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Thread: I joined the Cult

  1. #111
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Gig Harbor, WA (originally from Morenci, AZ)
    Posts
    1,300
    Something to consider

    Using LED's as a light source for backing up, may not provide the light expected. LED's seem bright when you look directly at them (good for running lights & brake lights), but they don't seem to light up objects very well.

    Before committing to LED's, for backup lights, try both LED & incandescent bulbs, measure the reflected light coming off your garage door, for each type of light. The light that produces more reflected light will be much better (safer) when looking in your mirrors and backing up.

    The same holds true for camp lights.
    Brian

    2004 Toyota 4Runner Sport, 3" OME lift, 255/75R17 Goodyears, Super Sliders, communications, GPS, Black Widow roof basket, Truck Vault, 400 watt inverter, Scion stereo with iPod cable. 2009 Roadtrek 190 with 5" lift.

  2. #112
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
    Posts
    6,104
    Quote Originally Posted by Photog View Post
    Something to consider

    Using LED's as a light source for backing up, may not provide the light expected. LED's seem bright when you look directly at them (good for running lights & brake lights), but they don't seem to light up objects very well.

    Before committing to LED's, for backup lights, try both LED & incandescent bulbs, measure the reflected light coming off your garage door, for each type of light. The light that produces more reflected light will be much better (safer) when looking in your mirrors and backing up.

    The same holds true for camp lights.
    Good thinking. I do have a small pair of cheap "fog" lights I could clamp to the back and try out.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  3. #113
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
    Posts
    6,104
    I looked up the part number on the springs at ProComp's site http://www.explorerprocomp.com/PDFs/07cat/132.pdf and found out from the spec sheet:

    Procomp part number: 51323 for Jeep YJ Wrangler rear springs 2.5" lift
    flat length: 45.87"
    free length: 42.37"
    camber: 7.4"
    eyelets: 1.5"
    leaf width: 2.5"
    leaves: 4
    weight: 28.6 lbs
    spring rate: 188 lbs/in

    The eyelets have red poly bushings and the kit for replacements is 69261
    Last edited by teotwaki; 09-02-2010 at 03:34 AM.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  4. #114
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
    Posts
    6,104
    I ordered some 6" oval white LED lights from A/T that replaced the current red brake/turn lights in the bumper. I added some LED combination stop/turn lights with a red side marker. I also mounted up the Blitz fuel can holders

    Bunch of photos of the work....

    New stoplight roughly in place compared to old oval stoplight

    Fuel can holder with half size Scepter fuel can and new LED stoplight. It was getting dark so the flash photos are not the best.
    Last edited by teotwaki; 03-06-2012 at 12:59 AM. Reason: clean up photos
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  5. #115
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
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    6,104
    The new rear LED stop/turn lights are all wired up


    I turned my attention to the overall electrical wiring, in particular what was in the nose box. There were no fuses or breakers of any sort and with two big batteries in there almost any short circuit would be cause for a meltdown. I also wanted to add a better solar panel controller with a current/voltage meter, a marine style battery charger and a relay to be able to switch on the new backup lights manually.

    It took a bit to figure out how to mount the panel between the two big bolts that fasten the nose box and water tank together. I also wanted to avoid nuts on the back of the panel so I went with drilling and tapping all of the mounting holes. When I start a project I pull everything out and spread it out in the garage. It was cold enough last night that I set up a small heater too.



    Here is the panel with all of the holes in it


    And here is the panel with all of the components screwed down. I left space to add one more breaker to the left of the 100 Amp unit.


    This setup will make it easy to add other items such as a two-way radio in the nose box.
    Last edited by teotwaki; 03-06-2012 at 12:40 AM.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  6. #116
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    United States of America
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    I bored a big hole in the nose box for the fitting that holds the battery tender's AC plug. It is right below the two existing DC cig lighter sockets


    Then I plugged in the new LED backup lights to see how they looked

    Last edited by teotwaki; 03-06-2012 at 01:08 AM.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  7. #117
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
    Posts
    6,104
    Then back to working on the electrical panel and all of the wiring on it.
    Started to fill the wiring in and then set it into the nose box for a test fit.

    Then took it back out to finish the wiring.

    The wiring is solid but not as "pretty" as I'd like. But it survived washboard roads so that's good enough.....
    Last edited by teotwaki; 03-21-2012 at 06:14 PM.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  8. #118
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
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    6,104
    I reworked all of the wiring in the nose box

    1. Extended the trailer harness and wired it into the panel's main "input" terminal strip
    2. Built a new harness for the 7-pin trailer plug with larger gauge wires for the power and ground inputs.
    3. Wired up the cig lighter sockets to the Blue Sea fuse box.
    4. Built new cables to parallel the two batteries and connect them to the panel.
    5. Hooked up the battery charger and tested it.
    6. Tested the solar charge controller.
    Here is how the nose box looked when I picked the trailer up.


    A few pictures taken as I worked on it all



    Solar charge controller works!
    Last edited by teotwaki; 03-21-2012 at 06:53 PM.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  9. #119
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
    Posts
    6,104
    I finished all of this off before I took the trailer to Death Valley for 3 days. Some people think I've been sitting around doing nothing? Duh.....

    Before photo with a new "after" photo of the nose box.


    After from roughly the same view angle


    This is how I brought the backup light wires, breakaway switch wires and frame ground out of the nose box.


    Wires under the trailer are run and inside split loom


    Cig lighter sockets rewired. Just below the battery tender inlet you can see the entry point for the wires that go out through the plastic elbow on the bottom of the nose box.


    Various shots of labeling. These labels helped me out when I was troubleshooting!




    Backup lights relay and switch. The relay just passes through the voltage from the truck. Flip the switch and local battery power is applied
    Last edited by teotwaki; 03-21-2012 at 06:10 PM.
    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

  10. #120
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    United States of America
    Posts
    6,104
    Somewhere I had read of another person who had added lights into their RTT by reworking an IKEA LED strip setup that was for lighting under cabinets.

    Mark Stephens' Adventure Parents web site:

    Eezi-Awn 1200 Roof Top Tent: Evaluation and Photos | Adventure Parents

    I found the "DIODER" at IKEA, cleanly eliminated the AC transformer and replaced the AC plug with a cig lighter plug.

    Here is the finished light cord for power


    The little junction box was for the original four cords to go to four light strips but I only plug in one cord now. The black plug is fused. The on/off switch is the original.

    I just snake the cord through the tent's hinge cover and plug one end into the nose box outlet.


    This is all of the junk that you don't need.


    The tiny 12v power supply might be useful for some other low power project. The other cords I'll keep as spares in case the one in the tent gets whacked.

    A few low quality night shots out in Death Valley.

    Lights on inside the tent with a fuzzy moon up above in Death Valley last Saturday.

    Enough light for s shaky non-flash photo!


    There are 9 white LEDs per strip. I zip tied them to the top pole.

    Jim
    4x4 Tourist


    Trip reports are on my Blog: "Sun To The North"

    Two Favorite Expo Quotes: "A bad day on the trail is better than a good day in the city" & "Bad days make for GREAT stories!"

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