monitors, converters, break-away brake cables, and ...? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-21-2013, 01:18 PM   #1
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Name: Chuck
Trailer: Scamp 16 Deluxe
Washington
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monitors, converters, break-away brake cables, and ...?

Hi,

Sorry if this is a bit of a rant.

My 2005 13' Scamp has a number of wires directly attached to the battery. There is a line going to the little break-away cable box, a line going to the Link 10 monitor with misc fuses and a shunt, and what I assume is the main cable (seems sort of skinny for a main battery cable) going to the converter, which also seems to have a 25 amp fuse in it. All this stuff is either in the battery box itself, just inside the right side forward closet, or half way between.

From my marine days, I came to believe in having the ability to isolate the battery from everything else inside the boat with the flip of ONE switch. There are tons of reasons that's an advantage (requirement!) in a boat, which we can discuss elsewhere, but to put it briefly, it's what I got used to.

So here's this Scamp with fuses and wires all over the place, and no central breaker/fuse panel, and that seems nuts to me. I'd like the ability to switch from one battery to another (assuming I had more than one), and to turn the whole shootin' match OFF, so I could fiddle with, switch around, maintain, and otherwise mess with the battery(s). Not only that, but I could troubleshoot, modify and upgrade one circuit at a time.

So would it hurt anything if I installed two big honkin' cables (as short as possible) leading to a panel (inside) that at least had a main disconnect, the leads to the Link 10 monitor, and the breakaway power leads? Also, I'm guessing the battery would benefit from having the converter/charger moved closer to it. Am I missing something? Is there a reason for this "distributed fusing" arrangement?

Am I hopping down a bunny trail here, or has anybody else been inclined to tear out most of the electrical system and start over?

Thanks for listening
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Old 09-21-2013, 01:26 PM   #2
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I've been puzzled by Scamps electrical system. On my UHaul, I installed a big disconnect switch and breaker right at the + battery terminal. All power is distributed via a circuit breaker (no fuses) panel, so only one wire runs directly to the battery.
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Old 09-21-2013, 05:22 PM   #3
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Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
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My 2005 13' Scamp has a number of wires directly attached to the battery. There is a line going to the little break-away cable box, a line going to the Link 10 monitor with misc fuses and a shunt, and what I assume is the main cable (seems sort of skinny for a main battery cable) going to the converter...
The Link monitor cannot possibly work correctly unless all current in and out of the battery goes through the current-measuring shunt. When setting up a master shutoff, this could be fixed, too.
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Old 09-21-2013, 09:48 PM   #4
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Brian (or anybody else?), do you have experience with a Link 10? The documentation calls for the two 2 amp fuses on the positive side (in the DC+ and voltage sense lines) to be within 7" of the battery. Why would that be, and how critical is it, especially if I replace the 10 gauge (or so) primary battery wire with something twice the size?

This one isn't on Scamp, but it's exactly what I'm talking about.
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Old 09-22-2013, 03:43 AM   #5
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I have a link 10 and my fuses are 1at battery. And one at meter, my meter is across the trailer from the battery, but cable wise about 25 feet away. I have not had any issues so far. I. Added a master switch to kill everything on the. Positive battery lead and it works for me. It also stops the link 10 shunt from draining the battery when the trailer. Is between. Trips

Joe
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:05 AM   #6
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Chuck
Sounds like a P/O or someone as been modifying the wiring in your Scamp. The orig. Scamp wiring has only two wires going to the battery (one black and one white) and the black (+) wire has a fuse in it at the battery which shuts off all battery power to the trailer. I have not seen a link 10 or breakaway switch installed by Scamp.
I have cleaned up wiring in several Scamps. I usually put in a 7 wire trailer distribution box inside the front of the shell just as the wires enter the trailer.
If you upgrade the inverter and want larger primary wires some have run them on the outside the drivers side frame rail following the shower drain line to the rear and entering the floor behind the wheel at the converter.
Eddie
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:23 AM   #7
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Trailer: 1984 19' scamp
Kansas
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I used a 50 amp marine circuit breaker rated for switch use, going to distribution blocks. I left my electric landing gear hot. Everything else is switched through the circuit breaker. They have different amperage breakers, depending on your wire size.

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Old 09-22-2013, 11:44 AM   #8
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Joe, you put your master switch on the positive side of the battery, BEFORE the two wires with the 2 amp fuses going to the Link10, right? And the shunt is actually on the negative side, at least according to the documentation I find. How much wire is there from the positive battery terminal to the 2 amp Link 10 fuses?

Eddie, yes, there are other electrical mods, including a DVD/CD player, a tiny TV (interesting that the TV runs on 110 and the player on 12 volts), a pair of speakers, and a couple of LED light fixtures. I think the PO had stock in a company that sells cable ties, electrical tape, and that cable loom material. What model/brand 7 wire distribution box would you put in the trailer?

Jared, can you orient me in that picture? Am I looking down into a box or ...? Those terminal connections must be protected by something. I note the gauge of the primary battery wire is considerably larger than on my rig. What do you mean by "electric landing gear," and why did you leave it hot?

I appreciate this conversation, in that it helps me better understand what's going on inside that piece of equipment in my driveway. Thanks!
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Old 09-22-2013, 12:15 PM   #9
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.......And the shunt is actually on the negative side, at least according to the documentation I find........
You can put the shunt on either the positive or negative side, but you may need to reverse the wires to the shunt to maintain correct charge / discharge orientation.
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:16 PM   #10
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Sorry, that's outside under the fifth wheel bunk. I don't have anything covering the terminals, due to location. I might silicone them. The large wires with the Andersen connector go to the battery (makes for easy removal), the other large set runs to the converter, they're 4 gauge wires, since the converter is rated for 45 amps. You would just need to size the circuit breaker to your wire gauge/length.

Some people call jacks on a fifth wheel landing gear. Mine have an electric motor. I left them hot so I can hookup and unhook without turning the circuit breaker on.
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:26 PM   #11
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So, I'm still curious, why would the Link 10 need the two 2-amp fuses to be within 7" of the battery? That will make it hard to pull all the fuses inside. thx

-c
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Old 09-24-2013, 03:51 AM   #12
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chuck, give me till the weekend, I'll go take a few pictures
Joe
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