Battery Cable Gauge

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2013: Battery Cable Gauge
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Perigo - Linton, IN on Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 07:45 pm:

I have a Model T and an A. Recently, I bought a 1939 Chrysler. The previous owner put on modern 12 volt cables, as we know is not good. New battery cables for the Chrysler are over $80.00 with shipping. Was thinking of making my own with heavy duty jumper cables.

Mike


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Walker, NW AR on Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 08:53 pm:

OK.


Was there supposed to be a question in there somewhere? :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By A. J. "Art" Bell on Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 09:56 pm:

Likely cheaper to buy 6 volt cables at a farm supply.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Thode Chehalis Washington on Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 10:00 pm:

Even $200 heavy duty jumper cables are smaller gauge then the recommended battery cable.

Here is some that are good for 800 amps but only 1 gauge wire.
http://www.awdirect.com/heavy-duty-jumper-cables-cable-clamps-800-amp-bayco-prod ucts-sl3010/jump-start-sets-accessories/?gclid=CJXVi-GIpLkCFY1FMgodvgkA1w&epc=AW SEPLA&CID=AWSEPLA&ci_src=17588969&ci_sku=BC80&ef_id=Uh4UBgAAAVfpUguQ:20130830015 739:s

Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Aaron Griffey, Hayward Ca. on Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 10:17 pm:

Go to any good welding supply shop and buy number one or size 0 (pronounced ought) welding cable by the foot.
Get the terminal ends for the battery and starter at an auto supply store. They will no doubt have to order them. The ones at the welding supply look different and are expensive.
A propane torch or a gas welder can be used to solder the cables into the terminals.
Fords originally used size one cables. Size ought is larger, double ought is even larger.
If it is for a speedster or pre-'19 Ford with the battery in the back of the car you should use size 00 cable (pronounced double ought).
The terminals will be easier to get for size one than the larger cables sizes.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Pat Kelly on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 12:02 am:

I'm with Aaron, I use welding cable and have our local NAPA store crimp on some real nice quality cable ends. PK


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Aaron Griffey, Hayward Ca. on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 12:26 am:

Pat must have a real GOOD NAPA store in his area.
I doubt if any store in my area has a cable crimper.
I once worked at a shop in San Leandro that has one, we made many new cables for the cars we serviced.
Mainly we replaced the battery end terminals on the original cables, looked very professional and didn't take long.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Garnet on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 12:32 am:

Ever see one of those TV adverts where someone asks "do you have batteries for this" and the reply is always "yes, we have batteries for anything" .... places like that will usually make up cables for you or have the material onhand you can buy. It ain't gonna be cheap though! BTDT.

Garnet


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By ROBERT J STEINER on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 07:28 am:

1ga is the min. you would put on your car
Try RJ&L Automotive Fasteners & Vintage Wiring Supplies.www.rjlautofasteners.com
They sell original type cloth covered battery cables already made up or you can buy them off the spool or better yet they'll custom make you up a set.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Dallas TX on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 07:30 am:

Ends need to be soldered, not crimped.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan B on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 07:53 am:

Are any of the T part suppliers selling battery cables that are soldered not crimped?

I just "upgraded" my batter cable to the correct heavy duty 0 gauge and they were crimped.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By keith g barrier on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 07:55 am:

If you are a cheapskate like me, go to a salvage yard and get the cables from a junk ford diesel, they are plenty large and will have at least one terminal in place. Crimping works fine with the brass terminals, standard practice for heavy equipment. KB


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Peter Claverie on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 11:55 am:

Firms that specialize in 18-wheeler parts & supplies tend to have the wire, the terminals, and the crimping equipment. If you arrive in a Model T, they also tend to look more and charge less. That's my experience, anyway.

How can you tell? look around for brake drums that are too heavy to pick up, lying around.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bob Cascisa - Poulsbo, Washington on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 12:16 pm:

Soldered terminals will corrode over time and become resistive. The key factor to a good connection between the wire and the terminal is that it is "Properly Crimped". Crimping tools for large terminals are expensive. They provide a properly formed crimp to manufacturers specifications. When done right with the right tool, the strands of the cable and the terminal are nearly fused together.

Aircraft do not have soldered terminals. They are all crimped with specified tools that are calibrated to crimp to manufacturers specifications.

Now, having said all of that, I have to remind myself that it's just a Model T. In the absence of the proper tool, soldering is not the end of the world :-).

Be_Zero_Be


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By ROBERT J STEINER on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 02:55 pm:

there is no Model T suppliers that solder on the lugs. They are all crimped. Also the cost involved to solder them on is expensive, the catalog retailers/ customers won't pay the price for that service.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan B on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 03:09 pm:

Is that the same reason why most suppliers sell the incorrect 2ga. battery cable size? I'd rather pay more and get the right thing.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By ROBERT J STEINER on Friday, August 30, 2013 - 03:54 pm:

1 gauge is the min. you should be using 1/0 (0)gage is better. I know Langs sell proper size cables The other competetor shows in his catalog 2/0 (00)cables but its actually 2 gauge they don't know the difference


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James A. Golden on Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 04:57 pm:

1/0 Gauge was the original Ford size and 2/0 Gauge is 10 % better yet.

1/0 Gauge is also more difficult to find.

My T was turning over and starting with 2 Gauge cable, but barely turning and showing 4.2 volts getting to the starter terminal while cranking.

I replaced the cables with 2/0 Gauge and now it starts like it is doing a compression start or almost immediately.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tman - Right Coast on Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 05:21 pm:

I buy the cable at a boat store by the ft. Shop around


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By ROBERT J STEINER on Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 07:40 pm:

Rj&L Automotve Fasteners sells 1/0 and 2/0 cotton covered braided battery cable.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Pat Kelly on Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 09:00 pm:

My Local NAPA store is also a welding supply, truck and heavy equipment parts supply. Out here in the sticks you have to cover many bases. They really do make good cables and hydraulic hoses. PK


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Eric Dysart - SoCal on Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 09:55 pm:

I've built a couple of electric car conversions and more recently converted my 30' sailboat from diesel to electric power. My main battery pack is 48V and I run the system at more than 100A for an hour at a time. My main cables are 2/0 and I bought a large cable crimper a ways back, here's a link to the same crimper, http://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/show_product.do?pid=11284. None of the EV guys solder their cable lugs, a proper crimp will make a much better and long lasting connection than soldering. In an EV, the current can be 400A at 144V for more than a minute. A Model T cable has a much easier life, they will probably survive even an inferior soldered lug without failure. But why chance it, do it right and crimp it.

Anybody local (in SoCal) is welcome to borrow my crimper if they need it. And I get all my cable and lugs at genuinedealz.com, great product, good prices, free shipping and no tax. No affiliation, just a satisfied customer.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ted Dumas on Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 11:37 pm:

Before you spend too much money, how does it work with the 12 volt cables? If it works fine as is, then a replacement may not be necessary.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By ROBERT J STEINER on Sunday, September 01, 2013 - 08:10 am:

alot of the 12v cables are 4gauge so beware on what you are buying.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tman - Right Coast on Monday, September 02, 2013 - 10:52 am:

Ted, It might hold up for a short time but one day when it has to be cranked a little more than a quick start, then you will have wished you bought the proper cable.


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