one of these Anchor tools years ago.

Heat shrink termination and butt splice connections.

 

With the usb charger pictured above, prompted a final comment - blue lights look very modern, but my old eyes find the color very distracting when navigating at night, went with red for switches.

 

Fun stuff...

 

 

Edited by w2f4

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I did this project two winters ago, when I also pulled my console.  The cost if I recall was about $300 from New Wire Marine with a complete custom switch panel (with USB Plug), roughtly the same number of switches as you, labelled heat shrunk wires, and also new positive terminal and negative terminal which I mounted inside console.

If it ain't broke don't fix it, but this is an easy project and relatively low cost.  New wire does all the work for you, basically just mount the terminal, panel, and secure the source power leads for all your electrical needs.  THe panels they build are beautiful, I used a carbon colored panel.  One word to the wise-I did the cheaper backlit switches and cannot really read them at night.  That was dumb. 

This project will make you happy, and if you have some marine wiring experiences (crimping and heat shrinking) it's a breeze.  

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This topic caught my eye, not because I am a boat owner, but because I wired my Overland 5th Generation 4Runner auxillary systems as if my truck were a boat, since it spends the majority of its out-of-the garage time in a salt environment.

 

So here are some lessons learned - refer to pictures as well:

  1. I only use Blue Sea Systems components - learned that lesson the hard way - I have never had a failure, much less an environment induced failure
  2. The only items I wire directly to the battery with in-line fuses are the battery voltage monitors.  Everything else is wired to a power and ground buss with the power source wire fused basically on top of the battery with either a fuse buss or a reset-able breaker.
  3. From the power and ground buss', I wire each circuit to a terminal board.  On this board are the inputs of power and ground and the outputs to the component that is being controlled by the switch. I
  4. f I am controlling a relay, all of its wiring goes to the terminal board as well.
  5. From the terminal board, I wire to each switch, so since my switches are illuminated, there are three wires to the terminal board - power, ground, and control.

The first picture is a control circuit for my ditch lights that allows me to turn on each side individually or together, after I switch power to the control box.  I have a wiring diagram hand drawn that I need to clean up - if you want it, PM me and I will supply it in a little while. 

 

The rest of the pictures illustrate the Blue Sea Systems switches I use - these particular switches control 2 circuits at a time (for a total of 4), my rear-of-the-SUV power/gound buss and control box, and my under hood wiring arrangement showing the power bus on the passenger side (fed by the house battery) and the ground buss on the drivers side ( wired to the Main Battery).  Of course, the ground of both batteries are directly wired, and the positives are manually connected by the battery switch (if necessary) or automatically by the Start Isolation Automatic Charging Relay (SI-ACR).

 

The intent behind my wiring scheme is to allow me to perform point-to-point failure investigation should a pro, be it a wiring discontinuity or a component failure.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Hope this helps

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