Finding 110 volt stranded wire - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-30-2009, 12:40 PM   #1
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I am about to wire the trailer with fresh 110 volt wire. Where would I find stranded 110 volt wire? Home Depot/Lowes or a good, local hardware store?

Fran
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Old 12-30-2009, 12:50 PM   #2
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Quote:
I am about to wire the trailer with fresh 110 volt wire. Where would I find stranded 110 volt wire? Home Depot/Lowes or a good, local hardware store?

Fran
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Any of the above. It comes on a roll of a 1,000 feet... But they will cut you any length and charge you by the foot. BTW, I prob have several thousand feet of various guages (sizes) in my shop..... Stop by, it's not snowing too hard here in Central WA...... Larry
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Old 12-30-2009, 12:54 PM   #3
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Any of those places you mention should have stranded wire.

110 volt applies to the insulation on the wire. Equally important, is the amperage rating. Amps are what heat a wire up (IR losses). You have to figure what you are going to run with the power going through your wire, add up the amp values of all these things, multiply by some safety factor, say 150%, and then buy the appropriate wire.

Stranded vs solid: Because repeated bending of a wire will cause it to break, solid is only used in stationary applications. Stranded is meant to take some bending and I would think is the best for a moving vehicle like an RV. So don't let anyone talk you into solid wire.

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Old 12-30-2009, 06:05 PM   #4
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If I were doing it, I would use nothing smaller than 12 gauge and use even a larger gauge (10) for the air conditioner.

I would also use a loom to run the wire inside to prevent any chafing of the insulation. You can get loom at auto shops, Lowe's and/or Home Depot or www.jcw.com.

Note: 14 Gauge is smaller than 12 gauge. The lower the number the higher the gauge.
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Old 12-30-2009, 11:18 PM   #5
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I like using delcity for most of my electrical projects. Decent price, quick service.
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Old 12-31-2009, 04:49 PM   #6
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I got a real good deal on a 100 ft., 12 guage, 3-wire generator extension cord that I used for 110v upgrades, and stripped down to individual wires for 12V upgrades. Had about 25 ft. left over that I made into an extension cord. Cheaper than buying it by the foot at Home Depot. Check around.
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Old 12-31-2009, 06:20 PM   #7
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Marv's suggestion is absolutely outstanding. Has the heavy gauge wire and a protective covering to boot.

Harbor Freight has sales on 12 gauge extension cords all the time in various lengths and I've seen sales at Lowes also.
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Old 12-31-2009, 10:23 PM   #8
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Thanks for the offer, Larry. It's a bit far to go for wire, tho. What with the snow on the passes and all.
Maybe if I were re-doing the whole house, not my little 10' trailer. I think I'll need about 30' or less; that's just an estimate.

Fran
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Old 12-31-2009, 10:27 PM   #9
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[quote]
If I were doing it, I would use nothing smaller than 12 gauge and use even a larger gauge (10) for the air conditioner.

I would also use a loom to run the wire inside to prevent any chafing of the insulation. You can get loom at auto shops, Lowe's and/or Home Depot or www.jcw.com.



Thanks, Darwin. I'll look for 10 or 12g. stranded. Not sure what a loom looks like, but I'll ask at the store.
-Fran

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Old 12-31-2009, 10:37 PM   #10
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Marv's suggestion is absolutely outstanding. Has the heavy gauge wire and a protective covering to boot.

Harbor Freight has sales on 12 gauge extension cords all the time in various lengths and I've seen sales at Lowes also.

So you second Marv's suggestion to get a heavy duty extention cord, 12g, for my 110v interior wiring.
Hmm, very, very clever.
(I think I even have one in the garage that I rarely use because it's so heavy to lug around!)

Fran
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Old 12-31-2009, 11:04 PM   #11
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Here's a couple of photos of the old wiring that was original to the Compact II; I must say it all worked when I brought home the trailer, solid core, 35 year old wire held in place with metal staples! BTW, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Fran
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oldwiring.jpg   oldwiring2.jpg  

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Old 01-01-2010, 10:22 AM   #12
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Should you use the extension cord, it will have very fine strands in it so make sure you DO NOT tin the ends (Solder) because if you do and there is a problem the solder would get hot enough to melt and the connection will come loose. Just twist the strands tight and usr the screw on the receptacle to attach.

Here is a site for loom which you will not need if you use the extension cord.

http://www.jcwhitney.com/TAYLOR_FLEXIBLE_W...0;0;2005407;0;0
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Old 01-01-2010, 12:02 PM   #13
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Do not use extension cords for permanent wiring of any kind regardless of the gauge of the wire.

Extension cords are designed for short-term use, not as a substitute for permanent wiring. the insulation compound is not designed to protect on a full time basis, you cannot believe how many times i have seen electrical fires due to this practice.

when you remove the outer jacket the inner insulation will start breaking down. The inner insulation has no wear or abrasion proofing if it should rub. it also will not have any where on it a rating telling you what it is. Wiring that is designed to be used as an individual conductor will tell you what it's ratings are.

You will notisce that most trailer wiring is designated "nmw" or "nmwu" and looks similar to normal house wiring, but with a slightly thicker insulation.
the ratings mean it is acceptable for wet, and/or wet/underground burial.

My trailer is an 82 and all 110v wiring is original, and it all works. Never had a broken wire or a broken connection.

Remember one thing when you're doing your own work, someone who might have been smarter than you set out standards, to prevent injuries and accidents, and the least you should be doing is meeting the standard, at best you should be above the standard.
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Old 01-01-2010, 04:40 PM   #14
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Hi Joe,
Well, I definitely want to be as safe as possible and exceed standards, as you say. Don't want any fires, that's for sure.
We tend to camp primarily at sites where there is no AC, but nevertheless I want peace of mind when we are hooked up,
as infrequent as that is.

Fran
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Old 01-02-2010, 12:25 PM   #15
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There is stranded wire available for 110v wiring, but there are a multitude of codes and practices that should be followed if you go that route, everything from protecting the wire to ensuring a ground is pulled to each connection point.
I guess my pont is do it once, do it safe, do it to code. 12 volt wiring can start a fire if not fused right, but it rarely causes shocks or death. 110v wiring done wrong can kill. Be Carefull that's all

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Old 01-02-2010, 07:21 PM   #16
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One of the reasons for the code specifications in household electrical wiring is the rodent protection that is introduced in the sheath that covers the wires.

Extension cords are under a different set of standards and MAY NOT have the chemicals in their coverings as household wiring does.

If you have concerns of rodents entering your camper then it would be prudent to wire in accordance with the electrical code for campers. (The code may not be the same as for a household)
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:53 PM   #17
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Without a big long write up at this time, I agree with Joe. Some of the advice that has been given is not sound advice, but that is the nature of forums. Makes them interesting, except in this case - maybe dangerous.

The photo you showed of your old wiring was not neat I agree (and I like wire my wires neat), but the connections were in a metal box and the metal box had strain relief nuts on each of the wires entering it. I have seen much worse.

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