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Author Topic:   Assess My Re-Wiring
de posted 04-30-2009 12:17 PM ET (US)   Profile for de   Send Email to de  
I'm starting a complete rewire of my boat. I won't go into the reasons, but I'm yanking out everything. I've read many of the posts here but have never really seen a basic diagram of how a possible infrastructure for the wiring might look. I have practically no experience in wiring, but I'm still going to take a stab at it.

The pic in the link (I hope the link works) outlines my idea of how the guts of the system could possibly look. It does NOT detail the wiring harness and associated gauges, only the basic infrastructure. My goal is to have everything super organized and documented, so if anything goes wrong, it will be simple to debug and fix by someone other than me.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Once this basic infrastructure has been nailed down, I'll follow-up with a detailed layout of everything. ?action=view¤t=BoatRewireInfrstructure.jpg


Raleigh, NC

ratherwhalering posted 04-30-2009 12:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for ratherwhalering  Send Email to ratherwhalering     
1. Perhaps you should install both an automatic cycle bilge pump and a float switch. Why? Only when the float switch is tripped will the bilge pump go into automatic cycle. The benefit would be for redundancy. If the float switch became fouled, then the bilge pump would automatically shut down (and short cycle) in the absence of water. Wire an "on" switch for the bilge pump to the console. You'd have the ability to manually pump the bilge, bypassing the automatic cycle.

2. Typically, the bilge pump is wired directly to the number two battery, for mooring use when the battery switch is off and saving the other battery in case of a total drain.

3. Why have a ground Buss terminal in the stern? Simply run some 12/10 gauge duplex wire to the console and have 14 gauge duplex for the bilge pump ground and manual override at the console, where things are generally dry and less apt to corrode.

4. I would also locate the bilge pump and accessory fuses in the console, for the same reason noted in #3, above.


davej14 posted 04-30-2009 01:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for davej14  Send Email to davej14     
Use of a marine grade fuse block will help simplify and organize your wiring. I recommend Blue Seas as the source.

They include the negative common bus.

de posted 04-30-2009 02:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for de  Send Email to de     


I posted the diagram with a slight mod. As far as the bilge pump, I have it switched using an AUTO-OFF-ON toggle. When in AUTO, if the main battery switch is on 1-2-BOTH, then the float switch will activate the pump. If the toggle switch is OFF, then no pump action. If ON, then pump is on. Rob - you're suggesting to wire the float to pin 2 on the 1-2-BOTH battery switch, rather than pin C ? .... right? And also do away with the "AUTO" part of the toggle switch? I.E. Float is always on as long as battery two has some power.

As far as having a ground bus in the stern, the primary reason is that the one wire that I considered saving was the heavy ground from the metal gas tank. I guess I could just as easily route it into the console area to a ground bus.

As far as having the bilge pump protection in the stern, currently there exists a "panel box" with a 50A breaker which was used for ACC, and a 15A for the bilge pump. Plus I read somewhere that you should fuse the bilge as close to the battery as possible. ( ????? )

Rob - Thanks for the suggestions. This is the type of feedback I was looking for since I'm a novice at this.

Updated diagram. BoatRewireInfrstructure2.jpg

ratherwhalering posted 05-04-2009 02:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for ratherwhalering  Send Email to ratherwhalering     

The bilge pump, as diagramed right now, has no MANUAL capability. Only when the float switch circut is closed does the pump activate. My sugguestion is you have a three wire, automatic bilge pump. ON/AUTO/GROUND. You can either do away with the float switch and use the automatic cycle on the pump itself, or use both the automatic cycle AND float switch for redundancy.

The console switch has OFF/1/2, meaning open circut(off), closed circut 1 (automatic only) OR closed circut 2 (manual only). Manual mode power supply is from the Accessory panel.

My second sugguestion is that the power lead for the automatic bilge pump setting be connected directly to the #2 battery. The battery switch (and thus the accessory power leads and engine starting leads) may be turned to OFF position, and the automatic mode of the bilge pump will function only when the console switch is in the automatic setting. If the console switch is in the off position, there is an open circut, and there is no power drain. If the console switch is in the manual position, there is a closed circut to the Accessory, but which are OFF at the battery switch.

de posted 05-04-2009 09:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for de  Send Email to de     
I need to update my drawing. I made lots of progress this weekend. Yanked out all wiring, pulled new engine-to-control harness, installed temp sensor on engine, pulled main power/gnd/tank sensor/temp sensor/pump/new antenna/battery status wiring. That metal fish tape was worth every penny.

I did replace my bilge float/pump with a new Automatic Rule pump and Rule panel switch. Waiting for various switches and fuse holders to arrive. Everyone seems to think a direct battery connection is the way to go on the pump, so I suspect that I'll go that way.

I still have to crawl into that bilge area at least one more time ..... fresh coat of bilge paint. I'm too old and fat for that job. I'm trying to figure out how to get my wife to do it.

Everyone, thanks for all the help and suggestions.


de posted 05-05-2009 04:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for de  Send Email to de     

Here's an updated drawing with the new bilge pump. WiringInfrastructure1.jpg

Feejer posted 05-06-2009 05:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for Feejer  Send Email to Feejer     
You might want to toss out the 1-2 Off battery switch and get a BEP switch, see link

Phil T posted 05-07-2009 03:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for Phil T  Send Email to Phil T     
I am not clear what model boat you are re- wiring.

I don't think the rear "bilge area" ground block is really necessary and adds more complexity than is necessary.

On both my Montauk and Outrage 17 re-wires, I ran the bilge ground wire, along with the others up the tunnel to the negative bus.

With the rear ground buss removed, run the console negative and fuel tank ground wire to the battery.

I agree with Rob, and move the fuses to the console.

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