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Old 09-10-2019, 10:10 PM   #1
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What are these disconnected wires?

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Pretty shockingly sloppy....2019 Bambi sport 22FB. The electronics wannabe nerd in me finds this ramshackle of wires disappointing.

Just learning more and more about how these things work, poking around and I discovered these two fairly important looking wires that are disconnected. One is pretty heavy gauge, and green, leading me to believe it is a ground wire of some sort?

Not sure about the other one.
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Old 09-10-2019, 10:13 PM   #2
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That is your factory pre-wire for solar.
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Old 09-10-2019, 10:36 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMFL View Post
That is your factory pre-wire for solar.
Ditto.

Ground wires in nearly all (if not all) Airsteams are white.

Tim
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Old 09-10-2019, 10:38 PM   #4
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What are these disconnected wires?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GMFL View Post
That is your factory pre-wire for solar.


Interesting. So if I traced those two wires back, they would eventually lead to the Zamp connectors on the outside of the trailer? (One down low on the tongue, three up high on the rear roof)?

If I add solar, I suppose those wires will need to make their way into some kind Of bus to feed the voltage to the converter....better do more research
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Old 09-11-2019, 02:15 AM   #5
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What are these disconnected wires?

Quote:
Originally Posted by doughpat View Post
Interesting. So if I traced those two wires back, they would eventually lead to the Zamp connectors on the outside of the trailer? (One down low on the tongue, three up high on the rear roof)?

If I add solar, I suppose those wires will need to make their way into some kind Of bus to feed the voltage to the converter....better do more research

They would lead to the rooftop Zamp combiner box only. The connector on the tongue goes directly to batteries and is for a portable panel(s) that need to have their own dedicated charge controller. Portable suitcase systems generally do.

The wires in your pic would be connected to a charge controller, that would then output to your batteries via negative and positive bus connections.
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Old 09-11-2019, 05:00 AM   #6
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You should prepare yourself, in general, to find a "rat's nest" of oddball loose wires everywhere IMO. Airstreams do not win awards for manufacturing neatness or quality control IMO.

"rat's nest" -- https://www.google.com/search?q=rat%...com&gws_rd=ssl

QC -- https://www.google.com/search?q=QC&s...=airforums.com

"quality control" -- https://www.google.com/search?q=qhal...=airforums.com

Happy trails,

Peter
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Old 09-11-2019, 10:34 AM   #7
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Hi, these wires are pre installation for solar panels. Runs from roof trough the vent and the fridge area to the electric box.
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Old 09-11-2019, 02:29 PM   #8
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We have a 2018 sport 16. I am glad you mentioned the Zamp port going directly to the batteries. I assumed they went to the charge controller. Thanks for the mention.
I have 2 panels on the roof and looking to buy a suitcase. How difficult would it be to wire the suitcase to the existing solar controller which is under the seat in the front of the trailer. Would like to not have additional controller.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:41 PM   #9
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suitcase panels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sport 16 STL View Post
We have a 2018 sport 16. I am glad you mentioned the Zamp port going directly to the batteries. I assumed they went to the charge controller. Thanks for the mention.
I have 2 panels on the roof and looking to buy a suitcase. How difficult would it be to wire the suitcase to the existing solar controller which is under the seat in the front of the trailer. Would like to not have additional controller.

The suitcase panels I have seen here on the forums come with a charger controller attached to the panels thus the reason the Zamp port is connected directly to the battery. Others please correct me if I'm wrong. Also I've heard of the charger controllers charging profile need to be set correctly so two controllers work together.


If you can get to the charger controller wiring (sounds like you can) you could just purchase regular panels and wire a port or re-purpose the Zamp port (by connecting it to the controller instead of the batteries) and just use the one (factory) controller, just do not exceed the controllers rated amps. Mine on my FC27 is a 40 amp controller. Others chime in if AS uses more than one pre-wire/factory solar setup.


I did read on the forums here a member made his on suitcase set up with some simple hinges and a controller and some home made supports (he did not have the factory pre-wire) sorry don't remember where it was posted.
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Old 09-12-2019, 07:44 AM   #10
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Solar charger

I have access to the controller. I didn't know if I could make a splice or junction on the positive and negative wire coming from the roof top.
I have an unused mc4 connector on the roof but haven't figured out a way to use it with a suitcase.
I can buy a controller with the suitcase, probably the easiest solution, but if I upgrade the battery monitor, it's output will not be shown.
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:08 PM   #11
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If you want to tie a portable panel without a controller in parallel with ones on the roof then, yes, you would rewire the front Zamp connector to the right polarity and wire it in parallel with the roof wires.

If you don’t have roof panels then you may as well get a portable panel with a controller and use the front Zamp connector to connect directly to the batteries.

Note, if you don’t buy a Zamp brand panel the connector on the airstream may be reversed polarity from your panel. You’ll need to flip those wires if so.
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Old 09-16-2019, 08:22 AM   #12
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Solar roof plus suitcase

Yes I have 2 90 watt solar panels on roof.
Charge controller is 30 watt. Is it acceptable to make a junction with the roof wires and a 100watt portable panel before attaching to the controller? Looking for something smaller than the standard mc4 Y connector.
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Old 09-16-2019, 04:18 PM   #13
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I think you meant "charge controller 30 amps"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sport 16 STL View Post
Yes I have 2 90 watt solar panels on roof.
Charge controller is 30 watt. Is it acceptable to make a junction with the roof wires and a 100watt portable panel before attaching to the controller? Looking for something smaller than the standard mc4 Y connector.

each of your 90 watt panel max out put would be approx. ~5 amps. My renogy 100 watt panel is rated just over 5 amps. So like daleyocum suggested take the Zamp connector and wire it parallel with the roof top harness and the most you'll make is approx. ~15 amps peak so your factory controller is acceptable. I would recommend when money permits a victron BMV 712 battery monitor. With the portable panel I wouldn't worry about the MC4 connectors just use the Zamp compatible harness and if your panel has the MC4's and you dont want to cut them to change them over you can make an adapter cable to the Zamp port. Hope this make sense.
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Old 09-16-2019, 07:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptdzl View Post
each of your 90 watt panel max out put would be approx. ~5 amps. My renogy 100 watt panel is rated just over 5 amps. So like daleyocum suggested take the Zamp connector and wire it parallel with the roof top harness and the most you'll make is approx. ~15 amps peak so your factory controller is acceptable. I would recommend when money permits a victron BMV 712 battery monitor. With the portable panel I wouldn't worry about the MC4 connectors just use the Zamp compatible harness and if your panel has the MC4's and you dont want to cut them to change them over you can make an adapter cable to the Zamp port. Hope this make sense.
I don't think I have the ability to run wires to the roof. I do have easy access to the green and yellow solar wires from the roof. Can I put each wire on a mini buss bar. Then run the suitcase wiring into the same area and attach to the buss bar. Then run one wire into charge controller for pos and same for neg. There may be a minor voltage difference in the suitcase and wasn't sure it would work.
Going to add the battery monitor at same time. Trying to put together all the pieces before I start tearing into the electric.
Another project is finding best way to integrate a solar generator with built in mppt charge controller.
It has been fun learning all the new stuff, thanks for the helpful postings.
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:09 PM   #15
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I assume your solar controller charger is floor level?

You don't need to go to the roof to hook your Zamp connector (disconnect from batteries) directly to the solar charger. does yours look like the attached picture? If so you've confirmed the positive wire from your roof panels is the yellow wire? Just add a ring connector to the positive lead from the Zamp connector and add it to the stud with the yellow wire then add the black negative wire to one of the negative battery bus bars or easier yet get a dual spade connector and just add the black neg wire from the same Zamp connector to that neg post on the controller charger. Then all you need is a connector Zamp compatible from your solar panel. Your just adding a 100 watt panel on the ground correct. message me if you would like to discuss more details.
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Old 09-18-2019, 11:36 AM   #16
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Adding a solar panel to existing system

Mine is different and I will post some pics.
A question on your photo. The yellow is positive from the panels. The red is the negative from the panels? They are both attached to the charge controller? If you add a solar panel the positive can be added to the yellow post. Check. Why does the extra solar negative go to a negative bus bar and not added directly to the red negative post on the controller. I thought the positive and negative always had to directly go the the charge controller to enable to to perform it's functions.
Thanks for you time and patience as I try to educate myself.
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Old 09-18-2019, 04:29 PM   #17
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Adding suitcase panel to existing solar controller

Here is the look in the Sport 16.
What is best way to connect the wires from the suitcase panel, to the input green and yellow solar input wire?
My current idea is two small bus bars to connect the two input wires to the controller. Any cleaner method?

In the second picture, is the silver zinc bus bar for negative/ground wires?
The lower bus bus bar is positive?
When I add a 12 volt car style outlet I can pull from those two bars?
Here is where I am puzzled. What are connections in black box in third pic. I removed a plastic cover so connections are totally enclosed.
Just noticed my charge controller is not lithium compatible. Another project.
Thanks everyone for your comments and suggestions.
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Old 09-18-2019, 09:48 PM   #18
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RED goes to battery circuit breaker bus bar

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sport 16 STL View Post
Mine is different and I will post some pics.
A question on your photo. The yellow is positive from the panels.

Correct

The red is the negative from the panels? NO it is charge controller output to the circuit breaker bus bar which inturn is connected to battery



They are both attached to the charge controller? simply sun volts/amps IN yellow then charging volts/amps OUT redto battery



If you add a solar panel the positive can be added to the yellow post. Check.
YES

Why does the extra solar negative go to a negative bus bar and not added directly to the red negative post on the controller. red is the charge controller output



I thought the positive and negative always had to directly go the the charge controller to enable to to perform it's functions. Yes as your pictures show


Thanks for you time and patience as I try to educate myself.

see above
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Old 09-18-2019, 10:19 PM   #19
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Interesting that controller is the exact one that came in a Renogy 2 panel kit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sport 16 STL View Post
Here is the look in the Sport 16.
What is best way to connect the wires from the suitcase panel, to the input green and yellow solar input wire?
My current idea is two small bus bars to connect the two input wires to the controller. Any cleaner method?

In the second picture, is the silver zinc bus bar for negative/ground wires?
The lower bus bus bar is positive?
When I add a 12 volt car style outlet I can pull from those two bars?
Here is where I am puzzled. What are connections in black box in third pic. I removed a plastic cover so connections are totally enclosed.
Just noticed my charge controller is not lithium compatible. Another project.
Thanks everyone for your comments and suggestions.

Last puzzled question first

The black box I believe is for the accessories that need voltage when store switch is off, my wiring diagram was pasted to my box on my FC27 you'll need to verify from yours

the zinc bus bar is negative/ground then the circuit breaker bar is positive and you should verify the charge controller battery +/- wires do go to those points. There may be a fuse or breaker inline.


As for your Zamp portable connector wires you could use the 3 wire connector (1st pic home depot) to cut the panel +/- and splice in the Zamp +/-connector wire OR mount the single post (if room) and attach the 3 wire ends with ring terminals. Hope this helps.
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Old 09-19-2019, 08:34 AM   #20
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Solar panels sport 16

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptdzl View Post
see above
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptdzl View Post
Last puzzled question first

The black box I believe is for the accessories that need voltage when store switch is off, my wiring diagram was pasted to my box on my FC27 you'll need to verify from yours
I will check that out further.

the zinc bus bar is negative/ground then the circuit breaker bar is positive and you should verify the charge controller battery +/- wires do go to those points. There may be a fuse or breaker inline.
Yes, the controller output neg goes to the zinc bus, and the positive goes to the other.

As for your Zamp portable connector wires you could use the 3 wire connector (1st pic home depot) to cut the panel +/- and splice in the Zamp +/-connector wire OR mount the single post (if room) and attach the 3 wire ends with ring terminals. Hope this helps.
Space is an issue, especially when a battery monitor will be added. Both look to be good options.

What are a couple of lithium capable charge controllers that you recommend?

I have a much better feel for the process. My research showed it was possible and wanted confirmation.
Thanks again for your time.
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