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Old 02-08-2011, 10:36 PM   #1
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

wired my bus with 30 amp, for us I think its lots of power. 30 amps is plenty unless your running 3 or 4 aircondtioners, and a hot tub. also most of the parks that I have been to had 30 amp plugs, and most generators are 30 amps., I havent seen any 50 amp plugs yet at the parks that I have been to.

just my 3 cents worth
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Old 02-08-2011, 10:55 PM   #2
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

You can wire for either one or both, depending on how much power you think you will need. You can also get adapters so if you wire for 50A, you can still use a 30A or 20A/15A adapter if that is all that is available at a particular campground. Same thing if you build to 30A but get an adapter for a 50A plug, you can plug into a 50A receptacle and only pull 30A out of it. Just have a 30A breaker so that if you start to pull more than your system allows it will just trip the breaker. The adapter approach would seem to me to be the plan that would give you the most flexibility. I wired mine to have the potential to plug into 2 seperate 30A circuits for a total of 60A (across two distribution boxes) if I have the opportunity to do so; or a 30A and a 20A for a total of 50A, etc. The thing is, 50A extension cords are pricey. I happened to get a good deal on two used 30A cords, so that works out well for me. So the way mine is set up, I can harness 60A total, but still not have to buy any wiring beyond 30A capacity.
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Old 02-08-2011, 11:35 PM   #3
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

Though I'm not planning to use a 50 amp service, I'm wiring from the inlet to the panel for it. Not that much more expensive, and cheaper than a re-do. 30 amp service = 3600 watts, a 50 amp service = 12,000 watts.
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Old 02-09-2011, 12:39 AM   #4
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

We have run into several parks with 50amp service. It usually costs more. Most public campgrounds tend to be wired 15/20/30 amp. Private parks get into 50 amps. So do mobile home parks. I have heard of some public parks "upgrading" their electrical systems and installing 50 amp. We've been staying in public campgrounds since 1979.

In our RV, we have 30 amp and we also have 30 amp to 50 amp adapters that we use if we can only plug into 50 amp. We will wire the bus for 30 amp and use the 50 amp adapters if need be. Back during the summer, some idiot plugged into the 50 amp and overloaded the (private) campground. We all lost power. They were there overnight so it didn't impact them too badly, they left out. Guess they had to run their 4 A/C units. Might not of had to have that many A/C units if their RV wasn't BLACK!!!! Morons! We had to have the 50 amp in TX at the two private parks we stayed at. One was a mobile home park and the only plug in the box was 50 amp.

A lesson was learned... just because a park has 50 amp doesn't mean they can handle too many folks using 50 amp!
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Old 02-10-2011, 01:34 PM   #5
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

[quote="Tesla"]Well, since the sauna and both of the hot tubs will be powered by vodka, we should be fine.

bring on the dancing babes!
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Old 02-10-2011, 09:27 PM   #6
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

Quote:
Originally Posted by bus-bro
Though I'm not planning to use a 50 amp service, I'm wiring from the inlet to the panel for it. Not that much more expensive, and cheaper than a re-do. 30 amp service = 3600 watts, a 50 amp service = 12,000 watts.
To be clear, 30-amp RV service is 120 volts only, 3 wires: Hot, Neutral, and Ground. Wattage is 30 amps x 120 volts = 3600.

50-amp RV service is four wires with two Hot wires, plus the Neutral, and Ground. This provides 120 or 240 volts. You can put up to 50 amps total on each Hot leg. You can use this as 50 amps at 240 volts from Hot leg #1 to Hot leg #2. Power is 50 amps x 240 volts = 12,000. Or you can get 120 volts between either Hot leg and Neutral, up to 50 amps per side, 100 amps total. Power is still 100 amps x 120 volts = 12,000. You can also mix 240-volt and 120-volt loads, up to 50 amps per "leg," the same as most homes do.

The adapters that power a 50-amp four-pin plug from a 30-amp three-pin plug tie the two Hot wires together in the adapter, so there is no 240-volt supply available. You can draw 120-volts at up to 30 amps/3600 watts combined through the two Hot wires going to the bus, all from either wire to Neutral, or divided in any combination between the two.

Edit: 50-amp service requires a circuit breaker panel with two Hot feeds feeding the breakers on either Hot line, similar to what most houses have inside. 30-amp service can use a small panel with only one Hot feed. Either type needs two other buss bars, a Ground bar plus a Neutral bar insulated from the panel. Don't tie the Neutrals and Grounds in a vehicle together into the same buss like you would do in the main panel of a home.
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Old 02-13-2011, 07:54 PM   #7
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

I only plan to need 30 amps, but am wired for 50...mainly, the genset I will use has a 50A output. Also, at campgrounds, the 50A plugs tend top have MUCH better connections (newer, less use, or both).
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Old 02-17-2011, 06:39 PM   #8
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

Quote:
Originally Posted by cincinnati_kid
Quote:
Originally Posted by gbstewart
wired my bus with 30 amp, for us I think its lots of power. 30 amps is plenty unless your running 3 or 4 aircondtioners, and a hot tub. also most of the parks that I have been to had 30 amp plugs, and most generators are 30 amps., I havent seen any 50 amp plugs yet at the parks that I have been to.

just my 3 cents worth
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2 air conditioners and say a microwave or a toaster or tv and you will overload a 30 amp circuit. Out of all all the camp grounds I have been in the last 10 years I would say 80% of them have 50 amp service. Almost all travel trailers and motorhomes are 50 amp. BTW a gen set can output 30 or 50 amp depending how it is rated. a 4000 W gen set is roughly 30 A at 120 V . A 6000 W gen set would be a 50A output at 120V
I havent had any problems , I run 2 acs 1 5000 btu and one 8000 btu , I have a built in surge protector as well, I tripped that more then I wanted to I still havent seen a park yet with 50 amp, so I guess I got to get out more Ill have to invest in a power adapter 50 amp -to 30
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Old 02-17-2011, 06:57 PM   #9
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

Quote:
Originally Posted by gbstewart
... I havent seen any 50 amp plugs yet at the parks that I have been to.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cincinnati_kid
... Out of all all the camp grounds I have been in the last 10 years I would say 80% of them have 50 amp service. Almost all travel trailers and motorhomes are 50 amp...
It depends on what type of campgrounds you are staying in. Public campgrounds tend to only let you stay 14 days at a time. Private will allow monthly stays. Public campgrounds will allow any skoolie in. Not so with private campgrounds.

Public campgrounds (COE, SP, NF, etc), especially the smaller, out of the way ones, will be wired mostly, if not all, 30 amp max. Few 50 amps except in the more popular parks and then in selected sites. For example download the camp rates pdf and look under "Amps. Min-Max" to see available electric http://tn.gov/environment/parks/fees.shtml we have stayed at Harrison Bay and Tim's Ford... both have 30 amp max. Although Twin Lakes COE and Coneross COE (Seneca/Clemson SC) both have 50 amp sites. Lake Hartwell SP, Devils Fork SP (SC) does not. Oconee SP (SC) and Tallulah Gorge SP (GA) does. That is just a few that we personally have been in. There are no hard and fast rules about it.

Privately owned campgrounds will have a selection of available amperages. You will pay extra for 50 amp in most places. Mobile home parks tend to have 50 amp service.

We've been camping in public campgrounds since 1979. If you plan on being in both types of campgrounds set up to where you can use both 50 amp and, with conservation if need be, 30 amp. 30 amp will easily run 1 AC unit, 1 micro, fridge/freezer, TV etc. The biggest thing is the air conditioner or electric heat. Those are the things that will force you into 50 amp. Motor homes and the big fivers tend to be 50 amp now. Trailers tend to be 30 amp with 50 amp available as an option. Mostly it's how many AC units are stuck on the roof. Unless you plan to only stay in large, fairly new private campgrounds/resorts (make sure they will take a skoolie, or lie like mad) or you will only be boondocking or own your own land, I would suggest that you set up your electric to handle being knocked down to a 30 amp service at times.
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:16 PM   #10
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Re: 30 Amp / 50 Amp

one of the things I've found with a 40 ft bus is the campground usually has 50 amp sites only for the bigger rigs. kinda bugged me since I only have 30 amp setup, yet, I had to pay for a 50 amp site, and use an adapter.
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