Electrical Impedance – Pay Attention To The Tie Wraps On Your Boat’s Electrical Wiring
Recently I had the experience of being one of the instructors in a new ABYC/NMEA combined certification program. This four-day certification program is designed for experienced marine electricians and installers gain the following certifications:
- The ABYC Electrical Certification Program
- NMEA MEI (Marine Electronics Installer Certification Program)
- and the NMEA 2000 network installer certifications.
This year I decided to work two days as an ABYC electrician instructor and two days as a student, learning the NMEA material.
The NMEA program was awesome and it brought back some great reminders of things to do and not to do when working on your boat’s electrical system.
The good news is that I passed the electronics installer and network exams! It would have been a major embarrassment if I didn’t.
One of the “not do items” that came up is something that I’ll bet most of you really don’t consider but perhaps should.
Over tightening the tie wraps on your boat can crush your coaxial cabling.
The issue with over-tightening of the tie wraps on your electrical wires is that you could crush the coaxial cable, which as you may or may not know has a designed impedance value, (think resistance).
Electronic installers consider impedance values for the coaxial cabling they use for VHF antenna leads, depth sounders and such. Impedance of the coaxial cable and contribute to a performance loss in the gear the coaxial cable is associated with.
The bottom line is that to ensure maximum performance. Impedance values must never exceed NMEA installation standards.
In the upcoming weeks as we slide into the backside of summer. I will be sharing more from my experience as an ABYC electrician instructor and student.