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Unread 02-05-2013, 08:03 PM   #1
fourwheelin
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Big 3 (Battery cabling upgrade - custom)

Didn't want to resurface or hijack someone's thread, but thought some would appreciate this write-up on how to replace/upgrade all the battery cables in a TJ. Lots of pics!

http://daedalusideas.blogspot.com/20...3-jeep-tj.html

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Unread 02-05-2013, 08:31 PM   #2
BYuen
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Great writeup, thanks! Bookmarked it. I will definitely use this whenever I get around to upgrading my wires for a higher amp alternator.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 08:35 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fourwheelin View Post
Didn't want to resurface or hijack someone's thread, but thought some would appreciate this write-up on how to replace/upgrade all the battery cables in a TJ. Lots of pics!

http://daedalusideas.blogspot.com/20...3-jeep-tj.html
A couple of things to note-

He didn't crimp them deep enough for some reason. That tool is designed to be smacked with a hammer, do so.

On the alternator picture, that is a very poor way to route a soldered connection of that size. The solder wicks down into the strands and creates a stress riser that will break under vibration. He would have done better with it pointing down to relieve some of the load.

If you are going to use split loom in an engine compartment, get the black stuff with the white stripe, it is rated for higher temps that get in the engine bay.

Other than that, he did a good job and if he remembers to turn the terminals square on the battery when he puts the new one it, all will be good.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 08:58 PM   #4
snookhansel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblaine View Post

A couple of things to note-

He didn't crimp them deep enough for some reason. That tool is designed to be smacked with a hammer, do so.

On the alternator picture, that is a very poor way to route a soldered connection of that size. The solder wicks down into the strands and creates a stress riser that will break under vibration. He would have done better with it pointing down to relieve some of the load.

If you are going to use split loom in an engine compartment, get the black stuff with the white stripe, it is rated for higher temps that get in the engine bay.

Other than that, he did a good job and if he remembers to turn the terminals square on the battery when he puts the new one it, all will be good.
I prefer to use a crimping tool. Crimping the wire too much is equally as bad as not enough crimp. Crimping tools either auto release pressure when the correct pressure is met or mechanically limit themselves like a hex or round die does. These factors also rely on the type or brand lugs you use. Of course I know you know this Blaine and I'm sure for the load this cable will see no one really needs to be this anal about their cramping methods. For most it would not be worth the cost of the correct tool. I own several different types and they are not cheap.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 09:04 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by snookhansel View Post
no one really needs to be this anal about their cramping methods.
Everyone has their own style, some more cramped than others.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 09:12 PM   #6
fourwheelin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblaine View Post
A couple of things to note-

He didn't crimp them deep enough for some reason. That tool is designed to be smacked with a hammer, do so.

On the alternator picture, that is a very poor way to route a soldered connection of that size. The solder wicks down into the strands and creates a stress riser that will break under vibration. He would have done better with it pointing down to relieve some of the load.

If you are going to use split loom in an engine compartment, get the black stuff with the white stripe, it is rated for higher temps that get in the engine bay.

Other than that, he did a good job and if he remembers to turn the terminals square on the battery when he puts the new one it, all will be good.
I didn't have a surface to smack the tool on. But realized while crimping I didn't need to as (1) the c-clamp squeezed enough where I couldn't pull the cable out of the lug even with all my might. (2) Once it was soldered, it was like a solid piece of metal - no way its coming apart. But good point for others to know/think about.

As for the alternator connection, I'll take the advice and turn it down a bit. I just mirrored the stock connection. But like I just mentioned, the solder made it solid where it has no flex, so not too worried. I had it on like this for a month now and even had it out wheelin' - no issues so far!

What's that about squaring the terminals with the battery? Just for looks? Actually, due to the larger cables I made, I had to turn the negative a bit in order to allow the cable not to touch or rub anything running up to the body.

Thanks for the input.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BYuen View Post
Great writeup, thanks! Bookmarked it. I will definitely use this whenever I get around to upgrading my wires for a higher amp alternator.
Glad it can help. I plan on updating it once I get the new battery in. So syked about it. Cause I got an awesome deal, but mainly cause its spill proof!
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Unread 02-05-2013, 09:40 PM   #7
snookhansel
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Originally Posted by 77351wcj5 View Post

Everyone has their own style, some more cramped than others.
Yeah I caught that after I posted. I post from my phone and sometimes it spells for me and I don't catch it. Also I agree with Blaine. I would have never soldered the crimp. If you make a good crimp there is no need. Although a dimple crimp may be UL approved on aluminum lugs I'm just not a fan. But copper lugs aren't as pretty. Oxguard in aluminum or copper clad aluminum to aluminum wire is always a really good idea. This is just me being very anal though. All in all you did a fine job.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 10:06 PM   #8
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fourwheelin View Post

As for the alternator connection, I'll take the advice and turn it down a bit. I just mirrored the stock connection. But like I just mentioned, the solder made it solid where it has no flex, so not too worried. I had it on like this for a month now and even had it out wheelin' - no issues so far!
You make cables for the life of the vehicle, a month is nothing in the lifespan. The issue with soldering cable is the solder wicks down into the strands and makes it solid with no flex. If we could make that work, there would be no reason for stranded wire, we would just use solid.

At the hard spot transition, there is no strain relief if the solder has wicked too far into the strands and continual vibration will start causing the strands to break at the end of the solder.

If you are going to do it that way, find the hard spot and continue that Triple wall adhesive lined heat shrink you used past it a ways to build in some strain relief.

Quote:
What's that about squaring the terminals with the battery? Just for looks? Actually, due to the larger cables I made, I had to turn the negative a bit in order to allow the cable not to touch or rub anything running up to the body.

Thanks for the input.
I didn't think I left this guy out did I? That means my normal OCD is kicking in about things being symmetrical and lined up.




Quote:
Glad it can help. I plan on updating it once I get the new battery in. So syked about it. Cause I got an awesome deal, but mainly cause its spill proof!
I like the batteries I like, but if asked, I tell everyone to get what ever does not spill. There is more damage done to vehicles from corrosion and acid than should be legal. If you can't mount it on it's side, it don't belong in a Jeep.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 10:09 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by snookhansel View Post
Yeah I caught that after I posted. I post from my phone and sometimes it spells for me and I don't catch it. Also I agree with Blaine. I would have never soldered the crimp. If you make a good crimp there is no need. Although a dimple crimp may be UL approved on aluminum lugs I'm just not a fan. But copper lugs aren't as pretty. Oxguard in aluminum or copper clad aluminum to aluminum wire is always a really good idea. This is just me being very anal though. All in all you did a fine job.
I don't solder anything electrical for the most part. I have a swaging tool for cable size terminals and enough crimpers for the rest to make your eyes water if you had to buy them all at once.

The bad part of that is I'm considering moving away from Weatherpak and going to Deutsche and not looking forward to that learning curve or the tool buying curve.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 10:23 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by mrblaine View Post

I don't solder anything electrical for the most part. I have a swaging tool for cable size terminals and enough crimpers for the rest to make your eyes water if you had to buy them all at once.

The bad part of that is I'm considering moving away from Weatherpak and going to Deutsche and not looking forward to that learning curve or the tool buying curve.
I'm all about burndy and Greenlee. Its most of what I own has been.around forever and a day. It is time tested and proven. I have never had hydraulic issues with greenlee. Their dies crimp sweet. Like I said I prefer a round squeeze crimp. I do also own a couple of dimple crimpers but they crimp in 4 spots around the barrel and release at a predetermined pressure. These type of crimps can be bad if a person isn't using a quality lug.
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Unread 02-05-2013, 11:18 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by mrblaine View Post
I don't solder anything electrical for the most part. I have a swaging tool for cable size terminals and enough crimpers for the rest to make your eyes water if you had to buy them all at once.

The bad part of that is I'm considering moving away from Weatherpak and going to Deutsche and not looking forward to that learning curve or the tool buying curve.
I've done Weatherpacks for years - are Detsche really that different? I haven't torn any to bits...
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Unread 02-06-2013, 07:05 AM   #12
mrblaine
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I've done Weatherpacks for years - are Detsche really that different? I haven't torn any to bits...
Deutsche are smaller, seemingly more robust, cleaner looking, and what is used by all the folks that do high end wiring on the desert race stuff.

It's also the connector used on Rigid light bars.
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Unread 02-06-2013, 07:14 AM   #13
mrblaine
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Originally Posted by snookhansel View Post
I'm all about burndy and Greenlee. Its most of what I own has been.around forever and a day. It is time tested and proven. I have never had hydraulic issues with greenlee. Their dies crimp sweet. Like I said I prefer a round squeeze crimp. I do also own a couple of dimple crimpers but they crimp in 4 spots around the barrel and release at a predetermined pressure. These type of crimps can be bad if a person isn't using a quality lug.
Quality is what it's all about when it comes to wiring, tools, and terminals. I use the high end terminals that have the double crimp that gets the wire and the insulation for strain relief. I have the matching crimper.

http://www.delcity.net/store/Nylon!i...inals/p_802012

I also use tinned copper boat cable and wire for the vast majority of my wiring.
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Unread 02-06-2013, 05:19 PM   #14
fourwheelin
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Originally Posted by snookhansel View Post
Yeah I caught that after I posted. I post from my phone and sometimes it spells for me and I don't catch it. Also I agree with Blaine. I would have never soldered the crimp. If you make a good crimp there is no need. Although a dimple crimp may be UL approved on aluminum lugs I'm just not a fan. But copper lugs aren't as pretty. Oxguard in aluminum or copper clad aluminum to aluminum wire is always a really good idea. This is just me being very anal though. All in all you did a fine job.

Thanks. First time doing this work. If I ever do it again (hopefully not on this vehicle), looks like I have some pointers to consider from you guys.
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Unread 02-06-2013, 07:57 PM   #15
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Looks like fun
I'm having Jeepersandcreepers make up a set for me and some extra cables for my aux fuse panel. They look to do great work, and are super helpful.
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