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DRL LEDs, Front Motion Sensor, NEXT CRAZY IDEA

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by Botbldr45, Dec 25, 2013.

  1. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    #1 Botbldr45, Dec 25, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2013
    image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg Ever park three feet from the curb because you are afraid you would run into it???
    Well I do it all the time and it annoys me

    Being an old Audi owner I kinda like the DRL LED lights.... but.....
    can't hack into the 12 volt system on a 2.5 without lightning striking you and the warranty going up in smoke.... Soooooo...... What to do????

    During my online Christmas shopping I just ordered some silly stuff and am hooking it up to run some tests to see how crazy it would be to install a separate 12 volt system in old #992 that could power Phillips DRL and some backup sensors on the front of the car.

    Hooked up a system, trying to find out how long a rechargeable "fish finder" battery will power the two add-ons, how long to recharge battery, how system would work, etc

    I'll posts some pics and would appreciate any feedback
     
  2. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Looks like a fun project. Not buying the "can't plug anything in" deal but I can understand your caution. (My 2.0 has had a backup camera installed for over 3 years with no issues.)

    Personally I deliberately park 3 feet from the curb. The car is so small that it doesn't matter. Also if my car gets SUVs on either side and is parked forward, drivers can't see it until they're already turning into the spot. The drivers in this town are so bad I don't want to give anyone the chance to drive obliviously into the back of my car!
     
  3. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    Yea it would be nice to tie into the 12v AUX socket in the center console. I could power the entire thing there and eliminate one switch since that socket goes dead a few minutes after turning car off. That would be great for DRL lights.
    Still need an on-off for the proximity sensor since they are designed to splice into the rear backup lights...... No backup lights on front of car.

    I definitely appreciate your parking technique and use it also when around a herd of parked ICERs
     
  4. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    It took a while to get things together. One battery indicator failed after one charging cycle so had to order another one. The battery indicator shows how much charge is left in the battery and serves the only notice as to when it's time to recharge. I have a digital voltmeter attached and that is useful but appears to serve an academic function rather than a practical one. The combination of the two meters does give a pretty good analysis of the battery function. My recharging idea is a simple 12 volt plug from Radio Shack and works pretty good. All wires are 18 gauge Radio Shack. The Phillips 8 DRL LED kit has an automatic inline dimmer that is activated when one turns on the headlights but that cuts the brightness of the LEDs by about 30%. I eliminated this feature for obvious reasons after learning how my system works and the fact I wanted the entire system to stand alone from the Roadsters 12 volt system.

    I have run thru 4 battery cycles and have determined that the battery will last for about 18 hours of continuous use. The LEDS remained on during each cycle although I did turn them off and then back on after about five minutes three to five times during a cycle just to see if things were still working. The proximity sensor I turned on and off up to ten times per cycle but it's voltage draw seems pretty negligible. That sensor is only on for maybe 30 seconds max per use. Since actual driving use of the DRL's is not continuous the battery will no doubt last a lot longer.

    After full charge the battery seems to put out 12.5 volts for the first hour or so and the voltmeter shows a 0.1 volt decrease every time the LEDs are turned on......... but then goes back up 0.1 volt when turned off. The actual operating range of the battery reads between 11.1 and 11.9 during the the first 16-17 hours. The battery indicator does show an appropriate decrease in capacity over that time decreasing from the top green dot to the third from the bottom green dot but this doesn't appear consistently linear ..... A bit of a disappointment. At the end of a cycle the voltmeter drops below 11.0 volts and the indicator goes into the yellow dot range then the red - yellow flashing state. I never let the battery go flat but did get the voltmeter down to 9.0 volts once .... Then plugged it back in.
    Interestingly when the voltmeter gets to the low 11's the brightness on the LEDS seems to decrease. I rationalized that the original Phillips dimmer was probably a voltage drop activated by a sensor when the headlights were turned on........ That's when I cut it out of my circuit.

    Next ....... Looking at how to get it into a 2.5 Roadster but first.....need to see how the numbers will change after setting the system up in my garage. It's cold out there!:crying:
     
  5. smorgasbord

    smorgasbord Active Member

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    Love following your progress here. When you get it up and running in the car, please share the part numbers and how-to.
     
  6. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    #6 Botbldr45, Jan 15, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
    image.jpg Cold testing was a success. MD weather helped by going down to 5 degrees for awhile. Battery seemed to hold its voltage and discharge rate pretty good. It even charged normally in the garage test.

    Switches proved to be a problem. My original idea was to use the same switches on the Tesla. I got two from a guy named Yvo Tuk - Elise-shop.com. I designed the control piece to go in the useless storage hole where the trunk latch is. It looked great but then image.jpg I realized that the lotus switches are momentary switches not latching switches! Soooooo...... Without a circuit board to convert momentary(push button) switches to latching switches I would need new switches. They need to be small to fit ..... No greater than 15mm. Found some at Aliexpress so I'm waiting for those, but I also found a device called an Amico latching trigger mode two channel power relay module that will work in a 12 volt circuit so my Lotus switches might still be an option.

    Now I wait for supplies!

    The semi-circular cut out is for ones finger to activate the trunk button. I really wanted to move it to the control board but that would violate my stand alone system idea and probably void my warranty. I decided against it.
     
  7. Fabrizio

    Fabrizio Member

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  8. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    Yes Fabrizio very nice find!

    I saw that in my original internet search and liked it. My decision not to use it centered around my typical driving situation. I drive with the volume on my radio at ear pain levels from ignition to shutdown. If Eric Clapton is playing "Let it Rain" when Im pulling up to a curb there is a snowballs chance in Hell that I would turn it down to listen for a beep! Thats just me……… After watching the video I was impressed with the relative ease of installation and ability to easily aim the sensor. My choice has two stick-0n sensors and a visual readout that gives you distances starting from 4.8 feet up to 1.8 feet at which time a big "P" is displayed that says "park"…... I quess. Audio prompts are available starting with slow beeps proceeding up to manic machine gun sounding beeps but are easily turned off on the control module.

    Update: Amico latching trigger mode two channel power relay module was a bust! Couldn't get it to work after trying everything I could. Current would bleed thru the manual switches all the time and the separate 05VDC relays didn't close the circuit even though they advertised that circuitry magic would allow 5 volt relays to close 12 volts of power. Oh well …….. I probably wired it wrong…….. back to the Internet where I found a device from Baker Electronics in Texas that should work. I talked to a very helpful tech guy, that chuckled a lot, who told me how to wire it safely. The new Pulse activated, Latching Relay Modules PLRCr are on their way! Last chance to use my Lotus switches I think.

    Although I found a great location for the battery over the Passenger side fender in the water tight section of the front of the car I have chickened out there. It would require mounting brackets that would need holes drilled into the wheel well. I may do that in the future but for now the battery fits in the center console and easily accessible for recharge.

    I need to get in touch with the guys who have removed their dashboards for radio refit to see if they saw a way to run 4 wires thru the "firewall". Don't want to drill holes………

    Finished wiring control module…reminded me of my old HeathKit days. It will be cool if Baker E module works.

    photo.JPG

    Unwired switch on the right is for the parking sensors….. need to run wires first.
     
  9. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    Baker Electronix device works like a charm. It allows lotus led momentary switch to act like a latching switch. The control module now is wired with one switch turning on power to the voltmeter and the battery status gauge and the other switch working the LED Running lights. That's success but a new problem has me rethinking the wiring!

    Hopkins motion sensor comes in two components. One is the wiring to the actual sensors that ends in a wireless communication module that sends signal to a separate module that is connected to the display. Cool but each module needs power and each module creates a drain on the battery. I need a 12volt disconnect that turns off the motion sensor drain and the Baker PLRC drain. And preserves the battery so I don't need to charge it that often. Little tricky to use a Lotus switch to turn off the PLRC that makes the switch work! No problem...........:scared:

    Figured out fuses for wiring and recharging socket ( guitar amp plug). ...... Seems to work. Still don't really don't have clear picture where I am during recharge of battery. Battery status gauge is great for monitoring SOC on battery as is discharges with use but inaccurate during recharge.

    Back to the internet!
     
  10. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    #10 Botbldr45, Mar 9, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2014
    Well, Roadster Forum seems a little slow so I thought I would throw in an update on my winter project.

    Baker PLRC modules are very reliable and allow me to use Lotus switches. You can even pour a beer on them and they still work ...... Not that you guys would want to but testing components must cover all possibilities. The phantom drain situation on the first line MS's made me rethink my wiring and I came up with a solution that ... of course .... Made the control unit a RubGoldberg (sp?) device at best.

    image.jpg


    The switch on the right of the panel turns on the voltmeter and battery monitor. The switch on the left now is a cutoff for power to the motion sensor ( black wire) and the LEDS ( black and white wire). The Lotus switch hanging on the right of the photo is the on-off for the LEDs and will mount next to the headlight switch in the unused knock-out above the instrument cluster dimmer switch. Don't think using that space will void the warranty :rolleyes:

    I used two Baker PLRCs to make it all work.

    image.jpg

    They are the black boxes with the red light on top. I taped them together to allow them to fit behind control panel in useless storage space below trunk switch.

    They entire system runs off of negative battery terminal triggers. All switches and Baker Electronix PLRC's are wired to the neg side ( black wires). The fuse block is on the positive side ( red wires). 3amp fuses for the LEDS, the Hopkins Motion Sensors base unit and the Hopkins Sensors display unit ( see post above). A 7.5 amp fuse is used for the battery charging unit......... Which I have changed from the last post.

    I'll get into that later........ Still testing it. Safer interface and good strong proprietary plug system with SOC indicator ....... Which I like!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Anybody know if running a 12volt current thru Automotive Epoxy will start a fire:scared:


    image.jpg

    To get one wire to the battery positive terminal I needed a fuse block with only one wire out..... I emprovised!:crying:

    - - - Updated - - -

    Next problem!!!

    Where to put LEDs! After spending time staring at 992 I realized that I can either wire the Phillips unit to the grill ( would look like the old heaps we had at the fraternity house in 1967) or double side tape them to the grill!!! No room the properly mount them .... Bummer!

    Must go stare some more.:frown:


    image.jpg
     
  11. bart513

    bart513 Member

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    I am always worried that an SUV will back into it when parking due to the low profile..
     
  12. samcarney

    samcarney Sam C

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    +1 :)
     
  13. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I've almost had that happen while I was sitting in the Roadster, with it powered down! Fortunately he heard all the honking before it was too late.
     
  14. jbadger

    jbadger Roadster #506

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  15. Jackyche

    Jackyche Member

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    I had someone back into my Roadster 2 separate occasions in the span of 3 months.

    First time was a minor scratch (repaint), second time left a 8-inch crack on the bumper (replaced it with 2.5).

    Super annoying.
     
  16. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    After staring at the front of the car for a long time I realized that the perfect position for the LEDS was impossible!
    I had to mount them in the grill after all. I ran down to my office and dismantled the electric Endo Drill and brought it home to drill four very small holes in the bottom slat of the grill. I was then able to attach the Phillips LED brackets to 992 in a fashion that does not cosmetically affect the grill....... Screwed them in and very stable. I moved the lights toward the center of the car a bit as not to interfere with the airflow out the side vents in front of the wheel well. I figured the Tesla Engineers had a reason for that channel..... Esthetic compromise but .......

    image.jpg

    I still have to figure out the sensor deli a but was able to leave two "Aux" wires out of the upper left Red Lotus switch ( couldn't get blue). I can use one of those for the sensors when I get around to it. The other cable I might use to power a mp3 unit to make obscene noises for pedestrians so they can't say they didn't hear me.....:biggrin:

    image.jpg

    I know the LEDS are very weenie but I was thinking that four more toward the counter on both sides may look good?

    That's "toward the center" feel like I'm correcting Siri as I do on most iPhone texts!

    - - - Updated - - -

    View attachment 45994

    This is the control module with lights out.
    The Lotus switch next to the headlights is for the LEDs.

    View attachment 45995

    This is with all lights on.......
    I have the fuse box and "kill" switch on a shelf on the drivers side about knee distance from the seat to the accelerator petal. Kinda hard to get to but a perfect location.

    - - - Updated - - -

    View attachment 45994

    This is the control module with lights out.
    The Lotus switch next to the headlights is for the LEDs.

    View attachment 45995

    This is with all lights on.......
    I have the fuse box and "kill" switch on a shelf on the drivers side about knee distance from the seat to the accelerator petal. Kinda hard to get to but a perfect location.
     

    Attached Files:

  17. WarpedOne

    WarpedOne Supreme Premier

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    Are you from Australia?
     
  18. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    LOL your attachments are in all orientations or just plain missing. Please edit!
     
  19. Botbldr45

    Botbldr45 Member

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    Wow that stinks ....... Let's see what I can do
     
  20. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    That last pic reminds me of a fly hanging out on a ceiling :)

    But seriously, I've ran into issues posting pics, doing updates, etc with the TMC server... mostly with the way it handles pics. It didn't matter which way I orientated the pic on my PC, the server orientated the way it wanted it to be. Also I've made a mess out of a post trying to fix/clean things up. End result, I had to delete my thread/post and start all over. I think there's a silly bug in the attachment / update feature.
     

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