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Old 07-10-2005, 11:40 PM   #1
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Default Battery cables

Am finally having to replace the battery cables since cannot get them to reliably connect. My question is why did GM feel it necessary to use a 2 guage (at least, might be an 0) cable to the starter ? Bought a stub since was not long enough to reach for just a terminal and despite drilling the center out as far as reasonable, I still had to fold back about 15-20% off the copper because it would not fit.

Generic replacements seem to be 4 guage and considerably smaller than original. Any idea why a 3800 starter would be expected to draw that much current ?
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Old 07-10-2005, 11:49 PM   #2
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i'm not sure so much about current draw, but more the length? i'm not sure if our cables are normal length or not, but maybe that is why? I have jumper cables that are a good 10-15ft long, and super super thick.. and they look about the same size as the starter cable [maybe a little smaller]. They weigh more than one of my cylinder heads. Well, anyways they barely had enough current to crank my car over 'jumping' the starter. yeah it worked, yeah the battery was charged, but no it didn't crank as fast as it normally does..

no clue though.. just thought i'd contribute that worthless piece of info. If you buy new cables, why don't you just make them yourself? Get 0 or 2 gauge wire, cut to length, put on new connector, solder new connector for added protection, enjoy?


-justin
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Old 07-11-2005, 12:23 AM   #3
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OSG...how do you solder a connector onto 2 gauge wire?

The reason behind the gauge of the wire is probably it'* ability to carry the voltage over a certain length. If a wire is too thin a gauge it would get very hot if the amerage being pulled through the wire is too great.
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Old 07-11-2005, 10:59 AM   #4
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you add solder to the crimped connector.. you melt it right over the exposed wire ya know..


-justin
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Old 07-11-2005, 11:02 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opensourceguy
you add solder to the crimped connector.. you melt it right over the exposed wire ya know..


-justin
Let me rephrase, how do you heat a 2 gauge wire sufficiently to have solder flow properly into the strands and solidly connect tot the lead/metal end you are putting on.
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Old 07-11-2005, 11:20 AM   #6
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no clue.. the solder doesn't hold it on.. it'* just there..


-justin
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Old 07-11-2005, 12:12 PM   #7
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Yes solder is there to HOLD IT ON. If you cannot heat it up enough , then there is no point even having solder. You might as well just duct tape it on , you will get the same effect.

You would need a torch to heat that up enough to solder it on, by that time you will probably melt the connector.

I have seen battery connectors that you can use for that size, but they crimp on, not solder.

I can just imagine the size of the crimpers needed to do that. Those connectors are pretty solid, ( the ones I have seen).

Just as easy to go get the proper cable from a parts store with the connectors on it already.
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Old 07-11-2005, 07:59 PM   #8
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Err folks: the battery cable on my 400 cid GTO is at least three steps smaller and is no shorter than the cable on the Bonneville.
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Old 07-11-2005, 10:29 PM   #9
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I would just get a replacement cable from the parts store. They may be smaller, but they wouldn't sell cables that are too small.


Maybe it was GM'* way to make it look like it had more power, with bigger cables, lol.
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:32 PM   #10
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OK before I get out and get under, does anyone know how long the cable from the battery to the starter is supposed to be ?
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