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Old 02-24-2019, 08:13 PM   #1
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Questions about landline electrical

Hi all. Long time lurker, first-time poster.

I'm finalizing the blueprints for my mini skoolie. I want to be able to park my bus outside of someone's house and dry dock (run an electrical cord from their house to power my bus). My dad tells me that as far as he knows, all outdoor electrical 110 outlets are run off of 15 or 20 amp circuits from the house. So I'm thinking that I need to plan my bus' wiring accordingly.

I plan on having three 110 plugs in my bus. Primary one would be in my "kitchen area" which could run a blender, toaster, crock pot, etc. The second one would be by my desk/work area where I'd keep a lamp plugged in as well as for my laptop. The last would be by my sleeping area where it'd mainly be used as a recharge station for my phone and tablet. I also want to install 2 roof vent fans.

Questions I have:
  1. If I'm expecting to plug into a 15 or 20 amp house outdoor outlet, do you keep all these things on one circuit?
  2. What type of wiring do you use in buses? My dad doesn't think house Romex wire should be used. He's thinking automotive wire. What gauge is usually prescribed?
  3. If I'm cooking in the kitchen using, for example, a toaster oven and possibly an overhead fan, will all the other appliances (like my laptop) have to be turned off/not used so I don't blow a fuse?
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Old 02-24-2019, 09:26 PM   #2
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No plans for air conditioning?

Even if you generally only plan to plug into 20 amp I would suggest at least a 30 amp inlet. Easy to adapt down to 20.

It you really only plan the uses you outlined, there isnít much reason for a bunch of circuits. But it seems like people always want to add.

Youíll get various opinions on wire type. Travel trailers use romex. You can make a case for SOOW cabling based on vibration. 12/3 SOOW would be rated for 20 amps.
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Old 02-24-2019, 10:21 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by david.dgeorge07 View Post
No plans for air conditioning?

Even if you generally only plan to plug into 20 amp I would suggest at least a 30 amp inlet. Easy to adapt down to 20.

It you really only plan the uses you outlined, there isnít much reason for a bunch of circuits. But it seems like people always want to add.

Youíll get various opinions on wire type. Travel trailers use romex. You can make a case for SOOW cabling based on vibration. 12/3 SOOW would be rated for 20 amps.
What's your opinion of this wire, I keep getting offers from Amazon for it.
https://www.amazon.com/Triplex-Tinne...ds=marine+wire
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Old 02-24-2019, 11:20 PM   #4
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Romex properly installed shouldn't give you any problems but stranded wire gives you protection against vibration related issues.

I would go with a 30 amp shore power connection which gives you some room to grow your electrical system.

Your kitchen circuit will draw the most amps and should be on it's own breaker, preferably a 20 amp with 12 ga wiring. The other circuits will be low draw and can be 15 amp with 14 ga wiring but electrical usage tends to evolve so give yourself some headroom and wire all circuits 20 amp. Keep in mind that electric heaters and air conditioning draw a lot of current.

Will you have a house battery bank?
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Old 02-25-2019, 04:44 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by o1marc View Post
What's your opinion of this wire, I keep getting offers from Amazon for it.

https://www.amazon.com/Triplex-Tinne...ds=marine+wire


Looks fine, but is 16AWG. In some cases may be overkill, but 12AWG makes sense to me.
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Old 02-25-2019, 05:15 PM   #6
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Keep in mind that 16 ga is smaller wire than 14 ga. Smaller numbers mean larger wire. Makes no sense but that's the way it is.
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Old 02-25-2019, 07:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david.dgeorge07 View Post
Looks fine, but is 16AWG. In some cases may be overkill, but 12AWG makes sense to me.
I was more concerned about the type of wire over the AWG, When I get to wiring I'm sure I'll need a couple of different sizes. I'd like to color code everything, but wire ain't cheap/
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Old 02-25-2019, 09:10 PM   #8
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If most of the time you will be plugging into a buddies 20 amp outlet you may want to use a 15 amp breaker in your bus. All three outlets could go on the same breaker. That way if you pull too much currant your tripping the breaker in the bus which is easy to reset instead of having to go into the house to reset the breaker there. Pick up a Kill A Watt meter it will tell you how many amps each device you have will use. It will let you know if you can run your coffe pot at the same time as your waffle maker. You should use 12 gauge wire and automotive wire would be best. Also your extension cord should be at least 12 gauge or larger (10 gauge) depending on how long your cord will be to reduce voltage drop.

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