Custon Switch Panels

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by howardm, Aug 3, 2011.

  1. howardm
    Joined: May 2010
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    Location: Aberdeen, Scotland

    howardm Junior Member

    I am currently planning my electrical system, including shorepower and a move to TackTick.
    What I am looking for is a book or website showing how the switch panels are organised at the back, busbars, wiring etc.. I have access to laser cutting and printing equipment. I just need a bit of confirmation that my ideas would work.
    Any links to pictures of good custom panels, front and back would be great.

  2. Adler
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: PIRAEUS - GREECE

    Adler Senior Member



    BEfore you start to develop the panels please go to:

    These devices have main purpose to reduce the indications on your panels and to establish a background Control work-system.

    Read carefully the options and decide what you could apply to your case.

    Waiting for your comments I wish you good luck...
  3. Tim B
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: Southern England

    Tim B Senior Member

    Switch panels are really simple. Basically consisting of some form of positive bus, a switch, a fuse/breaker, and a negative bus. How you do these parts is up to you The hard part is providing sufficient protection. Electronics and sea water are not friends.

    Personally, I am a fan of using MoSFETs to do the (high-side) switching, then controlling them from a logic-level (5v or 3.3v) supply, which may be manual switches or a microcontroller. This has a few advantages, it keeps heavy cables as short as possible, it removes physical contacts from the high load path, and it means you can make the panel smaller. It should also be easier to waterproof, and therefore last longer.

    Incidentally, google Image search has lots of example switch-panels that you can draw inspiration from. Above all, keep it simple.


    Tim B.
  4. messabout
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    And when you have finished the job to your satisfaction, make a careful schematic including color codes and have it laminated. Place it in a safe location that is accessible. Sooner or later you will need it.

    There is a whole book out there someplace that deals entirely with marine wiring, maintenance, hull electrolysis and the like. I can not recall the name of the book but it is listed on many booklists such as the Wooden Boat magazine site. Someone on the forum will be familiar with that book and give you better information.

  5. howardm
    Joined: May 2010
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    Location: Aberdeen, Scotland

    howardm Junior Member

    Thanks folks,
    On another forum I was pointed to the BEP Custom Panel Configurator which looks a good starting point for layout.
    I haven't had it working yet though on my 64 bit laptop.

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