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Author Topic: Breaker panel code? Need Help!!  (Read 3070 times)
Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
1989, MCI 102C3, 8V92T, HT740, 06' conversion FMCA# F-27317-S "Wife- 1969 Italian/German Style"
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« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2007, 06:23:27 PM »

Hi Brian,

If we were using theese cords on a boat where it rocks from side to side, then I can see using the marinco because of the locking mechinism.

In our busses it seems to be over kill and not nessesary. I have about 6 of theese e-bay cords and I purchaced the female ends at Lows for 12 bucks.

Nick-
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« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2007, 06:31:37 PM »

 I  guess you guys have never heard of Murphy. Go ahead and put your panel in the bay, load the bay up with stuff that you have to move to get to it, and I guarantee that at some point a breaker will trip at 0 dark thirty, in a thunderstorm and you will be looking over your shoulder for rabid grizzles. I will be the first one to say I told you so, but you would not listen.
 If you put it in an accessible location in the coach the Gremlins cannot have any fun. They will find other areas to entertain themselves at your expense!!!!
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« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2007, 07:00:28 PM »

I'm with Jim on this... rabid grizzlies and all!   Roll Eyes

I put mine in the center of the first bay, thinking I wouldn't have to get to it much.  WRONG!!

I find I need to get to it all the time to turn on or off the a/c compressors and electric element in the Aquahot. And that's all I have connected so far!  It's just a pain in the rear, especially when the bay is full and the grizzlies are foaming at the mouth!

I'll be changing it in the spring. Will be moving the breaker panel, but more importantly, I'll be putting the a/c compressors, water heater element and some other items on relays so I can control them from within the coach. I found an awesome deal on 30 amp single pole breakers at a surplus store. I bought all they had!  Cheesy

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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2007, 07:13:10 PM »

My 12 volt, 24 volt, and 120 volt panels are in the basement.  Only once has a 12 volt fuse blown and that because someone plugged one of those jumpstart battery packs in to recharge on 12 volt.  The 12 volts outlets are wired with 10 guage wire and 30 amp fuse so no idea why fuse blew.  A typical cigarette lighter outlet is fused at less I believe.

The only issue with the panels in the basement is maintaining clearance in front of them.  My bus was designed to maximize usable bay space to haul stuff so the panels get in the way.

To get a factory molded plug you'll have to buy your cord from an RV place with the plug attached.  If doing 50 amp you could probably find a range cord with a molded plug, but it will only be 6 feet at most.  Lowes does sell the special 30 amp RV plugs, but they are really cheaply made and I doubt tehy would last.  I put one of those marine type threaded twist lock receptacles on my bus and then bought the matching RV cord off Ebay.  Lots of regular RVs are going this route.

I  think you will find that a range cord is different than an RV cord. The range cord is three wire and the RV cord is four wire if I recall correctly.

Richard
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« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2007, 07:18:35 PM »

I'm with Jim on this... rabid grizzlies and all!   Roll Eyes

I put mine in the center of the first bay, thinking I wouldn't have to get to it much.  WRONG!!

I find I need to [size=102pt]get to it all the time to turn on or off the a/c compressors and electric element in the Aquahot[/size]. And that's all I have connected so far!  It's just a pain in the rear, especially when the bay is full and the grizzlies are foaming at the mouth!

I'll be changing it in the spring. Will be moving the breaker panel, but more importantly, I'll be putting the a/c compressors, water heater element and some other items on relays so I can control them from within the coach. I found an awesome deal on 30 amp single pole breakers at a surplus store. I bought all they had!  Cheesy



I have always been of the opinion that breakers are not designed for or to be used as on-off switches.

Richard
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« Reply #20 on: December 29, 2007, 07:30:52 PM »

If you put it in an accessible location in the coach the Gremlins cannot have any fun. They will find other areas to entertain themselves at your expense!!!!

Rear bay - about 10" allowed on the roadside for water access and hookups, tanks take up the centre of the bay with about 12" allowed on the curbside for 2 x 110 panels, 1 x 12 panel, master 12V disconnect, 110 transfer switch & the inverter.  Can't get much more accessible than that.  If it ever happens I can be in and out of that bay at 0-dark-30 before the grizzlies have even had time to realize I'm awake.  And I don't believe in using breakers as switches.  YMMV

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« Reply #21 on: December 29, 2007, 07:59:10 PM »

I  think you will find that a range cord is different than an RV cord. The range cord is three wire and the RV cord is four wire if I recall correctly.

The NEC requires newer ranges that have anything 120 volt in them to have four wires instead of three.  I was able to easily find four wire range cords at Lowes.com.  Still not very suitable for RV use at 4 feet long.

The 50 amp plug used on RVs is just a four wire range plug which makes the receptacles easy to find unlike the specialized 30 amp plugs.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #22 on: December 29, 2007, 08:05:24 PM »

Th reason I am using the Marine stuff is not because it is locking, but because it is watertight.  I am putting a receptacle through the wall of the bus so I don't have to cut a hole in a bay to run the cable through.  I've never seen any sort of connector besides the Marine connectors that have covers and are water tight.  A lot of new RVs are using this system instead of the stuff the cable through a hatch like older travel trailers.

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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #23 on: December 30, 2007, 06:28:48 AM »


I have always been of the opinion that breakers are not designed for or to be used as on-off switches.


I don't disagree with this, in general, but they do provide for that capability quite well. Main breakers have been used for years to provide for a main disconnect, too, so I don't think there's really any harm in using them this way. I suspect that opinion probably carries over from a time when main disconnects were a separate switch in the circuit, and breakers were screw in fuses. You know.... the time when dinosaurs roamed the earth Roll Eyes

I guess I don't necessarily consider enabling and disabling the A/C compressors and Heater elements as "on-off switching", but maybe that's just a matter of perspective. They are a bit different than normal circuits, and enabling or disabling them is a matter related to the mobile environment they operate in. While they were designed to be connected directly to power with their controls determining when to turn them on and off, it doesn't always work best this way in the bus. In the case of the a/c, there is an on/off switch on the thermostat, but it does not cut power to the unit, and the inverter plays havoc with the relays on the contnrol board when it's operating in sleep mode, so it is necessary to cut the power in some manner. The heater element is a high current draw with automatic priority control, and needs to be disabled unless you are on full 50 amp service. I know there are switch that could be used on these circuits, but the breaker provides that occasional capability just fine. When I get the relays installed, I won't have to switch the breakers, but in the meantime.... click!



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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #24 on: December 30, 2007, 06:41:30 AM »

Would it make sense that we should have all the major electrical connections and propane systems in bays for safety reasons. I put everything electrical in the first bay. I also will install a fire alert and supression system in both the main electrical bay as well as the generator bay and engine compartment when the budget allows. It seems that many RV fires can somehow be traced back to faulty electrical or propane systems. Do we not have RV Saftey guy who talks about fire suppresion systems for buses. It also seems like recent news has shown just how devistating a fire can be. I would rather have a fire controlled inside a bay with little fuel to keep it going verses inside the bus with lots of fuel and family members.

My 2 cents.


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Grant Goold
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« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2007, 07:05:40 AM »

I  think you will find that a range cord is different than an RV cord. The range cord is three wire and the RV cord is four wire if I recall correctly.

The NEC requires newer ranges that have anything 120 volt in them to have four wires instead of three.  I was able to easily find four wire range cords at Lowes.com.  Still not very suitable for RV use at 4 feet long.

The 50 amp plug used on RVs is just a four wire range plug which makes the receptacles easy to find unlike the specialized 30 amp plugs.

Thanks for the update. I have not installed an electric range for several years and was not aware of the change. Has the outlet for 30 amp clothes dryers changed also to include a safety ground

Richard?
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« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2007, 07:14:51 AM »


Thanks for the update. I have not installed an electric range for several years and was not aware of the change. Has the outlet for 30 amp clothes dryers changed also to include a safety ground

Yes, dryers have to have 4 wire outlets now.  I would assume that new stoves and dryers can be wired for 3 or 4 wires for older homes, but I don't know for sure.  My house is new so I have the 4 wire outlets.

240 volt circuits have always had a ground and two hots.  They do not have a neutral.  Stoves and dryers used to use the ground as the neutral for any 110 volt stuff they had inside like motors and timers.  The NEC now requires a seperate neutral for the 110 volt stuff.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2007, 10:08:33 AM »

Thankyou everyone for the info, better to be safe than sorry!!  Its great the experience, opinions and actual hands on info. Thanks again, have a Happy New Year!! DR
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