Side Post Battery Cables

oldretiredafguy

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I'm getting tired of fiddling with the side terminal system. Has anyone changed theirs out to a traditional top system? Did you find ready made cables, or did you make your own? If you made your own, how did you deal with the small wires?
 

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I've done it both ways. Made my own by using the terminals that just clamp the wires in, has a bar and 2 1/4 inch bolts. Not the prettiest, have heard alot of folks cuss them. Grease everything good putting it together and I have never had a problem with them.
Just solder the eye lugs on.
 

SirRobyn0

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I've done it both ways. Made my own by using the terminals that just clamp the wires in, has a bar and 2 1/4 inch bolts. Not the prettiest, have heard alot of folks cuss them. Grease everything good putting it together and I have never had a problem with them.
Just solder the eye lugs on.
@oldretiredafguy, I agree with the above. I still have the side terminals currently, but if they start to give me trouble or my battery goes I'll probably switch to top post. One of the biggest motivators for me would be switching to a Group 27 battery, vs currently the largest battery being group 78.

If you want to stick with preformed cables you should be able to get ready made units with pigtails off the ends for the small wires. I know you can get them with at least two smaller wires.

Technically the bolt on terminals are suppose to be considered temporary repairs because the end of the large battery cables are not sealed and over time if acid gets in there they can corrode down the wires. But just like wanderinthru has said if you coat the stripped part of the wire down with dielectric grease before you assemble them, they will last a lifetime and should be trouble free. I will probably do it that way when I do mine because it lends to greater flexibility of being able to set it up and change it at will if I want to.

Whatever you do don't even consider crimping eyelets to the wires and attaching them to the terminal clamp bolt. The clamp bolt on a lead terminal, unless overtightened will not be tight enough the provide a good connection over time.
 

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Just crimp or solder copper eyelets in place of your existing side terminal ends and use marine top post clamps with mounting post for eyelets.Cheap and easy. Use a little common sense make sure your cables are long enough or can be rerouted to reach top posts.I've gone eyelet/eyelet cables on everything I own just for simplicity. You can bolt an eyelet to the replacement side post terminals or to a top post terminal end.It makes swapping ends painless.And gives you mounting points for add ons, an amp, bigger charging cable,3 ground leads etc.
 
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SirRobyn0

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Just crimp or solder copper eyelets in place of your existing side terminal ends and use marine top post clamps with mounting post for eyelets.Cheap and easy. Use a little common sense make sure your cables are long enough or can be rerouted to reach top posts.I've gone eyelet/eyelet cables on everything I own just for simplicity. You can bolt an eyelet to the replacement side post terminals or to a top post terminal end.It makes swapping ends painless.And gives you mounting points for add ons, an amp, bigger charging cable,3 ground leads etc.
That's a good idea, I will do this when I change to the top terminal. I don't know why I hadn't thought of this. I've crimped plenty of ends for starters, but never thought to do it on the other end and go to marine terminals.
 

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wanderinthru

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Just crimp or solder copper eyelets in place of your existing side terminal ends and use marine top post clamps with mounting post for eyelets.Cheap and easy. Use a little common sense make sure your cables are long enough or can be rerouted to reach top posts.I've gone eyelet/eyelet cables on everything I own just for simplicity. You can bolt an eyelet to the replacement side post terminals or to a top post terminal end.It makes swapping ends painless.And gives you mounting points for add ons, an amp, bigger charging cable,3 ground leads etc.

Do they make a battery with the 3/8 bolt post, like used on semi's and tractors, that will fit in our trucks? Often thought about it, never looked.
 

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Just think,back in the day the side terminals were to replace the troublesome top post type that were such a problem...
 

Ricko1966

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Well as stupid luck would have it,I have to use a truck I never use today. So had to rob a battery from another vehicle, sweet thing about eyelet connections is you just leave the terminal on the battery undo the 2 top nuts and the battery comes out .I know, sounds minor, but really in and out with marine terminals still on the battery is faster and easier than top posts, or side terminals.
 

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Do they make a battery with the 3/8 bolt post, like used on semi's and tractors, that will fit in our trucks? Often thought about it, never looked.

Deep cycle marine / RV batteries have 3/8" or 10mm terminals on them. As long as you were careful to get one with enough cranking amps (You'd be looking at marine cranking batteries) you could do that.

Just think,back in the day the side terminals were to replace the troublesome top post type that were such a problem...

And now GM uses top terminals again, I think the reason is that the side terminals were not very computer friendly as it is to easy to have have a make and break contact while tightening the terminals. I'm not against side terminals at all, my 84 still has the original cables and ends. What I don't like is lack of compatibility and restriction on size.

Well as stupid luck would have it,I have to use a truck I never use today. So had to rob a battery from another vehicle, sweet thing about eyelet connections is you just leave the terminal on the battery undo the 2 top nuts and the battery comes out .I know, sounds minor, but really in and out with marine terminals still on the battery is faster and easier than top posts, or side terminals.

Same here. Pulling hay off fields today and I need to do a water run. The Dodge is the water truck, that is all it does now, so it hasn't been run in sometime. Was not planning on taking a water run this weekend, was going to do it next weekend, and thought I had a little time to get it running, but the tank tells me it's time, NOW. Go out to the Dodge, nothing. Switch the battery with my Jeep, still nothing, but lights working now. It'll crank if I jump across the battery terminals. Relay good. So that leaves ignition switch and neutral safety since the back up lights are working I'm thinking it's the ignition switch.... Another thing to fix great.....
 

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Deep cycle marine / RV batteries have 3/8" or 10mm terminals on them. As long as you were careful to get one with enough cranking amps (You'd be looking at marine cranking batteries) you could do that.

Same here. Pulling hay off fields today and I need to do a water run.

Not sure the marine/RV route isn't the way to go then. Those post just don't seem to corrode like others do. Stay tight and clean, along with being simple to deal with and hook jumping cables to.

Round hay I hope? Be fine with me If were to never see a little square after the 25 kajillion I hauled as a kid and young man! Hauling water has NEVER fit into the schedule! The schedule always revolves around that.
Good luck.
 

gotyourgoat

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I'm getting tired of fiddling with the side terminal system. Has anyone changed theirs out to a traditional top system? Did you find ready made cables, or did you make your own? If you made your own, how did you deal with the small wires?
When I first got ol browntown there was no battery tie down, and the connections were made with a complete hodgepodge of garbage. There were I believe thermostat bolts with a bunch of washers and a socket to somehow make a connection.

This is the improved and simple solution which holds strong and doesn’t give me trouble. Same side mount cables with the bolts pulled out and the plastic part that holds the bolt folded over.(could be cut off I guess, just didn't) Top post battery adapter to eyelet connection. Dual post battery in case I have to swap to something else, this is the battery to steal.
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gotyourgoat

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Alternatively you could go this route.
Side mount to top post adapter. Literally nothing changed from oe except the battery.
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SirRobyn0

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When I first got ol browntown there was no battery tie down, and the connections were made with a complete hodgepodge of garbage. There were I believe thermostat bolts with a bunch of washers and a socket to somehow make a connection.

This is the improved and simple solution which holds strong and doesn’t give me trouble. Same side mount cables with the bolts pulled out and the plastic part that holds the bolt folded over.(could be cut off I guess, just didn't) Top post battery adapter to eyelet connection. Dual post battery in case I have to swap to something else, this is the battery to steal.
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Never mind on my other post, this is what I'll be doing! Even better no problem going back to side terminal if needed.

Oh I like the hold down to. I'm telling you plumbers tape is so handy. My bird pens are chain link panels, and the panels are held together with that stuff and bolt works great. I've seen it used as exhaust hanger too.
 

SirRobyn0

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Round hay I hope? Be fine with me If were to never see a little square after the 25 kajillion I hauled as a kid and young man! Hauling water has NEVER fit into the schedule! The schedule always revolves around that.
Good luck.

No most of the hay around here is rectangle bails. But not for this job. This is what's left of my Dad's farm and he does loose hay. No I'm not kidding. It's for his use and he's only got two old horses to feed so it'll plenty for him and he sells some to another guy not far away for cheap, so this is not a paying job just favor to Dad. Now last year when I drove hay truck for a farmer in the valley that was bailes. Truck and the big trailer. That was a great job as all I had to do was show up with my equipment and drive. He had guys to load. I did have to strap it down. I'm not doing that this year because I'm putting in more hours at the shop, which sucks really. It's nice to have the steady pay from the shop, but more and more I'm finding I'd rather be doing other things.

Yes! Water is a must have for sure and it's a real problem here this year. Ok I'm off to do more hay for dad!
 

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