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Is there a spare 12V connection behind the dash - '17 AR190

2kwik4u

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I can find a ton of threads on adding a circuit to the system. No big deal there. Does anyone know (or have a link to a schematic) if there is a spare 12V circuit behind the dash? Looks to support a USB charging port for the phone that is now mounted at the helm.

Something like this.

Any thoughts before I run a spare set of wires directly from the battery over to the helm?

If I DO have to run a new circuit, any idea on best routing to get there? Battery is in port rear compartment, helm obviously starboard side mid-ship area. Across the stern, and up the starboard gunwale the easiest? Can I go under the floor at any level across the top of the fuel compartment?
 

gallobg

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I can't answer that question for a 2017. But in my 2019 (the re-designed year) there was NOT any extra circuits available. I ended up adding a Blue Seas circuit block at the helm area since I was already adding a bunch of other electrical stuff for amps, second battery, etc.

In your case, if this the *only* thing you want to add right now, then I would probably just jumper a circuit off of the existing in-dash cigarette port (I assume the 2017 has one there?). These USB chargers can draw a maximum of 3A, so unless you are also maxing out the cigarette port at the same time you are charging a phone that can take the 3A, then I would assume that you won't blow a fuse or anything.

IF you decide to run a dedicated cable up there, I ran mine up the starboard side gunwale from the rear. It was a real PITA but like I said I already had the boat taken apart to run a bunch of other stuff. For me, I'd take the simple route and jumper the existing circuit for now unless you've got time to spare.

Also, I would recommend this version of the USB ports since it has an on-board power switch. So the voltage meter will only run when you turn it on (ie no parasitic loss when you're not using it). Installed this one and so far its been great.

 

2kwik4u

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I can't answer that question for a 2017. But in my 2019 (the re-designed year) there was NOT any extra circuits available. I ended up adding a Blue Seas circuit block at the helm area since I was already adding a bunch of other electrical stuff for amps, second battery, etc.

In your case, if this the *only* thing you want to add right now, then I would probably just jumper a circuit off of the existing in-dash cigarette port (I assume the 2017 has one there?). These USB chargers can draw a maximum of 3A, so unless you are also maxing out the cigarette port at the same time you are charging a phone that can take the 3A, then I would assume that you won't blow a fuse or anything.

IF you decide to run a dedicated cable up there, I ran mine up the starboard side gunwale from the rear. It was a real PITA but like I said I already had the boat taken apart to run a bunch of other stuff. For me, I'd take the simple route and jumper the existing circuit for now unless you've got time to spare.

Also, I would recommend this version of the USB ports since it has an on-board power switch. So the voltage meter will only run when you turn it on (ie no parasitic loss when you're not using it). Installed this one and so far its been great.

Thanks for the feedback. I don't have a cigarette lighter at the helm currently, so it sounds like I'm running a spare set of wires on a new circuit.
 

2kwik4u

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OK, here's another stupid question.

I have a role of 14/4 wire I've used to wire in speakers in the house. 14awg/4 conductor. Any reason I can't use this to power a 12V accessory at the helm? Already have the wire on hand. It's high quality braided copper in an insulated jacket. Blue Seas shows that 14awg will handle up to 10A on non-critical circuits at 20ft. I could tie two legs together as well.....if that works that way.....and make it into something MORE than 14/4 cable, but ??/2 cable perhaps?

If that won't work. Is adding a 10/2 siamese wire, with 10A fuse holder and some bus bars to the helm the right way to go about it? Not sure if/when I'll add anything else up there, but I'm sure I'll think up something.
 

gallobg

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I'm sure it will work, copper is copper, so I don't see anything wrong with using that type of wire EXCEPT that I would either take it out of its sheath or otherwise make it apparent that it is NOT speaker wire but instead a live electrical lead. You'll know what it is but somebody else (for example, a mechanic working on the boat or even a future purchaser) might assume its just a dead speaker wire.

Otherwise, yes you could simply run some 10/2 (I used 8/2) with the fuse holder up to the helm. It might be longer than 20' depending on how you snake the cable around stuff, but that is probably a good length. One tricky thing running the wire through the gunwale is that you need to find places to secure it off the floor, because that interior gunwale is also a water drain channel on these boats. I did not want a live cable sitting on the floor where water will flow past it, in case there is some break in the insulation. I was able to find a few zip-tie points from the factory that were in the gunwale and secured the cable to those. But it took awhile and a number of fiberglass cuts from reaching down that far.
 

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2kwik4u

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Correct sir. No accessory port at the helm. Here's a screen grab from boattest.com
1626439453010.png

Thanks for the schematic on the horn wiring. That might be the ticket. I think I've used the horn MAYBE 3 times in 5 seasons.
 

gallobg

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Hey look - real live gauges that won't crap out when Connext up and dies! Seriously, until mine went RIP last week I was all in on the digital screens, but now I just want some backup analog gauges. I do wish there was an easy way to add them.

Back on topic... That's actually a good idea to tap off the horn leads. Like you I almost never use them either. My only caveat would be to figure out what the fuse rating is for the dash equipment. On my 2019, it looks like there is a single 20A fuse that feeds everything up to the dash. So just make sure your stock one has enough headroom for the 3A charger, I assume it will.
 

2kwik4u

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Hey look - real live gauges that won't crap out when Connext up and dies! Seriously, until mine went RIP last week I was all in on the digital screens, but now I just want some backup analog gauges. I do wish there was an easy way to add them.
Fun note. Even these "analog" gages are electronic based. Little LCD screen down in the bottom of the tach. Same with the speedo, it's just an electrical signal. Still more robust than a touchscreen (only because other functions aren't tied into it, but moved to physical switches below), but not completely analog.

With that said, the speedo always works with this setup. My old Rinker with the pitot tube speedometer would clog after about 3min in the water, so there is something to be said for electronics.

Back on topic... That's actually a good idea to tap off the horn leads. Like you I almost never use them either. My only caveat would be to figure out what the fuse rating is for the dash equipment. On my 2019, it looks like there is a single 20A fuse that feeds everything up to the dash. So just make sure your stock one has enough headroom for the 3A charger, I assume it will.
yea, I'll definitely have to track down the schematics for my boat before I do the tapping there.

I really like that it's already on the main battery switch as well. Easy to prevent parasitic losses there.

*edit*
Just ordered the plug that you linked to. Installation pics coming soon (well, after Monday because shipping and all)
 
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2kwik4u

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New dual USB outlet installed. Tagged off the horn circuit as suggested by @zipper. Be on the water Sat and Sun and I'll have plenty of test time!

Not super please with the location. I wanted to put it where the warning sticker is, but that is a separate cavity behind that panel compared to the switch panel. Leads weren't long enough. I'm sure this will work fine and it doesn't look grossly out of place.

PXL_20210723_001700789.jpg
 

gallobg

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Nice job! Placement looks good and clean to me.
 

2kwik4u

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Nice job! Placement looks good and clean to me.
Didn't have the right sized drill bit, so I had to use my step bit to start, then dremel to fit. It wasn't pretty when I was done, but it's covered by the insert. Was trying to get it centered on the fuses horizontally, and centered on the opening vertically. Missed a little, but most won't notice.
 

2kwik4u

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Follow up on this mod since I was searching for it for another member.

I've been using the RAM mount and this charger for a few weeks now. It's stayed ahead of the phone (Pixel 5) in terms of charging versus usage, and will keep the phone at 100% even with Navionics up and running and screen at full bright. Nice to have access to phone full time to control music as well. Most likely going to relocate that stereo remote somewhere else this winter (probably rear swim platform) since I have volume and source control through the Marine Audio Bluetooth/App connection, as well as Spotify playlists going. I don't use the voltage readout very often other than to check that it's around 12 when the engine if off and around 14 when the engine is running. Nice quick easy check to see if the charging system is working.

Overall for the ~30min install, and the $15-ish cost, it was well worth it.
 

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Wishfull1

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Watching this thread gave me the courage to poke my first hole in the boat. :) I wanted to put it on the side panel in front of the throttle, but my arm was not near long enough to secure the back nut.

I ended up on the underside by my right knee and tapped into the horn circuit. Worked out perfectly! Thanks for tip on the horn circuit @zipper
 

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