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Saw a homemade buss bar on YouTube. Aluminum angle with copper pipe flattened. Bolts through that and mounted to wood. Curious, any of you make your own. With several pairs of batteries one is needed with multiple posts. Sure could make them lot less money than buying

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4 hours ago, GlennWest said:

Aluminum angle with copper pipe flattened. Bolts through that and mounted to wood.

I wouldn't mount a busbar to wood as it will conduct if it should ever become damp. Making your own could be done but I would use true insulating materials for all mounting attachments. 

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Pre-made jumper wire, very heavy to connect start batteries w/ 4 connections. My pics are too big to post here.  

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Glenn you always come up with good questions...…...Sure I like the idea of COPPER as a good buss and junction material (provided sufficient mechanical strength). I'm NOT a fan of two dissimilar metals joined together as that causes battery action/corrosion. Id say a guy can find all sorts of junction blocks and buss bars intended for use say inside panelboards etc that are suitable for copper conductors and NOT comprised of two dissimilar metals. Once I made mine up I thoroughly coated them with waterproof spray and brush on coatings/sealants to keep water and oxygen away. 

PS those factory buss bars aren't all that expensive

John T  Live from sunny 80 degree Florida yayyyyyyyyyyyyyy

Edited by oldjohnt

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Glenn rather than smash pipe why not just order from copper from a place like this https://www.metalsdepot.com/brass-products/copper-flat-bar. Also, you can buy on ebay.  I agree with John you just seem to be asking for problems by attaching it to aluminum angle. I have not made my own but looked into it and then bought them due to time considerations. I think if you walk through a dollar store or home depot you will see all kinds of plastic or rubber items that could be used for mounting (bottoms for canes or table feet). Otherwise if wood is easiest just put a buffer layer of plasticor dip them in plastidip.

 

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Hey Glenn take a gander at Digi-Key - 

no end of electron stuff and lots of their part numbers can be ordered in qty 1 of...

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Glenn's system involves major loads and I suspect he is looking at busbars like this which are anything but cheap.  https://www.electricalhub.com/blue-sea-2107-powerbar-busbars-600-amp-2.    John T what do we really need for busbars because there can be a vast price differential which is why I looked at making my own heavy duty ones just like Glenn.

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Searching and found info on using acyrlic flat plat and bolt copper bar to it. That looks promising. Yes, when I stated searching high amp 10 post buss bars , that adds up fast. 

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1 hour ago, GlennWest said:

Searching and found info on using acyrlic flat plat and bolt copper bar to it. That looks promising. Yes, when I stated searching high amp 10 post buss bars , that adds up fast. 

I've made a few.  Most often I'll use 1/4" or 3/8" x 1" copper  -  1/4" drilled and tapped for 1/4" bolts  - 3/8"  drilled and tapped for 5/16" bolts.  The 1" wide material is necessary to provide the surface contact for 1/0 - 4/0 wire/cable lugs.

When making the connection use an anti corrosive paste like Noalox or Tef-Gel

Here's a  chart 

https://stormpowercomponents.com/resources/ampacity-tables/quick-copper-busbar-design-selector

 

 

Edited by ALLOY

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Of course, the actual "buss bar" (big chunk of metal) has to be capable of handling the maximum current that could flow say from one end to the other and in an "ideal" world the bar itself and any lugs, bolts and set screws would all be of the same metal. As you all know   in an electrical panel instead of cable ends bolted to a buss there are holes with the same metal set screws and all that's rated for Copper or Aluminum conductors, but that's different from most RV battery cable installations. I would not hesitate to use an AC electrical panel type of metal buss bar with holes (say suitable for 1 or 0 or 00 gauge cable) and set screws versus RV type cable ends onto a bolt/stud. I would venture a pure guess (no idea of Glenns actual max loads) the big Neutral or Ground buss bars used in a 400 Amp Service panel might well suffice. 

Not to overthink all this a big enough piece of metal with big enough bolts/studs (say 3/8 hardware and same bolt metal as the bar itself) using lock washers and lock nuts then coat n seal once all is finished to keep oxygen and moisture away will surely "work"

FWIW I have used a piece of flat steel and steel bolts/studs then sealed everything and never had a problem, and I still prefer NOT to mix say copper with aluminum and steel etc to avoid electrolysis...….Sure an AC panel buss bar may NOT be cooper but is for copper conductors, but there's some serious materials science and engineering behind that ya know lol.

It was regular maintenance for our electricians to check the torque on all those panel set screws !!!

Best wishes

John T   Rusty so no warranty but believe this is still accurate

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https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fulk%2Fitm%2F232898743272

There are others as well for a DIY I would use stainless probably 1/4 by 1 1/2 or 3/8 by 1 with stainless hardware and two layers of the white cutting board for insulation, I think they are nylon, I used thick plexiglass  to make one yeRs ago. 

Edited by Lance A Lott
Clarity

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Glen, We made our own buss bars in a variety of sizes in the marine business.  But this is one area that paying up for the proper item for the proper job is best.  Buy the time you buy the copper, base material, studs, fasteners, etc and put your time into it, it's better to buy off the shelf.  We used Starboard as our base with copper bar stock, stainless studs and plexiglass covers.  

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The actual Volvo Battery Bus Bar is far better built that the ones with links so far and as I remember, about the same price.

I used to have a link to a Battery Bus Bar with the same construction as the Volvo version with one addition I liked.  Beside the four holes for the battery studs, the bar has its own studs hear the end holes for attaching cable and wires without stacking on the battery studs.  But alas I lost that link

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14 hours ago, GlennWest said:

That will not work on a Chevy volt battery. 

You didn't ask for one that worked on your battery, just simply "what is a Volvo battery connector". Sorry I replied.

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