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Old 01-28-2011, 08:06 PM   #15
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1965 30' Sovereign
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tg- thanks for stickin with me on this one, the u cord terminates under the tandem 20 amp breaker and is connected to one of these breakers, making it the main which is admittedly a little odd as i understand it. this is the black 10 ga black wire connected to the left breaker. i do have an AC, so perhaps that is the 15 amp breaker on panel right.

i'll isolate and test the cord tomorrow and report back...

there is a small stranded black (looks smaller than 14 ga) wire attached to the neutral bus, but as i glean from your responses, black on a DC system is the ground. why would the DC system even run to the AC panel - should it not interface at my "constavolt" converter?

i'll also try to take a better photo tomorrow, where shadow doesn't block some of the view.
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:15 PM   #16
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Black on DC is normally the +12 volts. White is -ground or common. This applies to trailers.
Now in your car or truck Red is +12 volts and Black is -ground or common.
More photos will be good. Take one of the converter as well.
Can you tell me where the large Black and large White wires go? It looks to me like the large black wire terminates on the top of the left hand circuit breaker where one end of the red wire is terminated.
Are these wires (large black and white) stranded or solid?
What size is the breaker on the right?
Look on the outside of your trailer and see if you can find a receptacle that was used for the UCord in the past.
You say you have the 30 amp breaker that the PO removed?
You can copy and paste my questions into your next post and then go in and answer each question. It will help keep things straight.
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:48 PM   #17
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More questions

On the right side of the panel there are three cables leaving the panel.
Can you identify what they are?
Is one of them the UCord?
It looks like there is a Black and White wire leaving the top connector just below the cable. Is this true?
Do you know where they go?
Is there another cable going out the back of the panel just below the 2 circuit breaker on the left?
Can you get on your computer while you are in the trailer. If so we could set up a time and communicate directly in real time.
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Old 01-29-2011, 05:22 PM   #18
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Chingon: I just realized I have been using the wrong terminology when talking about the 120 volt AC power cord going to your trailer. This is called the shore power cord not the UCord. I've been working with someone else on their 12volt system. The UCord is the one that goes to the tow vehicle. I just got locked into the "UCord" in my brain. So from now on we will refer to it as the Shore Power Cord.
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Old 01-29-2011, 06:32 PM   #19
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From what I see the shore power comes in on the 10 gage stranded (could be solid) white, black, green wire . The white & black off to the left and green to the ground buss. The hot (black) is jumped to both circuit breakers by the red wire.

That is the 1st problem you are now protected only by the CG 30 amp breaker. Most load centers I have seen like this the shore power(black wire) would go to the breaker on the right (a 30 amp) and out of that breaker to the input power lug on the top left. “Doesn’t have to” but provides you the protection of a 30 amp breaker in the coach.

As it is now if the CG breaker is defective and fails to trip or is wired wrong you could pull up to 55 amps on your shore power cord.

The current set up looks like 2 @ 20 amp breakers on the left and a 15 on the right. I would guess one 20 for the AC one for the wall outlets and the 15 to the HW heater.
The white wire going into the ground lug (pointed out) looks like a single wire coming through the bottom of the box from where? And a single black wire comes in from the top right and goes where???

Main cause for GFCI tripping is the outside 120V outlet also a frayed shore power cord but it could be a fault in any down stream outlets. They usually protect the bath, kitchen and outside outlets.
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Old 01-29-2011, 07:26 PM   #20
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Looks like you're right Garry.

I think Garry is right. The large Black, White and Green wires look like they could be the shore power cord, now that I look at it again. And the large black wire must terminate along with the red wire on the top left buss lug.
I was able to enlarge the photo and now can see that the shorepower cord (?) comes in the bottom of the panel.
The white wire on the right that goes thru the bottom of the panel is probably going to the skin of the trailer somewhere.
By the looks of the romex covering all of the wiring going out the right side of the panel is original.
I agree that one 20 amp circuit would go to the outlets and another to the AC. I don't believe the water heater had electric backup in those days, mine didn't.
The 15 amp breaker probably supplies the power to the refer. Which would normally use just over 150 watts when on electric.
I would reinstall the 30 amp breaker between the 15 and the 20 then connect the shore power black wire to the bottom of the 30 amp breaker, leaving the red jumper in place to provide power to the outside buss. This would be the main breaker.
Still am confused about the black wire that goes out the top right corner of the panel just below the romex.

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Old 01-31-2011, 12:46 AM   #21
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ok gang, back at it again.

the shore power does enter from the bottom and was wired to the top left bus lug. all the romex exiting to the right is original, and the smaller black wire connected to the neutral bus that enters from the uppermost port is stranded and as best i can tell from the DC system, as it is too small to carry any manner of load from AC.

no electric to the water heater, and the fridge was just removed as it just pooped out on both electric as well as LP functions.

the outside 120V outlet tested as normal with a 3-prong tester, but it is apparent that water has entered the outlet as the face of the outlet shows discoloration and oxidation.

when the shore power cord was disconnected from the service panel it did not trip the GFCI, however when wired to the 30 amp breaker it did trip, even when all breakers were pulled from the panel. i picked up a new panel, and breakers due to the inability to source a new 30amp breaker in the style currently found in the AS.

current plan: install new service panel with new breakers. wire new 30A shore power cord to 30A breaker in the new panel. connect existing branch feeders to new breakers...but what of the mysterious stranded black wire entering the current panel at upper right? i'll presume the white wire exiting lower right is a ground, but should i keep this connected? as the panel on the AS will function as a sub-panel of the shore's service panel shouldn't it rely on the shore power's ground system (in this case it is two ground rods as well as a cold water ground)?
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Old 01-31-2011, 01:05 AM   #22
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also, i will note that i tried to wire the shore power cord to the 30A breaker and mount in the right most position - making it the main, but the bottom of the breakers have alignment pins that will only allow the 30A to be mounted in the left most position.

attached are photos of my "univolt" in hopes it might help diagnose the problem, or help identify the black wire that is thus far a bit of a mystery
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Old 01-31-2011, 08:42 AM   #23
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Your Question:
as the panel on the AS will function as a sub-panel of the shore's service panel shouldn't it rely on the shore power's ground system (in this case it is two ground rods as well as a cold water ground)? Yes it will be a sub panel: therefore the neutral will not be grounded.

I would leave the small black wire disconnected at least for the time being.

When you get the new panel installed, just connect the shore power cable to it along with the white wire that we think is chassis ground for the trailer. Before you connect any of the branch circuits. Test the system to see if the GFI will hold.

Then connect one branch circuit at a time; testing the GFI as you complete each branch.

Looks like you need to upgrade the converter. I also notice a the 120 volt AC power to the converter has a white romex cable, I don't see a white romex entering the old sub panel. Does it get spliced or something?

If you still have the old refer hang on to it. We can do some testing to see if it still works.

If you haven't removed the old panel and still have the shore power wired in, connect the shore power back the way it was originally then remove the small black wire and test the shore power again. Just for drills.
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