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Discussion Starter #1
I own a 95 F-350 7.3 PSD,the batteries are going south on me so before they toast the starter I want to change them out.My question has to do with the stock cables that are in the truck.The terminals are corroded so bad I'm sure I'll have to replace them.I know Ford will want my first born for new cables so to keep from trading in my 16 yr old son on a new set of battery cables what do you guys suggest.I know there are some ideas out there because from what I've seen there is a bunch of "been there,done that" on here. Thanks for the help and "keep on strokin' ".Thanks, Yankee Rebel:feedback
 

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COCA= COLA pour it on the acid all gone, then spray with teminal protector available at napa and those places
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the fast response,but the problem is that the batteries need to be changed and the cables are corroded and I'm sure they will not tighten up correctly to the new batteries.The previous owner must have had trouble because it looks as though a tool was used to brad the terminals to the cables.Kinda hard to explain what has been done,point being,to make sure I have a good connection on my new batteries I thought someone would have an idea to fashion homemade cables instead of the Ford cable.I will go to Ford in the AM and see how much they want,sometimes I guess you just bite the bullet.I don't use the truck every day,so I have time to explore all options.Thanx, Yankee Rebel.
 

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im with ray on this one... go down to napa or whoever and get yourself some red and black cable by the foot and make em yourself.. get some solder on terminals with some heat shrink tubing and voila ur done.. and make sure u pure solder and not the stuff with rosin core.. ask them for the solder used with wires its diffrent from the stuff for plumbing iirc
 
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I agree with them also. Go to Napa, hell, I've seen them at Walmart. Just replace the cables yourself. You might need to splice the new ones in, but Napa or a good auto parts store should carry what you need.

And a simple little trick. Once done, get the vaseline out and coat the posts and terminals. It also keeps corrison away and doesn't impede any current.
 

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I always thought rosin core soder was ok, and acid core soder is what you wanted to stay away from because it causes future corosion. I could be wrong but I never got along very well geting solid core to stick to anything.
 

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Double post deleted..sorry, read on.
 

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Correct...you need some kind of rosin to allow the solder to stick properly. In a previous life I used to be in the battery business (motive power, i.e. forklift). I delt with high current DC battery and charger repair and made all of my own cables for batteries and chargers. I used to use 100% lead and rosin paste. I think the point being made was don't use the stuff with the rosin built into the solder. There's not enough rosin when doing stranded wire. Ace Hardware used to sell 100% pure lead sticks, but for what you are doing, the lead/tin combo stuff will work fine. Do not crimp high currect DC connections, especially when dealing with batteries. The exposed copper in crimped connections usually corrode faster. This is a big factor with forklift batteries, because of the heavy gassing, vented caps and high currents. Automotive applications are not as bad because the batteries are pretty much always fully charged and don't gas as much, but I always prefer soldered over crimped anyway.

Also, use propane, mapp, oxy/propane or oxy/NG for gas. Do not use oxy/acetylene, it will contaminate the lead. As far as cable, I used to use 600V welding cable. It's oil/gas/chem resistant, very flexible and available in sizes from pretty much #2 to 4/0 in red or black, although most electrical supply houses only have black. I would use black and red electrical tape to seal up the connection...shrink wrap works too, and is a little better. The best stuff is the shrink wrap with the gel inside that melts and makes it watertight, but it's not necessary.
 

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if you are looking to save $ just put new ends on the stock cables....easy and cheap....
 

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if the cables themselves can be cleaned and salvaged new ends is an option but they dont leave ya much extra length on factory cables to do this most times.

What I have done on both mine and moms trucks is made my own cabes and installed eye ends for 3/8 studs and installed group 31 batteries with posts . this way its easier to add wiring for stereo trailer hook ups ect .. but you have to check clearences to be sure they will fit under your hood or madify battery tray to fit them . on my 1984 they fit fine in factory trays .

another nice side to doing this is future repairs involve just the cable bad and not all in the case of the funny double pos cable ford uses
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hey guys,fixed my battery problem,thanks for all the input.I replaced the battery terminals with 3/8 eye ends which I soldered on with 60/40 rosin based solder.Could not find 100 % lead wire so had to go with the 60/40.I will go to the store and get some vasaline petroleum jelly to put on the post to prevent corrosion.Thanks again for all the help,as you can see I used ideas from different post to fix the cables at the cost of around 20 bucks.That sure beats spending 120 dollars to achieve the same results. :Thumbup:
 

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I'm going to have to kindly dissagree w/ the "go to NAPA & buy some cable by the foot" posts. My experiance w/ auto parts store battery cable is that it's cheap junk that won't hold up over the long term.

IMHO going to a welding supply store & buying some insulated leed wire is much better. have them mount the new battery terminals while you're there. They should be able to do it. No, it's not their normal line of business, but if they're worth thier salt, they'll know how to do it properly. Do this & I recon you'll never have batt cable problems again.
 
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