RV Electrical - Standards? Inspection? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-27-2014, 06:40 PM   #1
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Name: Randy J.
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RV Electrical - Standards? Inspection?

I'm installing a small house battery (35 ah) in my 1976 Trillium (it doesn't appear to have had one) mostly for led lights and a gas detector. I'm also hooking in a solar panel. I was an electronics technician for most of my career and am also quite familiar with the standards and licencing requirements for household AC wiring, but not with RV trailer DC. I feel that I can do it safely but would like to be sure I'm on-side with the legal/standards requirements for trailer DC. Specifically:

-Does anyone know if the job needs to a permit like household wiring? Seems unlikely.
-Must 12V connections be made inside a utility box as with AC (also seems unlikely since we see connectors at various places in trailers and automotive DC wiring.
Is there an electrical code available online? Can't find one.

Oh, if anyone is wondering about the tiny battery, I've intentionally kept the reserve capacity small. What about TVs, computers, etc. etc.? Well that's exactly what we hope to leave behind!

Randy
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Old 06-27-2014, 08:25 PM   #2
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I don't know about the Northern climes, but down here low voltage wiring is pretty much cowboy style, or so it appears in a number of factory built Trailers and Motorhomes I have had to work on.

For the most part, general safe wiring practices, with lots of clamps and ties, pressure crimped connectors, fused circuits and no Scotch-Locs is my personal code. No fires so far.

You will find some low voltage code in industrial and commercial applications, but not much, if any, in RV building where the motto seems to be Yippy ki yea....
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:00 PM   #3
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As regards the battery, I wouldn't go less than a group 24 deep cycle marine battery. Mine has an 86 Amp Hour rating. It holds up well, but we run minimum demand, all LED bulbs, some phone charging, and the largest, the Fantastic Fan. I was keeping the battery charged with 45 Watts of solar, but I just bumped it 80 as we were camping in semi shade and the weather was cloudy much of the time. We made out alright for 13 nights, but I wanted to be on the safe side.

Figure your real needs before deciding on a battery and your solar panels.

Clif
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:09 PM   #4
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I use automotive wiring practices when wiring a trailer for 12V.

As for asking "Comrade Bureaucrat" who couldn't hold a real job...
Forgetaboutit!
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:45 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by floyd View Post
I use automotive wiring practices when wiring a trailer for 12V.

As for asking "Comrade Bureaucrat" who couldn't hold a real job...
Forgetaboutit!

If you want to insult someone you should have enough male parts to do it by name.....
or
As Thumpers Father said, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"
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Old 06-28-2014, 08:21 AM   #6
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There are boxes that make things look nice and simplify the install though.
Princess Auto has a 7 pin connector junction box and Marinco makes some nice little 12 v fuse panels. Harold Barre wrote a good book on 12 V systems. I'm sure you will soon hear about many best ways to make connections and splices.

As for leaving all the electronics behind, you will find that you won't. The laptop will be used for downloading pictures from your camera. You will check and leave emails, search for things locally etc. Maybe even watch a DVD. Remember that not every day is a nice sunny day. Your cell phones will need charging etc.
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Old 06-28-2014, 08:31 AM   #7
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Blue Sea makes some nce 12v fuse blocks as well.. I am putting this one into my scamp this weekend

I am only planning on using 4 of the 6 circuits to start with (fridge, lights, fans, and usb charging for phones) but I like being able to have all of the fuses in one place rather than having to chase down inline fuses all over (which certainly would work, it's just less convenient).
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:23 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
If you want to insult someone you should have enough male parts to do it by name.....
or
As Thumpers Father said, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"
There you go again....
"Comrade Bureaucrat" was certainly no person in particular.
The term obviously represents a reference to an over zealous system of incompetent government micro-management.
If I wanted to insult someone you would be the first to know (in retaliation of course)
I do not, and have not wished to do so.
Love you too
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:44 AM   #9
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There you go again....
"Comrade Bureaucrat" was certainly no person in particular.
The term obviously represents a reference to an over zealous system of incompetent government micro-management.
If I wanted to insult someone you would be the first to know (in retaliation of course)
I do not, and have not wished to do so.
Love you too
Your statement is written in second person and, with the modifying predicate, indicates a specific individual was being referred to.

But, if it's just supposed to be an anti-government rant, take a look at all of the freedoms and RV's that are enjoyed in those countries where the "Comrades" were in charge.

Either way it will offend some or all, and it's in poor taste.

I'm Done.....
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:50 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by sarahspins View Post
Blue Sea makes some nce 12v fuse blocks as well.. I am putting this one into my scamp this weekend

I am only planning on using 4 of the 6 circuits to start with (fridge, lights, fans, and usb charging for phones) but I like being able to have all of the fuses in one place rather than having to chase down inline fuses all over (which certainly would work, it's just less convenient).
To stay out of the Overpriced boating stores, as well as get something built specifically for RV use, one might consider the Progressive Dynamics PD-6000 series DC distribution panel. More circuits, blown fuse LED's, & multiple DC inputs (Battery & Converter). And it's a USA product. (Not saying the Blue Sea isn't. but I was unable to determine it's origin.

Scroll down in the PD link below for pics. I paid about $28 for the last one I bought: http://www.progressivedyn.com/pdfs/f...ne_catalog.pdf
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Old 06-28-2014, 10:07 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
.

I'm Done.....
Thank You!
It is with great relief and strained optimism that I read those last two words!
It has been a long and insufferable road toward what is surely now to become... congeniality?
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Old 06-28-2014, 10:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy in TO View Post
As for leaving all the electronics behind, you will find that you won't. The laptop will be used for downloading pictures from your camera. You will check and leave emails, search for things locally etc. Maybe even watch a DVD. Remember that not every day is a nice sunny day. Your cell phones will need charging etc.
And the books...for heavens sake, don't forget to charge the books.
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