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Do your Fuse Panels have a story to tell ?


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Stopped by the HDT electrical shop the other day and Huston was elbow-deep in the BLACK burned-out loom of a nice Pete.......


I chuckled and remarked .........."well Huston it looks like one of your clients had a real Bad ground.....(Huston swears that 50% of truck DC electrical problems can be traced to marginal grounds)........Huston grinned and walked over to the bench and picked up a blown fuse and tossed it to me and said ......."OK Dick Tracy tell me how a blown 20 Amp fuse can burn through a wire loom the size of my wrist....."


Ok Huston you R-Da-Man.......U tell me .........


Well Dick Tracy how about the 20 Amp fuse was in a circuit rated for a 10 AMP fuse and then when the load raised to about 18 AMPS the wire got RED HOT and started burning through other wires in the loom and then those wire started burning through more wires and so..........by the time I get this mess fixed and install 5 new CORRECTLY sized fuses I will have made enough to buy that new mega-buck-fly-rod I have been drolling-over"......


Huston said....." you kid me about my Ground-Fetish......and I plead guilty as charged......but fuses are a close second.......you would be amazed how many pieces of equipment I work on that have the WRONG fuses in various circuits.....and......once in a while I even find circuit breakers of the wrong size and a few times auto-circuit breakers that are wrong........


The big three circuits most often "violated" are the Cig/ Assry plug circuit, the Tail circuits (trailer plugs) and the A/C compressor clutch circuits.......


Huston says go ahead Dick Tracy.........go back to the old Freightshaker and do a Real-Fuse-Audit.......You'll likely be amazed what you find............


I was amazed........


Will you be ...........Amazed ? ? ?



Drive on.........(Drive on........only smoke a little....out the exhaust)



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Normally a "fail" is not something I'd want to bring to the attention of others but the Mobile tech who installed the inverter/charger put in the wrong breaker, 30 amps I think when a 50 should have gone in. The fuse blew and caught fire but was contained in the metal 4x4 steel box. No idea when it happened but it could have taken the trailer with it. Fortunately, Chris, the guy who works on my truck and trailer found it.


He also found some mickey mouse wiring in the dash with a small cigarette outlet inverter for the laptop, no fuse and wrapped up with electrical tape....out it came and wired in with a fuse or breaker.


It seems typical, the original truck wiring is fine but all the add ons are done by those less than qualified.


Another reason why I stick to anything of wood and leave the iron stuff to those in the know.

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Back in the day, when I was an apprentice (electrical) and at punk school, we wired up a #14 (15 amp fuse rating) to a carbon pile and big supply (400 amps worth). We gradually raised the current level toward failure. About 175 amps, the insulation (THHN-THWN) began to smoke. Really crispy by the time we got to 225 amps (as in charcoal). Wire arced at 275 amps and opened.


Really should have had something under the wire, instructor was NOT a happy camper when molten copper dropped on the bench top. Told us that next time (who us??) go over to the weld shop and grab some fire brick first.


Pretty sure it was more than an extra 10 amps to toast the loom, but either way, proper fusing is a goof idea

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