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    Thread: Adding 110VAC "shore power" to 2002 Westy

    1. 04-08-2012 08:15 PM #1
      My project before we go on an extended trip was to add 110 "shore power" to our 2002 Weekender. I've always been jealous of my neighbor's older Westy with original equipment shore power.

      Here is my step-by-step if anyone else wants to have a go:

      DISCLAIMER: Working with electricity is DANGEROUS. If you don't know how to work with 110 electricity, don't try to learn with this project. Also, please refer to a guidebook to check any of the things I say in the post.

      1 - MarineCo power inlet
      1 - Grey 15a power outlet
      1 - Grey 15a GFI outlet
      1 - Grey outlet wall plate
      1 - "old work" 2-gang box
      15 ft Romex wire (left over from remodel project)

      STEP 1 - Install power inlet. I chose to put the inlet on the driver's side rear quarter panel because of easy access through the jack cubby and I wanted the outlets on that side. Use a 1-7/8" hole saw to drill the hole. You only want to put ONE hole in your van, so make sure you have the right location and tools - and double check. Connect one end of the romex and install the inlet per the instructions on the package

      STEP 2 - Cut the hole for the outlet. I removed the original ashtray below the rear drink holder and enlarged that hole to fit the outlet box.

      STEP 3 - Run the wire. A "fish tape" comes in handy for this, but you can probably to it with a coat hanger if you don't have one. I found that removing the rear speaker made it a lot easier also. Don't remove any of the panels, just fish the wire through the space between the panel and the body. I ran a second piece of wire from the outlet box to the front seat so that I can also install a battery charger for the RV battery - that is next weeks project.

      STEP 4 - Modify and install the outlet box. My chosen location for the outlet has a body contour behind the panel (first picture, where the duct-tape is. To install the box, I need to cut out a chunk. (This makes the volume of the box smaller, which might make it a little harder to wire. If you are a stickler for following housing building code in you van modification, you would have to measure the remaining volume to make sure it it still big enough.) The Dremel saw and liberal use of JB-Weld took care of the required modification. I used an "old-work" box because it has installation tabs that snug up against the panel and keep the box secure.

      STEP 5 - Install the outlets. Install the outlets just like you would in a house - make sure the CFI outlet is the 1st to be connected or the other outlet won't be protected. The CFI outlet gives you protection if there is anything wrong with the power you are plugging into, or if a short occurs anywhere in the system.

      STEP 6 - Install the wall plate and test!

    2. 04-08-2012 09:11 PM #2
      Pics no worky for me as they are but I managed to figure out your first one and it made me cringe...drilling into the body like that. Someone a few years ago did this project and ran a power cord to the back cubby area where the jack is and out below the taillight and behind the bumper. Just pop our the rear foglamp dummy assembly and his 110V inlet was right there. I think I would have replicated that before hacking into the body.

    3. Semi-n00b
      Join Date
      Sep 17th, 2006
      Now serving Snohomish County
      04-09-2012 02:28 AM #3
      I cannot see your pictures either but I see you mention using Romex wire which is not a good idea. Solid wire is not good in vehicles. You can get a marine version similar to Romex which is stranded. That is what you should (and hopefully did) use.

      Here is a link:


    4. 04-09-2012 06:30 AM #4
      Sorry about the picture links, I thought they were to a public gallery, but they weren't these should work:

      All the pictures can be found here on flickr

      mastermind - I didn't use multi-strand Romex, but you make a good point and thanks for the link. In my installation, there are very few bends, and no place where the wire might move over the course of time - so I think that the single strand will be OK - but I may rerun it next weekend in any case.

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