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ianb1268

Grain Trailer Wiring

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There were some topics posted before about proper wiring. A lot of you guys will recognize this, old grain trailors no longer suitable for fleet work, but still are suitable for farmer useage, probably last for years. This particular fellow had problems with the truck breakers blowing, had a dealership go through his whole unit with no luck. I don't work on these professionally any more, but I still have people showing up at my door exhausted of money and time, still needing to use their old units. After a quick glance at the condition of the electrical system, I wouldn't even try to repair such a butchered system. Lights being jumpered around, not even the right terminals used on the nose box, a real mess. The wiring runs through the frame rails on these old Load King trailors. I am going to run some external circuits, replace the pigtails and make some proper connections, and bring things up to paar with the proper color coding. It may be more time consuming, but fixing things the first time, and having trouble free service for the customer is a savings in the long run. I will be doing this after work, so for those of you with wiring woes, stay tuned, I will keep things up to date.

Some more pictures

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I got some work done after supper last night. The nose cone box was in good condition, after washing away all the grease. The breakers are not that old, they are 20 amp, reset themselves. The only thing about these, they can weaken with time, change out if you are suspicious about them. If you look closely at the back side, there is one side of the breaker with copper on it, don't connect your wiring to this side, or you will be bypassing the breaker. The breakers can come with two lengths of studs, if so, keep the short one on the side with the copper. You can utilize the longer stud for more light connections if you want. Color codes are as follows;

White-ground

Yellow-left signal

Green-right signal

Red-brake lights

Brown-marker lights

Black-clearance lights

Blue-utility accessories, or ABS on new trailors. This old machine has no accessories to power up or ABS, so I can use 6 wire cable.

I like to use the proper size of eye connectors on my cables. I like to use 2 methods of joining the connectors. Mechanical by using the crimpers, and chemically by soldering. I like to seal the connection with some heat shrink tubing. Careful when connecting the nose box, I run the cables away from any exposed screws and grounding studs. Vibration with wear quickly throught the shrink tubing and ground out.

I included a picture of a home made jig I use. A male connector with the proper wire going to each terminal. This way a person can hook it up to a battery to test the lights. If a person wanted to get fancy, an amp gauge can be hooked in series to see how much current each circuit is drawing. It gives you a good indication of the condition of the circuits.

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Looks good ian, not many guys around that like this type of work anymore :lol: and I fully agree starting from scratch far easier. Guess our salted roads and fertilizer hauling wasn't kind over time. :angry:

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Like you said hardtail, our weather conditions don't do the old equipment any favours. <_< I strung the main cable from the front to the rear of the trailor last night. I am going to use a junction box at the front and the rear, I don't want to cut through any insolation on this piece. About the only rust free spot you will find is on the underside of the side channels. I ran it on the right side, the left has the air line in it, don't want to start melting them. Also the mechanisms for the hopper gates are there, I want to keep my wiring away from all the action. Armed with a bunch of tight fitting cable clamps, I spot welded some bolts on the underside of the side channels. Don't try and drill and screw it, this steel is extremely hard, I had yet to find a screw that will hold up against it. After it is done, it is hardly noticeable. Things are moving along.

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I got the back end of the trailor done last night. Most of the hard work is done, time to get those side markers done.

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wow looks good, we are about to start buddy barry's trailer. shrink tube is the way to go.

thansk

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Had to work all night the last few days. We had a power grid failure, had to stay the whole night at the plant for start up. Now that I have caught my breath again, I am going to finish this trailor project. :rolleyes: Side markers were next on the project. The lights have two elements. The dim element is for side marker lights, the bright for the turn signal. On the pigtail, there are 3 wires of course, white-ground, red-signal light, and black for the marker. The ground could be attached to the light box frame, but with this kind of corrosion, I chose to bring the ground to the rear of the trailor into the junction box. For that I needed 3 wire cable. Up here we like to use artic flex, doesn't loose its flexibility in the cold weather. For butt connections, I wrap the wires tightly together with my fingers, followed with soldering. This makes for a small, neat connection that can be easily covered with the shrink wrap. I like to bring the insolated cable through the housing, so it will last longer against vibration. I like to split up my marker lights, rear markers will go on the brown circuit, as well as the side marker/signal lights. The rest of the clearance lights will go on the black circuit. This way if a circuit breaker trips, there will still be some sort of illumination for the trailor. The red wire on the right side went to the green post on the junction box (for the right turn signal), and the red wire on the left side went to the yellow post (for the left turn signal). Both black wires went onto the brown post in the junction box.

Clearance lights are simple. Two wire, black and white. Again because of corrosion problems, I will bring the ground wires back to the junction box. The pigtails were joined to the two wire artic flex like before. The black wires went onto the black terminal in the junction box, white onto the white.

I like to seal the wiring going into the light boxes with silicoln. Not that they will be a sealed unit, rust has pretty much eaten most of it, but once it has dried, the cable will be held in position, preventing the insolation being worn off for a long time.

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LOOKING GOOD!NICE CLEAN JOB!

NO MICKEY MOUSE,MULTI SPLICE WIRING-I HAVE SEEN 6 FEET OF WIRE WITH 3 DIFFERENT COLORS,6 LITTLE PIECES IN THE MIDDLE OF IT.REPLACED MORE THEN ONE MESS WHEN I DROVE OVER THE ROAD USUALLY IN CALIFORNIA,AT A TRUCK STOP.

TAKE CARE AND HAVE A GOOD ONE!

PAUL

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Well guys, I got lucky. The rear light bar was in good shape with new wiring, I just had to redo a couple of wires. :D Doing the rear light bar is just like doing the side marker/signal lights. Bright element is the red, to be used for the brake lights, or signal lights, depending on which one you are wiring. Black is for the marker lights, white for ground. The two outside lights at the rear are for the signal lights. Inside ones used for the brake lights. The front junction box is installed, both the front and rear boxes are grounded to the frame. Some people like to use grease or corrosion inhibitor and pump the junction boxes full. Myself, I think it makes a mess. I like to use some old spray paint that is laying around, seals well and prevents the terminals from corroding. Other than that, life is good. I told the owner to come by in the morning to pick up the unit, he showed up this evening, about 5 minutes after I was done. :o We plugged everything in, it worked the first try. I guess it doesn't hurt to keep us on our toes. I hope this post helped some of the beginners out, and never bored the experienced.

More pictures

Trailor leaving our yard.

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LOTS OF GOOD INFORMATION FOR SOMWONE REWIRING A TRAILER.MUCH WOULD ALSO APPLY TO A TRUCK.

LOTS OF GOOD HINTS ALSO.

USUAL PROBLEMS IN WIRING ARE BAD GROUNDS AND BUTT CONNECTORS IN WET CONDITIONS,THESE PROBLEMS HAVE PRETTY MUCH BEEN ELIMANATED BY RUNNING GROUNDS TO THE JUNCTION BOX AND SOLDERING WIRES THOUGH IT TAKES A LITTLE MORE TIME THEN USING A BUTT CONNECTOR,FOR SPLICES AND THE HEAT SHRINK MAKES IT PRETTY WATER TIGHT AND IS WELL WORTH THE EXTRA TIME.

FROM WHAT I HAVE SEEN I WOULD RECCAMEND YOU TO ANYONE THAT WANTS WIRING WORK(ONLY PROBLEM IS YOUR TOO FAR AWAY FOR THAT! ).

HINT FOR SOME ONE TRYING TO FIND A SHORT IN LIGHT WIRING,LOOK FOR LIGHT/S THAT ARE OUT. IF YOU HAVE A DEAD LIGHT AND A HIGH CURRENT DRAW YOU MOST LIKLEY WILL FIND THE SHORT IN THE WIRE TO THE DEAD LIGHT(UNLESS IT IS BURNT OUT!)I HAVE FOUND MANY AT WIRE HOLE UNDER THE OFFENDING LIGHT.

TAKE CARE AND HAVE A GOOD ONE!

PAUL

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LOTS OF GOOD INFORMATION FOR SOMWONE REWIRING A TRAILER.MUCH WOULD ALSO APPLY TO A TRUCK.

LOTS OF GOOD HINTS ALSO.

USUAL PROBLEMS IN WIRING ARE BAD GROUNDS AND BUTT CONNECTORS IN WET CONDITIONS,THESE PROBLEMS HAVE PRETTY MUCH BEEN ELIMANATED BY RUNNING GROUNDS TO THE JUNCTION BOX AND SOLDERING WIRES THOUGH IT TAKES A LITTLE MORE TIME THEN USING A BUTT CONNECTOR,FOR SPLICES AND THE HEAT SHRINK MAKES IT PRETTY WATER TIGHT AND IS WELL WORTH THE EXTRA TIME.

FROM WHAT I HAVE SEEN I WOULD RECCAMEND YOU TO ANYONE THAT WANTS WIRING WORK(ONLY PROBLEM IS YOUR TOO FAR AWAY FOR THAT! :lol: ).

HINT FOR SOME ONE TRYING TO FIND SHORT IN LIGHT WIRING,LOOK FOR LIGHT/S THAT ARE OUT. IF YOU HAVE A DEAD LIGHT AND A HIGH CURRENT DRAW YOU MOST LIKLEY WILL FIND THE SHORT IN THE WIRE TO THE DEAD LIGHT(UNLESS IT IS BURNT OUT!)I HAVE FOUND MANY AT WIRE HOLE UNDER THE OFFENDING LIGHT.

TAKE CARE AND HAVE A GOOD ONE!

PAUL

Excellent point, Paul. I find that wiring problems generally give themselves away, flickering, unusually dull, lights out. Definetly look at the system before tearing into it.

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thansk, printed some of this off for my buddy barry.

good thread and nice workmanship

thansk

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thansk, printed some of this off for my buddy barry.

good thread and nice workmanship

thansk

Thanks, glad someone can make some use of all my UFI.

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yes these BB are good and even better when the search button works. i showed this to buddy barry and he ordered all the shrink tubing and that what we did too.

thansk

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yes these BB are good and even better when the search button works. i showed this to buddy barry and he ordered all the shrink tubing and that what we did too.

thansk

That will be a real test of your skills, seeing as what you Manitoba boys put your equipment through. :D

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yes the extra bounce on the 300 kms to the nearest city sure does a number on equipmnet, more welds, more wire and more duct tape hold it together, LOL

thansk

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