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Author Topic: routing a new cable  (Read 1288 times)

dufferDave

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routing a new cable
« on: January 13, 2020, 10:50:32 PM »
Where do I go to learn how to open up some sort of passage through my RV to install a cable from the back window up to the driver's seat? Should I pester the manufacturer for some sort of structural schematic of the roof and walls? Should I just start tearing into the walls or something? (EEEEK!) Should I go down through the floor and run the cable along the chassis (where all the road dirt and debris will hit it)?

Or is there some secret path that is not obvious to us newbies but that is ridiculously easy?

Jim Godward

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2020, 02:37:16 AM »
It would help if you posted the kind of RV you need to do this in as different manufacturers build differently. I can comment on Newmar
RVs but not any other recent makes.
Jim
Jim & Pat Godward
AC7PO & KD7ZDM
Hillsboro, Oregon

SeilerBird

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2020, 04:01:04 AM »
As a retired electrician who has ran many cables in many interesting places there is no way I could even begin to instruct you without seeing the rig first. I suggest hiring a competent electrician to do the job for you.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2020, 06:52:19 AM »
You can pester the manufacturer all you want but don't hold your breathe waiting for structural info.

Yes, the most practical method is to get the cable down through the floor in any way & place possible and then run it along the chassis. It may also be possible to run a cable in the ceiling, either through or adjacent to the a/c ducting, but that's usually far more challenging.
Gary
--------------
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

SLOweather

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2020, 07:30:43 AM »
It would also help if you told us what the cable is for. A rear view camera cable, TV cable, or speaker wire can be run differently than an AC power cable for a new air conditioner.

On our last moho, I ran the cable for the rear view camera from above the rear bed in the cabinet down inside a closet and then along the edge of the driver wall/floor through the toilet room, behind the galley cabinets and couch, and under the driver door threshold up into the dash. Slideouts can complicate this routing.

On this moho, the P.O. ran the cable from the over-bed cabinet, down through the closet and trunk to the undercarriage, and then along the frame rails up to the front and into the dash through an existing cable entry hole.

2014 Itasca Sunstar 31KE
1988 Itasca Suncruiser 31RQ
1968 Travco 201

Rene T

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2020, 08:07:16 AM »
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
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Bobtop46

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    • Work Camper
Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2020, 09:16:57 AM »
As a retired electrician who has ran many cables in many interesting places there is no way I could even begin to instruct you without seeing the rig first. I suggest hiring a competent electrician to do the job for you.

 :)) :))
2007 Coachman Aurora 36FWS
2017 Equinox
2006 Mini Cooper S

ChasA

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2020, 10:11:58 AM »
I knew a guy that put a satellite cable up at ceiling corner and covered it with crown molding.  It looked very nice.
Apex, NC
2010 Winnebago journey Express 34Y
2018 Ford Edge SEL
Air Force One towed brakes
Blue Ox towed setup

dufferDave

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2020, 11:17:26 PM »
It would help if you posted the kind of RV you need to do this in ......

It's an old (2003) Fleetwood Jamboree 31W. 

I have tried fishing a leader through the AC vent openings but the ducts either take some nasty turns or are just plain not continuous.  I have been looking and looking at the interior cabinets and walls, but I just don't see anything that I want to tear apart.  I don't think my boss will approve the aesthetics of running a conduit cover on the ceiling, so I think I have "painted myself into the corner" of running the wire outside, under the chassis.

The wire itself is for a rear-view camera to feed a new display on the dashboard.  The kit I ordered has a 66 ft long cable, so I could run it back and forth three or four times.  I don't want wireless (bad previous experiences with bluetooth crap). 

And I may be doing this all over again if I can't get the TV signal to work in the bedroom (rear end) that is supposed to feed off the living room TV gear (mid-ships) using the existing wires in the walls. So far, nothin'.

Lastly, thank you to everyone for your advice and comments.  I promise I will not burn down my RV in frustration....at least, not on purpose.

HappyWanderer

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2020, 06:14:48 AM »
When installing cable underneath on the chassis, make sure to use split loom to protect it.
WARNING: This post may contain a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer, or birth defects or other reproductive harm.

Mark_K5LXP

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  • 2005 Itasca Sunova
Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2020, 07:59:37 PM »
Not sure how RV's chassis wiring schemes differ, but my class A has a couple cable bundles running underneath already.  If there's room one can add to the existing bundle, or secure additional wires to it (using the above mentioned cable loom).  If it were me, I'd run a new set of cables from front to back to make the effort of crawling underneath there worth the trouble.  I'd consider putting in an HDMI, a couple Cat 5e or 6, some zip wire and maybe an RG-6 along with your camera cable.  Terminate them in a small utility box up front and inside rear cabinet or drawer unit.  From there you can interface new devices and gadgets going forward for a nominal cost and trouble over running just one cable.

When I remodeled my S&B house I installed half a mile of cat 6 and RG-6 putting runs in every wall I had open.  I don't think I've used more than a handful of those runs over the years but having them when you want one is way better than wishing it was there.  I've used the cat 6 runs for things other than networking, you get 4 pairs that can carry switch signals, telephone, low current DC or audio.

Mark B.
Albuquerque, NM

Deano2002

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2020, 08:13:10 PM »
If you have deep pockets hire someone, if not and if you are a do it yourself person you figure out a way to do it and what you want to do is not dangerous. This can be done running the cable  under the rig. There is a video on youtube where this was done on a bus to coach conversion called the Bus Life.
1989 Champion LaSalle 34' project

Hanr3

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2020, 08:52:17 PM »
Easiest path. Run wire down the back outside wall of camper, run along frame rail, enter the cab thru the firewall via an existing grommet or add one if none are convenient.
If you don't want it running on the outside of the wall, fish a wire up/down the inside of the wall. Windows will be an obstruction.
 
2016 F150 3.5L Ecoboost XLT
2019 K-Z 231RK Sportsmen
1997 16' Sylvan Back Troller Select

SpencerPJ

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2020, 07:02:52 AM »
Get a large piece of cardboard to lay on / scoot on, and a bag of zip-ties.
2020 F150 Lariat 502a, Max Tow, 3.5 Eco
2012 Puma 21BH TT
Paul & Julie


"Never argue with stupid people. They bring you down to their level and beat you with experience" - Mark Twain

Blues Driver

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #14 on: January 25, 2020, 06:39:50 PM »
Consider flexible exterior grade non metallic conduit with zip ties or brackets to the frame. You can put a fish line/ pull line in it before you mount it. The bedroom should have cabinets to come up in. 
Why go to all the trouble to route it an d then have it damaged by debris or weather.
Pat

TheBar

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2020, 10:22:40 PM »
5 years ago I installed a back up camera on my 30 foot Class C. All the wires are hidden. I did not use the wire which came with the package. I bought 5 wire cable so I could power the camera from the front instead of connecting to the back up lights and still leave an extra wire for something they haven't invented yet.

My fish eye camera is mounted mid height just above the license plate so I can clearly see the contour of the ground plus low hanging branches above. I ran the cable into the back wall through the license plate light housing. Fished it down the wires for the license plate light to the chassis, then all the way to the engine compartment through split loom conduit from Harbor Freight. It was the same kind of split loom used by the factory and I mostly followed the factory wiring loom. When I got to the engine compartment I was able to push the wires inside the cab under the dash through an existing rubber wire grommet. I used lots of black zip ties all the way.

Once under the dash I connected the camera (using the extra 3rd wire in the cable going to the back) and the monitor to power with an inline fuse using an ignition positive live wire and the negative wire mounted to the metal dash frame. That way the camera and monitor are on whenever the engine is running. So I can see cars tailgaiting me that might decide to pass when I change lanes which can't be seen in the side view mirrors. Which is more important than using the camera only for backing up.
Retired computer automation programmer
1997 30' Class C plus 2008 popup
DW loves camping more than I do!

cerd

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2020, 05:59:27 AM »
I was able to run mine through the wall and under the cabinets, but I already had to remove the wall panel due to water damage. You could consider a 4 foot flexible drill bit, but you don't know if or what wiring is within the wall.

Swing by a Best Buy and talk to the guys in the install bay. They can probably give you a reasonable bid or at least some tips.

FYI, I would use an EMI shielded cable that will just barely reach the camera. I wanted a 30 foot cable for my 20 foot MH (room for routing) but I couldn't find one. I ended up using a 50 foot cable and now I have a little bit of interference on my display.

Also, when you install the camera, I recommend installing an electrical box on the inside so you can access the plugs to connect a new camera without tearing apart the wall in the event that the camera needs to be replaced.
1990 Chevy G30 Gulfstream Ultra Class C
350TBI

NY_Dutch

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2020, 07:59:47 AM »
I've run numerous cables under various RV's by securing them along the same path in the frame rail the factory wiring follows. I've never had a failure due to weather or road damage.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

TheBar

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2020, 09:54:13 AM »
The split wire loom isn't 100% needed. Just for extra security against flying gravel. I would not use solid conduit on a moving vehicle. If water gets forced inside there is no way for the water to drain and your wires will be immersed in water forever. Your cable needs a metallic shield to protect from RFI and it should be grounded at one end. Which means you can use it for the negative wire feed to the camera. That way both positive and negative feeds will be from the same location in case of problems.
Retired computer automation programmer
1997 30' Class C plus 2008 popup
DW loves camping more than I do!

cerd

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2020, 10:50:44 AM »
Your cable needs a metallic shield to protect from RFI and it should be grounded at one end. Which means you can use it for the negative wire feed to the camera. That way both positive and negative feeds will be from the same location in case of problems.
You may get additional interference this way due to ground loops. Its better to have a shielded 2 conductor cable.
1990 Chevy G30 Gulfstream Ultra Class C
350TBI

TheBar

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Re: routing a new cable
« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2020, 10:43:00 PM »
When two or more devices are connected to a common ground through different paths, ground path noise, or a ground loop can occur. Both devices should be connected to a common ground point. I get a crystal clear picture this way.

https://www.audioholics.com/home-theater-connection/ground-loops-eliminating-system-hum-and-buzz
Retired computer automation programmer
1997 30' Class C plus 2008 popup
DW loves camping more than I do!