Bigfoot 17 power centre wires - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-14-2015, 05:37 PM   #1
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Bigfoot 17 power centre wires

Hi All,

I am replacing my power centre from my 1984 17foot Bigfoot trailer with a PD4045 and looking for a bit of help from someone who may have done this. I am guessing that all the white wires that were spliced into the battery line will go to ground inside the new PD4045. I am wondering if all the lines going to the fuses on the old power centre are hot DC lines (the two brown lines and the orange and yellow one). Two brown wires are spliced into a blue line and the orange and yellow wires splice into the other blue line. The blue lines go to the fuses. Here are a few pictures that show how they go into the old box and where they go inside.

As well, wondering what size of fuses I should be using for the fridge and for the other lines that are for lights and the water pump.

Thanks for your help in advance.
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:32 PM   #2
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best not to guess, Ted....

I have not replaced my PC with a PD 4045........but this quote from you sounds down right dangerous: I am guessing that all the white wires that were spliced into the battery line will go to ground inside the new PD4045

in the AC world....the white wire is neutral...the black is hot...and green goes to ground

in the DC world (in BF and most RVs) the white is negative....black is positive

you're "guessing" that taking all the negative DC wires and gounding them in the PC will be ok???? I can't imagine what's going to happen then....

whatever you do, take pictures......insurance companies like those

oh and for the record...I ditched the converter in my BF when it failed....I kept the fuse/breaker panel part....and hard wired a charger to the system
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:39 PM   #3
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Yes that is what I meant. The white wires that were spliced into the negative battery line coming into the old unit will go to the negative dc terminal in the PD4045. Thanks for the correction!

Do you happen to know if all those lines going to the fuses in the old unit would be positive?


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Old 09-14-2015, 07:02 PM   #4
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It's always best to chase down where wires go to before reconnecting, especially if you have any LED lights as they won't work and can be burned out if connected in reverse.


As the PD-4045 doesn't have an internal grounding terminal strip I always set up an external terminal strip for all the grounds I need.. The Battery (-) goes to a heavy stud, along with a cable to the chassis cround as well as the ground from the 4045 and one as a ffeder to the ground terminal strip.


If you are just installing, set up the AC first and get that working. You will have to install a master breaker and a separate breaker for the converter section and connect the wire for that before the converter will work.


The refrigerator will need at least a 20 amp fuse, the others should be good at 10 amps.


Don't guess, ask questions.
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Old 09-14-2015, 09:38 PM   #5
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Thanks a lot Bob,

How would you recommend tracing the wires?

I understand that white wires should be the negative ones. From your past experience are those two brown wires and the yellow and orange wire in my pictures positive?

Ted.


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Old 09-15-2015, 08:23 AM   #6
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For DC wire tracing I have a long jumper wire with a 20 amp slo-blo fuse spliced into it. When I want to find out where a wire is heading I connect one end of the jumper to the (+) side of the battery and the other end to the wire in question and find out what works. Then I tag the wire. Trying to follow colors, especially in a trailer than has had several owners, can lead to lots of trouble.


For AC wires, basically, if you have to ask, get an electrician to help you.
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Old 09-15-2015, 09:04 AM   #7
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on a 97 BF...

it looked like this....might point you in the right direction but you should still confirm......first pic original PC...second pic after "re-work"
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Old 09-16-2015, 03:45 PM   #8
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Well the PD 4045 is installed and everything is working finally. Things I learned from this is that the instructions that come with that unit are definitely lacking. You need to take a short wire and run it from a branch circuit and take it to the 120 V hot bus which is on the right-hand side of the unit. Otherwise will be no power to the converter. I also learned that on my original power center the lines that ran to the fuses were the positive DC lines. I did like Bob suggested and ran a bus outside of the unit for all of the negative DC lines and the negative battery line. As well before hooking up to the pigtails I did an ohm test to make sure that they were labeled right. Thanks for all your help guys and for all your advice in past discussions Bob which I referred to.

Ted.


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Old 09-17-2015, 08:21 AM   #9
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That little buss bar to the right side of the PD-4045 is not explained in the documentation but the word I got from PD was that it was required to meet a certain Canadian standard and did not have to be used in US installs.


That said, I connect the shore power directly to the the main breaker that backfeeds the buss and the next breaker is connected to the converter only.
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