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Old 05-28-2014, 12:13 PM   #1
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what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

Camper van owners - what does everyone use for an electrical tie-in point for all your 115v appliances? A simple power strip? Will that trip the breaker when you try to run the microwave, AC, tv and refrigerator all at one? In-camp scenarios is what Im referring to, when you have electrical plugins at the camp spot...
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Old 05-28-2014, 12:33 PM   #2
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

My van is wired for 120v, so I use the outlets.

You can add up the load and see if it will trip your breaker, and or size your power strip to your needs- or you can just plug everything in at home and see if anything explo... er, if it trips.
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Old 05-28-2014, 12:40 PM   #3
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

So your van just has household romex or similar wiring built into the areas for appliances?
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Old 05-28-2014, 06:01 PM   #4
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

^^^ I agree, but it's not going to trip at home. Not in my world. Only at the most in opportune camping moment, like right after you start cooking dinner.
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Old 05-28-2014, 09:35 PM   #5
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

Not sure of your point.

The shore power plug (on the van) relies on the shore panel main breaker that the trailer park supplies or your house panel outlet that you plug into for protection. So it's important that the wire between the breaker box inside the van is large enough to be able to trip a standard 20-30 amp 110 breaker at the remote pedestal or house panel you plug into away from the van in case of a short. 220v is usually 50A.
My van has an AC distribution panel inside under the seat in my 50 model. The wire from the shore power plug on the outside goes to the inverter then to the distribution panel. From the panel there are about 4 individual smaller breakers that feed different circuits inside the van to a number of outlets.

Many power strips have built in protection which is good for a simple installation. I general don't load up any one outlet inside the van but my loads are slim except for the microwave. It has a dedicated outlet. I also have a dedicated outlet on the outside of the van GFI protected.
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Old 05-29-2014, 09:33 AM   #6
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

I have both the shore power plug for the outside of the van, and the dist panel (leftover from a teardrop build) for the inside. But Im curious how everyone actually, physically plugs everything in? Do you wire in household outlets in a big enough gang box to be a "power strip" for all teh appliances? Or do you just use a power strip and cut its plug head off so you can wire that into the dist panel?
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Old 05-29-2014, 10:52 AM   #7
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

This would all depend on your shore power and distribution panel. Like what is the shore power input? (as in amperage), what breakers are in the distribution panel and stuff like that. And then more importantly what are the loads you intend use. There is no simple answer, except to consult a qualified electrician.

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Old 05-29-2014, 11:20 AM   #8
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 43jeeper
I have both the shore power plug for the outside of the van, and the dist panel (leftover from a teardrop build) for the inside. But Im curious how everyone actually, physically plugs everything in? Do you wire in household outlets in a big enough gang box to be a "power strip" for all teh appliances? Or do you just use a power strip and cut its plug head off so you can wire that into the dist panel?
Does this help answer your question? SMB put a GE breaker panel in mine. The Main breaker controls all the others, and then each breaker has wires that run to single standard household outlets mounted in 1-gang boxes near each appliance.

In my van, the micro and fridge are in the same cabinet. Both plug into the same outlet at the back of the cabinet.

The one marked 110v Outlets has 3 outlets on that circuit, 2 inside the van and one outside. There is also a GFCI outlet mounted under the dinette seat. This probably protects the 3 other outlets. I've never manually tripped the GFCI to see if that's correct, but I suppose I should someday.

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Old 05-29-2014, 05:12 PM   #9
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

Mine is the same as the above picture and as I posted, I have several outlet located throughout the van even one outside.

My panel I put up at home is designed for RV's and trailers.



This is what my 30A shore power cord plugs into.
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Old 05-31-2014, 04:53 AM   #10
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Re: what does everyone use for 115v central tie-in point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 43jeeper
I have both the shore power plug for the outside of the van, and the dist panel (leftover from a teardrop build) for the inside. But Im curious how everyone actually, physically plugs everything in? Do you wire in household outlets in a big enough gang box to be a "power strip" for all teh appliances? Or do you just use a power strip and cut its plug head off so you can wire that into the dist panel?
I wouldn't recommend using a power strip and cutting the plug off for several reasons....

Power strips are typically junk compared to stuff you actually use to wire up 110V mains junction boxes. The circuit breaker in the power strip is typically a 20 cent part. Also, the cord of the power strip is not rated to be used under carpets, behind walls, etc. which would make it a fire hazard.

The mains (110V wiring) gets wired pretty much the same as inside your house, which is inside junction boxes using 14/2 AWG wire for 15A circuits and 12/2 wire for 20A service. All of the romex grounds also need to be tied together (preferably with crimps instead of wire nuts) and tied to the chassis somewhere.

Based on your question above, it sounds like you are thinking that each 110V receptacle needs a wire run into a common J-Box much like plugging each one into a power strip. Typically, you need only one wire running from the first junction box to each subsequent box for a few receptacles, all protected by an appropriate breaker.
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