Battery location - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 21st, 14, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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Jim
 
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Battery location

I'm trying to keep my engine bay as clean as possible. I'm getting back to working on wiring. I know the subject has been debated, but what are the pros and cons of placing the battery in the trunk?
If you went with the trunk location, what part/parts did you use for a positive bus in the engine bay, and where did you locate it? How did you route your battery cables?

Pics would be greatly appreciated

Jim

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 21st, 14, 06:12 AM
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Re: Battery location

Pros- weight is in the back, clean under hood.
Cons - you have to move it to the back and install a lot of cable. You have more power cable to become chaffed and possibly short out.

I used a kit from Summit on mine and added a circuit breaker, I think 150 amp.

Box is located on the right rear trunk pan. Negative is very short and located on frame rail. Positive goes to the circuit breaker mounted to the trunk floor right outside the battery box. Positive leaves the breaker and is run inside the car over the fender well. Right where the back seat has a tab at the floor the cable enters the inside of the rocker. The cable then runs inside the rocker to the front of the car completely hidden. It exits the front of the rocker. Both piercings have heavy duty grommets. Then we go right the starter.

This car is an LS swap so from the starter another cable goes to the fuse panel. The alternator connects to the starter as well. You can add a junction block up on the fender. I was trying to hide as much as possible and used the starter lug as the junction.

You will see a bunch of people use a Ford type solenoid in the rear to keep the big wire from have current on it when not starting. I haven't figured this one out personally. If you do this you still need a large guage charge wire that is hot and then you need a 14-16ga wire for solenoid trigger. In my mind the circuit breaker takes care of any shorts and I didn't run the cable under the car.

Good luck.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 21st, 14, 06:28 AM
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Re: Battery location

I made my own hold down bracket for the battery. Routed the pos cable through the interior like Garth did. Installed a bulkhead connector through the firewall below the heater box. Connected the charge wire there.

Neg cable to an unused 3/8-16 hole on a convertible-only brace in the trunk. Welded a 3/8-16 nut to the subframe and ran a short ground to the engine block.

Cable used is 1/0 welding cable from a local welding shop. Terminals and heat shrink from Del City.







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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 21st, 14, 10:18 AM
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Re: Battery location

I moved mine to the trunk also.
Used a Ford solenoid so the cable is only hot during cranking.
I didn't use fuses and went with 0ga. wire, not the 2ga.


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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 14, 03:08 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Battery location

Thanks all. Very helpful.

Jim

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 14, 05:28 AM
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Re: Battery location

If it was me, I'd wire it just like BMW and Volvo do when they have trunk mounted batteries. They don't have all the excess wiring and relays as shown in the schematic, they simply put the battery in the trunk with a longer cable.
I would also not hook my sense wire to the alternator output, as this limits the voltage at that point, rather extend it over to the main power distribution point, in this case the horn relay. This will assure that there is maximum voltage at that point so all your accessories are fully powered.
If you have a permanent magnet starter you don't want to jump the starter as shown as it will cause the starter to become an unregulated generator if it fails to disengage after starting the engine.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 14, 06:41 AM
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Re: Battery location

I was unaware that Volvo and BMW engineers copied my trunk battery set up. I used Taylor Wire 00 battery cable in red and black insulated fine strand copper cable. I put the battery in a Marine UL listed box vented to the outside and used Moroso bulkhead connectors



to attach the Taylor Wire cast copper screw on cable terminators



I ran both cables forward secured to the frame (in your case you hopefully have frame connectors) using nylon plastic cable holders to bring it up under the toe boards to bolt a terminator onto the firewall. I used a remote solenoid to activate my mini Hitachi style gear reduction starter, and secured the battery cable to the firewall with power conection made to the motor using the factory cabling (note the difference in size of starter and ground cables from the factory compared to what I feel they should be).



As required by NHRA rules I used a Moroso emergency shut off to break the battery circuit.



I did this in a 1985 Impala four door sedan powered by a 582 big block with 402 decals (aka a sleeper). If you are unfamiliar with the mid eighties Impala it is essentially an unloved early seventies Chevelle in sheep's clothing. Never win a beauty contest but it ran 9:30's.

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 14, 07:18 AM
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Re: Battery location

Quote:
Originally Posted by onovakind67 View Post
If it was me, I'd wire it just like BMW and Volvo do when they have trunk mounted batteries. They don't have all the excess wiring and relays as shown in the schematic, they simply put the battery in the trunk with a longer cable.
I did the same to the '68 I had for qtr mile entertainment.
I used 4/0 cable, it was free at the time, and soldered the terminals on, and used the cutoff switch.
Then I cranked up the voltage setting on the mech VR since I didn't charge between rounds - I had a field cutoff switch for the alt.

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 14, 10:22 AM
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Re: Battery location

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larger Dave View Post
I was unaware that Volvo and BMW engineers copied my trunk battery set up.
I did this in a 1985 Impala four door sedan...
BMW brought out their trunk mounted battery in the E30 in 1982, a few years before the 1985 Chevrolets made the scene...

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 14, 01:44 PM
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Re: Battery location

I just liked the idea of that big copper cable from the battery only being hot during cranking....as to the 'noid in the trunk

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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 25th, 14, 10:26 AM
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Re: Battery location

On a rear mounted battery with the starter up front, I prefer running a dedicated power wire from the battery positive post to the starter and then also a dedicated ground wire of the same size as the power wire from the battery negative to the engine block. I then add ground wires and/or ground straps from the engine block to the body of the car and also from the battery negative terminal to the body of the car in the rear.
On some cars I've wired I have the main wire hot all the time going to the starter and then off of the starter branch off to other circuits. On others I have had the starter wire running through a relay in the trunk and then had all of the other circuits wired back to the battery.
Regardless of how you do it you always want to protect any wire off of it's power source.
If you have a power wire off of the battery, protect it right at the battery. Fuses, fusible links, breakers, and such need to be sized for the load and for the size of wire they are attached to.
If I'm running a 1/0 copper wire for a starter circuit I limit the fuse size to 300A maximum. If I have a customer with 1/0 CCA (copper clad aluminum) wire then I limit the fuse size to 250A maximum. Be aware that just because a wire is a certain size each one may handle different amounts of current and each will have different amounts of voltage drops through them.
By having a dedicated ground wire run from the battery to the engine block (as well as having the other grounds in place) there is less chance of having current being misdirected to where it flows though bearings and causing damage to them. This is providing all of the wiring and connections are done properly and are solid. I have seen shifter cables welded together by having things misdirected.
While I have seen my share of people running relays in the trunk off of the trunk mounted battery to allow a switched circuit to the starter, always protect this wire before the relay. You may think that if there is a short and it being on a switched circuit that it's safe I have seen relay contacts weld themselves together to where even if the switch or relay is turned off it still allows power to flow through it.

Jim

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old Dec 25th, 14, 10:52 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Battery location

Thanks Jim...great info.

Jim

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