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Old 08-07-2011, 06:42 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
1974 21' Globetrotter
staten island , New York
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 55
'74 Land Yacht electrical confusion.

First off, hello everyone!

So last fall we purchased a 74 land yacht and when I towed it home
the lights, brakes etc. all worked.

When I would do random hookups this spring everything was fine.

Now of course we are one week away from a trip and the 12v is fine as is the 120, but when I connected it to the car nothing.... no lights at all so I will assume no brakes as well. The connector on my truck is good and the cable looked good as well.

Since I got nothing i am going to assume my ground is bad, Where would this be? at the univolt? somewhere on the chassis?

If this was anything mechanical I could replace while I was asleep but plumbing and electrical I need help, so please help.
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Old 08-07-2011, 07:53 PM   #2
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Weíll assume the fault is related to the umbilical between the car and the trailer. I can tell you that on my TW the ground is connected to one of the receptacle bolts and grounds to the skin. Hopefully you have that plastic cover on the inside over the plug and not solid interior skin.
However, there is almost always a ground path to the TV through the hitch or WD bars.
Does the brake controller indicate a connection? Can you hear the magnets click when you hit the brakes? Do the brake and turn signals work, but not the running lights? Iíd be checking the fuses and outputs at the TV plug.

Just brainstorming (although itís usually just an annoying drizzle),

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Old 08-08-2011, 06:27 AM   #3
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1974 21' Globetrotter
staten island , New York
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Posts: 55
The brake controller does not indicate a connection. No lights at all. i don't have an assistant with me right now to check and see if they are working probably not.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:39 AM   #4
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1991 35' Airstream 350
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The ground for the trailer lights and brakes normally is just a wire that comes out of the bundle coming from the tow vehicle and attaches to the frame of the trailer near the tongue, or where the wires separate in the front of the trailer.

Is the trailer sitting on the hitch whilst you are trying the lights? If the ground wire is broken, the physical connection of the metal to metal hitch and ball provides a ground (not a great one) that should let the lights work.
Jeff & Cindy
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:44 AM   #5
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1974 21' Globetrotter
staten island , New York
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 55
I've checked the lights when the trailer was hitched and off the hitch. No difference.
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Old 08-08-2011, 01:50 PM   #6
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1974 21' Globetrotter
staten island , New York
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 55
Quick update,

Looks like the 12v direct power fuse on the car side is blown.

I hooked a battery charger up to the cord and got the directionals, running, and reverse lights to work.

I had someone install the power commander and the 7 prong so he will know exactly where he put the fuse since i can't find it.

Another issue i noticed is that I got a slight buzz touching the chassis while hooked to shore power. Another mystery to solve.
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Old 08-08-2011, 03:07 PM   #7
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the tingle is a dangerous condition called a 'hot skin' and needs immediate correction! reading a few of these threads should guide you what to check for.

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Old 08-08-2011, 05:44 PM   #8
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1974 21' Globetrotter
staten island , New York
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 55
Regarding the "hot Skin" Checking the chassis with a volt meter we got about 8 volts as the highest reading and it took a lot of searching to get that. I'm not belittling it I will resolve the issue.

I traced my cord back to a GFI outlet on my house that needs replacing so I am going to power the camper from another outlet and see if i still get a reading. Either way it cannot stand.
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