Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 04-05-2016, 02:11 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Full-Time Travel
Posts: 11
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Glaval
Chassis: Ford E-450
Engine: 7.3L V8 DIESEL OHV Turbocharged
Please Review My Electrical Plan

After a great deal of research and learning from the information provided by Skoolie.net, I have nearly finalized my house electrical plan. Before purchasing the components, I would appreciate a review and critique of my design. I also have a few questions that require answers from someone much more knowledgeable than me!

The house system will initially have three power options:


Shore power (30 amp)
Battery (two 12 volt deep cycle batteries)
Generator


Solar power will be added later.


The house system will remain independent from the chassis electrical system except when the engine is running the inverter will be switched to the chassis system. What type of switch should I use to switch the inverter input from my house batteries to the chassis batteries?



The 120V inverter output will go into a breaker box with outlet and light distribution from there.



It seems like I need a switch to select between shore power, generator, and house batteries. In other words, when connected to shore power the switch allows power to flow directly to my breaker box. And the same when using the generator. What is the best switch for this?



I like the Xantrex Truecharge 804-1210 battery charger. The idea is this charger would recharge my house batteries when using shore power or the generator. Am I correct?


What am I missing? Our budget is tight, so I am trying to design a good basic system that will provide 120V power while traveling or boondocking. The power will be primarily for a computer, Winegard satellite, and TV.


Many thanks for your advice, suggestions, and guidance.


AdventurousWanderers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 02:27 PM   #2
Bus Geek
 
bansil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: MNT CITY TN
Posts: 5,158
SINCE IT IS A NEW INSTALL

I would go with a 50 amp in (over 30 amp)

1) cord is maybe $25 more

2)basic electrical box is $20 or so

3)install house type 15 amp breakers (replace anywhere)

4)use 12 gage wire (is good for 20 amps)

5) this will give you 2 legs of 120 coming in if you want and you can have 2x the power to make things work

6)this will allow you to use 240v appliances while on 50 amp service (ie: big water heater and still use water heater on 120v, takes longer to recover)

7)if you use 30 amp hook up a $20 adapter lets you do that and still have power to everything (just only 30 amps total)

and another adapter $20 will let you plug into a single 120v 15 amp outlet

it is the most versatile way to go in my opinion
__________________
Our build La Tortuga
Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.
George S. Patton
bansil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 05:01 PM   #3
Bus Geek
 
Robin97396's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Willamina, Oregon
Posts: 6,409
Coachwork: 97 Bluebird TC1000 5.9
To my understanding, some RV hookups have 50 amp hookups. Those are for the big RVs and skoolies aren't likely to hook up there, but who knows. Most of the buses I've seen here look respectable. The average RV electrical hookup is 30 amp, and some only have 20 amp service. That's why they sell those dogbone electrical adaptors.

I agree with bansil, I'm going 50 amps. You just never know what you might like to do in the future, and at this time the cost of upgrading to 50 amp service is very nominal compared to 30 amp service that could limit you at some time in the future.
Like Granny always said "It's better to have to much than not enough."
Robin97396 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 07:44 PM   #4
Bus Nut
 
FlyboyHPD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Houston, Tx.
Posts: 400
Year: 1999
Coachwork: AmTran
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466E
Rated Cap: 84
I'm in complete agreement with Bansil as well. Mainly because I have two unchangeable factors. My bus is 40 ft, which I consider a "big rig", and a wife. I refuse to put propane in my bus so everything will be electrical because of that. We'll have a 10 gal. hot water heater, 13k BTU AC/heat pump, combo washer/dryer, and misc. other small electrical draws.

I plan to utilize 50 amp service when in an RV park once a week if they supply it , 6 deep cycle 6v batteries w/3000 watt inverter and an 8kw Onan generator for boondocking the other 6 days every week. I'm thinking that should supply my electrical needs just fine. Maybe overkill but rather have to much than not enough.
__________________
1999 International AmTran, DT466E, MD3060
https://flyboyrv.wordpress.com/
FlyboyHPD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 07:52 PM   #5
New Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 2
Back to the original. Question. With switches. Between. Shore power. gen and inverter power. You could. Use your shore power cord and put outlets. For gen and inverter to plug into. Simple and never will forget. To flip the switch.
swiftriver00 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 10:07 PM   #6
Bus Geek
 
Robin97396's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Willamina, Oregon
Posts: 6,409
Coachwork: 97 Bluebird TC1000 5.9
Amazon has automatic control boxes that will switch based on your prioritization of electrical sources, usually batteries and solar being the last source.
I'd prefer a manual switch. Technology is nice but it could be a bit of a struggle for off grid type situations.
Robin97396 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2016, 02:36 AM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Full-Time Travel
Posts: 11
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Glaval
Chassis: Ford E-450
Engine: 7.3L V8 DIESEL OHV Turbocharged
Thanks bansil. 50 amp makes a lot of sense.
AdventurousWanderers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2016, 02:38 AM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Full-Time Travel
Posts: 11
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Glaval
Chassis: Ford E-450
Engine: 7.3L V8 DIESEL OHV Turbocharged
swiftriver00 - can you expand on this idea a bit? I like simple! I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "put outlets"? thanks
AdventurousWanderers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2016, 06:42 AM   #9
New Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 2
Will say you have a 30 amp cord for shore power. You could run you gen power to a 30 amp outlet. So when you want to use gen you plug into you gen outlet . You can set up an outlet for a inverter..
swiftriver00 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2016, 08:22 AM   #10
Skoolie
 
NowhereFast's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Sarasota, Florida
Posts: 171
Year: 1995
Coachwork: International
Chassis: Carpenter
Engine: d466 mechanical
Anyone have a ballpark of how expensive it would be to switch from 30 amp to 50 amp on my shore?
__________________
Nowhere Fast - Sarasota, Florida
NowhereFast is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2016, 09:44 AM   #11
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Salt Lake City Utah
Posts: 1,628
Year: 2000
Chassis: Blue Bird
Engine: ISC 8.3
Expanding on the idea presented by swiftriver00: wire the bus with only a shore power cord. Use adapters to plug the shore power cord into the built-in outlet on the generator when you want genny power, or to plug into the built-in outlet on the inverter when you want to run on battery power. Higher-wattage inverters often don't have a built-in receptacle; in that case you'd supply your own outlet, box, and bit of wire from that outlet to the inverter.

That's surely the lowest-cost form of manual transfer switch.

A minor extension on the idea: wire the bus with a short shore power cord, just long enough to reach the inverter and generator and maybe a campground pedestal if you're parked right next to it. Use the rest of the shore power cord cable to make an extension for when you can't park adjacent to the pedestal. With this modification you may find that you don't have to mess with the full length of shore power cord every time.
family wagon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2016, 12:02 PM   #12
Bus Geek
 
bansil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: MNT CITY TN
Posts: 5,158
go to ebay and search 50 amp cord, and how big is your box?

once the cord is hooked up, then you can add extra breakers and outlets to your hearts desire

problem is when people do 30 amp or less they do not have enough wire and outlets etc to take advantage of the extra power w/o going behind walls or bulkheads

example in LaTortuga

we wanted to be able to cook and sleep in comfort

so the bus is divided into two regions front and back

on 15 amp 120, we can EITHER run the bedroom AC or heat (back) or use the 2 electric burners/Rotisserie oven in kitchen (front) we can only use 1 and keep fridge going...
one 1200/1500W heater or AC front or back or we can cook 1400/1500W

on 30 amp we have 15 amps available in the front AND the back, so bedroom ac/heater on and at the same time; we can either cook OR run the heater/AC (fridge stays on)

now with 50 amps we can do whatever we want 2 heaters/AC and cook with rotisserie(1500W and two 700W burners etc) and heat the 40 gallon water heater with 220V also


so you can see how it stacks up if you run wires with a purpose


Now your thinking what outlets work with what cord?

Using adapters from 50->30->15 amp...all circuits will be energized...you just have to be mindful of counting amps or you can trip breakers (heater on in back and you turn microwave on to heat coffee...15 amp breaker that we are plugged into will go..CLICK

hope that is clear as not really dirty water
__________________
Our build La Tortuga
Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.
George S. Patton
bansil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 11:50 AM   #13
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 43
Only issue I see with this proposal of feeding the AC Load Center with a 50amp cord that can be connected to either the Shore, Genny or Inverter is this: I think you need to disconnect your battery charger if you are using the inverter to power the coach. Otherwise, your DC is being converted to AC which goes to the battery charger where it is converted back to DC to charge the batteries. Seems to me you would burn up your batteries pretty quick if you didn't take the charger out of the equation.

PLEASE correct me if wrong and don't take this as gospel. I'm the infinite number of monkies banging away on a typewriter hoping to write an award winning play.
PappySki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 12:22 PM   #14
Bus Nut
 
AlleyCat67's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Music City USA
Posts: 737
Year: 2005
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freightliner
Engine: Detroit MBE906
Rated Cap: 72
Yes if you're using inverter you don't want to use inverter output for battery charging. However nothing says you can't charge from another source while the inverter is running... if your inverter has a charger built in then AC from shore or genny coming into the inverter will be split between charging battery bank and powering AC loads connected to the output.
__________________
My bus - Jasmine - External Build Website - YouTube Channel - TN/KY Meetup Group
As a level 1 burglar, Bilbo got a pony when he accompanied the level 60 dwarves on the Smaug the Dragon raid. Those powerlevelers probably invited him solely so he could trigger fellowship attacks for them.
AlleyCat67 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 12:25 PM   #15
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 43
Thanks. That what I thought.
PappySki is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
12 volt, electrical, generator, house power, inverter

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:24 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×