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Old 01-11-2021, 08:54 PM   #1
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Need 12 V source 2016 Adv. 38Q

I need to add and wire in a 12 v. repeater near the rear of the rig for my TPMS. I'm scratching my head trying to figure out where to catch a constant 12 v source between the bathroom and rear.

Any ideas where to add and splice in the line for this device on a 2016 38Q?

(PS Remember I'm the guy that's dumb as a brick about this 'lectrick stuff)
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Old 01-12-2021, 09:12 AM   #2
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Some questions first may help. I assume (dangerous?) that this is a small repeater that will draw very low current. Does it have any specs to tell how many watts or milliamps it might use?
If we blow past the idea and do assume it to be very small, it can often be connected to a working circuit and that gets lots of places but you may want to pick a spot where it is out of the way, so looking at all the options from your end is needed to get the best spot.

I did a snip of one place that looks good to me (on the drawing) but that may be right where there is a towel rack, so look it over and maybe choose where you might like the thing hanging and we can look again for a better spot!

Light switches are a good spot to look as they are almost always powered when we have the RV out and they often do have a hot wire in them. This is what I see in the hall left side facing forward. It looks like there are two switches mounted together for galley and lounge lights.
The wires are likely to be labeled so that you can pull this switch out and find either wire JF or and they will be full time 12VDC that would work as they come from the breakers for these lights and normally the circuits are not loaded near close to the 15 amp the breaker will carry, so we can add a small load to one or the other.

I marked a couple thoughts with red X where it might be handy to mount the item just above the switches or punch through the wall and mount it inside that space???
Then if you look for the code as this example shows, find that wire and tie to it. The drawing of the switch is likely to be from the backside while looking at the connections, so turn your mind around when looking???

If this is awkward, pick a better spot near one of the switches and we can look at what it does and have a redo. First thought is not always the best one!
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Old 01-13-2021, 06:20 AM   #3
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An excellent response that is very helpful!!! I started doing some poking around in the rig yesterday but gave up as it is too cold out there at the moment.

I did tear into the double switch at the forward bulkhead of the rear bedroom and found hot wires but have not yet isolated which one is hot and which one is ground (have not done that yet). While I like the switch you recommend, I think I want it few feet further back on the bedroom wall to more easily work with signals emitted from the dolly and toad wheels? But the approach you point out would be the same. I am thinking maybe using the closet light switch for a source but am trying to figure out some way to access that source without hanging out the side of the switch or poking a hole in the wall nearby. That may be impossible.

Unfortunately the Bellecorp repeater came with absolutely no information in the box or stamped onto the device itself. I don't remember ever seeing any electric device without some sort of identifying stamp or statement of specifications (i.e.voltage, milliamp draw or watts etc?).

It would seem that I should put some sport of in line fuse on it as it is odd that it did not come with any fusing visible on the open end wires (no connections).

At some point in the next few days if I can get a bit warmer weather, I'll go out to the rig an take a pic of the switch set up I am talking about and post it here. As the wires are not color coded there I am a bit fuzzy about the coding but I suppose I can determine a hot wire with my meter??? Then the question will become how to splice or attach and which wires or connectors to attach too. I probably want to add a switch somewhere for the device as I would not want it on a light switch constantly turned on for operational needs???

Sorry for all the ongoing questions and head scratching. But I do appreciate the feedback and suggestions.

I am thinking that until I get this fully laid out in my mind and at the proper final location I'll just use a 12v. cigarette lighter adapter I have for a 110 circuit in the bedroom. But I'd really like t get it hardwired and working independently.

Many thanks Morich!!!
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Old 01-13-2021, 09:21 AM   #4
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Good points and some more info may clear some things. Where to pick up power is the big one and where to put it is going to be a personal choice, so some idea of why I choice those wires may help.
If you find the code stamped on the side of the wires, this chart is a help:
https://www.winnebago.com/Files/File...ical_guide.pdf

The idea is that all wires are supposed to have an ID and we then go to the chart to find two columns, from and to, to tell us the general idea of what and where they are used. Looking at the switch, we see two choices on each switch, so on the left side of the drawing which is looking at the back side of the switch to the galley, we find A goes to the light and JF comes from the breaker to the coach lighting !

Working back at the start of my thought, I first went to the drawings for your RV here:
https://www.winnebago.com/owners/own...s-and-diagrams for "wiring diagrams
Went here for the specific RV, guessing at the serial number!!
https://www.winnebago.com/Files/File..._j38q_wire.htm
And since you DO want a 12 volt connection, I went to the 12volt body info here:
https://www.winnebago.com/Files/File...ire_190013.pdf
See where I picked up maybe you would want to use the switch they detail as "detail EM? That means there will be a much more detailed drawing, usually on the next page or so. So some looking should turn up the info on any of the lights or switches you might want to tie into.
If you should choose something along the right side of the coach and find the detail. I've found the code which starts with J is often the one going to the breakers or fuses and that is what you want as that breaker /fuse will serve to protect all the wiring that is there for the switch as well as what you add for the repeater! No more fuses needed!

But that brings up a point that may not be covered and needs some thought as all electrical works on having a complete circuit (circle?) for power to come from the battery or source like AC, go through the item and get back to the other side or ground when we use battery power.

In this drawing, looking at the black portion, the simple idea is that power comes out from the positive post of the battery, to the switch and if that "gate" is closed, goes to the light, through it and back to the negative battery post. But the way it almost always works is that the path back to the battery uses some short- cut like being screwed to the metal parts of the frame or another wire to get back to the battery. Newer rules use a separate wire and older use the direct connection to the frame as ground.

I was not thinking it totally through and only looking for a place to pick up power but you do need to find both a place to get power and a place to get ground. That's where they should have sent along some directions to tell you if you need both sides???
Lots of things like adding a light, the second side is done when you screw the fixture to the metal frame but that won't work if you are screwing it to wood inside.
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Old 01-14-2021, 07:22 AM   #5
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Your info is so good and is very helpful!

The switch I am looking at at this time is depicted on sheet 3 as EE and detailed on sheet 5, detail EE. I was leaning toward the closet light circuit. I need to research and see if one of the wires is a ground. Then I need to understand if it is a complete circuit, can I splice the 2 repeater wires into the two coach wires before the switch? I'd like to have the repeater on a separate switch I'd need to add so the light would remain switched independently, in other words split the circuit before the light switch in a wye?

My rig is a 10J89U2 serial number. It may be today or tomorrow before I can get back into the rig to check the wire numbers.

Many thanks Richard!

Joe
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Old 01-14-2021, 09:39 AM   #6
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Yes, understand not having the RV handy. Sometimes we just have to set and wait while we plan the next big move!!
But I think you are beginning to get the right ideas on what to look for so let me throw some ideas that might apply, depending on what you find. This IS one of the few places where you DO want your mind to think in circles!
But those circles can be arranged in lots of different ways as long as each item you want to power and switch has a full circle.
Let's say drawing 1 is what you have now, one switch turns light on/off.
Drawing 2 would work but both light and repeater are on/ off at same time.
3. Probably preferred as they switch separately.
4. Or it could be the repeater before the switch!
5. But keep in mind that things are not always easy to find the right wire at the right place to get to it and tie things together, so sometimes we back off a bit to less than ideal to avoid tearing the whole wall out!
I wanted a powered vent fan and found metal bars in the ceiling stopped me from running concealed wires to the best places to tie in so went alternate as "good enough".
I was next to a light that used a wall switch, so tied into that wiring but since I did NOT want the light on at night when we are most likely to want the vent fan, I also added a small rocker switch in the side of the light fixture plastic.
The hangup is that when we want the fan on, we turn on the light switch at the wall and if then we want the light out, we flip the little rocker switch.

So look for what exactly has to happen to get what you want and you may find that using a wall switch to turn both repeater and light on is okay if you only use the repeater as you drive and the light being on is not a problem or if it is a bother as you drive at night, etc. add a switch to kill the light but leave the repeater on.

Sounds difficult but just let the mind run in circles and there are lots of options! And lots of them can wait till spring?
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Old 01-14-2021, 03:53 PM   #7
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Again- excellent and helpful analysis that really clears my mind and thinking on this Thank you!

It may not be a bad idea to have it linked with the switch and have the light on when traveling for the reasons you share. I would not notice it when in transit and the light is rarely used but for a few minutes grabbing something from a dark closet when not in transit. On the other hand having the light on when traveling (an LED) would remind me that the repeater is on when parked and it should be shut off. So 2 may be the better option here.

Now I need to find the proper sized spade connection to make it all come together. Will likely tie all wires together on the spade and use it as the splice. Any problems with that?

Thanks
Joe
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Old 01-14-2021, 04:37 PM   #8
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Not at all! All together on one spade whatever works best in the space you find. These are handy and made so we don't have to cut the wires to add a connection in the middle somewhere:
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Utilitech-2...B&gclsrc=aw.ds
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Old 01-14-2021, 04:43 PM   #9
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Hate to bother you again on this Richard, but do I need to add some sort of fuse on the repeater lines?

Many thanks

Joe
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Old 01-14-2021, 07:22 PM   #10
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I would not if it is tied into a line to a light as there will already be one to cover the light and it will be just a bit more load on that breaker than without the repeater.

What often gets confused is that we think of the breaker being the right size to protect the load from the light alone but what normally happens is that the breaker or fuse is sized to make sure it trips before the WIRE gets too hot to be safe.

They use some wire size that fits what they want to do like a 16 gauge and then they use a fuse to protect the amount of current that wire will safely carry, even though they may only put a light or two and those lights may only use half as much current as the wire and fuse will do safely.


If we look at the breakers in an RV, many of the light circuits are fed by 15 amp breakers as the smallest size and that often is way more capacity than needed. There is a lot of "slack" built into the wire and breaker sizes, so if we are not adding something that draws a lot of power like a motor, etc. we can almost always get by with adding a little to the load. Your repeater is a small item.

The breaker size is meant to be small enough to trip long before the wire overheats but not near close enough to trip unnecessarily.

In my case of adding a fan to the light circuit, I found there was a 15 amp breaker but it only had one small light on that circuit so even adding a fan motor was not getting close to tripping the breaker. If I added a toaster or electric heater, then I might have trouble!

Which brings up a point on doing this work that needs some care.
When working on the wires, try to make sure that you don't touch the power wires to the ground wires in any way as that is what makes a LOT of current flow and the breaker WILL trip, so you have to go hunt for which one to reset.

The real circuit is more like this with the breaker and if things are normal, the current has to run through the light bulb, motor, etc to get back to the ground and that limits the amount of current that can flow.

But you may have heard of getting a "short" in wiring and it blows the fuse?
That name comes from the current taking a "short" route and doesn't go through the item powered and lots more current can flow, so the fuse or breaker stops the flow before the wiring gets hot!
An electrical short is a nickname for a short circuit and they happen if we stick a screwdriver in a box and make a path from positive to ground wires or metal of some sort. The power takes a "shortcut", too much flows and the circuit breaker or fuse stops it!

I did not draw it on any of my drawings but almost the first step off the positive side of the battery it goes to a breaker before going to the wires, switch, or anything else.
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Old 01-15-2021, 04:49 AM   #11
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Thank you!
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Old 01-16-2021, 04:31 PM   #12
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With the low draw I have tapped into the running lights for the RV. Now power or parasitic drain with the ignition turned off.

It is interesting how TPMS were mandated by the feds to improve fuel economy and now people are obsessed with the pressure in their tires. Somehow we managed for more than a century without them.
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:28 PM   #13
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I have a repeater in the rear of my View. You could use the 12v on the generator. Make sure you use a fuse holder.
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:57 PM   #14
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We have the same coach/year as you have. I mounted our repeater on the wall of the battery compartment. Attached small battery jumper clips to the repeater leads and then clip to a battery. I remove one clip and clip to one insulated battery wire when not needed.
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:10 PM   #15
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On my Adventurer 37F my batteries are in/under the stepwell. I chose to just run a fuse line off the chassis battery to my repeater which I mounted to the back of the rear fender well inside my propane bay. Id initially wired a battery charging pigtail to the battery and was able to unplug the repeater and plug in my trickle charger I keep plugged in while setting at the house. Having to remove the step to make the switch got to be annoying so I routed my battery lead and my repeater lead into my inverter bay in front of my stepwell, installed a dpdt switch in conjunction with my trickle charger and now I just throw the switch to change from one to the other. Just another option but Id for sure would want to be able to power it off.
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:12 PM   #16
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Point to keep in mind if connecting a small feed wire like to a repeater to a big feed like the starter cable to the battery. The generator start battery will have a very big fuse and then a small fuse more to fit the size of the added wires will be needed.
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:22 PM   #17
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Yes, Im using a 5a fuse off the battery terminal.
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:55 PM   #18
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I looked at the 12 volt electrical for the 2016 Adventurer 38Q and it looks similar to my 2015 Suncruiser 38Q (well more precisely exactly the same). For my TPMS I simply lifted the bed (it's pretty heavy) and accessed the back of the 12 Volt breakers for the RV.


I added a breaker (there's room) and hooked the alligator clip of the TPMS to the output on the new breaker, then located the ground block under the bed and grounded to that. My TPMS appears to have an internal fuse or breaker so I could have just clipped to the hot bar on the back of the 12 breaker panel, but opted instead to put a small 12 volt breaker (amazon) in, attaching a jumper to the 12 volt feed and it was ready.


You've got all the access to 12 volts at this panel that you'll ever need, and the ground is just a couple feet away attached to the floor. Make sure you have a good multi meter, find the ground and just probe the bars on the back of the 12 volt circuit breaker box.



These 4 pictures show the box. The inside has three rows of breakers, and the metal bar that I've shown as "HOT" on the inside pictures is one of three that crosses mine. You can insert a new breaker by popping out a blank, running a 12 volt line to one side of your breaker, then hook the other end to your TPMS. The third picture shows a ground block on the floor under the bed (near the 12 volt circuit breaker box) and the fourth shows my feeble attempt to hold a multi tester, phone and light and take a picture. Careful, that bed is a back breaker. Mine is a Tireminder TPMS and it works great at this location for the RV and the Ford Flex being towed behind.
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Old 01-18-2021, 11:37 AM   #19
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Thanks all for the great advice.
Joe
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