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Old 02-28-2016, 01:25 PM   #41
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Good job figuring out that mystery!

I spent many a pleasant afternoon removing useless wiring from my bus loom and mine was nowhere as tangled as yours.
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Old 03-20-2016, 07:18 PM   #42
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Just a quick note about inverters, generators and such. To run computers, TV's, microwaves, or basic Hi tek electronics, you will need a "Pure Sine Wave Inverter" and yes they are a bit more expensive, but not when you think of the money you will save on electronics you would have blown on fluctuating power. They will convert 12 or 24 volt DC to pure 110 volt AC I use one on my solar system Battery bank.

-V
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Old 03-20-2016, 08:23 PM   #43
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I use car charger style adapters to run my laptops, they are cheap and reliable. I used to run a 12v tv, but it used a lot of power. Now I just use my laptop for a tv.
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Old 07-16-2016, 09:53 AM   #44
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12V separation from combustibles

It's been a while since I last posted here, and I am thrilled to say that Velda is now registered as a Motor Home, with license plates and everything! She's legal! (Driving her is SO MUCH FUN!!!)

But that's beside the point of this post, which is regarding the wiring for my internal 12V lighting. When I connect the ground for coach lights/fans/etc. to the chassis, how much separation do I need between the connection and any combustibles - if any space is required at all?

Clearly, I'd never dream of having a 120V connection in anything other than a junction box or other approved "container", but it doesn't seem like 12V systems require the same kind of separation where wires are connected (I'm putting ALL wires, for both 12V and 120V systems, in conduit to protect them from abrasion). Since the entire wooden interior is screwed into the metal exterior in about a thousand places, and since the metal exterior is the return leg for the 12V system, it follows that the 12V system cannot be separated from the combustible wood interior. That said, the part of me that has experience with 120V systems is rather uncomfortable about having the ground/return wire connection to the frame directly adjacent to wood/plywood.

I'm probably being overly cautious/paranoid, but I'd love to hear from others that no separation between 12V connections and wood/plywood is required before I insulate and cover the interior with paneling.

Thanks!
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Old 07-16-2016, 10:42 AM   #45
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I'm not an electrician but have been told repeatedly by folks who are that you should never run 12v and 110 wires close together. Something about the 110 "bleeding" current over into the other wiring.

Anyone here know more about this?
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Old 07-16-2016, 11:21 AM   #46
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You are correct in that a 120 volt wire running parallel with any other wire
will induce an a/c current and voltage into the other wire be it 12 volt or any
other low voltage wire. This is why my bus has the 120 volt wiring running
down the bottom of the chair rail and the 12 volt wires where the factory
put them.
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Old 07-16-2016, 01:17 PM   #47
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Oh, for *@%!

I recall hearing/reading that 12V and 120V should only cross at right angles, but somehow missed the "don't run them next to each other" part. Guess I get to rip out everything I just finished two days ago and re-do my 120V system.

If it isn't one thing, it's eighteen others, isn't it?...
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Old 07-16-2016, 02:00 PM   #48
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I suspect that there is always a to-do list when you own a Skoolie.
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Old 07-16-2016, 02:12 PM   #49
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Old 07-16-2016, 11:03 PM   #50
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That all is true,....ac voltage in reality the current induces voltage,.. really current in neighboring wiring. If you would have audio microphone cables then you could probably notice it. For 12 volt lights wiring no ill effects can be inspected when you run that parallel in close proximity to the AC wiring.
12 volt circuits are all relative high current and thus low impedance. The induced AC component is minimal.
Now if that AC wire would 480 and go to an 400 Amp arc welder and your 12 volt wiring would power your laptop then maybe i would take some precaution.
As long as you clearly indicate what is the low voltage and what is the high voltage wires then you should be OK.

Later J
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Old 07-18-2016, 05:22 PM   #51
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Electrical code says it's OK...

The quote below is from ~2007 NEC - even though it's "out of date" this isn't the kind of thing that changes drastically, one edition to another, so I'll take it that safety is not the issue with running 120 and 12 V systems in the same conduit:

300.3(C) Conductors of Different Systems.
(1) 600 Volts, Nominal, or Less. Conductors of circuits rated 600 volts, nominal, or less, ac circuits, and dc circuits shall be permitted to occupy the same equipment wiring enclosure, cable, or raceway. All conductors shall have an insulation rating equal to at least the maximum circuit voltage applied to any conductor within the enclosure, cable, or raceway.

Exception: For solar photovoltaic systems in accordance with 690.4(B).

FPN: See 725.55(A) for Class 2 and Class 3 circuit conductors.


Of course, safety and interference are different issues. But since my 12V system only runs a couple small fans and some lights, I'm not really worried about possible interference.
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Old 07-18-2016, 07:13 PM   #52
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Ahh, I notice you updated the post to reflect that the root source is NFPA 70 (National Electrical Code) -- IRC and IBC, and maybe UBC also, incorporate NFPA70/NEC by reference. Code is such a mess of reference spaghetti.. It's also really frustrating that one section will indicate that a method is broadly applicable, but another section somewhere else will say "oh by the way.. that one 'applies to everything' requirement actually doesn't apply here."

Such is the situation several of us were thinking of when you cited 300.3(C). Way back in our memories we remembered reading low-voltage stuff wasn't allowed to be commingled with high voltage stuff. I did finally find something along those lines, though actually it's more permissive than I had expected it to be! Class 1 circuits are allowed to be in the same cable, raceway, enclosure, etc with power supply circuits when "the equipment powered is functionally associated." That's in 725.48(B)(1). Class 2 and Class 3 circuits have a whole lot more limitations and it makes my head spin reading them and trying to relate them to something in the real world! The Class 2/3 limitations seem to be along the lines of "don't mix low and high voltage unless it's absolutely required because they both go to the same device/equipment, and then separate them as soon as possible."

That said, I didn't come to recite chapter and verse. I think that if you've colored your wires in such a way that it'll be easy to identify whether a conductor belongs to the 12 or the 120 volt system, and if the insulation on the 12 volt circuits is good for 300+ volts like the stuff on the 120 volt side likely is, then you're probably fine so far as safety is concerned. Not ideal because of the possibility for an inattentive person to cross the 12 and 120 volt circuits despite the wire colors, but good enough for what it is.
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Old 07-18-2016, 10:39 PM   #53
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I'm at work right now so I don't really have time to go through and look at all of the posts so I apologize if this is a repeat. My plan at this point is to have everything completely solar power with the option to plug in and also charge my batteries off of the engine if need be. I will have electric appliances ( stove and microwave) my inside and outside lights, and also several plugs that I can plug a TV, xbox, and stuff like that up to. Can anyone give me any advice on how to make this work if it's even possible.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G891A using Tapatalk
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Old 07-19-2016, 12:33 AM   #54
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Heating and cooking with electric requires A LOT of juice.

I'm designing my electrical system for full-time living, over 50% boondocking. I'm cooking and heating with propane. Fridge/freezer, A/C (if/when needed) and other misc will be 120v (from 3000W inverter). All lighting, water pump, etc will be on 12V. 1000W in PV panels and 1000ish Ah in wet cells.

Anything you want is mostly possible. It all comes down to size and money.

Good luck!
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Old 07-21-2016, 07:24 AM   #55
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so many colors! OK, so just four.

Quote:
Originally Posted by family wagon View Post
I think that if you've colored your wires in such a way that it'll be easy to identify whether a conductor belongs to the 12 or the 120 volt system, and if the insulation on the 12 volt circuits is good for 300+ volts like the stuff on the 120 volt side likely is, then you're probably fine so far as safety is concerned. Not ideal because of the possibility for an inattentive person to cross the 12 and 120 volt circuits despite the wire colors, but good enough for what it is.
All of the 12V is blue 12# stranded, insulated for and capable of carrying up to 600V.

All of the 120V uses white, black, and green 12# stranded, also insulated for and capable of carrying up to 600 V.

Cooking will be on the LP range; LP also powers the water heater and refrigerator. We've got a wood stove for heat.

I'll put a big-ass sign in the generator box reminding any user of the color coding
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Old 09-27-2016, 03:21 AM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeldatheWonderbus View Post
I'm at a standstill on figuring out how to connect my new multi-function stop/turn/driving lights in the rear. Their turn and running light functions work just fine, but I can't figure out how to wire them to get brighter when the brake pedal is depressed. I've gone through the entire buss panel, but none of the connections become energized when the brakes are applied. I'm missing the relevant page (and all the even pages) of the electrical circuit diagram manual (for a DT 466e, if anyone has a copy around, or wants only the odd-numbered pages), so I can't review how the brake lights are connected to the brakes there.

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!

(Same question also posted in DT466 forum)

Have you tried the public library I have used the one near me to get wiring schematics for several old trucks . If your not sure ask the reference desk Many times they can get odd weird repair manuals trough the library exchange I have had books from all over the country sent in just be prepared to pay for copies as reference books are normally only allowed to be used in the library and no checking out to take home .

There will probably be a small fee to cover postage and the time frame before having to send it back varies .

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Old 12-02-2016, 09:14 AM   #57
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Battery Charge Rate?

Hi All,

I have a question regarding battery charge rate. I have three VMAX 12v 155 AH Batteries, a 60 amp Renogy Solar Charger, and a 2000w AIMS Inverter with 70 amp Charger.

I ordered the batteries based on AH needed, not realizing that different ones apparently have different specified charging rates? The cut sheet for these batteries says: Charging Current 10A-35A. But then under "Recommended Charging Options" it just says "Smart / Microprocessor controlled charger" and "Charge Controller 25A-UP"

So my question is; Is my Aims Inverter/Charger and/or Solar Charger to powerful for my batteries? Or are the required charging amps cumulative with multiple batteries? Should I get a 4th battery to be safe?

Someone in another post advised that the solar charger side of my system should be fine based on actual wattage coming from my 600W array, but I would assume with the inverter/charger plugged into shore power 70amps will actually be 70amps...

Thanks!!!
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Old 12-02-2016, 10:36 AM   #58
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Others here are more knowledgeable than I, but if memory serves the charge rate you want is 5 to 13% of your total amp hour capacity of your battery bank. 155*3 would be 465 amp hours in total, so your charge current should be between 24 and 60 amps.

4 batteries would bring the amp hours to 620, which would mean a charge current between 31 and 80 amps.

If you can afford to do so I would add the extra battery, not because you particularly need it, but to take full advantage of your charger's output capacity, and also for the extra battery bank capacity. (And also because I prefer an even number of batteries but that's just me.)

Something else you might look at is using 6v golf cart batteries, rather than 12v batteries. My battery bank is going to be a minimum of 12 6v 230ah batteries, connected either 2 in series x 6 in parallel (12v/1380ah) or 4 in series x 3 in parallel (24v/690ah). Total capacity is the same, just different configurations... higher voltage means smaller cables needed to connect everything up. 12v bank with 3000 watt 12v inverter will require 4/0 cables to connect, while 24v bank to 3000 watt 24v inverter can get by with 1/0. And if you step up to 48v 3000 watt inverter 4AWG will be enough. But you'll need to be drawing some serious wattage before you need that.

I'm sure other peeps with more knowledge will chime in.
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Old 12-02-2016, 11:10 AM   #59
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Thanks AlleyCat!

I am familiar with the concept of charge rate = aprox 10% of amp hour capacity. With that concept alone, I can make my system work! But whats throwing me for a loop is this "10A-25A Charging Rate" listed on the VMAX spec sheet... These two things dont jive!

As for the 6v batteries, I appreciate the insight, but Ive already got quite a wad of cash tied up in these VMAX 12 volts....

Thanks!
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Old 12-02-2016, 11:46 AM   #60
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If you've already got them, may as well use them. For myself though I'd prefer to get more amp hours out of the same size footprint... granted 2 of the GC2 6v are a little larger than a 12v but not enough to really matter. Just keep that on the back burner for when the day comes that you have to replace them.

I would guess that that charge rate shown on the spec sheet is for a single battery... 35A seems high for a 155ah battery... but anyway. Since you are gonna have 3 in parallel, whatever input current you feed them is gonna be split between the 3.

To minimize any difference, connect the positive lead to one end of the string of batteries, and the negative to the other. That way the current has to flow through all 3 to return to the charger.

You might reach out to the manufacturer and see if they can clarify it for you... I'd say your 70 amp charger output will be fine as long as you connect it to all of your batteries, if you use it on just one you'll cook it unless you can reduce the charge current to the appropriate level (or if it is self-regulating, but check with a meter to be sure).
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