Electrical System

The Alcan/Alwest electrical system is typical of boats of the era.  That is to say, it followed the standards of household wiring for the AC system and automotive wiring for the DC system.  It is not how you would build a boat today, but it can still be workable without needing a complete refit.

DC system

The drawing indicates it is for the Alwest 370 model.  There is no indication to which other models it may apply.  The drawing is dated April 1971.  There is no guarantee it applies to the 1971 model year and no indication to which other years it may apply.  Use at your own risk.

The DC system on the Alwest is generally of poor quality, but this is common to boats from this era.  The wiring appears to be automotive grade with untinned copper wire in plastic insulation.  The wires running from the batteries to the dashboard panel are inadequate if you intend to add any sort of high-power 12v equipment.   It is recommended that any changes to the system follow ABYC standards for the materials used and the installation.

AC System

The diagrams below are of unknown origin.  There is no indication to which models this diagram may apply.  Use at your own risk.


AC power layout



 AC panel schematic



Another AC panel schematic (submitted by Terry Robb,       MasterCard III)


The AC system is reasonably acceptable.  Most of the boats made are intended to operate with the generator running to supply AC power.  The quality of the wiring materials was fine for the day, but would not be acceptable on a more modern boat.  The wiring work was generally well done.