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  Routing of power wires for downriggers

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Author Topic:   Routing of power wires for downriggers
JMARTIN posted 01-19-2006 01:51 PM ET (US)   Profile for JMARTIN   Send Email to JMARTIN  
I will try to stay away from my other electronics, but there is a pinch point where you cross from port to starboard on my Revenge. The transducer wire and lights run through the head bump pad at the entrance of the cabin on my Revenge. This is also the closest the wires would get to the electronics because the dash board is right next to it. I would assume that I have no concerns. The only thing running when I use the downriggers is the fishfinder/sonar, portion of my Lowrance.

Scotty recomends a 30 amp fuse also. I was just planning on using an in line barrel type fuse set up. I am hooking directly on to one of my batteries. The wire guage will be 10 for the port side and 12 for starboard.

I know very little about electircal, John

jimh posted 01-19-2006 10:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
How can we help?
JMARTIN posted 01-19-2006 11:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for JMARTIN  Send Email to JMARTIN     
I guess I want someone to do the install for me, then I can yell at them if it doesn't work. Just kidding. I do not know how much interference these downrigger power wires can cause to the other electronics on the boat. My Lowrance warned about being to close to the compass, the Navman warned about the power supply, the Scotty just warned about having a big enough wire for the load. Since the downriggers are not "on" all the time, it must not be a big deal. John
jimh posted 01-20-2006 07:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The ship's compass can be affected by the flow of large current through nearby conductors. This effect can be minimized if the postitive and negative conductors carrying the current are paired together and twisted.
bobeson posted 01-20-2006 02:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for bobeson  Send Email to bobeson     

I wouldn't be so concerned about this wiring being in proximity to other electronics. As Jim said, keeping the power wires close together (positive and negative leads) is going to help more than anything. Having them twisted is extra good, but you don't need to do that in order to eliminate the biggest effect that having them separated creates. When you having fluctuating currents in a circuit, the area between the positive and negative leads experiences a changing electromagnetic field. This is in effect an inductor, like one side of a transformer. When you have a large area between the leads, you have a large inductor, and any other nearby "inductors" (other circuits) can couple to it. So, for example, your worst case scenario would be where your downrigger positive wires run down one gunnel to your transom, and the negative wires run down the other gunnel. Now everything in-between those wires is subject to inductive coupling to the noise created by the changing currents flowing in that circuit. By running the postive and negative leads close together, you are limiting the coupling to the very small area in-between the conductors. Other electronics should have some filtering of their power supplies to eliminate the small induced noise that is going to always exist on the boat's power distribution, and as long as you aren't directly coupling into their actual circuitry you should be OK.

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