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Author Topic: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour  (Read 14824 times)

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Stu Jackson

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It's The Connections
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2006, 12:23:16 PM »

John was right, it's all in the connections. 

We researched the fridge issue described in my post above, where the fridge would pop the ammeter up and not work when there was evident battery voltage.  We, one by one, replaced the fuses, checked the connections and finally snaked a long pair of wires through the cockpit and saloon between the fridge connection and the electrical panel, connecting it to the output side of the switch and the fuse.  It finally worked.  We thought the problem was in the old wiring itself from this detective work.

So, we installed all new wiring from the fridge to the panel, under the aft cabin to the water heater (via the pull string left when we did our alternator regulator upgrade), across the cabin sole to the holding tank compartment and up to the panel.  We were absolutely amazed that the length of wire we cut for the temporary connection from the fridge to the panel (just to check out if it was the old wiring), was just perfect for that routing, not too long and certainly not too short.

So, we fired the new wiring up after installing the lug and connector at the panel ends, and...NADA!!!

I fiddled around with the jumper that went from the fuse to the input side of the switch and the connector at the fuse slid right off the wire!  It was the ONLY connection we DIDN'T check!  Drats.

So, we now have a new jumper and complete new wiring from the fridge to the panel.

Ron's right, all those old connectors are just a glitch waiting to happen.

Oh, the fridge is working now...

Moral of the story:  Listen to John's advice and CHECK EVERY CONNECTOR before pulling new wiring.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2006, 01:07:51 PM by Stu Jackson »
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Stu Jackson, C34 IA Secretary, #224 1986, "Aquavite"  Cowichan Bay, BC  Maple Bay Marina  SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)

"There is no problem so great that it can't be solved."

Mike and Joanne Stimmler

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Re: Fridge failure Adler Barbour
« Reply #16 on: September 10, 2006, 07:39:52 PM »

I'd have to disagree with the fuse theory! A fuse is either open or shorted. Depending on the type of fuse, rarely,you might have an intermittant open, but I'd bet some of my Caribbean rum that it was a bad fuse holder or the connection to the fuse or some type of oxidation to cause a high resistance.      :lol:
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Mike and Joanne Stimmler
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Re: Fridge failure Adler Barbour
« Reply #17 on: September 10, 2006, 07:48:14 PM »

Stu,

Glad you found your root problem, even if was the circuitous route. On our previous '91 C34 and on the current '88 C34, I always start with the assumption that any electrical problems have a high probability of being solved at the electrical panel, or more specifically, on the back side of the electrical panel. The combination of bare, stiff, copper wire with short leads and poorly crimped push-on spade terminals with no strain relief just makes an awful combination. I am currently in the process of investigating several alternatives for a complete replacement of the distribution panel in Otra Vez. Needless to say, there will be no push-on spade terminals handling anything but signal level power, and all of the breakers will magnetic rather than thermal.

For troubleshooting in general, particularly with C34 electrical problems, I have to constantly keep reminding myself to never overlook the simplest thing that could be wrong, because it is often exactly what's wrong. Remember that "assume" spells "ass-u-me".

Enjoy your cold beer.

John
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John Nixon
Otra Vez
1988 Hull # 728

Stu Jackson

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Re: Fridge failure Adler Barbour
« Reply #18 on: November 18, 2007, 10:50:07 PM »

Following up on replies #12, #14, #15, & #17 above:

The new wiring worked for awhile.  Then recently I noticed the same "startup" problems.

Since we'd only abandoned, and not removed, the old wiring, I spent the weekend paralleling the wiring, both behind the panel and at the unit itself.

Seems that both the newer connections AND the now much increased wire sizing (with the old #10 and newer #12 wiring in parallel) have solved the problem, since even with "lower" voltage at the panel (see #12), whatever the voltage that is there is now, finally, getting all the way back to the fridge.

So, sometimes it's BOTH !  :D

Here's a picture of the three way connectors used.  After this picture was taken, I used Liquid Lectric Tape on the ends of each wire connection and the bodies of the connectors and then dressed the main wires.  Note the wires to the fridge were not connected to their posts when this picture was taken.  There's another three way on the + side behind the panel, and I just put a spade connector on the (-) and ran it to a post on the negative buss.

EDIT:  I've since replaced the three ways with term strips.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2015, 12:05:05 PM by Stu Jackson »
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Fridge Follies & Radio Shack
« Reply #19 on: October 19, 2008, 03:52:27 PM »

Fridge Follies & Radio Shack

The Radio Shack fan is:  4 inch 12 V DC fan  #2730238  all of $25, instead of $43!  It's a bit thicker than the old one, bought new longer machine screws and nuts - easy except for egtting out of the lazarrette :D

Had another non-start this morning at anchor.  First checked the fuse on the panel, OK, opened panel, John's STILL right::::the new connection "I" had made myself was bad, worked when I wiggled it.  Installed a new quik connect onto the spade on the back of the rocker switch, back in business.

Can't reinforce anymore than this that when it's electrical it's usually a connection!
« Last Edit: September 02, 2012, 10:38:54 AM by Stu Jackson »
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Stu Jackson, C34 IA Secretary, #224 1986, "Aquavite"  Cowichan Bay, BC  Maple Bay Marina  SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)

"There is no problem so great that it can't be solved."

Ron Hill

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Re: Fridge failure Adler Barbour
« Reply #20 on: October 19, 2008, 04:36:58 PM »

I always crimp and solder.  The old belt and suspenders always seems to help.  A thought
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Stu Jackson

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Re: Fridge failure Adler Barbour
« Reply #21 on: September 09, 2014, 09:27:19 AM »

September 9, 2014:  I eventually replaced the three way connectors with terminal strips at both ends.  Last week I ran yet another set of wires and replaced the old OEM wiring with this new wire, and also redid all the jumpers and connectors at the back of the electrical panel.  I also cleaned the 1-2-B switch studs and lugs.  I'll also be cleaning up up the wires at both the NDP and PDPs.  I'll also replace the two connecting wires from the main wires to the fridge itself.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2014, 09:28:27 AM by Stu Jackson »
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Stu Jackson, C34 IA Secretary, #224 1986, "Aquavite"  Cowichan Bay, BC  Maple Bay Marina  SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)

"There is no problem so great that it can't be solved."

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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #22 on: September 09, 2014, 10:11:33 AM »

Stu, I just couldn't help noticing that tomorrow (Sept 10) will be the 6th anniversary of your post noting that you had learned your lesson about always checking all the connections, and that your fridge was working again. Time has a way of getting away from us, doesn't it?

You did well to go all the way back to the distribution panel looking for problems. Since 6 years ago, I have had several of the original rocker switches cease to function under any load on my boat. This has happened most recently on the fresh water pump switch. I replaced the function of that switch with a much more robust toggle switch with screw terminals which I mounted in the outside edge of the distribution panel adjacent to the failed switch. Quite honestly, the panels on the earlier boats were awful! On my boat, there is a mismatch on several places between the push-on spade terminal sizing and the spade on the back of the switch: the switches had 3/16" wide spades, and the push-on receptacles were 1/4", sometimes with some extra mashing around on them to make them sort of stay on the switch spade.

Having said that, as long as you have completely replaced all of the wiring to the fridge, don't overlook that first possible culprit in the wiring chain, the switch.

On my ever-expanding boat project list is the complete replacement of the old distribution panel to achieve no push-on terminals anywhere, no wimpy switches, and no rat's nest of wires to the extent that is possible.

I hope your good work and dedication to the task is successful. Maybe on the 7th anniversary of this topic, you can happily report a year of reliable fridge operation  :clap
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John Nixon
Otra Vez
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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #23 on: September 09, 2014, 12:22:46 PM »

John- when I purchase my "new" 1990 C34 this year, I took a good look at the distribution panel and wiring and determined most had to go--while I still had some funds and energy left. I am glad I did. I am very happy with my new custom-configured Blue Sea 360 series panel. Meanwhile, hoping my old fridge hangs in there. After installing my below deck autopilot, I am not looking forward to opening everything up again in the aft cabin and lazarette to play with fridge!
« Last Edit: September 09, 2014, 01:12:49 PM by Noah »
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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #24 on: September 09, 2014, 01:25:35 PM »

Noah, very nice looking panel! I guess I should have a look at the 360 series as compared to the traditional gray panel series I have considered thus far. The 360 series looks like it has less wasted space.

Thanks for the heads up, and I truly realize how much you must be enjoying your new panel.
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John Nixon
Otra Vez
1988 Hull # 728

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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #25 on: September 09, 2014, 02:00:14 PM »

One reason it gives me more room is I relocated all battery selector switching/functions. The house bank switch is now at the battery box and the engine battery and energency combiner switches are in the after cabin.
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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #26 on: September 09, 2014, 02:04:30 PM »

Engine battery and emergency cross-connect switches
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Stu Jackson

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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #27 on: September 09, 2014, 06:13:33 PM »

John Nixon is always right!!! :clap :clap :clap

It's the connections, stupid!  :abd:

So, after I put in the new wiring, redid the jumpers on the electrical panel, checked the voltages around the 1-2-B switch and the paddle switch and at the new terminal block connections, I planned my "Dumpster Diving Day" into the lazarette this afternoon.  I planned to replace the (+) and (-) wires from the terminal block in the lazarette to the fridge.  Since I'd replaced those #10 wires a few years ago, I figured they were OK.

The wires sure were.  But HUBRIS strikes again:  I pulled on the red one - tight; I pulled on the black one - Yikes!  It pulled right out.   :shock: :shock: :shock:

When I reported this to The Admiral when I got home this afternoon, she mentioned: "I'm surprised you didn't do that first."   :cry4`  Wish she'd been there... :D :D :D  Just to see the look on my face when it happened. :?

I had had all the "implements of destruction" out for replacing those two wires:  wire, ring terminals, wire cutter, wire stripper, terminal crimper, screwdrivers, wire ties, etc.   :thumb:

Put 'em all away.

Going sailing tomorrow, just to see if it works, ya know... :D :D :D

The first picture shows the old jumpers, notice the bare wire showing on the (+) to the right hand side of the bus - I replaced that one, among a few others, and the jumpers from the fridge swtich to the (+) bus.  At least it's dry with no corrosion.   :D  And at least it's behind the panel, NOT the fridge compressor!!! (which could use a cleaning, eh?)

John Nixon is always right!!! :clap :clap :clap

It's the connections, stupid!  :abd:

« Last Edit: September 10, 2014, 06:24:35 AM by Stu Jackson »
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Stu Jackson, C34 IA Secretary, #224 1986, "Aquavite"  Cowichan Bay, BC  Maple Bay Marina  SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)

"There is no problem so great that it can't be solved."

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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #28 on: September 09, 2014, 10:39:41 PM »

Stu:  :thumb: :thumb: :thumb:

I think you may well have arrived at the end of the quest!  :clap :clap :clap  It is unfortunately true that until you have looked at every last possible connection issue, the job isn't done. I would be embarrassed to reveal how many times I have suckered myself to ass-u-me the I had considered everything that could be responsible for an electrical problem, only to discover that one of my assumptions about something painfully simple was incorrect. Someday over a few cold ales on your boat or mine I will tell you of at least one recent case of a series of small but incorrect assumptions that cost me most of a summer and a lot of money on the boat  :cry4`

In my considerable experience of making small but incorrect assumptions in my electrical/electronic troubleshooting exercises, I can tell you and others that it is most often the simplest of things that we overlook because we ass-u-me that "it couldn't be that because it is just too simple to be screwed up". Those are famous last words to always remember  :roll:

IT'S THE CONNECTIONS, STUPID!!!

Congratulations on finding the stupid one  :thumb:
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John Nixon
Otra Vez
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Andrew Harvey

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Re: Fridge Follies - Adler Barbour
« Reply #29 on: September 10, 2014, 06:29:51 AM »

Did you still drink the bourbon ?
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