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Old 05-25-2010, 08:56 AM   #1
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Novel solution to an umbilical problem

The trailer to TV umbilical on our '72 Argosy 20 was shot - the connector was toast and the cable was a little too short for my liking. The engineer in me wanted something better. I went to the local truck supply store (Monmouth Truck in Shrewsbury, NJ) and found a heavy duty coiled cable (which extends to 4 feet) with 7 pin trailer end connectors installed on both ends. I picked that up along with another vehicle end connector and bracket.

The new vehicle end connector is now mounted on the A-Frame of the trailer and the coiled cable plugs in to both the trailer and the TV. The nice thing about this arrangement is that the umbilical is removable from the trailer, so it's one less thing to worry about running over with the snowthrower! :-) Also, the connectors stay nice and clean as they hang out in the back of the 'burb when the Arg isn't in tow. I'm going to make the same mod to our Base Camp next...

Oh yes... I finally got around to adding a break-away switch for the trailer. Been meaning to do that since we bought it 2 1/2 years ago...

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Old 05-25-2010, 10:07 AM   #2
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Hey Bob,

Nice solution! Sure beats running the new umbilical into the trailer.

Also being an Engineer, I would add some type of retainer to the plugs once connected, as I have seen these pull out of the receptacle, even though the cover has a detent should that holds the plug in.

Perhaps a rubber strap arrangement to hold the cover down on the plug to take advantage of that built-in detent.
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Old 05-27-2010, 03:10 PM   #3
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Bob, good idea, I'm thinking of the same thing. I have a cable from my motorhome days for the tow vehicle connections. I'm gonna run out to the shed and see if it will work.
Lewster, good to see you are hangin' around.
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Old 05-27-2010, 04:12 PM   #4
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I like the work. Am thinking of working the following into the mix on mine (with a spring clamp of some sort to retain umbilical while in use):

Trailer wiring basics for towing

EZ Connector Trailer Plugs - Waterproof, corrosion free trailer plugs
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Old 05-27-2010, 04:30 PM   #5
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Hmmm, very interesting, Bob. I need to convert my ancient 6 pin connector on my '58 Overlander to a modern 7-pin configuration. Your solution has got me thinking.
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Old 05-27-2010, 05:57 PM   #6
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The only change I would make is to mount it to the LP tank ring. Somehow my shin finds anything and everything when I walk around my trailer.
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Old 05-27-2010, 07:14 PM   #7
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I've use that method for various small trailers for many years - I mount a female '4-round' socket on each trailer and a similar socket on the tow vehicle, or all vehicles in my 'fleet'...

Then I use a double ended cable assembly with male connectors to connect the two...a couple of adapters makes the hook-up usable for a 'loaner's' TV...

This rig cleans up the trailers when not in use - no dangling electrical cable to get in the way...

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Old 05-28-2010, 09:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewster View Post
Hey Bob,

Nice solution! Sure beats running the new umbilical into the trailer.

Also being an Engineer, I would add some type of retainer to the plugs once connected, as I have seen these pull out of the receptacle, even though the cover has a detent should that holds the plug in.

Perhaps a rubber strap arrangement to hold the cover down on the plug to take advantage of that built-in detent.
Good point. I'm thinking a bungee of sufficient length would do the trick. Hook one end to the pull up bracket for the WD bars, two wraps around the handles on the connector, then back to the pull up bracket.
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Old 05-29-2010, 09:56 PM   #9
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Modified the Base Camp today...

Liz and I did the umbilical mod to our Base Camp today. We had an "incident" a while back where the cable had dragged on the pavement resulting in some damage. I had done a temporary repair (funny how long "temporary" can be) - today was the final solution. The only thing I had to do besides the wiring was to move the jack to the opposite side of the trailer tongue.

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