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Boatowner's Illustrated Electrical Handbook Hardcover – August 26, 2011


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Frequently Bought Together

Boatowner's Illustrated Electrical Handbook + Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual: How to Maintain, Repair, and Improve Your Boat's Essential Systems + Marine Diesel Engines: Maintenance, Troubleshooting, and Repair
Price for all three: $69.80

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press; 2 edition (August 26, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071446443
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071446440
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #28,820 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Keep your boat's electrical systems running and reliable

Boatowner’s Illustrated Electrical Handbook is perfect for learning how your boat’s electrical system and much of its equipment works, and it will be an invaluable guide when adding equipment as well. This book needs to be in every boater’s library as a ready reference on how to make effective repairs and modifications that comply with ABYC standards.”—Ed Sherman, Senior Instructor and Curriculum Designer, American Boat and Yacht Council

“A definitive technical book that is easy to read. Buy this book and throw out the rest.”—Motorboat & Yachting

Whether you take to the sea under power or sail, bounce around the bay in your runabout, or cross oceans in your cruiser, you’ll find everything you need to maintain, repair, and upgrade your boat’s DC and AC electrical systems with this comprehensive and fully illustrated guide.

Tackle onboard electrical projects and learn how to:

  • Meet ABYC standards for both DC and AC wiring
  • Install solar- and wind-power systems
  • Add electrical components
  • Prevent corrosion of your electrical system . . . and more

Charlie Wing received his Ph.D. in oceanography from MIT. Since then, he has spent his career explaining how things work. He founded two do-it-yourself house-building schools, hosted a PBS series on energy conservation, and has written more than a dozen top-selling do-it-yourself books. Wing lived aboard his boat for six years, during which he wrote the first edition of this book.

About the Author

Charlie Wing received his Ph.D. in oceanography from MIT, where he later worked as a research scientist. He has written a dozen books on home building and five top-selling boating books.


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Customer Reviews

This book explains it all very well.
D. W. Corcoran
If you want to learn your boats electrical systems - this is your book.
LIFTMAN
I feel like this book is just the right book for the almost beginner.
Danny

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

41 of 41 people found the following review helpful By D. W. Corcoran on January 4, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a really impressive book. It provides a really good understanding of the many forces/dynamics of electrical systems on a boat.

There is a lot more to 12 volts, than a positive and ground. To my surprise, it's more complex than 120 VAC in my house. At home, for the most part, you use one standard type of wire and have no concerns about your wiring causing any part of your house to corrode. While there is virtually a perfect and repeatable way to wire everything in your home, surprisingly their isn't a perfect way to do things on your boat, you need to continuously make tradeoff's when you add something new, and it helps to understand the tradeoff's that were already made on your boat by the manufacturer's and prior owner's in making your next modification. Also, at home for the most part, your not worried about corrosion, while on a boat, the various metals in your boat want to use the water to establish electrical currents that are destructive ... in the very worst case in a matter of days, if not months and years, to metal parts in your boat.

This book explains it all very well. Be sure to start from the beginning where it explains what a battery is. I skipped that section initially (I know the chemistry of a battery more than most people), but found it very helpful to read this section, as the following sections establish how the various metals in your boat colude to form their own battery like behavior where you didn't intend, the result being corrosion.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Hamor Marine Service on May 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Harry Homeowner wouldn't give it a second glance, but Bob Boatowner should. Dr. Charles has put it all together, from shore power to solar, it has plenty of references to ABYC standards for electrical installations. All of the inforamtion is precise and clear, he makes

references to the ABYC and the NEC as necessary. If you're a licensed electrican (like me) you'll appreciate the nomenclature.

If you're Bob Boatowner with little or no experience making electrical installations - this book might not be for you. But, if you are willing to read and read again - you'll be OK.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Chad Trani on February 15, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book has all the detailed information a person would want about DC wiring - particularly in a marine environment. It covers the basics as well as goes the extra distance to explain, in depth, the mechanisims and chemistry of how systems actually work. A great book for either the novice just getting started, or the veteran who wants to further flesh out his informational knowledge. I'd highly recommend it to a friend.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sailor on September 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book is not for the rank beginner, but if you have passed that stage and have a basic understanding of electricity and you want to increase that understanding, review and evaluate your existing installations, install new equipment properly, and keep your boat electrics safe, it should be aboard your boat. I often recommend it to my more technically-capable customers.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By jasgrab on June 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a great companion book for the DC Bible. I am revamping my boat's electrical system and I have read both. There is tons of insight and information for the layman. This book actually goes into more depth then the DC bible. Very interesting and informative!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Shorty on November 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For strictly electrical work on a boat, I like this better than Calder's book that covers all mechanical systems, although Calder's is a good book to have. If you want one book on just electrical, this is it. Clear, well organized.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kenneth Turcotte on May 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great if you have limited electrical knowledge. Even if you have none it would be helpful especially in the wireing area and learning where the colors apply to which areas of the boat.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Peter R. Gibbons on February 8, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My interest in this book came after looking at some others that were written for RV's, 12 volt, and house wiring. None of those resources did quite what I needed, but this one does. Interestingly, my needs are not in boats, but vans and RV's. This book doesn't cover RV's, but it is the best resource that I've found for mobile wiring practices, materials, and design. The way this book is written is readable and understandable, without getting too jargon-laden. I'm not an engineer, but after working with this book, I am pretty confident that I can design a basic electrical system safely and using the correct materials. If I had to choose one resource to finish my RV wiring project, this one would be it.
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