Beginning a new re-wiring of lights - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-02-2012, 05:01 PM   #1
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Name: dave
Trailer: 1974 Trillium 1300
Ontario
Posts: 31
Beginning a new re-wiring of lights

Hiya,
I am just needing a bit of a push with info about starting the re-wire of the 74 Trill. I am doing the running light system first. then later maybe the interior lights. Planning a simple 4 wire replacement for now.

1. Should I leave the old wires in place to follow the route?

2. Should I begin from the back or front of the wiring? ie start at the tail lights?

3. Will a 25' length kit be enough wire?

4. Solder connections and shrink tube?

My plan is yet to be finalized as to the interior system. I am thinking LED lights powered from a separate external wire running to the car battery. Solar dream might be next year.

Thx folks

Dave
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Old 08-02-2012, 06:33 PM   #2
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Trailer: 2008 13' Scamp
British Columbia
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Dave,

1. Leaving the old wires in place just makes for more wires cluttering up a limited space. I'd either make sure that there're not usable by checking them individually. If you can put power or a meter on one end and confirm continuity I'd use it. If not, if the reason for no continuity is hidden or not reachable, I'd use the old wire to pull through a new wire.

2. Begin at back or front, not sure it makes much difference.

3. 25' should be more than enough length but weaving wiring in and around items always uses more than you think it will.

4. I've always soldered and shrink wrapped all my work on boats and cars for many years and never had a problem. Not everyone is a fan of soldered connections but they work for me

Personally I'd keep my trailer power consumption isolated from my car battery. I charge my batteries from the car but then I flip a switch and isolate the car battery from the trailer.

If your only goal is LED lighting I'd suggest having an inexpensive motorcycle battery as your power source and a small solar cell to keep it topped up. You might not even require a wire to your car battery but if you do I'd suggest putting a switch or isolator on it to prevent the unhappiness of a dead car battery

Ron
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Old 08-02-2012, 07:05 PM   #3
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Trailer: 1972 boler American and 1979 Trillium 4500
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If you are planning to possibly change or add things in the future, I'd suggest using a connector box where everything comes together, like under the front bunk.
Something like this:
Stud Type Junction Box
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:29 PM   #4
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Name: dave
Trailer: 1974 Trillium 1300
Ontario
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Roy, Thx, Makes sense. thx

Ron, I will try and learn more about what you mean. Your answers to my questions makes sense re switch and isolator. I am not knowledgeable enough to run a wire inside the car to hook to the trailer. That I think would mean a 6 wire system. trying to keep it simple, at least simple for me!Thx
Motorcycle battery is a new idea to me. thx
dave
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:55 PM   #5
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Dave, there is a simple 7 pin solution.
They make a 7 pin for your TV that you plug the 4 pin into. Then you run 2 wires back from engine compartment. 1 for power and 1 for brakes (if you want) the 7th pin is an auxillary or spare in most situations.
There is a great book I found that tells you how to do and check the 12V systems.
Managing 12 Volts: How to Upgrade, Operate, and Troubleshoot 12 Volt ... - Harold Barre - Google Books

Publication Date: June 2002 | ISBN-10: 0964738627 | ISBN-13: 978-0964738621 | Edition: 2 Updated
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Old 08-02-2012, 11:20 PM   #6
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Trailer: 2008 13' Scamp
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Good point Roy,

That's what I did with my truck. It came with a flat 4 pin plug. I bought the Hopkins 7 pin plug which allowed me to plug the 4 pin plug into it and gave me the extra wires for a battery charging circuit and trailer brakes.

A simple battery charging circuit can consist of wire to the positive terminal, with an inline fuse and a toggle switch. There are higher level systems but this basic setup would give you a "use if you need it" setup.

I have a large LED spotlight at home. It's power supply is a solar cell about 6" square. It doesn't take much power if your only load is going to be LED lighting.

Ron
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Old 08-11-2012, 04:41 PM   #7
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Name: Cathy
Trailer: 1973 Love Bug '13
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OK guys, had to chime in with another question. Can anyone give an idea of how much led light and for how long using a motorcycle battery vs car battery.
thanks,
Cathy
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:08 PM   #8
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Cat,
A "car" or 12 V battery, should cost you about the same and last you longer.
The amount of LED's depends on you.
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:11 PM   #9
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Roy, I get that the amount of LED's depends on me, but say for example I want one task light for about 5 hours a day, how many days would be your best guess till I'm out of light? The weight savings is what I am looking at.
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:19 PM   #10
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If all you want is a task light, you might consider one of these. I got one for Maggie and she loves it.

Reading Lights by Mighty Bright: XtraFlex LED Book Light

Hers uses 3 AAA 's. They don't weigh much. Raz
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:19 PM   #11
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It is not the weight savings.
A Led will last 5-6 times as long as a conventional bulb on battery.
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:27 PM   #12
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Raz, thanks for that link. I am trying to decide whether I should even fool with a car/motorcycle battery and just take throw aways.

Roy, Thank you for your response, I think I have been unclear in my question. My weight concern is the weight of a car battery vs the weight of a motorcycle battery. I boondock and have always used disposable batteries and fuel lighting as I have always camped in a tent. Weight is a huge issue for me and I am trying to figure which is most practical for me. You are still awesome!

Cathy
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