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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I've already wired an accessory fuse box with a relay thanks to some of the posts on this site and it works great. However, I'm not sure where I should ground accessories when I add them. I could connect to the negative terminal on the battery or connect to the frame, but I thought I'd ask you folks what the pros and cons are to each approach. I'm not a total rookie, so I'd especially like to hear from people that have electrical expertise.

To be specific, here's some questions:

- In general, is it better to ground to the frame or battery? (I was thinking frame, but I’m not sure)

- Are there exceptions to the rule (if there is one) where one method is better than the other?

- If grounding to the frame, what’s the best place on a 2009 c50 to connect to? Is there already a bolt somewhere that is recommended or is it better to drill, tap and install a small bolt?

As always, thank you in advance for the input!
 

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Ground to the battery. Copper wire is a better conductor and you could possibly get corrosion on the frame contact points. The frame shouldn't really conduct the ground, just be attached.

Obviously, several bikes and cars come this way from the factory. Doesn't mean its the best electrically speaking.

I'm biased though, I'm an electrical engineer and I design microchips for a living so in my world the ground should be equal in (lack of) resistance to the power.
 

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Thanks, Grape Ape...

BTW, you were one of my favorite cartoons when I was a kid...
:biglaugh:
 

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I had added they extra fuse block but I got one with a grounding post attached . I then gro.ded the post to the battery.
 

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Loved that cartoon and my rock climbing buddies in college called me an ape because of my long arms.

So here's a disclaimer. I don't have a lot of real world experience wiring motorcycles or even cars, so maybe someone else who does might have a different opinion. I've done more electronic wiring and guitars, pcb boards. and of course micron level stuff.

My thought process is that you could get away wiring lights (or a horn) to frame since they would just get dimmer with extra gnd resistance. But any electronics can be sensitive to extra resistance on the gnd side. Basically you are reducing the voltage supplied to the device.
 

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Because of the short bolt on the top of the battery that makes it difficult to add more than one - maybe two - ring terminals to the battery posts, I would tend to stay away from adding wires directly to the battery....

I used a 14 gauge wire with a ring terminal and placed it behind the battery ground wire at the engine block.... Run the other end of that wire to a ground stud in the ''tool box'' behind the locked cover and fasten it in a stable permanent position so you can add as many circuits to it later on.

you could use a ''barrier strip'' instead of the single stud as well. It might make for a neater install with several circuits..


Do a similar tap for the 12v B+/hot source by taking a common 14 gauge wire from the stud on the starter relay that is just behind the battery. Run that wire to your fuse block.

Using these alternate electrical taps for B+ and gnd keeps the battery terminals free of additional stress, makes things look neater and professional, and makes it less of a fight to replace the battery when the time comes.

Just be sure that you only use these taps/wires for charging and accessory draw...... NO DIRECT BOOSTING ON THESE WIRES!!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Because of the short bolt on the top of the battery that makes it difficult to add more than one - maybe two - ring terminals to the battery posts, I would tend to stay away from adding wires directly to the battery....

I used a 14 gauge wire with a ring terminal and placed it behind the battery ground wire at the engine block.... Run the other end of that wire to a ground stud in the ''tool box'' behind the locked cover and fasten it in a stable permanent position so you can add as many circuits to it later on.

you could use a ''barrier strip'' instead of the single stud as well. It might make for a neater install with several circuits..


Do a similar tap for the 12v B+/hot source by taking a common 14 gauge wire from the stud on the starter relay that is just behind the battery. Run that wire to your fuse block.

Using these alternate electrical taps for B+ and gnd keeps the battery terminals free of additional stress, makes things look neater and professional, and makes it less of a fight to replace the battery when the time comes.

Just be sure that you only use these taps/wires for charging and accessory draw...... NO DIRECT BOOSTING ON THESE WIRES!!

Gene,

Thanks for your response. You said, "Run the other end of that wire to a ground stud in the ''tool box'' behind the locked cover and fasten it in a stable permanent position so you can add as many circuits to it later on". Is a ground stud something I would purchase or are you referring to installing a bolt that is connected to a ground wire that I could add more accessory ground wires to as needed?

Thanks again
 

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Gene,

Thanks for your response. You said, "Run the other end of that wire to a ground stud in the ''tool box'' behind the locked cover and fasten it in a stable permanent position so you can add as many circuits to it later on". Is a ground stud something I would purchase or are you referring to installing a bolt that is connected to a ground wire that I could add more accessory ground wires to as needed?

Thanks again
It could be as simple as a 1/4" bolt/nut through a piece of peg board or thin plywood and attached to the inside of the tool box with sheet metal screws... or something similar....

or a 1/4" hole through the toolbox plastic and the ground bolt and nut through there to attach the individual accessory grounds... that would be my least preferred because it is not easily dismounted if you want to remove the tool box from the frame...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Anything specific about the bolt or just a standard steel bolt?

Thanks very much!
 

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Anything specific about the bolt or just a standard steel bolt?

Thanks very much!
just a standard 1/4" coarse thread bolt will do fine. if you are in an area where corrosion could be a problem then you might want to consider ''stainless''.... but it's not a big concern - in my opinion....
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks.

Funny, I actually installed relay switches in the toolbox and added a bolt for the ground already. I started this thread to try and figure out what the best place to wire the bolt to for a ground, but I also had some doubts about using the bolt.
Your responses couldn't have been more appropriate for what I'm trying to accomplish and I really appreciate the help.

Volusia riders strikes again!
 

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There's no problem with grounding to the frame. Just make sure the connection is clean. On the other hand though, I bought a fuse block that had a ground side on it, so I use that

Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App


Yes, the frame is a very acceptable grounding location but I've found that it is handier to have a separate ground away from the battery so as to eliminate the rats nest at the battery posts....... A common ground point that is easy to get at where a direct to frame point may not be so nice.....


Which fuse block did you get?
 

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Another post lost...stupid VR auto-logout.

Well in stead of a detailed well prepared post with nice graphs and links and stuff you get this.

Nothing wrong with grounding to the frame,there are no greater losses due to electrical resistance unless you are comparing it to using 0 AWG wire directly to the battery or the generator's ground for your accessories. The higher resistance of the steel tubing is offset by its sectional surface area which is at a minimum equivalent to 6Ga.(.065 minimum wall steel tube VS .061 X 7 strands steel conductor wire). Also tends to be a lot easier to route and hide only one wire to the battery or fuse block.
 
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