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Old 28 April 2014, 12:25   #1
Nasher's Avatar
Country: Other
Town: Principalite d'Chaos
Boat name: The Nashers Revenge!
Make: Ocean & Bombard
Length: 6m +
Engine: Suzi DT200EFI, DT9.9
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I need to do a bit of work on the wiring in the RIB, and am going to take the chance to tidy up some of the extra wiring I’ve added since first building up the console a few years ago. In truth it will probably end up in a full rewire now I have access to better materials and equipment to do it.

I have however come up with some thoughts that I’d appreciate some comments on.

Anchor Light.
I’ve never actually used it in anger so to speak, so have only just realised this.
It’s obviously switched via a waterproof switch on the dash, but takes it’s +12V supply from the main fusebox which is supplied in turn from the main battery switch.
I’ve realised that to use it I’d have to leave the main battery switch turned on, which doesn’t seem like a good idea to me whilst the boat is left at anchor unattended.
Is it common practice to connect the anchor light feed before the main switch?

Bilge Pump.
I don’t have a float switch on the bilge pump at the moment, it’s just run off an simple switch on the dash mainly because it’s normally left on it’s trailer. But it can be left at anchor for several hours at a time, so I'm considering one, but the same applies as the Anchor light. Is it normal practice to connect it before the main battery switch?

I suppose both of the above could be solved with a two stage main switch system, or two separate switches, but it seems overly complicated for what it is.
What do other people and ‘proper’ builders do?

In a similar vein to the above, is there any safety benefit or any guidance regarding powering the VHF.
As a safety critical item, is it sensible to eliminate as many junctions etc as possible and connect it with a separate fused supply directly after or even before the main battery switch, eliminating any potential issues with the fusebox and associated wiring leaving you without a VHF to call for help?

Am I getting too paranoid in my old age?



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Old 28 April 2014, 12:40   #2
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Chris Caton's Avatar
Country: UK - England
Town: Wirral & Caernarfon
Boat name: That's Enuff
Make: Revenger & Avon SR4
Length: 7m +
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suppose it depends if you intend leaving it un-attended while it's anchored or just when it's on a mooring, my anchor light on the Revenger is fed from the main fuse board so is controlled by the battery isolation switch, on the other hand the bilge pump is fed from the live side of the battery switch so when it's left on a mooring the bilge pump would still operate. the VHF is also fed off the fuse board so is also controlled by the battery isolation switch.

I'm intending doing similar with the SR4 wiring next week when I get back to it, other than it's not getting a bilge pump fitted, well not for now anyway, I just want to get it wired up do I can get it wet n have some fun

I think if things get so bad with your wiring that your VHF won't work you could always bodge a temporary feed to get it working, or just rely on a handheld
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Old 28 April 2014, 14:15   #3
Country: UK - England
Town: Gillingham
Boat name: Harrys Game
Make: Avon WB 450
Length: 4m +
Engine: Yamaha F50
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 91
My personal view: I have fe3d the anchor light from a separate small battery located near the stern. I dont like the idea of using the battery for anything but running gear.
I dont bother with a bilge pump and the VHF is wired through the system so I would not worry to much about that either. Once again only a personal thing but I carry a separate hand held VHF if you get in the s*** its likely to be a battery problem . Regards Jim
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Old 28 April 2014, 17:03   #4
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Nos4r2's Avatar
Country: UK - England
Town: The wilds of Wiltshire
Boat name: WhiteNoise/Dominator
Make: Ballistic 7.8/SR5.4
Length: 7m +
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Both my bilge pump and anchor light are isolated on the main battery switch. If it's going to be nasty enough weather to worry about the amount of water getting in the boat it's not being anchored unattended.
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Old 28 April 2014, 19:44   #5
Country: UK - England
Make: Tornado
Length: 5m +
Engine: Twin 50 Mariners
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I have gone down the route of a simple extra breaker switch (one of those with a red plastic l-shaped key not expensive) for anchor light and auto bilge pump, as the only things I'd be likely to want to leave on when leaving the boat, it felt nicer to be able to leave everything else turned off at the main breakers. The extra breaker is also wired to just one of the twin batteries, so one is left unused for starting her up in the morning...
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