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Old 04-14-2016, 02:01 PM   #1
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job box for way to split shore power??

what you think skoolies, can i use this to split shore power, then run high quality extension cords to hq power strips strategically placed around rig?

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just seems it would be very easy way to dodge making sure grounds are separated in the 120v and 12v systems. thoughts? will this 50amp plug work with the ones in parks?
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:14 PM   #2
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You want your AC distribution box grounded to the bus body to avoid a "hot skin" condition.
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Old 04-14-2016, 03:45 PM   #3
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One of the reviews on that box indicates the inlet connector is CS6364. Parks would have NEMA 14-50 connectors.

As roach711 indicated, there are good reasons to have the ac ground connected to the bus body. I'm not familiar with any good reason for avoiding having the ac ground and the dc negative both connected to the body -- it's generally assumed those connections would both exist, in fact.

Good cords with a few power strips for ac distribution isn't a bad idea. But when I write "good cords" what I have in mind isn't on the shelf at any big box. I'd use the SOOW type cable which has a very thick black rubber insulation (it's about 3/32, almost 1/8 inch). The thinner insulated stuff at home centers, even the "heavy duty" types, may tear open surprisingly easily. The SOOW isn't terrible in price: Home Depot currently offers a 25' roll of 12/3 for $33.21 online. That'd be enough cord to drop an outlet within 8 feet of each end of a 40 foot bus and another one or more in the middle.
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Old 04-14-2016, 03:47 PM   #4
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You want your AC distribution box grounded to the bus body to avoid a "hot skin" condition.
I'm no electrician, but, I thought the only grounding you did to the body was that of the 12v system. The AC should be ground at the plug site of the SP. How will grounding AC to the bus actually prevent a circuit completion without a "rod in the ground" to transfer it to a true ground??
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Old 04-14-2016, 03:58 PM   #5
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Mike Sokol of No Shock Zone has a fairly comprehensive write-up on his web site. He and others have also participated in discussions on grounding topics on skoolie.net here and there. Having things grounded doesn't prevent circuit completion; instead it deliberately provides a (usually less hazardous) path for electricity to flow so that protection devices like ground fault or over-current circuit breakers will turn off the power automatically.

By the way, probably the thing you're thinking of that should be at the plug side of the shore power is the ac ground-neutral bond. That connection should be in just one place, which is normally the main breaker panel at a home or campground.
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Old 04-14-2016, 03:58 PM   #6
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You want your AC distribution box grounded to the bus body to avoid a "hot skin" condition.

I think my exwiff had this condition. If you touched her while she was sleeping, her skin felt like she was 200*. If I could have just ground her, it would have made the nights more comfortable.
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:22 PM   #7
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Apparently your wife doesn't read these threads?
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:43 PM   #8
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Apparently your wife doesn't read these threads?
LOL so what if she did, that's hilarious. good clean humor.

i thought one of the prongs that go into the shore plug at site was a ground. (universal ground for everything after it?)
really i love the idea of being able to take the box out and use it with generator for other projects. agree with the need for actual HQ cords. just seems like a very easy quick clean way to put ac into the bus.
when you run your 50 amp feed into one of the RV style load centers it wants to be grounded in there and that was what tripped my thought process up was the idea of the 12 and 120 grounded to safe thing(the frame or neg battery terminal)

seemed that keeping all that internal in nice job box was crafty to me. but still need more input. thanks guys n gals
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:57 PM   #9
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when i installed my house 12v system, i chose to not ground it to the frame.

i think you could call it a floating 12vdc -+.

there is a nice safety feature of not mixing the systems, if you incidentally touch the bus with a hot wire from the house, nothing happens.
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Old 04-14-2016, 05:04 PM   #10
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i was thinking the only thing i would use the 12v buss bank for would be the water pump. my rig has 3 batteries so i think the pump will be used intermittently enough to not deplete them to the point of not being able to start. maybe ill put monitor on it so i keep good watch. will upgrade the 12v system to be able to run our fridge is only other 12 v need at later date.
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Old 04-14-2016, 05:31 PM   #11
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If you take an AC cable (hot/neutral/ground) and touch the hot wire to either the neutral or ground wire you get a dead short which will trip the breaker at the breaker box. That's because the ground and neutral are both connected (bonded) at the main panel.

Now, take that same cable and put it in a steel bus shell with an ungrounded breaker box (no connection to the bus skin). If you touch the hot wire to the bus body there's no connection back to the main panel so the breaker doesn't trip. What does happen is that the bus skin becomes energized and when someone comes along and touches it while grounded they become part of that circuit and since the panel's ground and the person's ground isn't very well connected the breaker doesn't trip and the person gets a nasty shock or maybe electrocuted.

A DC ground is really a return circuit, more like the neutral wire in an AC circuit. An AC ground normally carries no current until there is a fault in the wiring.
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Old 04-14-2016, 05:37 PM   #12
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Apparently your wife doesn't read these threads?

I said EX!
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Old 04-14-2016, 05:40 PM   #13
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ok, so im pickin up what you guys are layin down.
goin with the job box + Supa cords (all cords are up high and totally trimmed over) + leave no room for them gettin a Fonz on by wrapping all cords and secure them proper in order to keep all the hot skin under the sunny sun!
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Old 04-14-2016, 10:36 PM   #14
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Going with a "normal" RV AC electrical system (a branch breaker box grounded to the bus skin and feeding several outlets) will give you safe AC power at about 1/3 the cost of that job box setup.
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:07 AM   #15
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also i was trying to picture the vibration involved with full time road tripping and figure the job box route offered less room for stuff to come loose and cause problems. and i can place the box in the basement of bus as opposed to inside. and the time it will take me to run 12-2 all over and place boxes / wire them is worth money as well so i have to look at big pic as far as easiest quickest way. ill post more pics soon, just got granite counter top laid for where sink is, and master bedroom all closed in! want to hit the open road by july 30th!
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Old 04-15-2016, 02:10 PM   #16
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You would be much better off using a regular household breaker box. Not only would you save $350, but you would avoid using plugs as a permenant connections.
Plugs, unless massively oversized are usually the weak link.
I could give you many examples of times when I have melted the plugs off of cords.
One thing that I would consider a rule to live by is that everything metal is grounded always.
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Old 04-15-2016, 02:14 PM   #17
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I checked with 2 of the electrical engineers here at the power plant I'm working, they both agreed with much enthusiasm that you ground the bus to the AC system as well through the breaker box.
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Old 04-15-2016, 05:08 PM   #18
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I am interested in the ac grounding thing but while we're on electrical.
Does anyone have an opinion about a Xantrex sw3000w inverter?
I have a chance to get 2 for less than the price of 1? I want 1 and could/would sell the other to a skoolie for my cost if they are any good?
I can do a lot of things including bending conduit and pulling wire but when terminating the ends I need help unless It was my design? ( I know/learn what goes where before it happens).
My bus is wired safely by what I know but no converter/inverter except a self regulating battery charger to run my 12v off of generator/shore power right now.
I have a chance to get what looks like a real good inverter and would like to know if it is worth the effort of installing?
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:29 PM   #19
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IIRC, the name Xantrex was bought by some Chinese conpany around 5 years ago.
This makes sense to me, beceause I know a lot of "xantrex" stuff has a lot of bad reviews and all of the original "xantrex/trace" gear is now produced and branded snider electric, the people who make square D.

I would look into if it is snider electric, or branded xantrex. If it is the later I would pass.
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Old 04-15-2016, 06:35 PM   #20
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Already know square D and Schnieder make them for Xantrex?
Just asking if they were worth installing?
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