RV wiring basics - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-19-2013, 02:10 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Carol H View Post
A vintage trailer restorer convinced me to always shrink wrap all my connections and bare wires to avoid corrosion and to avoid connections from vibrating lose. I had found that some of my original tail light connections had come loose. Have used the shrink wrapping on all electrical changes since, may have to wait another 20 years to see if it really works though .
It will only work if you don't routinely punch holes in the insulation to test if its live. I watched a how to video on you tube that showed how electric brakes work. The guy kept recommending punching holes in the wiring to test the circuit. He was working on a flatbed, so all the wire was essentially outdoors and exposed to the elements.

Stay tuned. In a few years this guy is going to be posting a video on how to rewire a trailer because his whole electrical system will have turned to green mush. In a lot of ways the video was well done. He did an excellent job on how to work on trailer brakes. Sadly, anyone who follows his hole punching methods is going to have a wiring mess.

Derek

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Old 01-19-2013, 03:40 PM   #16
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Interesting video!
Gives a good basic understanding of 12v wiring principles.

But lest some think that boats/trailer wiring is the same in all important ways it should be pointed out that there's at least one big difference:

In most cases ground on RV trailers is white, and ground on boats is black.

Also, and maybe this is only true of the older trailers many of us have, but isn't 110v wiring aboard RV's usually solid "housewire" (Romex)?

Francesca
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:39 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Steve Hammel View Post
I've always understood that 12v must be stranded wire as the electrons only travel on the outside of the wire...
No, the electrons move in the conductive material.

If the idea is that current moves only near the surface, this is skin effect; it has nothing to do with voltage, and it only applies at high frequency. It is unimportant at 60 Hz for small-gauge wires (anything in your house, car, or RV), and non-existent for direct current (of any voltage, in any size wire).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Hammel View Post
... the electrons only travel on the outside of the wire and stranded wire offers more surface area for them to travel.
Even at a combination of high enough frequency and small enough conductors for skin effect to matter, bundling a bunch of bare wires together does no good at all because they just act as one big conductor - you would need to leave a gap or insulation between the parallel wires.

Wikipedia has a decent article on this subject: Skin effect

Stranding in low-frequency (and thus certainly DC) wiring is just for flexibility.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:26 PM   #18
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Thanks Brian - the Wikipedia article you refer to was very interesting. I had not understood the effect of frequency on the skin effect before.
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Old 04-05-2013, 09:30 PM   #19
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Electrons, schmectrons! Everyone knows that the way electricity works is based on the conduction of smoke.

The proof is that whenever the smoke is allowed to escape from the wiring - like the time I crossed two hot circuits - the electricity stops working.
Don't let the smoke escape!
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Old 04-06-2013, 01:40 PM   #20
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RE: Romex... JMHO:

I have never heard of a problem with using properly installed Romex type wire in a trailer or a motorhome.

As boats, especially smaller ones, have a known source of engine vibration I can guess there is some concern, but not in a motorhome and certainly not in a trailer.

My rule of thumb is to anchor Romex type wire with screw down clamps at least every 16-18"
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Old 04-06-2013, 01:49 PM   #21
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Stranded wire is used in mobile equipment (cars, trailers, etc) because it is more flexible and will withstand vibration and flexing more without breaking. Copper work hardens with vibration or movement and can become very brittle and eventually break. Yes solid core wire such as Romex is usually used in RV 110V AC systems but in these applications the wire is very securely attached to prevent movement, Romex should never be used where there is any chance of flexing.
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:44 PM   #22
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My Trillium has what I think you are calling romex, but here I would call it NMW, as it has a jacket designed for wet locations, where typical romex is usually designated as NMD for DRY locations


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Old 04-15-2013, 05:29 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve_N_Janna View Post
Electrons, schmectrons! Everyone knows that the way electricity works is based on the conduction of smoke.

The proof is that whenever the smoke is allowed to escape from the wiring - like the time I crossed two hot circuits - the electricity stops working.
Don't let the smoke escape!
If I didn't know better, I would say you owned a car with Lucas electronics.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:02 PM   #24
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If I didn't know better, I would say you owned a car with Lucas electronics.
Lucas car electronics. AAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Been there done that!

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Old 04-15-2013, 07:21 PM   #25
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Are we talking about Sir Joseph Lucas, The Prince of Darkness?????
If so, don't miss these:
a collection of Lucas Prince of Darkness jokes

http://www.usa7s.net/vb/attachment.p...5&d=1259096206
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:26 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve_N_Janna View Post
Electrons, schmectrons! Everyone knows that the way electricity works is based on the conduction of smoke.

The proof is that whenever the smoke is allowed to escape from the wiring - like the time I crossed two hot circuits - the electricity stops working.
Don't let the smoke escape!
This weekend I let the smoke escape from the $35 1000 W inverter I purchased on kijiji to run my $40 700W microwave. The fellow who sold it to me went to the trouble of connecting it to a battery and had an AC trouble light and a drill plugged into it to demonstrate that it works. I read the labels and it said that connecting the DC input in reverse polarity would harm the unit. So the next day, when I did exactly that. I was kicking my self when I saw a rather large spark when I connected the battery clamps. The inverter was dead.
I looked up the manual on line. In the trouble shooting section, under totally dead inverter, (paraphrased) it said, "the inverter may have been connected to 12VDC with reversed polarity, return for service". Not acceptable.
I disassembled it and found four 30A fuses soldered to the board. I replaced them, and now it works again.
I have never before successfully put the smoke back in.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:38 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Are we talking about Sir Joseph Lucas, The Prince of Darkness?????
If so, don't miss these:
a collection of Lucas Prince of Darkness jokes

http://www.usa7s.net/vb/attachment.p...5&d=1259096206
Indeed!



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Old 04-15-2013, 08:15 PM   #28
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I read the labels and it said that connecting the DC input in reverse polarity would harm the unit.
Great job David. I'm installing my solar and its controller next week. You can bet, I'm going to be EXTRA careful to ensure I don't reverse the +-
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