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    Savant's Avatar
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    Cheap power wire...

    Ok, here's the deal.. Most 'car audio' wire costs $2.50+ / ft (for 2 AWG or 1 AWG or 0 AWG).. The 0 AWG wire can hold ~260 amps at 17 ft (and 0 AWG is usually around ~$4.00 ft)..

    Someone mentioned 'welding wire' at some point, so I started looking around.. I was in Home Depot and noticed a 225 amp welder with 4 AWG wire, the lead was about 6 ft long.. They don't carry replacemant wire at Home Depot.. so I went to the web. This site has wire.. from #4 (I'm guessing ~ 2 AWG for normal people, even though it probably says 4AWG on the wire like it did at Home Depot) down to 4/0 (0000, right?)..

    The kicker.. I just got a 25 ft. spanse of their #2 wire (rated at ~250 amps at 25 ft, but I'll be well under that so I should be able to hold my ~265 at full power, not that I'll ever get to full power ) for $0.73/ft.. yeah.. 73 cents a foot, not $3+.. The only down side is you have to have a $25 minimum purchase.. and the minimum wire length is 25 ft as well.. But, if a few people wanted to go in together (NOT WITH ME, I ALREADY ORDERED) they could save a TON of money on big power wire.. The only other down side is it doesn't look pretty, just black wire..

    Here is the site http://www.weldingdepot.com/ .. look under 'welding cable' on the front page, right hand side under arc welding..

    I ended up getting some hearing protection (LOL, for when I go shooting.. tired of little foam plugs) to fill my order to $25.. there was $10 shipping ..

    Now I have to get a fuse for by the battery and a distro block.. might be able to use the left over #2 to wire the amps, that would be nice if I didn't have to get more wire.. course, 5 ft of 4 AWG isn't expensive.. so.. we'll see..

    Happy power wire hunting! Hope this is useful info for you...
    Last edited by Savant; 01-03-2003 at 06:23 PM.







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    sounds good....but its probably not ofc... they say you get what you pay for. anyways..it sounds like delcity.net. cheap welding cable. (which delcity.net was a little more expensive) but thats where i got my 1/0 for my amp. i also got 100' of 12/2 speaker for around $19......switches...circuit breakers...fues holders...distro blocks...you might want to take a look there too. btw...$25 minimum order.



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    "I'm building a street rod and was told that a hot trick is to use welding cable to make my battery cables. Is this a good idea?
    No. Many custom car builders are tempted to use welding cable for two reasons: it's more flexible and easier to route inside en engine bay, especially when the battery is mounted in the trunk and many bends are required. Also, some people believe that welding cable offers higher-performance in terms of current flow. Actually, just the opposite is true. Welding cable is made from a great number of fine wire strands, while dedicated battery cable features fewer but thicker wire strands. Battery cable will outperform welding cable in terms of current flow. The other reason to stay away from welding cable is that it isn't designed for automotive use, and does not offer the correct type of insulation. The cable may get hotter, leading to problems with hot-starts (where the engine is difficult to start after having been run and shut off). In short, don't use welding cable. Use only dedicated battery cable that was designed for this purpose. Always use at least 4-gauge cable. If you're making a longer run (if the battery is in the trunk, for example), you may need to upgrade to a heavier gauge in order to avoid an overheated cable and the hit-start problem we mentioned. "
    this is off the (2guys garage)web site i dont because its kindaonthe same bases. idontknow if it has any thing to do with amps but it might? o and sorry for it being so long




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    From what I understand, amp power wire is specifically made with more strands (flexable and efficient?).. I think you might need a bit more wire if it's stranded versus solid core (goes against the efficient idea though) but any wire that's rated for X amps should work for X amps. .if one is 5" thick and one is .25" thick, X amps is X amps (for the most part)..

    I can see the insulation question... maybe.. but as long as the wire is protected where it comes across metal or is overly exposed it should be ok.. since this wire is mostly inside the car, the insulation on it should be fine.. Sure the wire might get a bit warm, but even in a shop you don't want wires too hot...

    Anyway, one guy said he was running welding wire and it was working fine.. From what I understand, wire is wire is wire (for the most part.. the post before yours mentioned OFC, but I've read that that's a joke unless the entire wire from tip to tip is closed in a vaccum)..

    The info is there is someone wants it.. if they would rather buy Street Wires or something, they have that option




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    well, before buying the cable from delcity.net, i asked them if i should get the battery cable to power my amp. they said that welding cable would work better because there are more strands (which conducts electricity better, correct?) and more flexible...so i bought that and have had no problems...heres the description:

    "A highly flexible neoprene jacket surrounds fully annealed rope-stranded bare copper. Used as a battery cable alternative because of its flexibility. A heavy duty welding cable that is resistant to flame, oil, abrasives, tar and grease. Temperature range: -40C to 90C. Rated at 600 volts with a paper separator. Meets or exceeds ASTMB-172 specifications and conforms to ICEA/NEMA welding cable requirements."

    its rated up to nearly 200F and resists oil.

    btw...its a BlTCH to cut



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    Originally posted by kicker
    <snip>Also, some people believe that welding cable offers higher-performance in terms of current flow. Actually, just the opposite is true. Welding cable is made from a great number of fine wire strands, while dedicated battery cable features fewer but thicker wire strands. Battery cable will outperform welding cable in terms of current flow. The other reason to stay away from welding cable is that it isn't designed for automotive use, and does not offer the correct type of insulation. The cable may get hotter, leading to problems with hot-starts
    That is absolute total bullshit. The number of strands in a cable has absolutely NOTHING to do with its resistance or the amount of current it can handle. Circular mils of copper is circular mils of copper. Period.

    Welding cable is usually Neoprene covered because Neoprene remains flexible in cold weather and it resists chemicals and gasoline better than any other rubber. It's rated for higher temperatures than you'll ever find in automotive service. #2 welding cable is fantastic for jumper cables for your car, and if you have the money to spend for battery cables, by all means go for it.



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    hey maylar (off topic) but where in ct are you from?



    when in doubt, check the ground.

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    Originally posted by fantomas
    hey maylar (off topic) but where in ct are you from?
    Wallyworld



    dave
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    Originally posted by maylar
    Wallyworld
    i see...my boss lives there.



    when in doubt, check the ground.

    1728

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    kicker's Avatar
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    hey maylar i wasnt for sure i was reading that earler that day soi just put it on there i geuss it dosent really matter i have used diferent kinds of wire for amps.




  11. #11
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    Originally posted by maylar
    That is absolute total bullshit. The number of strands in a cable has absolutely NOTHING to do with its resistance or the amount of current it can handle. Circular mils of copper is circular mils of copper. Period.


    The number of strands in cable DO play a part in the amount of current that can travel done the length of a cable.

    Current travels on the outside of a wire, therefore, more strands, more current.

    Now the big question is "is it worth it?" I've never spent the time to work out the physics and math so i can't say if it is or not.




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    Savant's Avatar
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    Originally posted by F.A.M.
    The number of strands in cable DO play a part in the amount of current that can travel done the length of a cable.

    Current travels on the outside of a wire, therefore, more strands, more current.

    Now the big question is "is it worth it?" I've never spent the time to work out the physics and math so i can't say if it is or not.
    I'm not sure I believe current travels on the 'outside' of a wire.. current movement is based on electron movement.. electrons exist in the entire spance of the wire.. so the entire wire carries current.. I would immagine that the total available 'copper' or available electrons is what determines how much current, not how many strands.. the number of strands just makes it all more flexable..

    At least, that's my understanding of it..




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    Ask Bill Nye, he'd know for sure.



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    Originally posted by F.A.M.
    The number of strands in cable DO play a part in the amount of current that can travel done the length of a cable.

    Current travels on the outside of a wire, therefore, more strands, more current.
    That only applies to high frequency AC current. It's a phenomenon called "skin effect", where the electrons migrate to the outside of the conductor. At VHF frequencies they even use hollow conductors, because current doesn't flow down the center anyway.

    But for DC and low frequency AC it doesn't apply, although the effect starts happening at high audio frequencies and could actually affect highs going to your speakers. Don't use solid wire for speakers :p

    But for DC power applications, stranded wire is used for its flexibility and durability under vibration. That's all.



    dave
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    Head Unit: JVC KWHDR720
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    Sub Stage: Boston G3 10", 0.5 cu ft sealed
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