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Author Topic: What are they called and where do I buy them ????  (Read 552 times)
KF4FCA
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Posts: 3




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« on: July 15, 2001, 08:09:05 PM »

I am looking for a power bar, power block, power connector - what ever they are called ..

Here is what i want to do.

I do not want to hook my mobil power cable directly to the battery - I would like to find a distribution bar ( that is hooked to the battery ) with terminals on it so I can hook up my 2 meter and maybe something else to the battery. Using a block of terminals would put less strain than putting a number of connectors onto the battery.

What do they call these power distribution panels/blocks?

Who makes them

Where can I buy them

thanx for your help

Andy
KF4FCA
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WG7X
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Posts: 350




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« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2001, 08:47:24 PM »

Andy,

MFJ Enterprises,
http://www.mfjenterprises.com, or 662.323.5869

Has what you need. Price ranges from $34.95 to
$74.95. Model numbers MFJ-1112/6/7/8.

Despite what some will say about MFJ quality, some of their products are reasonable and work in the intended way.

HTH,

Gary, WG7X
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N2CNK
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Posts: 3




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« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2001, 08:50:17 PM »

You have the name right, try MFJ, they sell several at all price points, 73 de Bill
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KA4WJA
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Posts: 704




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« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2001, 09:14:50 PM »

Andrew,
The generic name is a "terminal strip" or if it uses screws to hold the wires, "a screw terminal strip"

If you want to spend the money, by all means take the advice/info of the other posts....
BUT if you want to save some $$$,  build your own!!!

I've seen very HD High current (30amp+) "screw terminal strips" go for about 50 cents at many hamfests
and I myself picked up a 12 terminal (10" long) strip
for ONE dollar!!!  I added 4 feet of 8ga wire and some HD terminal strap and I now have a simple high current
dc bus terminal in my shack... Total cost less than TWO dollars!!!!  

You might even find building simple things such as this
will give you motivation to tackle something bigger!!!
BUT be forwarned!!! It is ADDICTIVE!!!

Good luck,
73,
John,   KA4WJA

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K8YS
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Posts: 79


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« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2001, 09:57:00 PM »

Andy,
What you are looking for are commonly called "screw terminal blocks". They are terminal blocks that are 2 or more screw terminations... but, I am very sure that you will NOT be happy with set up. After a while, you will discover that they are not very sturdy and will corrode easily. I would suggest another option. One would be to do as the highpower audio guys do, that is terminal blocks that incorporate fuses and will distribute the power using a gauge of wire that you will need if you run a 100w HF radio and or a 50 - 100w V/UHF radios. If money is no object, check out Crutchfield or if you want good quality at a good price, check out MCM Electronics and if you are like me and want good quality at a cheap price, check out Parts Express. All have toll free phone number and all have a web site. Radio Shack also sells distribution blocks, at Crutchfield prices, but really lacking in the quality (You've got questions, we got dumb looks and batteries -- sorry about the editorial:)  I come off the battery - a dual post battery, top posts go to my radio gear and the side posts go to the GM van -- if it were a Dodge with top posts to the starter, the side posts would go to the radio... to 4ga cable to a distibution block with four fuses, each branch is fused, each branch goes to an other sub branch, also fused! This makes for a very nice, neat and tidy set up, easy to trouble shoot, easy to add and subtract stuff.
I bought the battery at Sears. The 4 and 8 ga wire came from Parts Express as did the distribution blocks. Parts Express sells two flavors too, a generic version and one made by Street Wires.
This will cost you more then wire nuts, and will cost more than finding the black bakelite plastic terminal strips at a hamfest, but the extra effort WILL pay off in the long run... if I have learned anything in 27 years of mobile radio, it is to do it right the first time!
Oh, one other hint, seal the cut ends of your wires! I use a black plastic tape like material that windshield installers use to seal windshields... I am not sure exactly what it is called, but I think it is called "Beetle Tape" or some thing equally strange. The reason is that water will wick right up the unsealed end and invite corrosion.

73,
Bob
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KA4WJA
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Posts: 704




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« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2001, 11:49:54 PM »

I agree with Bob!

Do it right!

73,
John,  KA4WJA
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KQ6EA
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Posts: 609


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« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2001, 12:21:27 AM »

Go to a store/shop that specializes in High-Power car stereo gear. The kids in the "Boom-Boom" cars and trucks use hardware like this to connect together all the extra batteries they have to carry to power their amps. Most any type of buss bar, fuse block, ultra flexible cable, and terminal strip you can imagine is available, and in current ratings to several hundred amps. 2000W worth of 12V audio draws a LOT of current, and these guys know how to handle it.
73, Jim
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KD5MAW
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Posts: 75




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« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2001, 03:24:20 PM »

Thanks for reminding me. I need to see my broker about buying some stock in a hearing aid manufacturing company. {8^)
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KA2QFX
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« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2001, 05:02:17 PM »

Aside from any high power car audio dealer you can find some very nice power distribution components at any West Marine store. They even have fused/lighted switch panels if you want to get fancy. They are a bit pricey however.

I bought a bunch of screw terminal strips, all different sizes, at a hamfest several years ago. That's certainly the best buy if you want to save some $ and can wait for a sizable fest in your area.

73,
Mark
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