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Blackvue DR650GW-2CH Install

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by wk057, Apr 6, 2015.

  1. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    So, I *finally* got around to finishing my install of my dash cam on my P85D. At delivery, before driving off from the service center, I stuck the front cam up on the windshield and have been running with the front cam using the 12V power outlet since then........ that was in December. lol.

    Went ahead and ran the wires for the power and rear cam, and took some pics along the way. Figured I would share. I know there are other dash cam install threads, but several have requested I make a post when I do my P85D, so, here it is. (Rep?! lol)

    This isn't really a step by step how-to, and I'm not a professional dash cam installer. This is the third one I've installed on a Model S, however, so learned a few things that others may find helpful.

    ---


    So, first, as mentioned, I had already stuck the front cam to the windshield. Now I just need to do the actual install and wire routing.

    Let's start in the back. I popped the center plastic trim piece around the top of hatch with a plastic pry tool. It's held in by those annoying automotive plastic snap-ins. It is likely one or more will break, so, have some extras.

    2015-03-30-13.jpg

    And the piece to the right (passenger side)...

    2015-03-30-13.44.jpg


    So behind the top piece looks like this:


    2015-03-30-13.41a.jpg

    Next, I popped out the wire harness boot that attaches the car to the hatch. Not the one for the power lift gate (should be obvious).

    2015-03-30-13.45.jpg

    Then I removed two panels from the passenger side C-pillar. One screw under the black plastic one held it in place, the headliner-covered piece is snap in.

    2015-03-30-13.47.jpg

    Then pop out the other side of the boot. Should be able to fish something through to the outside from above the headliner (in this case a finger...)

    2015-03-30-13.48.jpg

    Now back to the front. Since I have an EZpass on my windshield I'm not super concerned about the wires here. The EZpass will cover them from view mostly.
    Tucked both wires across the front of the headliner with the plastic pry tool over to the passenger side A-pillar...

    2015-03-30-13.57.jpg

    When I got here, I continued towards the back with the rear cam wire.

    2015-03-30-13.58.jpg

    Tucking along the way to the B-pillar. The trim here is pretty tight.
    2015-03-30-14.01.jpg


    I tucked the power wire in the opposite direction towards the front door trim.

    2015-03-30-14.01a.jpg

    Tucked the rear cam wire behind panel...

    2015-03-30-14.02.jpg

    And presto, arrived at the back where I took the cover off of the C-pillar.

    2015-03-30-14.04a.jpg

    Pretty easy to fish the wire up to the boot hole without any tools.

    2015-03-30-14.07.jpg

    Now, this is the trick I used for getting the wire through the cramped boot. The connector is a pain to push through. It just takes forever and is frustrating (did this with my P85). I thought of this method pictured below when I did my fiance's P85. Basically just fed a loop through the boot, then pulled the end that went to the connector through from the far end, pushing the connector through the rubber as I pulled to make sure not to strain it too much or break the boot.

    2015-03-30-14.13.jpg

    Not long after I have the connector through!

    2015-03-30-14.15.jpg

    Now here is where people are going to stone me. I took a rapid/step drill bit and drilled a hole in the hatch metal near one of the trim mounting holes large enough for the connector.
    Let me explain. The wiring that runs through that boot doesn't emerge until it gets to the other end of the hatchback... which is behind the large piece of trim on that end. Drilling the hole is MUCH simpler than fighting with trying to get that piece off and on without breaking things.

    Not too hard to fish the cam wire up into the hatch and to this hole. I used a piece of solid copper wire to help with this part.
    (The black silicon spot you see is from a false start on my drill attempt. Sealed it up.)

    2015-03-30-14.37.jpg

    Installed a rubber grommet piece in the hole, then covered in silicon sealant for an added bonus.

    2015-03-30-14.50.jpg

    Have a bunch of excess rear cam wire now... and these little spots appear to be unused. Stuffed most of it here then zip tied it in a bundle (not to the holes, those are for the trim) (not shown, forgot to take pic).

    2015-03-30-14.51.jpg

    Re-installed the right trim piece, then the center piece. I marked the center of the hatch with a piece of tape before putting the center piece back.

    2015-03-30-14.54.jpg

    Wire is through and ready to go. Little long still.
    Mounted rear cam with lens in the center. Tucked the remaining wire under the trim piece. Made sure the trim pieces were secure. (I only broke one snap in thing this time... had an extra, though)

    2015-03-30-15.01.jpg

    Vacuum drill shavings!

    2015-03-30-15.05.jpg


    Presto, rear cam is there. And in this position it is completely out of sight of the driver.

    2015-03-30-15.14.jpg





    Now back to the front for power. I didn't take many pics here, but basically I just fished the power wire and fuse (cut the 12V male end off) through the door seal in the largest part. The door seal is pretty huge there and is perfect for this.
    I removed one of the bolts holding the frunk air piston and added a ring connector on the ground wire.
    Mounted the cable with the hooks included with the cam in multiple places along the way.

    2015-03-30 15.56.34.jpg

    Unfortunately the neat little fuse tap devices do not fit in the fuse box on the Model S with the cover on. I tried multiple brands with no luck. So, I opted for an old fashion fuse tap... you know, wrap the wire under the fuse and stick it back in...
    I'm not really proud of this solution, but I couldn't come up with a better one. I don't want to add a tap to any wiring inside the car. I taped the wire to the red plastic near the fuse. Cover closes fine with the thin wire there.
    I kept the inline fuse for protection of the cam power wire.
    I didn't bother using power magic type device since the cam is very unlikely to have any draw capable of killing the Model S 12V battery since the DC-DC will always keep it charged. If the DC-DC fails the normal car idle draw will kill it in no time anyway.

    2015-03-30 15.56.27.jpg


    And after some aligning of the rear cam using the live WiFi view on my phone... success!

    2015-03-30 20.04.48.jpg

    Hopefully someone finds this useful. :)

    On a side note, this is the 6th Blackvue dual channel cam I've installed (P85, P85, P85D, Chevy Volt, Chevy Volt, Prius C)... and I really like the cams. Decent quality, haven't had any reliability issues. Bunch of features. The ability to pull video recordings over WiFi is the best thing ever.

    -wk
     
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  2. patrick42h

    patrick42h Member

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    That's a pretty slick installation. Nice job!
     
  3. MichaelS

    MichaelS Member

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    Thanks very much for the great pictures. This should give me the courage to finish installing mine.
     
  4. llavalle

    llavalle Member

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    Great tips.

    I need to install my cam in the next few days. I'm feeling a bit weird driving without one (had a Lukas 7900 Ace in my ICE).

    4 small questions :
    1-I don't really understand where you drilled through the the panel, could you take a picture from farther away (even with the panels on)
    2-I don't like the idea of the old fashioned fuse tap either. I was thinking of using a modified obd connector for 12V... Have you measured the current draw of the cam? WiFi does make a big difference. The specs are "Max 4.8W", that's 400mA at 12V. According to SAE J1962, max AMP between pin #4 (chassis ground) and pin #15(battery power) is 4A but I'm unsure the OBD Port is 100% compliant on this car...
    3-Any problems with GPS reception through the windshield?
    4-About the DC-DC Converter, it is always on?
     
  5. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    Here is a shot pre-drilling with the approximate spot marked in pink. I picked a spot that had the most room behind it in case of any issue. Note the blueish plastic clip (broken one I removed in later pictures) is the hole next to the hole I drilled in later pictures.

    2015-03-30 13.44.01-hl.jpg

    I'll note that there are two layers of metal here with a small gap between them before getting to the hollow portion where the wire will be. I freaked out the first time I drilled and thought I was somehow about to go through the exterior. lol. Upon further inspection my initial concern was unjustified.


    I thought about the ODB port, but decided against it for a few reasons. I also never checked if it was constantly powered or not. The current draw, as measured from the end of the wire during a WiFi download of a video (seemed to be most usage) measured about 0.5A.

    I park in the garage, so GPS takes a bit to kick in on the cam. But it always does, so, I would say no issues.

    It is not always on, but it will come on as needed to maintain the 12V battery normally. The electronics in the car pull a decent amount from the 12V anyway as it is, so the dash cam is negligible in comparison and won't affect that the duty cycle of the DC-DC coming on, IMO.

    Hope this helps. :)
     
  6. andrewket

    andrewket 2014 S P85DL, 2016 X P90DL (soon 100)

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    The easiest place to access 12v for cars below vin ~15k and then again starting around 55k is behind the plastic mesh where the microphone for the Bluetooth resides. Search here on the forums, it's well documented. I used this source for a blackvue camera in my 100xx and 635xx VIN model S.
     
  7. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    Still would need to do some kind of permanent tap though, no? I wanted to avoid that, personally.
     
  8. andrewket

    andrewket 2014 S P85DL, 2016 X P90DL (soon 100)

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    Don't need to tap, just use a header to insert into the unused connector. It's female, so you need to supply the male end. You should also fuse it. It will cost about $3-4 in parts.
     
  9. JPP

    JPP Active Member

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    Nice work. Please also see this thread:

    DIY Dashcam (BlackVue 550 fronrear) - constant power source from dash

    with additional photos and notes. I too drilled out the right hand frame member on the hatch (maybe a bit lower than the OP here) for the same reason. I was fortunate to have always-on 12V in my headliner above the microphone grille. I chose to not use the connector pins but to pop open the TM connector, lay the red and black wires onto the bare leads, and snap the connector shut. Keeps it available for future needs (...the missing lighted sun visor vanity mirrors).
     
  10. llavalle

    llavalle Member

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    Yep!

    I ended up waiting to install it after a service appointment for a rattling noise in the A-Pillar. I waited cause I was pretty sure they would remove the trim piece and did not want my install to interfere with anything...

    So far so good. I did not use the conduit, I added a bit of slack on the driver side and the cable is visible from the rear of the car. I can't see it in my rear view mirror so I'm OK with that for now. I bought a right angle OBD-2 extension and connected that to a cigarette lighter female plug (pin #4 is vehicle ground and pin #16 is battery power)

    One thing I don't like about this dashcam is that it does not have rolling folders for each video type (normal, event, motion, etc). My previous cam (Lukas 7900 Ace) had those and I found that it was VERY practical -> set your event folder for 10% of your memory card and old events will only be rolled over when new events are created + this specific folder is full. AKA, normal recording does not overwrite old event / motion video. It also had a manual trigger button for events... I would trigger the event button every time something weird happened (road rage, near miss, etc)... I would dump the card every month of so.

    Well, like you said, I suppose the WiFi functionality compensate for this. I just need to remember to dump events when I get home. With WiFi it's really easy!

    Phil
     
  11. Cyclone

    Cyclone Active Member

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    I plan to use these photos here and some of the info at TLiving's blog to do an install in my Model S. I am fortunate to have a lower VIN with the constant 12V in the microphone cover up front, so I plan to use that rather than tapping a fuse. I see he did not drill in and instead ran the wire exposed from the rear body to the hatch. An alternative if you don't want to drill into your body. Now if only I had the guts to actually do this install myself!
     
  12. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    #12 Andyw2100, May 21, 2015
    Last edited: May 21, 2015
    Coming to this thread a bit late, but still before my installer does my installation in a couple of weeks.

    I had talked to him about getting power from this location, but did not realize I should buy some spare parts ahead of time. From another thread a while ago I had saved the following as a possible part I might need for this installation.

    Amazon.com: 1.3mm x 3.5mm x 11.2mm Plug with 6 feet Cord: Electronics

    I thought with that piece, the installer would be tapping into some wire in that microphone area, and the male end would plug directly into the camera, so that the power cord that comes with the unit would not have to be cut apart. There was talk of the need to add a fuse to this connection in the thread where I found the link.

    (I hadn't bought this because with the shipping cost, and then having to ask my installer to attach a fuse, I figured why not just sacrifice the cable that came with the unit. There didn't seem to be a compelling reason not to.)

    But it sounds like you're suggesting that there's an even easier way to draw power there.

    Since this is pretty much Greek to me, when you have the time, would you mind posting links to the $3 or $4 worth of parts? I'll then plan to order them and just suggest to my installer that he connect there, as I had suggested, and I'll have the exact parts he needs.

    Thanks!

    Edit of this part, before the "Also." (Leaving that part alone.)

    I just read through all this again, and understood this this time, I think:


    Am I correct that if my installer were to use the JPP method, he would need only the part I linked to above, and would somehow need to add a fuse? Or he could just cut the power cord that came with the unit at the 12V adapter, keeping the fuse inline, and use the original power cable? Is this correct? This actually sounds simpler, doesn't require that I purchase any additional parts, and leaves the connector free.

    Thanks!




    Also...



    This is actually my second trip to this installer for the dashcam install. It was supposed to be done at the same time as my front camera switch install, but that took longer than expected, and he ran out of time. (It works well though, and I'm very happy with the result.) In any case, I had read in other threads about the possibility of clips breaking, and to have extras available, and I had bought a bag of these:

    Amazon.com: 25 Toyota Trim Panel Retainer Clips 90467-10188 Sienna: Automotive

    (I know they say Toyota, but I had heard from a Tesla parts person, who didn't have any to sell me, that they were pretty generic, and they seemed to match up spec-wise with these: D10687 - Tesla Clip [D10687] - $0.97 : Bel-Metric, Metric Hardware, Metric Fasteners, Metric Bolts, Metric Nuts & Time-Sert Thread Repair.)

    But my installer does not believe these are the correct clips, or at least not the ones that he already could do with having some replacements for use under the dash. I'm thinking those may be the ones you are talking about, WK057, so would you mind sharing a link or a picture of the exact correct clip, so I can buy some of those too?

    I'm in Ithaca, and my installer is a couple of hours away in Rochester, so I definitely want to have any little parts he may need, so that this can get completed with just one more trip.

    Thanks very much!
     
  13. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    From what I understand these can be different from car to car. Tesla apparently changed which ones they used over time. The ones I got I went through Tesla service and they looked it up. I actually have no idea where the extras I had are now... and I don't seem to have any good shots from my install showing them, either. :(
     
  14. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    OK, no problem.

    What did you call them when you told Tesla service what you wanted? I had asked for "Trim Panel Clips" and the person I spoke to said that they didn't have enough to sell me, but that they were pretty generic. I thought I had found the right clip on Amazon, and maybe I did, but I'd like to have the other kind that my installer would like to have as well, just in case.

    Thanks.
     
  15. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    Don't laugh too hard, but I literally just said, "the annoying plastic snap in things that always break that hold the trim pieces," and the person knew what I was talking about. :smile:
     
  16. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Well-Known Member

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    OK, I'll try that.

    I actually have a ranger coming to install my Next Gen seats next week. Thinking about this, I'm sure he'll know what clips I'd need. I can show him what I have, and he can possibly then sell me a couple of the others, or at least tell me exactly what they are called, so I can order a few.

    Thanks!
     
  17. Madartist

    Madartist Member

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    @Andyw2100 I vaguely recall someone posting in another thread that a constant 12v power supply is again available under the front microphone cover in P85D. Of course, I'm rather skeptical since I don't see a reason why Tesla would make power available again in that location. Nevertheless, you might want to check anyway because it would be far easier than tapping into the fuse box for power. I have not looked for the wiring in my car myself since I would have no idea what to look for anyway.
     
  18. llavalle

    llavalle Member

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    My 85D (VIN #698xx) has the connector. I decided to go against that route because I could not find a clean way to route the wire from there to the dashcam. With the autopilot hardware, the cover behind the rear view mirror is full of electronics and while there is space to route a wire, it has to go though the fins of a heatsink. I also wanted to keep the dashcam cord intact so I had to stash the cigarette lighter plug somewhere...
     
  19. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    I went ahead and posted a thread containing some info that was passed along to me not too long ago regarding a spare 12V circuit on newer vehicles. It's a switched circuit, so, not sure if it's a lot of use for those who want continuously running cams, but seems useful none the less: Spare Switched 12V Circuit on Model S built after July 2014
     
  20. llavalle

    llavalle Member

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    Thanks for the info. Really usefull as I wanted to hardwire a high power usb charger in my car.

    As for unswitched power, I still think that pulling from the OBD-II port is the less invasive solution. You only get 4amps but that's more than enough for dashcams. It might not be the best option but I did not have to poke holes anywhere so it felt better :D
     

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