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Old 01-18-2008, 12:36 PM   #1
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wiring driving lights

Just now getting around to wire up my DL's . Is it ok to use 12ga wire to build my own harness or will it be too big? also the lights have a inline fuse and no relay. Should I add a relay?

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Old 01-18-2008, 12:41 PM   #2
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That's way huge dude.

18 or 16 gauge shoud be fine for (2) 55 watt lights.

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Old 01-18-2008, 12:44 PM   #3
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Always use a fuse. If you have a heavy duty switch that can handle the amperage, you do not need a relay. I'm think a 10 amp switch should be OK.
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Old 01-18-2008, 03:02 PM   #4
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ok well would the 12ga work? I ask because I have access to free 12ga wire but if it's too big i can go buy some. Sooo is it over kill and will cause problems or is it useable and just big?
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Old 01-18-2008, 07:06 PM   #5
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help
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Old 01-18-2008, 07:53 PM   #6
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do the 12g on the light side and use a smaller one on the switch side (runnin through to the cab) and do a relay just for safety sake.
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Old 01-18-2008, 08:00 PM   #7
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Using a relay is always i good idea IMO
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Old 01-18-2008, 08:02 PM   #8
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IMO a cable can't be too big.

i would never use only a switch. i always use a relay.
and donīt forget to install a fuse in the + cable as close as possible the battery.
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Old 01-19-2008, 07:46 AM   #9
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Quote:
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IMO a cable can't be too big.

i would never use only a switch. i always use a relay.
and donīt forget to install a fuse in the + cable as close as possible the battery.

X2. Bigger wire=less resistance. 12ga is fine but use a relay and fuse!
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Old 01-19-2008, 10:33 AM   #10
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What exactly is a relay. I know what they look like and such, but mechanicaly what does it do. I assume that it is more than just a glorified fuse.
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Old 01-19-2008, 03:17 PM   #11
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Quote:
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What exactly is a relay. I know what they look like and such, but mechanicaly what does it do. I assume that it is more than just a glorified fuse.
here's a picture and description complements of wikipedia.org

Protective relay

A protective relay is a complex electromechanical apparatus, often with more than one coil, designed to calculate operating conditions on an electrical circuit and trip circuit breakers when a fault was found. Unlike switching type relays with fixed and usually ill-defined operating voltage thresholds and operating times, protective relays had well-established, selectable, time/current (or other operating parameter) curves. Such relays were very elaborate, using arrays of induction disks, shaded-pole magnets, operating and restraint coils, solenoid-type operators, telephone-relay style contacts, and phase-shifting networks to allow the relay to respond to such conditions as over-current, over-voltage, reverse power flow, over- and under- frequency, and even distance relays that would trip for faults up to a certain distance away from a substation but not beyond that point. An important transmission line or generator unit would have had cubicles dedicated to protection, with a score of individual electromechanical devices. The various protective functions available on a given relay are denoted by standard ANSI Device Numbers. For example, a relay including function 51 would be a timed overcurrent protective relay.

These protective relays provide various types of electrical protection by detecting abnormal conditions and isolating them from the rest of the electrical system by circuit breaker operation. Such relays may be located at the service entrance or at major load centers.

Design and theory of these protective devices is an important part of the education of an electrical engineer who specializes in power systems. Today these devices are nearly entirely replaced (in new designs) with microprocessor-based instruments (numerical relays) that emulate their electromechanical ancestors with great precision and convenience in application. By combining several functions in one case, numerical relays also save capital cost and maintenance cost over electromechanical relays. However, due to their very long life span, tens of thousands of these "silent sentinels" are still protecting transmission lines and electrical apparatus all over the world.
Top, middle: reed switches, bottom: reed relay
Top, middle: reed switches, bottom: reed relay

Overcurrent relay

An "Overcurrent Relay" is a type of protective relay which operates when the load current exceeds a preset value. The ANSI Device Designation Number is 50 for an Instantaneous OverCurrent (IOC), 51 for a Time OverCurrent (TOC). In a typical application the overcurrent relay is used for overcurrent protection, connected to a current transformer and calibrated to operate at or above a specific current level. When the relay operates, one or more contacts will operate and energize a trip coil in a Circuit Breaker and trip (open) the Circuit Breaker.

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Old 01-19-2008, 04:07 PM   #12
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Don't let all that scare you, in a nutshell all a relay is is a remotely operated switch, a fast one that is much faster than you can operate a manual switch.
So, the dash switch operates the relay and makes it go 'click'
Find a good spot in the engine compartment for one to fit. Me, I used some sheetmetal, bent it a bit and now have a horizontal spot to mount relays. I put it close to the PDC [that black box where the fuses are], I use the end of it to grab power though sometimes I've just used an empty fuse slot for stuff I want to turn off when the jeeps are turned off. I've almost exclusively used the Hella relays which have a built in fuse holder on them. Saves having a bunch of hanging fuses all over the place. When you mount the relays make sure you mount them pins down, otherwise you will get moisture inside, condensation actually, that will build up and short it out.
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Old 01-19-2008, 04:58 PM   #13
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Foxy you're killin me with all that Wikipedia bulls#*t!
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Old 01-20-2008, 10:19 PM   #14
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lol, sorry I tried to explain it but ended up erasing what I wrote and didn't feel like writing it again ao I just copied and pasted it, and prayed that it was even close to correct.

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