A Better RV Plug - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-22-2011, 08:42 PM   #1
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Name: David
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A Better RV Plug

I've never been happy with the usual pollack/bargman style of RV plug. I especiallyy dislike the fact that you have to pull the guts of the plug out the front to wire it, and then try to jamb it back into place and hold it with a cheesy little setscrew. I use substantial wires in my harness wich makes the whole affair even harder to deal with. I've asked a few times at RV stores if anyone makes anything more professional grade. I just get this:

Well I stumbled onto a plug that is exactly what I wanted. It's the Endurance plug from Hopkins. They make a standard 7 pin and they also make several combination plugs for people who need different connections. You do not pull the guts through this plug. The plug is a robust one piece affair. The wires all attach from the rear and there is a separate weather shield that snaps onto the rear of the plug to cover the connections. Mine is very sturdy and well made. It's got a nice foam rubber seal on the door. Can't wait to install it. I plan to smash the old one with a 3 pound hammer. I picked up my 7 pin at Walmart for about $18. Here is a link to the Hopkins website and the 7 pin option:

Endurance? 7 RV Blade Vehicle End :: Hopkins Towing Solutions

David
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:50 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidSo View Post
I've never been happy with the usual pollack/bargman style of RV plug. I especiallyy dislike the fact that you have to pull the guts of the plug out the front to wire it, and then try to jamb it back into place and hold it with a cheesy little setscrew. I use substantial wires in my harness wich makes the whole affair even harder to deal with. I've asked a few times at RV stores if anyone makes anything more professional grade. I just get this:

Well I stumbled onto a plug that is exactly what I wanted. It's the Endurance plug from Hopkins. They make a standard 7 pin and they also make several combination plugs for people who need different connections. You do not pull the guts through this plug. The plug is a robust one piece affair. The wires all attach from the rear and there is a separate weather shield that snaps onto the rear of the plug to cover the connections. Mine is very sturdy and well made. It's got a nice foam rubber seal on the door. Can't wait to install it. I plan to smash the old one with a 3 pound hammer. I picked up my 7 pin at Walmart for about $18. Here is a link to the Hopkins website and the 7 pin option:

Endurance? 7 RV Blade Vehicle End :: Hopkins Towing Solutions

David
Hopkins products have worked well for me as well, I use the one which offers both a 4-plug and RV-plug in one molded unit it works great....
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Old 11-22-2011, 11:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidSo View Post
I've never been happy with the usual pollack/bargman style of RV plug. I especiallyy dislike the fact that you have to pull the guts of the plug out the front to wire it, and then try to jamb it back into place and hold it with a cheesy little setscrew. I use substantial wires in my harness wich makes the whole affair even harder to deal with. I've asked a few times at RV stores if anyone makes anything more professional grade. I just get this:

Well I stumbled onto a plug that is exactly what I wanted. It's the Endurance plug from Hopkins. They make a standard 7 pin and they also make several combination plugs for people who need different connections. You do not pull the guts through this plug. The plug is a robust one piece affair. The wires all attach from the rear and there is a separate weather shield that snaps onto the rear of the plug to cover the connections. Mine is very sturdy and well made. It's got a nice foam rubber seal on the door. Can't wait to install it. I plan to smash the old one with a 3 pound hammer. I picked up my 7 pin at Walmart for about $18. Here is a link to the Hopkins website and the 7 pin option:

Endurance? 7 RV Blade Vehicle End :: Hopkins Towing Solutions

David

First. How many times do you have rewire the socket on the tow?
Second. Why use wires larger than needed? It's a waste of copper and money with no gain.
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Old 11-23-2011, 10:32 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
First. How many times do you have rewire the socket on the tow?
Second. Why use wires larger than needed? It's a waste of copper and money with no gain.
Fires never start because the wire is too big.
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Old 11-23-2011, 11:04 AM   #5
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Name: David
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
First. How many times do you have rewire the socket on the tow?
Second. Why use wires larger than needed? It's a waste of copper and money with no gain.
I've been into mine twice in the last year, both under bad circumstances. Dealling with poorly designed equipment has never been a favorite thing of mine. I may not need to open it up for another 5 years, but I can do without the hassle then too.

As far as wire size, what do you consider too much? What do you run for line resistance? I have specific targets that I hit in terms of total resistive load from the wiring. If there is a borderline, I go one up in size. Reducing voltage drop by using larger wire is not a waste, it is a conservation.

I had further troubles with my connector because I put ring terminals on all the wires for a more secure connection to the plug. Shame on me

I just posted the link incase anyone was interested, that is it.

David
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Old 11-23-2011, 11:52 AM   #6
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If you use a charge line to your trailer, increasing the wire size will result in less voltage drop and higher charge current for the trailer's battery. Most suggest a minimum of #10, many who depend on the tow vehicle to recharge the trailer battery go as large as #8 or even #6.
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Old 11-23-2011, 12:04 PM   #7
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Fires never start because the wire is too big.
Properly installed wires have fuses or breakers.
10 guage wire has proven adequate to charge my house battery, but if you have a lot of batteries or run with a big 12V load, I guess bigger would be better.
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Old 11-23-2011, 04:19 PM   #8
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Name: George
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ez-connector

I saw ez-connector advertising a few months ago, looks interesting. I would assume that it could be easier to connect than current connectors - one hand versus two hands. Being sealed it could be more reliable. I would probably sacrifice $100 but rewiring seems as another few hours project.

George.
http://www.ezconnector.com/
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Old 11-23-2011, 05:08 PM   #9
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Should you find yourself in a Tractor Supply store you will find an aisle just for trailers and they have wire for wiring up these plugs and jacks and it will have different gauge wires inside the sheath for the various applications. The wire is color coded and the battery charge wire is the heaviest gauge wire and so on.

Davidso: You are just another in a long line of people to be flamed by that guy so welcome to the club.
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Old 11-23-2011, 07:15 PM   #10
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It all boils down to the resistive load of the wire you are using. The multi conductor cables are great, but they are not all the same. I have seen some with charge lines as light as 14GA, and some with charge lines as large as 8GA. To get the right wire you need to know the load expected on that circuit, and the length of the circuit. Wire is just a simple resistor. There are tables that list resistance for different gauges. Here are a few:
14GA = .0028 ohms per foot
12GA = .0018
10GA = .0011

Once you know the total resistance of the wire and the current load you can solve for voltage drop using Ohms Law. I don't mind a little voltage drop on some things. Generally I try to choose the wire size so that the volatge drop does not exceed .5 volts. That is not a magic number, it is just a value that I have found works well for most applications. On some applications like charge wires and brake wires I prefer to see less voltage drop because the voltage directly affects the performance of those items.

The headlights on my Tacoma came wired with some ridiculous wire size like 20GA. I installed a new harness using a relay and heavier wire. The lights are noticably brighter because of it. There is an incentive for manufactures to use the lightest wire they can get away with: cost. It's not uncommon to see auto wiring that presents 1V of drop or more across a circuit.

If you want the best performance from your electrical system it pays to know these things. The heavier wires are a bigger pain to stuff into a little socket. You will find the Hopkins unit a lot more forgiving. I run a 10GA charge and ground wire, 12Ga brake wire splitting to 14 for each wheel. Other circuits are figured using the same idea.

The last time I had to get into my socket it was 17 degrees and snowing lightly. The electronic converter had given up. I was in a parking lot on my back fighting with that thing and it took 2 tries to get it back so that the trailer plug engaged it properly. That is why the old one is getting the 3 pound hammer

David
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:28 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by floyd View Post
Properly installed wires have fuses or breakers.
10 guage wire has proven adequate to charge my house battery, but if you have a lot of batteries or run with a big 12V load, I guess bigger would be better.
Unintended high circuit resistance due to corrosion, fatigue, or loose connection will not blow a fuse or trigger a breaker but it can start fire.

George.
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Old 11-23-2011, 09:12 PM   #12
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Unintended high circuit resistance due to corrosion, fatigue, or loose connection will not blow a fuse or trigger a breaker but it can start fire.

George.
So it won't if it was intended?
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Old 11-23-2011, 10:27 PM   #13
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So it won't if it was intended?
You are correct regarding this Universe, but on the other side of the Big Bang...maybe? The correct word I should have used would be “any” which would include the high resistance by design.
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Old 11-23-2011, 10:40 PM   #14
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Unintended high circuit resistance due to corrosion, fatigue, or loose connection will not blow a fuse or trigger a breaker but it can start fire.

George.
George,
I'm curious. Have you actually seen this yourself on a 12V system? I haven't. Usually you just end up with an open. I've seen similar on a 220V AC circuit because the voltage was sufficient to create an arc across a corroded contact. I guess it could happen on 12V, but it seems less likely. If you have first hand knowledge I'd like to hear

David
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