Need help picking breaker box - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-19-2016, 09:10 PM   #1
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Name: Steve Robison
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Need help picking breaker box

I have a Scamp 13 that I am converting to run on 30 amps, currently it's only wired for 15.

I was thinking a 4-breaker panel would be the best way to go? Do you think this one would do fine http://m.homedepot.com/p/GE-PowerMar...2CP/202046209?

I was first thinking about going with a square d 2 breaker panel but I figured that a 4 breaker panel with 15 amp breakers would give me more versatility since I would be able to keep the fridge, battery charger and heater/AC on their own circuits.

Any ideas or recommendations are appreciated.
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Old 04-19-2016, 09:45 PM   #2
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You should also install a main breaker in addition to the branch circuit breakers. Based on my experience as an electrician , I would go with a Square D panel (QO or Homeline) over a GE but both will work safely.
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Old 04-19-2016, 10:34 PM   #3
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You should also install a main breaker in addition to the branch circuit breakers. Based on my experience as an electrician , I would go with a Square D panel (QO or Homeline) over a GE but both will work safely.
I've been trying to find a square d 4 space panel with main breaker but the only one I could find was at Lowe's for over $100. It seems that there aren't many panels with main breakers that are very small and would fit under the scamp's sink area.
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Old 04-20-2016, 07:22 AM   #4
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Maybe its to early in the morning for me but I dont understand if you want to redo the 120 VAC side, the 12 VDC side, or both.

But how about this. It is what Scamp put in my trailer and takes at least four AC breakers (including the 30 amp main). I also added a few circuits on the 12 volt side with the spare fuse slots. (Photo taken during the mod)
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Old 04-20-2016, 07:49 AM   #5
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I've been trying to find a square d 4 space panel with main breaker but the only one I could find was at Lowe's for over $100. It seems that there aren't many panels with main breakers that are very small and would fit under the scamp's sink area.
You want a MLO panel not a MB panel . Buy / install a 30 amp SP breaker as a main breaker and back feed the breaker. You can buy a 100 amp ,20 /24 circuit ,main breaker panel with cover for well under $100.
You are correct , there are few small panels / load centers with mains because there is almost zero demand. That's why you can buy residential breakers for under $5 and breakers for industrial applications are North of $50. DEMAND
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:02 AM   #6
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Maybe its to early in the morning for me but I dont understand if you want to redo the 120 VAC side, the 12 VDC side, or both.

But how about this. It is what Scamp put in my trailer and takes at least four AC breakers (including the 30 amp main). I also added a few circuits on the 12 volt side with the spare fuse slots. (Photo taken during the mod)
I'm redoing both 120 and 12. I really like that one you mentioned, I didn't remember it being only $60 so that would eliminate the need for a 12 volt fuse box which is at least $30 also. That's a good price and I might just go with that.

Where do you have it mounted and it also charges the 12 volt battery correct?
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:15 AM   #7
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Steve is correct about a main breaker being desirable, but then most (all?) of our little trailers never had one, and never will.. That said, if you cannot find a small panel box that does everything just mount two. One for the main and then a sub-panel for the breakers.

Now that I have said it I kind of like the idea. My old Scamp has the power inlet on the curb side and I have been considering moving it to the street side (where it should have been all along, what where they thinking?). As part of that I could easily incorporate a small main panel box as I will need a junction box anyway.
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:30 AM   #8
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Steve is correct about a main breaker being desirable, but then most (all?) of our little trailers never had one, and never will.. That said, if you cannot find a small panel box that does everything just mount two. One for the main and then a sub-panel for the breakers.

Now that I have said it I kind of like the idea. My old Scamp has the power inlet on the curb side and I have been considering moving it to the street side (where it should have been all along, what where they thinking?). As part of that I could easily incorporate a small main panel box as I will need a junction box anyway.
My first idea was to mount a small panel reusing the same holes from the old panel then have a smart charger on one circuit. I would then hook up the smart charger to a blue sea fuse box and run wires from the box back to my battery for charging only when hooked up to park power.

But if the Scamp fuse panel is $60 and does that as well I will go that route instead. I'm just really having to watch the budget because I'm restoring everything in this trailer and don't want to spend a fortune.
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:49 AM   #9
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Even though our camper is 30 Amps, I have always ran it off a 15 Amp supply using a 12 Gauge extension cord. What I have found out is I can run the Air Conditioner or the Microwave but not both at the same time. This does not present a problem for us until I want to Pop Popcorn then I turn off the Air, Pop and turn the Air back on.

Should you retrofit to 30 Amps, just do it with a good converter that has the capability and it will do both your AC and DC at the same time with the AC Breakers and DC fuses.
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Old 04-20-2016, 12:23 PM   #10
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If you have 4X15 amp circuits you have the potential to draw 60 amps which would overload your supply line if you do not have a 30 amp main breaker to protect your supply line if it is rated for 30 amps.
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Old 04-20-2016, 01:24 PM   #11
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If you have 4X15 amp circuits you have the potential to draw 60 amps which would overload your supply line if you do not have a 30 amp main breaker to protect your supply line if it is rated for 30 amps.
Ok good to know. I've never been camping with a camper so I just figured they'd have a breaker at the park power box that I'd just trip. Thanks.
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Old 04-20-2016, 02:52 PM   #12
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I always connect to the campground 15 Amp circuit that has a 15 Amp breaker. If I overload the line, the breaker at the camp ground will trip.
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Old 04-20-2016, 03:01 PM   #13
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I'm also in the process of considering wiring my 1974 Boler with 30amp 120volt. I was considering installing a breaker in the trailer. Is it required just for added precaution ? I'm not sure. I'm not an electrician but sure would appreciate some guidance in doing a 30 amp install! And I am wiring for 12 volt battery and solar.


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Old 04-20-2016, 03:54 PM   #14
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The issue with using the campground's circuit breaker to protect the trailer's service entrance cord is that in many cases the pedestal breaker may not trip when needed . Breakers are an electrical - mechanical Device and when subject to moisture as in a pedestal , the mechanical portion rusts and binds changing the trip point of the breaker. I have replaced pedestal breakers where they were so badly rusted they could not be shut off or trip .
The cost of a 30 amp SP breaker is so low that eliminating a main breaker in your trailer is foolish IMHO. The cost to do the job right the first time is far cheaper than having to do it twice / over.
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