My 2006 Chevy Avalanche 2500, plans, and questions on 12v electrical system -

How thick are the rods on a 2500? If they are the standard GM 1/2" - swapping those should be way up on the priority list. I'm curious with the 8.1 - what kind of MPG do you get with that?
Makemuch, nice setup. How long is your sleeping platform? And, how long could it be? (I'm not real familiar with all the configurations of the Avalanche).
Progress - slowly but surely

Hi All,

I've made some progress. I've updated the wiring and electrical I want to do… I'll cross-post this over on the Power Systems forum and ask my electrical questions there. I've also done some shopping.




I also added access to the saddlebag storage areas. On the Avalanche there are two storage areas accessed through a hatch on the top of the bed rails. The SnugTop however sits on those so it closes them off. I cut through the inside bed of the truck and put in hatches so I could once again use those areas. The driver's side will be for storage, and the passenger side will be where I put the power panel.


I'll put more details of this particular mod on the Chevy Avalanche Fan Club page as it's really specific to the Avy. (maker2280)

Next step is to put the power panel together and run the wire from the aux battery. I will be using 1/0 wire inside 1/2" flexible non metallic conduit. I am running both positive and negative to the aux battery. The cable came as a set at a good price so I went with it.

Your thoughts and suggestions are always appreciated.

Regarding previous questions..
Stryder106 - MPH about 10 - 12 mph is my guestimate. I'll track mileage and fill-ups on my next road trip. Not sure on the rods, I'll measure when I'm under there running the electrical.
freedrive - sleeping platform is about 7'. When put together it measures from close to the back of the front seats, though not touching to about 4" from the closed tailgate. When everything is down, I have hauled 8' x 4' sheets of plywood in there while being able to keep the tailgate up, so there is plenty of room.



Expedition Leader
Great solution / idea for the power panel location. I would further suggest designing the panel so all the ports are under covers / doors. Maybe even shaped so the doors will close even with things plugged into the ports. The idea being to shield the ports from gettign beat on by stored gear. But then again your fridge location ought to provide some protection anyway.

I considered recessing the ports on my power box but ultimately wen against it as the panel faces right at the Liftgate and on the front end, close to the back of the third row seats (when installed)
Rayra, one Anderson connection will be in the side wall of the bed for the ARB. Everything else will be inside/inset in the storage area that has the hatch cover, so I can cover everything up when in motion. Most of the outlets came with individual covers which I'll leave on for now... I'm also thinking of mounting an Anderson and 12v round outside the back somewhere so I can plug stuff in while keeping everything closed up... but that will be a future thing. I'm not yet quite sure how I'm going to attach the panel in there so it will be solid but also easily removable. this is where I just start putting stuff together with trial and error. I'll post pics when I get it figured out.
Progress has been slow, but I am happy to report, progress has been made.

I finished running cable from the aux battery under the hood to the passenger side saddle bag storage in the bed and wired in a few outlets.
I ran the flexible 1/2" grey conduit first then ran the 1/0 wire through to the back.... but not all the way up into the saddle bag storage, I left it hanging on the ground to make it easier to fish the wire through. I ended up running paracord through the conduit with fish tape, then drilling a hole through the end of the 1/0 wire where I tied the paracord through, trying to attach the fish cord to the 1/0 wire didn't work. While I pushed/fed on the cable on one end applying wax, and my son pulled on the paracord, which I wrapped around a thick dowel to make a handle. We got it through fairly easily with that method. Once it was through, I poked the cable and conduit up through the floor of the storage compartment. I had already put on the ring terminals on the end I was pushing through, and I cut and put the ring terminals on the other end in the bed once I knew how much I needed.

Here is under the truck in the back where it enters into the saddle back storage compartment from underneath.

Here is the inside before I cut it down.

This is the aux battery under the hood. The negative terminal is wired direct and run to the back, while the positive runs through a 200A circuit breaker that I stuck on the battery. You can also see the PAC isolator that runs through a fuse then up to the positive, that cable is black conduit. The conduit pretty much follows the frame all the way back.

On the inside, I decided to permanently mount an Anderson Power Pole (APP) panel mount connector and an regular 12v plug into the side wall figuring there may be times I may want to have some power, but not the full panel or maybe need the power but don't have the full panel in the truck. I will mount the rest of the outlets to the panel and as I said earlier, that entire system will be removable so I can use it to run a separate battery power box.


Here is a shot of what it looks like inside the storage compartment. I have the cables coming up through the conduit, and attached to a Blue Sea Systems Dual Power Post with a Blue Sea Systems ST- Blade Battery Terminal Mount Fuse Block Kit. You can see the smaller wire coming off and is wired to the APP and 12v ports. Coming off the post is also 1/0 wire with a big APP connector that I will plug into another panel mounted inside going to a fuse box (see further below). I've wired one APP with a 15 Amp fuse for the ARB fridge, one with a 30 Amp fuse for use with a tire inflator, and the 12v socket with a 15 Amp fuse. All are wired with 10 gauge wire. The two APP connectors are rated up to 45 Amps each . I really took all the over build recommendations to heart and I wanted to be prepared if I need more power for something else that comes along later.


This is the next part of the project… I will be putting in more power ports into the panel, along with a fuse box, solar controller, and a 1500W inverter inside the storage box. Pictured is the actual panel not drilled yet, the cardboard mockup with actual components - very much still a work in progress All of this will be removable and attachable to a portable battery power box. Layout is all wrong here and I hope to fit in a small fan in the panel, wired to the inverter so that when the inverter is turned on, the fan kicks on to alleviate any temperature issues inside the storage box.

Let me know if you have any thoughts or suggestions....
Cheers, Maker.
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