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Old 09-15-2006, 03:48 PM   #1
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New wire Query.

Well. Me and the wife put the body back on the frame of our 67 caravel.
We have aluminum wire throughout the trailer and want to replace it.
My question is, What is the very best type of wire to use for the 12 volt systems and what is the best type of wire to use for the 120 volt outlets.
Thanks for any help.
Eric and Elizabeth.
North Vancouver.
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Old 09-15-2006, 05:00 PM   #2
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For 120v AC, I use MC Lite. It is aluminum metal armoured cable. It is solid conductor, not stranded. It has an insulated ground wire, the metal jacket is not the ground path. Comes in 25' rolls at HD or Menards, fairly inexpensive.

For the 12V stuff, I use THHN stranded, inside corrugated plastic conduit (usually called Smurf Tube).

Here's a website on cable:

Here's a picture showing both the MC Lite and the 12V conduit.
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Old 09-15-2006, 05:19 PM   #3
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I found that working with high temp vehicle wire materials and standard "Romex" type cable was quite easy and quick. It is what the factory uses, and has used for many years.
The yellow cables in the picture is for 120V wiring.
All the other colors are 12V supply lines in various gauges, for different uses.
It all originates from 2 fuse boxes, one for 120V fed by the shore power cord, and one for 12V fed by the converter charger and the battery bank.
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Old 09-15-2006, 07:36 PM   #4
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I also like the Romex. I like copper; I would not use aluminum.
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Old 09-15-2006, 07:46 PM   #5
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I had a house fire with copper clad aluminum.
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Old 09-15-2006, 07:49 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by markdoane
For 120v AC, I use MC Lite. It is aluminum metal armoured cable. It is solid conductor, not stranded. .
I should clarify. The MC Lite cable has aluminum armoring; the conductors theselves are solid copper.
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Old 09-15-2006, 09:38 PM   #7
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I believe when my husband redid (completely) the wiring in our 1963 Bambi he also used romex... he has a number of entries on his thread about it, but it jumps around a bit, you might need to read through "chatter" to find it. I think most of it started around page 15. If you have time you might check it out:

Good luck. I was very happy he rewired our trailer. The original was very substandard and about 2 outlets in the whole thing!

Mrs. NorCal Bambi (traveling in S Tardis)
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Old 09-15-2006, 11:04 PM   #8
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copper wire is by far the best conductor of electricity .I use muti strand copper insulated wiring .the best starter solenoids ,coils ,electric motors , etc,all use copper windings and the maximum wire wrap.the best battery cables use muti strand copper wire ,the more strands the better flow of
current ,less amperage draw thru the wire or cable.solder all connections
where possible .

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Old 09-16-2006, 06:09 AM   #9
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good points scott.

in addition when stripping solid conductors be careful not to nick the wire.

ringing the insulation and scoring the wire will create a spot for it to break if subjected to flexing or vibration.

use a sharp knife or stripper to remove the insulation.

helpful hint: when removing the outer jacket on romex use a carrot peeler! fast and clean!

you call them ferrets, i call them weasels.
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Old 09-16-2006, 10:34 AM   #10
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One of the top of the line wires is M22759 mil spec wire. It is teflon insulated silver coated stranded copper wire. It is also flame proof. It is also extremely expensive. Any stranded wire is better then solid wire, it is more flexible, and disipates heat faster then solid. Twisted multi-conducter cable is also better then wires that run parallal to each other in a common cable like romax. A cable that has an insulated ground it better yet and if the cable is sheilded its even better. These are the basic types, so take your pick for your needs. The materail used for the conducter from worst to best are 1) Aluminum, 2)copper, 3) silver, 4) gold. I know I left some gaps here but these are the most common. You cannot go wrong with copper
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