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I get folks asking me what I think about a product idea from time to time and recently I had a query that really got my attention. How about a waterproof electrical buss bar? This one has gone well beyond the idea stage and is actually available as a product right now. Check it out here:

So, what are you looking at? Its basically a bus bar with a 300 amp @ 48VDC rating that is completely potted and has two permanently installed and water tight Deutsch 12 pin plug connectors installed on it. The only exposed metal parts are the two 5/16″ stainless steel studs you see. Those can be effectively sealed with a little squirt of Boeshield T-9 once the heavy gauge cables get attached. Why bother you ask? Well increasingly I’m seeing new boats coming through with rather large amounts of wiring exposed to bilge areas. The photo here is a good example:

Eventually, the bus bar you see above is going to end up with a nice green corrosion patina all over it. The electrical connections? Well they’ll be quite suspect at that point. So, although there may be some limits to the use of the Deutsch equipped, fully potted bar in the top photo due to amperage handling capability, I can certainly see plenty of really good applications for this set-up in bilge areas and under center consoles, really anywhere on a boat that is exposed either directly or indirectly to the weather.

The weather sealed buss bars are currently available in several configurations, one with a total of 24 pins in the Deutsch plugs and rated for 300 amps as shown here and a smaller unit rated at 150 amps at 48VDC with 12 pins. The appropriate mating plug assemblies are also available from the supplier. The 24 pin models sell for about $60 and the 12 pin model sells for $40.

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