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noah-garvin avatar image

Many questions about my electrical build, any answers appreciated!

Please only answer what you are able to, I know this is a lot of text!


I recently purchased the Orion-Tr Smart 12|12-30 Non-Isolated DC/DC Charger. I'm in the middle of setting up my first solar build for a van. I'm following this wiring diagram for an electrical build, but i'm changing one major component of it. In the diagram, he uses a Li-BIM, which is basically just a battery isolator made for LiFePO4 batteries. I figured since it's not too expensive, and it's much better in the long run, that I would replace that component with the Victron Orion-Tr. I'm really excited to set all of it up, but I do have a few questions about actually finishing the diagram before I purchase the inverter, batteries, and wires.


If there's too many questions, I apologize! I wasn't really sure where to find some of this, so I figured i'd post them on a few forums.


  • So first question.. I attached the new draft of the wiring diagram that i'm currently working on. The main electrical build is almost complete, but I'm not entirely sure how I should connect the Orion. I know the positive out goes to the positive bus bar on my system. But after that, what do I do with the other connections? Does the single, negative ground terminal go all the way back to a new connection on the negative bus bar? Or should it go to a separate grounding connection near the alternator in the hood? or does it simply go back to the same grounding connection that the negative bus bar is attached to?


  • And for the positive in, do I just take a 2AWG wire, and connect the starting battery to the positive input on the Orion? Or do I connect the Orion directly to the alternator somehow? Or both?


  • For the fuse, what kind of fuse is best for this build? And what amperage? My 2001 Ford E150 is using this 130A alternator. In the original wiring diagram, it looks like he's using a 250A terminal fuse, would that be correct for the Orion as well?


  • Also, is that an acceptable amperage to charge my house batteries with? Or do you think there's a possibility of my alternator overheating?


  • Do I need a manual/ignition switch? My understanding is that this is mainly just to override the Orion so that it doesn't turn on when you start the car, if you don't want it to. Or, so you can actually self-jump your starting battery off of your house batteries if you need to in an emergency.


  • In the original wiring diagram, what is the large orange wire with the green, white, and black cable coming out of it? Does the Inverter come with the wiring that i'll need to hook up the inverter to the distribution panel and shore power? What does the 6/3 and 10/3 mean for the wire sizes? I assume the "3" refers to the 3 cables inside of the larger cable, and the first number is the size of the 3 cables inside?


  • Lastly, what kind of distribution panel would you guys recommend? I'm assuming finding a panel that has both a DC fuse box built in, and also an AC breaker box is best. Does anyone have one in mind that they would use in this build?


Again, thank you for literally any feedback at all! I'm completely new to this and sometimes I struggle to find certain pieces of information online myself, so I figure it's best to write down all of the questions I have and ask on a forum like this.

wiring diagram
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