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what’s better, copper clad alum or ofc


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flm09 
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Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posted: October 13, 2014 at 10:50 AM / IP Logged  
Any differences in running 8 guage copper clad aluminum vs OFC.
soundnsecurity 
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Posted: October 13, 2014 at 11:05 AM / IP Logged  
copper vs aluminum... when you are talking about 8 gauge it doesnt really make that much of a difference, the copper can carry a little bit more current without heating up as much. i personally dont like using aluminum wire and if i did use id oversize it just to make up the difference on capacity
flm09 
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Posted: October 13, 2014 at 12:43 PM / IP Logged  
Thanks! Btw is a 60 amp fuse good enough for the pdx-v9?
soundnsecurity 
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Posted: October 13, 2014 at 1:45 PM / IP Logged  
no a 60amp fuse is not good enough, that amp has 80 amps worth of fuses. so going back to your original post, 8 gauge wire of any type isnt good enough. you really need a good 4 gauge copper wire to safely supply that amp if that is what you will be using.
flm09 
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Joined: September 17, 2014
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posted: October 13, 2014 at 3:03 PM / IP Logged  
Oh thanks! I didn't know. That's the amp I will be using. It's hard to find a 4 gauge amp kit.with 80 amp fuse. Any suggestion?
flm09 
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Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posted: October 13, 2014 at 3:06 PM / IP Logged  
I found a stinger 4 gauge amp kit with 150 amp fuse on Amazon. Is that ok?
Custom_Jim 
Copper - Posts: 196
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Joined: November 28, 2003
Location: Missouri, United States
Posted: October 14, 2014 at 12:46 PM / IP Logged  
Here's the scenario's I've had before and have never had any issues.
If I have an amp that has 40A of fusing in the amplifier I use a 4 gauge OFC kit and if it contains a 150A fuse at the battery I leave it as is and wire it all up. After all this kit with the fuse should be properly designed together and not cause issues.
If I have a problem with easily accessing the amplifier's 40A fuse I have replaced them with a 50A fuse BUT I MUST replace the 150A fuse at the battery with a 40A fuse to retain this original fusing size for the amplifier.
If I have a 4 gauge OFC power wire and at the battery have a 150A fuse I may only put in one amplifier like yours with the 40A fuse but if later I decide to add a second amplifier I can split the 4 gauge wire by the original first amplifier using a distribution block and then run either a short 4 gauge wire to the first amplifier or change it to an 8 gauge and then run either a short 4 gauge or 8 gauge to the new second amplifier BUT it must have it's own internal fusing AND the fusing of this second amplifier cannot exceed 110A. If I can I try and use a distribution block with a 4 gauge in and two four gauge outs and also try and match up the wire size to the terminal size on the amplifiers.
I'm old school and just prefer the OFC over CCA wire.
Jim
1968 Chevy II Nova Garage Find 2012
1973 Nova Custom
1974 Spirit of America Nova
1973 Nova Pro-Street
1977 Nova (Sold)
soundnsecurity 
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Posted: October 14, 2014 at 1:38 PM / IP Logged  
custom jim made some good points but ill add to them:
1. even though the 4 gauge kit comes with a built in 150A fuse i would not chose to max out the amperage load. if my amps come close to 150A then i would go a size bigger on the main run and then split it out with a distribution block. this isnt a problem you will have with your current setup but im really writing that for anyone ales that might read this.
2. the other major pitfall of buying wire is not all wire is made equal. there are companies that will advertise that their wire is of a certain gauge but the actual wire inside will be smaller then spec. this can create a saftey issue when you are trusting your wire to handle a certain amount of current. so really the best way to tell a good kit from the bad is price. your stinger kit should be a good kit but you will find other brand kits that are much cheaper and its cheaper for a reason.
Custom_Jim 
Copper - Posts: 196
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Posted: October 14, 2014 at 2:51 PM / IP Logged  
soundnsecurity, back when I was doing a lot of car audio I was buying 4 gauge and other sizes in bulk and I was also buying fuse holders, fuses, and other things to pretty much make up my own kit.
I agree it would be nice in the above system with a 40A fuse on the amps to change out the 150A in the kit to be at the battery to something like a 60A but it's in the kit. When I was putting my own kits together I had the flexibility to where if an amp had 100A fuse on it, I would normally use a 120A under the hood on a 4 gauge OFC wire.
And you probably know this, but what I could not do, or wanted to, was to have a 40A on the amp and then run a 40A under the hood.
I also tried to limit myself to an underhood fuse size of 30A max on a 10 gauge, 60A max on an 8 gauge, and 150 on a 4 gauge with OFC wire.
Jim
1968 Chevy II Nova Garage Find 2012
1973 Nova Custom
1974 Spirit of America Nova
1973 Nova Pro-Street
1977 Nova (Sold)
soundnsecurity 
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Posted: October 15, 2014 at 7:32 AM / IP Logged  
just to make myself clear, i wasnt talking about maxing out the capacity of the fuse, i was talking more about maxing out the wire. if a 4 gauge wire is rated for a maximum of 150 amps and you have a 150A fuse then its possible that your amplifiers could pull a little more than that and mot blow the fuse. this is the same way that an AGU glass fuse can fail without blowing because you are pulling just enough current to heat up the fuse and melt the solder without blowing the fuse in te middle where its supposed to blow apart. usually in an AGU fuse if this happens it will probably start to melt the fuse holder and maybe the wire around it.
if you are using an ANL type fuse then a lot of the time they dont blow immediately at 151A, it will take a good bit more to blow it instantly, so by letting in a bit more current than the wire is rated to handle then over time if someone really drives their system hard all of the time it could cause the wire to melt or cause heat to build up in your hardware if there is any kind of extra resistance in those connections.
im not saying that this happens all of the time but i do see occasionally burned wire where the fuse should have blown but didnt and once the wire starts to melt it only gets worse over time.
i oversize my wire out of an abundance of caution because you definitely dont want to be responsible for burning someones car.
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