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Old 04-30-2020, 09:48 PM   #1
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New to the family- how do you connect your lights?

Just now joining the TC family. Had a class C for 16 years and now have a 2017 travel trailer and I also snagged a 2006 Pastime for my fishing and hunting trips. Iíve had to dive into some water damage on either side, but thatís a cinch and Iím already almost done. Everything else works good and no other issues...that I know of.

Anyhow, my 2015 Tundra doesnít have a 7-pin up at the front of the bed, but thatís where the plug on the camper is located. Seems like it would be a hassle to connect it when loaded anyway. I donít want to mess with putting a 7-pin up there, so I think Iíll go with an extension. Trouble is, thatís a long way to go, all the way to the back (8í6Ē) and then down around to the bumper. Iím looking at 11-12ft. Plus, the camper sits on my tailgate so Iíll have to run it through a rear hatch and leave that hatch door open.

How do you all connect your lights when traveling? Anyone run a long cord all the way down and around? Got any pics? Any other tips for a first time TC owner??
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Old 04-30-2020, 11:03 PM   #2
laj
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New to the family- how do yo connect your lights?

Torque lift has a good video on youtube of a couple different ways to do it. Either a long cord that you lay alongside in the bed, run up underneath then mount it in the side of the bed. They also make a y-cord if you want to tow something as well.

They do this all the time in kent wa. so you could give them a call for more ideas.
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Old 05-01-2020, 08:17 AM   #3
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I have never had an in-bed plugs on my trucks and have run both of my truck campers to the bumper connection. I have a Y-cable off the bumper connection so I can also tow while carrying the camper. Places like e-Trailer have 7-pin extension cables if your stock one is not long enough or you do not want to rewire your OEM cable. You have to be careful when loading the camper to not crush or pinch your cable and you lose a little charge voltage with a longer run of wire, but there is no other reason to not do this.
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Old 05-04-2020, 10:24 AM   #4
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I've had "in bed" plugs on the TCs we had for nearly 40 years. As soon as we get another I will wire it the same way. IMHO, it is a way to avoid a lot of unnecessary work loading and potential problems with pinched wires. When the camper was nearly all the way in the bed and before setting it all the way down I would plug it in. Both our TCs had the cord near the front on the drivers side and that's where I installed the plug on the truck.

On the other side, we recently made a trip to pick up a Lance camper which has a three way fridge and uses a special plug. Before leaving I got a Lance "pigtail" and wired a standard plug to the other end so I would be able to plug into the trailer receptacle at the back of the truck. My plan was to use this as a temporary connection and later wire the Lance receptacle into the truck and place it in the bed.

We are usually always towing something and the in bed plug leaves the rear connection open for that. I didn't know there was a Y connection available until Larry and Bedlam mentioned it. I also had some problems with adding more load to the light switches than they were designed for and had to add relays (solenoids) to carry the additional load.

There are always alternatives, so go with whichever is easiest for you. One thought about doing it the way Bedlam does is that there wouldn't be a hole punched in the side of the bed that the next owner may not like.

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Old 05-04-2020, 12:14 PM   #5
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Here is shot with a lot going on:





My 7-spade pigtail from the camper goes into my Y-cable that is attached to to my SuperTruss receiver extension. To the far right you can see where the plug is on the truck also connected to the Y-cable.


From the large lugs and heavy gauge wires used to start my generator is an Anderson connector that mates the camper to to my two truck battery banks. I also have an additional battery bank in my enclosed trailer that is connected with the same type of wiring. The camper, truck and trailer batteries can all be charged by shore power, generator, alternator or solar.
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Old 05-05-2020, 08:36 AM   #6
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Hello

I highly recommend putting a 7 round connector in your bed. You will be able to add a charging circuit for your camper battery and will not need a generator.Check out Etrailer they have some great videos.

This is the setup I used on my 2011 f150

https://www.etrailer.com/Custom-Fit-...leID=201138681
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Old 05-05-2020, 10:50 AM   #7
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The charging through a 7-blade connector (even with upgraded wires) will just be a trickle due to line and connection losses. This is why Lance used a proprietary connector on the truck and camper and why most of us go to a dedicated run to a solenoid connected to the truck battery, a heavy Anderson connector and thick gauge wiring all the way from the camper to the truck.
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Old 05-06-2020, 03:32 PM   #8
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Great responses and a huge help. I like the idea of a 7-pin in the bed and I plan to do that. For now, I picked up a 3í extension that gets me plugged in going out the side and under the tailgate. I have both a 7-round and flat-4 at the back so I should be able to use both while pulling the boat, which uses a flat-4. Just have to drive the pin out to take the cover off. For some reason they made them so you can only use one at a time. Hopefully not for any specific reason!

I didnít get a bathroom with this rig but for hunting and fishing trips, Iíll survive. Now I have to wire up a remote switch so I can run all 4 jacks at once. Necessary? No. Neat to have when alone? Definitely.
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