Motorsports Village

Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box
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Author:  Ken0069 [ Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:47 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

Sergey that heavy + wire can also be connected to the positive terminal on the battery, and, if it were me, I'd also connect the negative wire directly to the battery also as that's about the best ground you can find. I wouldn't recommend connecting that positive wire to the alternator terminal.

As far as mounting goes, you can fabricate a thin gauge steel or aluminum bracket for mounting that you could fasten to an irregular surface. My HI 6 on the Camaro is mounted on a piece of clear lexan which is hose clamped to a roll cage X bar by the passengers door. Wherever you put it though, make sure it's at least 18 to 24 inches from the coil, been there, done that before!!

Heat?? So is that air inside the cab going to be hotter than under hood air in the summer months?? Keep in mind that it will tolerate "some" heat but water is a real NO NO, IMHO. If you have too, maybe you could make a deflector shield for it to keep direct hot air off it. :-k

Bottom line is if it were me, I'd figure out some way to mount it inside the cab.

Author:  Ken0069 [ Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:59 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

Sergey I've never actually run this Crane ignition. It came on the dragster I bought last year and I replaced it with the MSD Digital 7 box that was in the Camaro, so the Camaro got the HI-6.

Is this for your car or the truck? :-k

Oh, and if it's in your car and you can hear that chirp, maybe you're exhaust or radio isn't loud enough!! \:D/ =; Image

Author:  shrinker [ Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

The box will make the same sound as an MSD box so deal with that how you want.
Dont connect the negative of the crane direct to the battery terminal bolt because if your battery lead comes loose in the terminal end or doesnt make good connection at the chassis end all the ground current for the starter will go through the circuit of the crane box and blow it up. Dont ask how I know that. Connect the negative to the chassis as per instructions. You can then double a connection from that point to the battery in any way you want if you wish. No problems with that.

Author:  Ken0069 [ Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

I guess that shows how much I know then, hey! OK, I'll shut up now. :-#

Author:  shrinker [ Mon Jan 30, 2012 6:00 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

You can wire to the battery its just that if you get a bad connection either at the chassis or the actual end of the battery cable where it goes into the terminal that clamps around the battery post the ground current will go through any cables that you may have terminated at the cable clamp bolt. Its common for people to use a terminal on a wire and attach it to the clamp bolt as thats conveniently sized to fit terminals.If you do that and then get a bad connection say at the main cable that goes into the big socket end of the battery clamp the ground current will get to the battery via the clamp bolt terminal and then all the smoke escapes and it doesnt work after that. As we all know electricity is a myth, its all about not letting smoke escape.

Author:  shrinker [ Mon Jan 30, 2012 3:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

The capacitor is there to provide a energy supply close to the crane box. If the extension wires manage to cause a restriction to the current flow when it peaks etc during the operation of the crane the capacitor will take up the slack. If you use oversized wires and have nothing inadequate anywhere from the alternator to the crane you will be OK without the capacitor. The alternator is the supplier of electrical energy to the car so the wiring integrity has to be from the alternator. Alternator grounding is important, thats why top racers use alternator grounding straps not just the body bolted to the engine like road cars are.

Author:  Ken0069 [ Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

Sent this question to Crane tech support about the battery connection of the ground wire as the dragster was basically wired like this when the Crane HI-6 was in it and I basically did the same thing with my MSD Digital 7. So I guess I'm not as stupid as I thought!

Crane Tech Support wrote:
Good afternoon Ken,

You can definitely attach the heavy black wire directly to the battery, especially considering the way you’ve grounded the battery to the chassis – sounds perfect to me!


Mike Covello

Customer Sales and Technical Support
1830 Holsonback Drive
Daytona Beach, FL 32117

(866) 388-5120 ext. 1474
(608) 627-0474 Direct
(608) 627-0480 FAX

Author:  shrinker [ Wed Feb 01, 2012 6:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

I have experienced a person wiring the black negative lead of a crane HI-6 direct to the battery BUT the connection was done to the clamp bolt NOT into the terminal where the big battery cable goes. What happened was the wire for the normal car ground came loose forming a bad connection into the socket where it fits into the battery terminal and the engine was started and the ground current for the starter went through the Cranes ground wire to get to the battery via the clamp bolt. IT BLEW THE CRANE UP. It smoked the wire so its obvious what happened. You cannot connect an auxiliary device to the battery via an alternative path that would supply ground for the car if there is a fault with the original ground. If this person had connected the ground of the Crane to the part of the battery clamp that you insert the cars ground into there would have been no alternative pathway and the car would have probably failed to start or something similar. If the crane box itself was isolated via some rubber mounts etc there would have been no connection from the cars chassis to the battery via the internal circuitry of the crane.
Its simple, DO NOT connect the crane to the battery negative unless you connect it into the same terminal socket as the cars ground wire.
Many accessory battery terminals are fitted with extra lug points for extra connections. These are a bad idea because they offer an alternative grounding path in the event of a fault with the OEM ground. Thats why our race car is wired with a bus for positive and a bus for negative and only a single connection at the battery with a single ground wire going into the terminal. When you do it that way any fault at the battery terminal results in failure to start. And all electrical devices on the car are safe.

Author:  Ken0069 [ Thu Feb 02, 2012 10:26 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

Just getting opinions from the manufacturers is all. As I said, my dragster was wired like this when I got it and it's wired like that now. If I have problems and it's traceable to this, then you can give me one of them "I told you so" lectures but until then it's staying like it is. ;-)

Here is a reply from MSD Tech Support whom I asked the same question.

Rick Jage wrote:
Dear Sir:

Yes a direct connection to the battery using the Heavy Red and Black wires will be best connected directly to the battery terminals.

Rick Jage
MSD Tech

Data from form "Tech Support Question Form" was received on 2/1/2012 12:05:36 PM.

Author:  shrinker [ Thu Feb 02, 2012 6:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

I'm not criticizing your inquiries etc its just that they are not answering the question correctly. They need to be answering by explaining that the connection must be into the appropriate place on the terminal not to a lug attached to the clamping bolt. Its simple auto electrics that skilled tradespeople follow.

Author:  shrinker [ Thu Feb 02, 2012 6:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

The battery post is the most corrosion sensitive point so its important to force all the current through the one joint because if it gets corroded the current will go via another path. If you ground everything to the chassis or the engine block then even if the ground wire falls off or is mistakenly removed nothing bad will happen because there is no direct connection to the battery via some silly little wires or a PCB inside some accessory. People (Im not saying you) need to understand that the current flow (number of electrons passing in a time period) in the ground wire, is the same as the number traveling in the positive wire. Its just that the voltage is zero in the ground . Because the voltage in the ground is zero any resistance in the grounding path is important. Low voltage differentials are affected greatly by resistance, basically it stuffs the electron flow considerably because there is no pressure to push them. Its just like carbys and air flows etc. Make a small hole(resistance), and you have to push hard(voltage) to get your flow rate(amps or current) needed.

Here's something for just a chat; You know all the fuss about Innovate data loggers etc and Wide bands and grounding is just this issue. Klaus designed the Innovate stuff correctly and tells everyone to ground to the engine block. They try as they may to get people to ground stuff correctly, and do some people do that? NO. So it doesn't work.
I just finished installing a full on complex data logging system onto a race boat. Because of sea water and water proofing etc I installed everything into separate boxes that presented a problem with grounding. The necessary arrangement meant that I had to bus everything inside the boxes and connect all buses together inside the master-box and I also fitted a tiny battery with a relay to power the system when cranking. I just setup a normally closed relay so it opened when the starter energized and then the little battery takes over to power the system. When the starter stops, the relay closes again and the alternator charges the battery. It all works without any serial data corruption or funny business going on. The heater and controller grounds are all connected together and all cables are running at half their rating current.
The crane box is grounded to the engine so there is no problem with burning it out.

Author:  Ken0069 [ Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:28 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

Found a reply from Crane in my spam box?? I had sent them another message with the aforementioned scenario regarding loss of ground at the negative post and here is his reply.

Mike Covello wrote:
Good afternoon Ken,

I spoke with the engineer about the possible damage that could occur in the scenario as you’ve described and he agrees that if the ground strap did come loose it could cause catastrophic damage to the HI-6. He recommends attaching the heavy black wire to a chassis ground and using a ground strap from the battery to chassis using secure attachments. I apologize for the incorrect answer earlier. Let me know if you have any questions about this.


Mike Covello

Customer Sales and Technical Support

Gee shrinker, did you contact these people? ;-)

I stand corrected but I really can't see how moving that connection to the other end of that cable will change anything. :-k looks like everything that was connected there would hork up. :-k I've had countless times in my lifetime where corrosion on a negative terminal prevented the engine from starting but never had anything fried from that. :-k

Author:  shrinker [ Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

I didnt contact anyone. Im just telling you how it is. If the ground connection for the car is interrupted ANYWHERE so that the ground cannot get back to the battery ANY attachment that is direct to the battery terminal will then form the ground. IF that item passes ground through its board or whatever to the ground wire (which is an internal wiring thing inside each component, they differ of course) then the component will pass the starter current and poof goes the component.

Author:  rick360 [ Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:25 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

If a Crane box is wired directly to battery and a bad connection between ground and chassis develops ...

How does the Crane box provide a ground for other circuits that are grounded to chassis?

What path must the current take to get from the Batt + to Batt -?

There would have to be something inside the Crane box connecting the heavy black ground to somthing else that is connected to the chassis to provide the path from chassis to Batt - thru the Crane.

What other connection from the Crane box would be grounded to chassis?
Heavy red? I hope not
Small red ign wire? I hope not too
Wires to coil? I don't think they'd be grounded but I think the sec side of coil is ... maybe tied to Primary there?
Case? I hope this is not connected to the wiring, but this is possible. Poor design IMO if it does connect here.
Crank trigger? these should be totally isolated
Inputs (retard, stage etc)? Depends on input circuit design but made for +12V in so should not be a problem

I've always grounded everything to the chassis and the Batt - to the chassis. I hate wires running the full distance when the chassis is everywhere and convenient to connect. Just be sure you have good connections.


Author:  shrinker [ Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mounting a Crane Hi-6 Box

I dont understand why there is confusion over grounding. Any item that has a grounded chassis and also a ground wire connected to the battery is able to provide a ground in the event that its the only one doing so. Lots of items have grounded chassis and also a ground wire. If you connect the ground wire to the chassis there is no problem. Its just a problem when you connect the ground wire to the battery.
The crane black box is ground so when you bolt it to the chassis of your car its able to provide a ground path from the chassis to the battery terminal if you have connected the ground wire to the battery. thats all there is too it. Most components are ground on their external metal work. Radios etc everything is done that way. Never ground anything direct to the battery is the rule for auto electrics. Ground everything to the chassis or to a common ground lug then run a single cable to the battery terminal.

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