Category Archives: electrical

Tow bar electrics

Finally got around to connecting up the remaining wiring for the tow bar electrics.

These are there connections behind the headlight switch on the dashboard.And the connections to the vehicle battery.  I also placed the fuse block in a strong plastic bag to protect it from any moisture.

Still wiring and the fridge too

Time to fit the fridge into place.  I did some checking and there are a couple of different mounting frames you can buy for the fridge but after checking with the Evo furniture guys it was apparent that I didn’t need either.There are two fixing holes on each side of the fridge which you simply drill through to the outside and use longish bolts to fix it.Then it’s just a case of fixing a washer/nut combination in the adjacent units.One thing to check before you drill is how far back/forward you want the fridge itself.  I had quite a lot of flexibility here since I’d cut out the rear panel behind the fridge to account for its depth.  I decided to make it not fully flush so that I could open the door as fas as I wanted to.  You also need to consider that you need to be able to open the fridge door by a certain amount to get the  freezer/fridge divider and other stuff in/out.Back onto the electrics now.  This is the rear of the main 12V isolation switch.And from the front.Now with the wiring in place.This is where it’s going (under the seat/bed on the offside close to the furniture).Connectivity to the leisure battery under the seat.Some of the under seat wiring including the labeled fuses.  You can also see the mains battery charger in the bottom RHS of the picture next to the leisure battery.A better photo of the fuses.  I’ve wired ready for a solar panel which I plan to add later.

More wiring, including lights

Connections done for the light switches, USB socket and mains socket.  I used the rubber feet to offset the three individual units so they were flush with the frame.Bottom panel done.

Top switch panel, pump indicator/switch and LPG level gauge.

Top panel done.

Whole panel view.


Fusebox and negative busbar in place ready for wiring.

Some of the wiring completed.

Wiring the overhead LED lights.

Wiring, sockets, switches etc. & a bit of furniture too

Cutting of the front panel for the rear seat/bed.Test fitting in place.Preparing the mountings for the 12V charger, fuses, main switch etc.  This is all going to fit vertically on the offside of the rear seat frame.Since I don’t know how warm the charger will get I’ve decided to mount it offset from the panel and also cover the panel with a thin sheet of metal.This is the rear part of the panel in place.  You can see the trunking I have installed which enables the tidy routing of cables from from fuse box.Forward part of the panel in place now.These are the wires for the light switches and also a 12V supply for a USB socket.The level gauge for the LPG tank.Wiring for the LPG level gauge, soldered for reliability (since it’ll be hard to access later).Cabling to where the fusebox is going to be located.Route from the lower unit to under the seat/bed.

Cable routing

This is where/how I’m routing cables from the fuse box and to the battery which will be under the seat.  This point will sit just above the lower part of the seat frame.
Drilling holes for the cable routing.

Getting the cabling all sorted!

Cables which need to route to under the seat in trunking.
Holes through the unit (seat/bed is not fitted in position yet, i.e. is further back from its correct position).  The blue cable is the mains cable for the 240V socket on the worktop.
Cables in place.

Drilling back of the back box prior to fitting.This is the location of the back box.

Seat in place.

Electrics cabling/preparation

Have been giving the electrics some thoughts over the past weeks and these are my thoughts/doings.

Starting with the battery, I wanted to get one with a reasonable rating and have elected to not to try to squeeze it in under one of the front seats as many do.  Instead I’m going to mount it under the rear seat/bed.  This is the one I’ve gone for, from Alpha Batteries.

On The subject of charging I started with a standard split charge set up but since then have had a change of heart and now I’ve gone for different solution.  I plan to add a solar panel or two at some point so also wanted to consider this in relation to the charger. I looked at three different charges one from Ctek one from Ring and the other from Ablemail.

The CTEK D250SA was the 1st one I found and looked pretty good but is only rated at 20A (unless you add the CTEK SMARTPASS 120 unit to boost it, but that makes it more expensive and takes up more space too).

I was also tempted by the Ring RSCDC30, which is rated at 30A and is quite cheap compared to the other two.

In the end I decided to go with the Ablemail AMS12-12-30 one since it’s rated at 30A, silent running (fanless) and also has a serial interface I may make use of later.

In addition to the 12v charger I will be installing a CTEK mains charger which I already have.

Mains-wise I have purchased a small consumer unit with 16A and 6A breakers, the former for a couple of mains plugs and the latter for the charger.

I got most of the wire, connectors and also the fuse box from 12voltplanet.  The fuse box is a 10-way one, so plenty space for expansion.

I decided to buy CBE switches and sockets since I think they look tidy.

This is the location where most of the wiring converges and the location of the fuse box (this will be in the low unit to the RHS of the sink).
I’ve installed some trunking for most of the wiring (along with pull wire) since I’m bound to want to install something later!
Area behind the fridge on the off-side.
The OSR panel cut ready for installation.
Loads of wires!
I had to make some clips/brackets to hold the heater controller in-place.And from the front.
Cabling behind the OSR panel along with foam, to hopefully stop any rattles!
I made use of this existing negative point.Almost ready for panel fit.
Panel from the rear, I added some foam for sound deadening.  Note the invisible fixings on the LHS of the panel (RHS of the photo).Panel from the front.
And finally in place.  I didn’t bother with invisible fixings, except on the LHS, since they’ll be hidden by the unit.  You can see where the three square/rectangle back boxes too, which I will use for access behind the panel if needed in the future.
Close-up of the panel where the switches and sockets go (notice no visible fixings!). 

Prepping the floor, electrics placement & LPG tank brackets

Now I have the exact location of the seat it’s time to consider the fit of other items and also what additional holes I need to drill through the floor.

This is the view from the rear, under the centre section of the Rib seat. I’m planning to locate the leisure battery, chargerand mains consumer unit under hear whislt leaving space for the toilet at the front.
This is the battery mount I purchased on eBay (I don’t want such a heavy item moving at all in a crash!). Also you can see the hole I have drilled to access the negative connection for the battery I have made.
I drilled a hole through the floor then removed all of the paint from both sides around the hole, fitted a long bolt with large washers on both sites to ensure I get a good electrical connection. The second hole is for the conduit I will use for the mains cable from the underbody mounted socket.
View from underneath.
This shows a couple of holes in the unit to the right of the sink.  The larger one is for the gas drop-vent and the other for the gas pipe to the Propex heater.
Next I needed to ensure that the mounts for the LPG tank would be secure. Unfortunatley the location of the brackets meant that I had to modify some of the wooden spacers I’d installed.
One of the brackets I made (I had to cut a section out to avoid one of the battery tray mount holes).
Brackets in place.
All the holes made in the Altro flooring.  Notice the ridges in the flooring, my fault for having it rolled up for too long.  Luckily I managed to get rid of them by leaving it rolled out for a while.

Preparing the OSR panel

The ply panel I got didn’t have any holes in it for fixing so I had some fun drilling them in the correct locations.  Also for some of the holes the standard VW clips weren’t long enough so I bought a few longer ones from here.  For this panel I didn’t care that the clips will be visible except on the LHS where I used hidden clips.

When I test fitted the OSR panel I found that it didn’t sit flush on the LHS edge near the window.  There aren’t any standard holes to clip the panel in this location so I made some brackets myself and used rivnuts to fix them.

And now some electrical preparation too

I’d been thinking about what electrical wiring I needed to run behind the panels once I fitted them.  Not having converted a van before I was conscious that I’m bound to forget some cable or want to add something later so I’ve decided to use flexible conduit and make sure I have some access in the future.

This is the access point behind the drawer.

And viewed in-place.  I’ve added a piece of conduit from this point to the one in the next photo, further back in the van.

This is the point further back in the van.

This shows the access points on the, yet to be covered, rear panel.  You can also see the various holes I cut in the top LHS of the panel for the various switches/sockets I’ll be fitting.

The larger hole is for the Propex heater thermostat.

I had to carefully remove the cable housing to fit the cable through the necessary holes.

I also drilled a number of small holes to allow for cable access (and added grommets).

This is the hole for the conduit which will run to under the drivers seat (I didn’t fancy drilling a biggish hole in the bottom of the B-pillar for cable access).

Prepping for the fridge

I purchased the fridge sometime ago, now it’s time to work out how to fit it (or at least test-fit it).  The model I chose is the Dometic CoolMatic CRX 50.  It was a close-run choice between that one and the Webasto Cruise 49 option.  The main thing that swung it for me is that the CRX 50 has a removable freezer section.

The main thing I wanted to check was how far back I can fit the fridge, i.e. flush or proud of the front of the units.  I’d read that for some models it’s necessary to cut part of the internal frame (at the bottom).  This picture is without the panel in place and before I cut the metal frame.

I put the furniture in place then put the fridge in position too, marked the position of the fridge with tape.

As you can see the fridge is touching the lower frame.

When I offered the fridge up into the correct position it was clear that I’d need to cut the rear ply panel and also the internal van body, which I did (see later).

With the panel is place it’s clear that I need to cut it, along with the lower metal frame.

Marking out the panel to cut it.

Now with the panel cut, and the lower metal frame, the fridge fits quite a bit further back.

TBH, I’m not sure if I will mount the front of the fridge completely flush since I that will restrict the angle that the door can open.  I will probably mount it slightly proud so I can open the door to a greater angle.  At least I’ve done the necessary preparation to choose either option later (this is it mocked up and flush).One point to mention is that Dometic sell two different mounting kits, I don’t have either.  I didn’t like the look of the exposed screws and also wasn’t sure how/if they’d work with my Evo furniture (I checked with Evo Design and they advised that neither are needed).

One other thing I also thought about was ventilation.  My thinking is that I’ll be OK since there’s a gap between the window and the back of the worktop (something I need to tidy up later).