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 Cabin top wiring for wind instruments and lights
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WK 727
1st Mate

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USA
72 Posts

Initially Posted - 08/14/2018 :  17:28:53  Show Profile
The wiring that extends from the cabin top to the connector for the mast wiring is frayed and the wire covering crumbles. The gauges no longer work and the lighting is sporadic. Has anyone replaced these wires on their boat? It looks like it is sandwiched in the core of the cabin top. I would like to replace both the wind instrument wire and the mast lighting wire back to the gauges and switches.

Any suggestions would be appreciated. John

Regards, John
Westlawn Institute graduate
Yacht Design and Naval Architecture
04 Catalina 250 WK
Standard rig w/wheel steering
Yanmar 9hp diesel

kjk
1st Mate

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USA
87 Posts

Response Posted - 08/27/2018 :  17:36:47  Show Profile
I replaced the wires that went into the conduit in the mast but was able to get the wires that led to the deck connector (which I replaced). You may be better off running new wiring from the panel to the deck, not easy, but its then replaceable. The wiring was baked into the hull of the Cat 25 I had before, and it was impossible to salvage.

Kevin J. Kiely
Rockport, MA
1999WK
Hull # 407
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OLarryR
Master Marine Consultant

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USA
3366 Posts

Response Posted - 08/28/2018 :  03:25:10  Show Profile  Visit OLarryR's Homepage
I am sure that the Config of the 250 compared to the 25 is different regarding the deck connector and wiring thru the cabin top, however, here was my experience on my Cat 25. I replaced the wiring. I initially thought that the old cabling/wiring in the cabin top was baked in or so sandwiched that it would be impossible to remove it, so using a long extended drill bit, I removed the deck connector and inside angled the extended drill bit forward so that the new hole would go thru ahead of the bulkhead that separated my main cabin from the head area. (This is probably different on your 250.) The hole just made it into the head area and from there I installed the new wire and attached it along the bulkhead wall in the head area coming down behind the head and then passed it thru along the hull side under the main cabin seat (port side) to a new switch panel I installed in front of the sink above the drawers. But the reason I mention this is that after I completed the wire replacement and everything hooked up and worked fine, I then removed the old wiring that was attached to the underside of the floor adjacent to the bilge. That old wiring went up thru the mast column adjacent to the main cabin bulkhead. Since the old wiring was no longer needed or connected, I yanked it a few times and it dropped down inside the mast column and I removed it. So, it turns out that the old wiring was not sealed inside the cabin top, just a tight fit and was able to be removed in it's entirety. Perhaps, same is true with your old wiring. The thing is that even if the old wiring is not sealed/baked into the cabin top, it is such a tight fit that it is unlikely that installing new wiring you would be able to channel it thru the same pathway as the old wiring but you may be able to remove it in it's entirety once you install a new wire drilling thru the cabin top inside the deck connector space.

I know the configuration is different on the Cat 25 - Anyway, the new wiring I used was a mast cable made by Anchor. Believe it had 5 wire strands within it. I only needed 4 strands - One positive wire for the anchor light, two positive wires for the steaming/deck light combo and one for the negative wire. The extra positive wire, you can see in the first photo as I strung it along the top of the main cabin bulkhead aft to power a multi-swivel fan (Catafamo Scirocco with 3 speeds and timer for on for 2, 4 or 6 hrs) in the main cabin. The second photo is the ew switch panel. More photos are on my website but unfortunately, I do not have one that shows where the drilled hole came out in the head area but it actually came out just forward of the bulkhead in the rubber liner trimming on the top of the bulkhead and cabin top. I at first could not find the drilled hole because the rubber liner covered it but under closer inspection, I saw the hole slit in the rubber liner.





Larry
'89 Robin's Nest#5820, Potomac River/Quantico, Va
http://catalina25.homestead.com/olarryr.html
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WK 727
1st Mate

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USA
72 Posts

Response Posted - 08/29/2018 :  21:46:38  Show Profile
Great insight on my situation. I now plan on tracing the wires from the panel towards the mast compression post and hopefully have the same location for the wires as the Cat 25. I think that replacing them might be possible. Even though the models are different, the manufacturer is the same with the same design functionality, so here's hoping. Thanks for the tip on Anchor cabling. I'll post my finding after the boat is pulled out for dry storage next month.

Regards, John

Regards, John
Westlawn Institute graduate
Yacht Design and Naval Architecture
04 Catalina 250 WK
Standard rig w/wheel steering
Yanmar 9hp diesel
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OLarryR
Master Marine Consultant

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USA
3366 Posts

Response Posted - 08/30/2018 :  04:31:41  Show Profile  Visit OLarryR's Homepage
I was curious if they still sold the mast cable that I used. First of all, it is not "Anchor" brand as I mentioned in my above posting. I had forgot the actual name -- It is "Ancor" brand round mast cable.
Below is the hyperlink from their online catalog. You can get it mail order from various suppliers checking the web. It is thick but then again, it has 5 wires in it ! Woah ! Don't blow a gasket when you see the price of it - Many retailers sell it in 100 and 200 ft lengths. The cost will shock you. But recommend see the 2nd link for Defender Boat Supplies mail order - You can buy it from them by the foot - $2.29/ft !! If the 2nd link does not open properly - Then search on Defender Boats - Defender.com. Then go to electrical, then electrical wire, then select, multi conductor wire and that will get you to the Ancor Mast cable wiring 14/5 strands.

http://www.ancorproducts.com/en/155010

https://www.defender.com/product3.jsp?name=ancor-marine-grade-round-mast-cable-14-5&path=-1|328|2290011|2875094&id=2874755

Larry
'89 Robin's Nest#5820, Potomac River/Quantico, Va
http://catalina25.homestead.com/olarryr.html

Edited by - OLarryR on 08/30/2018 04:55:46
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