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Grounding question

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Joined: 05 Feb 2007
Posts: 40
Location: Syracuse, NY

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:45 pm    Post subject: Grounding question Reply with quote

I just wanted to get back to say thanks to all for their input on this issue. I've pondered this a bit and I'm going to do what Bob did and run a #8 wire for the ground to the panel, and let the airframe be the starter return path. This seems like a nice compromise between saving a little weight and having a good reliable ground for the avionics.

>> Tcwtech <rnewman(at)> 10/19/2017 12:46 PM >>>
--> RV10-List message posted by: Tcwtech <rnewman(at)>

I used the same Akzo Noble primer on my RV-10, all skins are primed including both sides of all lap joints. ( This primer is amazing stuff, does stink like all heck, but really tough and protective. We’ve used this on the eight airplanes we have built now over more than 20 years now, and can say it has held up extremely well.)
I did not run a separate #2 wire up to the front. All ground current for the starter, alternator and engine sensors flows back through the airframe. I do have a #8 ground wire running from the battery to a ground bus up under the instrument panel solely for the avionics.
I have absolutely no electrical issues or noise problems in this airplane.
Bob Newman
TCW Technologies, LLC
On Oct 19, 2017, at 11:58 AM, Tim Olson <Tim(at)> wrote:

--> RV10-List message posted by: Tim Olson <Tim(at)>

+1. I ran an independent #2 ground.

That said, with the number of rivets in the airframe I'm sure you'll be fine as long as you ground to something with a lot of rivets in it.
I just wanted as low a resistance path to my forest of tabs as

> On 10/19/2017 10:42 AM, Phillip Perry wrote:
> Ditto
> Sent from my iPhone
>> On Oct 19, 2017, at 10:35 AM, Shannon Hicks <civeng123(at) <mailto:civeng123(at)>> wrote:
>> I used a forest of tabs mounted to my firewall with a #2 (I think) cable run from there all the way back to the battery ground in the tailcone. I'm not sure if it was overkill, but I have had zero issues so far.
>> I think the plans ground path is through the skin to the battery tray where you ground the battery.

>> Shannon
>> On Thu, Oct 19, 2017 at 10:27 AM, Kent Ogden <ogdenk(at) <mailto:ogdenk(at)>> wrote:
>> All,
>> I have a question/concern regarding a ground return to the
>> battery. I have primed all my parts and skins with the Akzo Nobel
>> 2 part primer, which is awesome stuff though it's a smelly pain to
>> work with. All skin overlaps have been primed on both sides of
>> the overlap, and this stuff is not conductive at all so the only
>> electrical path is through the rivets and the small area of the
>> rivet hole that doesn't always have primer covering it. On the
>> outside of the plane the rivet heads have contact directly with
>> the unprimed skin so it's really the inside skin where there is
>> minimal area in electrical contact.
>> I am concerned that using the skin as a ground return to the
>> battery may not provide an excellent ground path, especially for
>> the large currents needed for engine cranking. I would really
>> rather not have to run another heavy wire to the front of the
>> airplane for ground, but I will if necessary.
>> Has anyone else faced this issue and had a problem (or no problem)
>> using the skin as a ground return? Also, where/how have people
>> connected the battery ground to the tailcone skin, do you use a
>> piece of brass or copper buss bar riveted to the bottom skin or
>> something like that?
>> Thanks for any suggestions!
>> Kent Ogden
>> #40710 ultra slow-build Smile
>> &nbsp--><========================

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