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Author Topic: Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)  (Read 3782 times)

HueyPilotVN

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Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)
« on: August 07, 2013, 11:18:59 PM »
First a few disclaimers.  This is a report on a practical way to do a temporary hook up to either a 30 or a 50 amp electrical service.  It is not about meeting code for a permanent connection. 

If you are not comfortable with the safety issues involved then please get a qualified electrician.  Also be sure to shut off the power such as the master breaker so that you do not get a nasty shock if you grab the wrong thing.

I have two stops on this trip where I have access to the service panels so I got an electrician to walk me thru the procedures for hooking up temporary power.

I started by buying two outlet boxes.  One is for connecting to 30 amp service and includes a circuit breaker in the outlet box.  The other outlet is for 50 amp service.  Here are pictures of the two.  The 30 amp box was about $80.00 because it included a circuit breaker and the 50 amp box was about $60.00.

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk121/HueyPilotVN/022-6.jpg

I next bought a roll of 6/3 cable with a ground.  It was 125 feet long and cost $214.00 at Home Depot.  I also bought a few 50 amp circuit breakers for about $8.00 each.  This is the wire cable that you need for a 50 amp service.  You can also use it for a 30 amp service by only using one of the hot legs, (the red and the black wires).

This picture shows the wiring for hooking the 50 amp outlet box at the outlet end.

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk121/HueyPilotVN/012-22.jpg

The green wire is the ground, the white wire is the neutral, and the red and the black wires are the two 120 volt positive legs of the circuits.

I ran the other end of the 125 foot cable into the basement where there is a 200 amp Square D power panel.  This is only a very temporary connection and not a permanent installation.

Here is a picture of the 50 amp circuit breaker installed in the bottom left section of the power panel.

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk121/HueyPilotVN/019-9.jpg

The white neutral wire and the ground wire go to the nuetral bus and the red and the black wires go into the two connections on the 50 amp circuit breaker.

If you were using the same wire cable for a 30 amp outlet box you would only use one of the 120 volt positive wires, (either the red or the black).

OK, again I do not want anyone to get in trouble with this information, but it is a fairly simple way to get power if you have access to the breaker panel.

Picture of 50 amp power in the woods.

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk121/HueyPilotVN/015-16.jpg

If this is in the wrong section please move it to the appropriate one.
Bill Waugh
40' Country Coach DP
34' Stacker Trailer, Trailer Toad
Jeep Commander
Mustang Bracket Race Car
35 years on the road

HueyPilotVN

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Re: Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2017, 12:52:53 AM »
update:

Here are the above pictures without downloading them from Photobucket if you are watching your data usage.


Bill Waugh
40' Country Coach DP
34' Stacker Trailer, Trailer Toad
Jeep Commander
Mustang Bracket Race Car
35 years on the road

Lou Schneider

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Re: Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2017, 04:25:33 AM »
Looks perfectly reasonable, Bill.  Well done!

One caution, though.  If the panel you're connecting to isn't the main panel for the property, i.e. it's a sub-panel in an outbuilding, it will have separate neutral and ground busses.  Connect the neutral and ground wires from your extension to the correct busses, don't combine them both on the neutral buss.

In a subpanel, the neutral can rise significantly above ground due to the voltage drop along the wire going back to the main panel where neutral and ground bond exists.  If you connect your ground lead to a subpanel's neutral buss and it rises above ground, the frame of your RV will likewise rise above ground, creating a shock hazard.

When you leave, don't forget to put a knockout plug in the hole you opened to get your cord into the breaker box.  And a couple of filler plates for the holes in the front panel when you remove your breakers.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2017, 04:53:35 AM by Lou Schneider »

JackL

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Re: Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2017, 06:34:14 AM »
I did one better than you !
  We bought a permanent site that has a standard power post with the standard 120v 20amp breaker, a 120volt 30 amp one and a 50 amp 240 volt one. That post is supplied by a 100 amp service and proper wires.
 My trailer only  had a 30 amp panel and supply.
 I bought a 100 amp panel that came with a main breaker and a few 20 amp single pole ones.(cost $50)
 I installed it in the same general area as my 30 amp one and changed the 100 amp breaker to  a 50 amp one.
I bought a RV 25 foot 50 amp extension cord on line(cost $50) I left the male end on it, but cut off the female end. I installed a separate cable port on the trailer next to the 30 amp one for the new cable and connected it to the new panel.
 I now have  both a 30 amp supply and a 50 amp supply and my wife has a washer and dryer that I installed in a "Dock box" at the back of the trailer. I ran the 120 and 240 volt wires underground to them via conduit, and did some adjusting to my sewer hook up for the washing machine drain.

 My background is electrical, so it was a fun project (which I drew up on paper first) and overall very inexpensive and next season, I'll add a second A/C unit to the new 37 foot long trailer.

Jack l

 

HueyPilotVN

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Re: Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2017, 09:13:04 AM »
Jack l,

You certainly did, Your configuration is a much more comprehensive setup.

What I did was just a solution to allow me to have 50 amp electric anywhere that I am within 125 feet of a Main electrical service panel.

I carry the 125 feet of heavy 6-3 with ground cable in my Stacker Trailer looped about 10 times on one of the walls.  It is one of the reasons it weighs over 25,000 pounds.

I have used the temporary hookup three time in the past few years when I am staying somewhere for over a month.  I used it at my Mom's house in Missouri, at Renae's Sister's long driveway in Minnesota, and also at the Hospital in South Carolina where we deployed the Mobile Hospital Units.

I have discovered that there are a few different brands of 50 amp circuit breakers for different service panels.  I now have a small assortment of them.

The following is one of my favorite things to do now as I leave one of these temporary hookup locations.

I tell them this Story. 

I have what is called a "Hybrid Coach".  It has a huge Lithium Battery Bank mounted under the floor.  As I am leaving I tell them that it is now fully charged and I can now drive this 60,000 pound rig for 1,000 miles on this charge.  I also tell them to be sitting down when they open next months electric bill.

That's my story and I am sticking to it.
Bill Waugh
40' Country Coach DP
34' Stacker Trailer, Trailer Toad
Jeep Commander
Mustang Bracket Race Car
35 years on the road

Bobtop46

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Re: Temporary Electric Connections, (How to)
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2017, 01:07:23 PM »
When I installed a temporary power panel on my sons property while helping him build a tiny house I used this box.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/GE-70-Amp-2-Space-2-Circuit-240-Volt-Unmetered-RV-Outlet-Box-with-50-Amp-and-20-Amp-GCFI-Circuit-Protected-Receptacles-GE1LU502SS/203393687

I ran this underground to the above box.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Southwire-By-the-Foot-2-2-4-6-Gray-Stranded-Al-MHF-Cable-30163099/205001794

I did use two short pieces of pvc conduit to get into the ground and out of the ground to the above panel. 

I used my 50 to 30 dog bone to plug in my 30 amp class C for the entire summer, until the tiny house was ready to be plugged in.  We were also able to use the GFCI receptacle for power tools while building, and still run the AC in the RV.     

2007 Coachman Aurora 36FWS
2006 Mini Cooper S

 

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