Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 03-06-2011, 07:11 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
cygvan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 219
wiring question

laying out my electrical system and came to a head scratcher. im boondocking between home and work and have access to shore power most nights. despite that, my build will use batteries and solar panels as primary source of power. no generator.

my vehicle 12v system will remain untouched. i plan on using only 120v appliances off the inverter.

ive decided to use romex since i am more familiar with it and i understand that the connections need to be protected from vibration etc. conduit or liquidtite, proper strain relief and boxes being all part of it.

question is about grounding. my assumption is that the ground wire will come off the distribution box and be bolted to the chassis? thus providing ground via the green wires in the romex that runs to each outlet?

how does this play along with an inverter? my intention is to purchase an inverter with charging capability as well as auto-switchover when shore power is detected. i keep seeing references to the chassis ground needing to be disconnected and people getting zapped when they touch the vehicle body. can anyone shed light on this?

im a k.i.s.s. kind of guy so im trying to determine the simplest way to provide what i need and be safe about it without having to play engineer 24/7.
__________________

__________________
Red Zeppelin - 2003 Chevy Express 2500 6.0L 2WD RB
cygvan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2011, 07:31 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Carmel Valley, CA
Posts: 634
Send a message via AIM to Skywagon
Re: wiring question

I hesitate trying to sound like I know what I'm talking about, but I'm under the impression that Romex, (or any other hard wire), is NOT a good idea in a vehicle or vessel that is subject to vibration.
Hopefully, someone more knowledgable than I will wade right in here and offer up the straight poop.
Bill
__________________

__________________
2008 RB 50 Pueblo gold, Diesel, 4X4, Aluminess
NO2B
Skywagon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2011, 08:01 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
cygvan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 219
Re: wiring question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skywagon
I hesitate trying to sound like I know what I'm talking about, but I'm under the impression that Romex, (or any other hard wire), is NOT a good idea in a vehicle or vessel that is subject to vibration.
Hopefully, someone more knowledgable than I will wade right in here and offer up the straight poop.
Bill
im mostly in agreement with the reasoning behind not using it but it seems there is enough debate that the jury is out. i wont be off-roading in my build, it will be strictly boondocking and will be driven less than 5k per year in suburbia.

one thing i plan to avoid is using the push terminals on the outlets and will use the screw down connections. how is your build wired?
__________________
Red Zeppelin - 2003 Chevy Express 2500 6.0L 2WD RB
cygvan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 12:00 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
scatter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Blairsden, CA (when not on the road)
Posts: 1,075
Re: wiring question

I have to go along with Skywagon on this one cygvan. Romex is solid wire and will not take much vibration before it breaks. Stranded wire is the way to go!! Besides, the solid wire romex is much tougher to bend and fit thru tight areas. I'd just to to an electrical or auto store and get a spool each of white, black and green 12ga wire. You'll be much happier during the wiring job and later down the road when you don't have to troubleshoot looking for a broken wire. Just my $100.00 worth....
__________________
Scatter
You can be anything you want on the Internet,
it amazes me that so many choose stupid....

2007 RB50, 6.0
K1WGB
scatter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 12:19 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
cygvan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 219
Re: wiring question

would i need to use a different breaker box, strain relief and connectors?

or can the typical ones accept crimped spade connectors? i know outlets and switches can, not sure about the breaker box.

is stranded and solid equivalent across AWG?

im worried about a bad crimp.

is there a line of wire complete with sheathing that is designed for this application?

buying spools of wire is no biggie as you suggest but i would need to sheath it no?
__________________
Red Zeppelin - 2003 Chevy Express 2500 6.0L 2WD RB
cygvan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 12:47 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
scatter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Blairsden, CA (when not on the road)
Posts: 1,075
Re: wiring question

You should be OK using stranded wire in most situations. If needed, just tin (with solder) the end of the wire and that will make it stiff like a solid wire. Standard strain relief will clamp around the three separate wires too.
I also wouldn't use any crimp connectors. I've seen too many fail. I always go for solder and shrink tubing for insulation whenever able. As far as spade connectors, you shouldn't need them. Just twist the end of the strands together and make a U bend and put it under the screw connector. This is where tinning the end works well as the strands won't come apart and leave one or two sticking out from under the screw.
Stranded and solid gauge will carry the same amount of current in any given gauge.
Yes, stranded and solid wire comes in different types of insulation and it does make a difference depending on what the wire is being used for. I don't have my books with me, so can't give you a specific designation, but with your wire being used in a dry location, most any insulation will work. Maybe someone here will pipe in on that.
You don't need to sheath the wires, but using that black (it comes in other colors too) flexible stuff that's slit it's entire length and putting the wires in it protects them from abrasion and gives a much neater installation. It's cheap too.
__________________
Scatter
You can be anything you want on the Internet,
it amazes me that so many choose stupid....

2007 RB50, 6.0
K1WGB
scatter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 01:08 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
cygvan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 219
Re: wiring question

ok so changing things up a little isnt so bad. seems that i will be spending just a little more time with sheathing the wires and making connections, either spade or tinning.

i dont think i would use split loom although i have loads of it from working on computers. i was looking at that grey flexible liquidtite stuff since i could use it for the pv to inverter runs as well.

originally, from breaker box to outlets i planned on using 12-2 romex. 12 (or 10) awg stranded sound about right? 10 awg for a 30 foot (roundtrip) run has minimal voltage drop.

__________________
Red Zeppelin - 2003 Chevy Express 2500 6.0L 2WD RB
cygvan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 01:15 PM   #8
Site Team
 
daveb's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Turlock Ca
Posts: 9,837
Garage
Re: wiring question

Personally, I would take the time and solder crimped lugs on the outlets. Tinning works but solder is soft; stranded wire will crush even tinned and you might end up with a loose connection. If you can find an outlet that has an allen type connection, that would be great and better than lugs. For terminal connections, an electrical supply house will have insulated allen screw connectors that work well on stranded wire. Always add a little Alnox or similar compound after wire brushing the conductor even if it looks new. Use mastic or silicon tape rather than typical black electrical tape.

For what its worth, it looks like SMB wired my vans inverter with Romex. I'd rather have that than relying on a simple crimp connector. I'm not sure what they used on the outlets but my guess is Romex as well.

Dave
__________________
2006 Ford 6.0PSD EB-50/E-PH SMB 4X4 Rock Crawler Trailer

Sportsmobile 4X4 Adventures..........On and off road adventures
daveb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 01:31 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
cygvan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 219
Re: wiring question

it would seem that if the concern with solid wire is vibration breaking it, that would happen at the point where the wire transitions into a device (outlet, switch or fixture). if the runs are properly sheathed and secured they should be ok. so that leaves the actual connection and that is why advice from both viewpoints makes sense to me.

so what if i used romex for the runs and ready made pigtails for the connections with a wire nut?

i replace light fixtures quite often in a storage facility's garages and i use the ready made pigtails to speed things up.

they have spade connector on one end (fixture side) and bare wire on the other. as it happens, the pigtails are stranded and the wire run is solid (bx in this case). course it isnt subject to any bouncing around but electrically its ok.

using a ready made pigtail and helping the wire nut with some electrical tape in this application would that make things more acceptable if i went with romex?

id be inclined to use them with stranded runs as well, why not right?
__________________
Red Zeppelin - 2003 Chevy Express 2500 6.0L 2WD RB
cygvan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2011, 03:49 PM   #10
Site Team
 
daveb's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Turlock Ca
Posts: 9,837
Garage
Re: wiring question

Quote:
Originally Posted by cygvan
it would seem that if the concern with solid wire is vibration breaking it, that would happen at the point where the wire transitions into a device (outlet, switch or fixture). if the runs are properly sheathed and secured they should be ok. so that leaves the actual connection and that is why advice from both viewpoints makes sense to me.

so what if i used romex for the runs and ready made pigtails for the connections with a wire nut?

i replace light fixtures quite often in a storage facility's garages and i use the ready made pigtails to speed things up.

they have spade connector on one end (fixture side) and bare wire on the other. as it happens, the pigtails are stranded and the wire run is solid (bx in this case). course it isnt subject to any bouncing around but electrically its ok.

using a ready made pigtail and helping the wire nut with some electrical tape in this application would that make things more acceptable if i went with romex?

id be inclined to use them with stranded runs as well, why not right?
Well, I would stick with stranded wire if I was doing it myself. Either use a sheath coated multi conductor wire or single wire runs in a lightweight flex type conduit where rubbing would be a concern. Sorry, I’m not really a fan of the plastic type lock nuts and would prefer to use the allen or split bolt type connectors with a solid soldered connection being best. I think the deal with solid wire is vibration at the connection point can be bad especially with something like a wire nut. Stranded wire should always be tinned or simply wiggling it around can result in the wire pulling out even when the connection seems tight.
There is a point of going too far or over building your project, so as long as it doesn’t pose a hazardous situation and you can get to the work area easily, something like a wire nut might be OK. If it comes off, fix it. I’d be thinking about having to remove cabinets and equipment to make a repair. Having to pull new wire in that failed…you certainly don’t want to have to do that over.
__________________

__________________
2006 Ford 6.0PSD EB-50/E-PH SMB 4X4 Rock Crawler Trailer

Sportsmobile 4X4 Adventures..........On and off road adventures
daveb is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

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

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:59 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×