XRC8 Winch Installation - Solenoid Relocation

barlowrs

Explorer
XRC8 Winch Installation - Solenoid Relocation and In Cab Controls

Mechanically, the winch installation is very strait forward; just mount the thing on the bumper. The end..haha
Now electrically, I decided to do some customization and make it a bit more complicated (especially for me, I am a mechanical Engineer, electricity scares me! Haha)

I decided to do two things:
- Relocate Solenoid to Under the hood
- Install In-Cab Winch Controls

To relocate the solenoid I had to first find a place to put it. I was already making a bracket to mount my auxiliary fuse block (See http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/showthread.php?p=562049#post562049 for fuse block installation) so I decided I would try to add the solenoid.

First order of business was to protect it somehow, after searching the isles of the local home depot for a good half an hour, my wonderful girlfriend points to a shelf and says “what about that, will that work?” Low and behold there was a PERFECT vessel to mount my solenoid. A 4” x 4” x 4” junction box.

First I drilled all necessary holes to mount the solenoid.



Then cut a notch to run the plug for the remote out the back side.



I then cut a big notch on the front to allow for the large cables to run out to the battery and winch.



Next order of business was to get some cables that would reach all the way to the winch from its new location. After a faily expensive trip to west marine for some marine grade 2 gage wire, I had enough cable to reach my winch.

All that was left was to install the aux fuse block/solenoid braket in the engine bay. Here you can see the final result, the solenoid box is under the bracket. You can kind of see the cables running out from under it.



Now onto the in cab controls…
 
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barlowrs

Explorer
XRC8 Winch In-Cab Controls

I decided I wanted to run in-cab winch controls, while also retaining my original “remote” plug. This gives me the ability to run the winch from in the cab, or, if need be, I can connect the original controller and relocate myself to a position where I can watch the winch.

I also decided I wanted everything to look as stock as possible, which threw in its own challenges.

The first order of business was to relocate the original remote plug from the solenoid. This was pretty strait forward. I made a longer harness that forked off so that I could route one set of wires to the original plug, and the second up to the in-cab controls.



I then drilled a hole in the lower dash area above my pedals and ran the wires out.



All that was left was to connect and install the original plug.



This allows me to plug the original remote in and be able to walk out and see the winch if I am winching alone.

Next was to install the in-cab controls. As I mentioned before, I wanted to make it as stock as possible. For this reason I decided to use a stock 05+ Tacoma double cab rear window switch for the in and out of the switch.

http://info.rockauto.com/getimage/getimage.php?imagekey=1188149&imageurl=http://info.rockauto.com/Airtex/1S7437.jpg

I also wanted to run stock “fog light” style power switch, however the stock switches turned out to be too deep for the location I wanted to install them, so I went with some Blue Sea conutra switches.



I used a laser inscriber at work to “etch” the labels of each switch (winch power, in, out, etc). I am planning on painted the etching with white paint to make it stand out, but that will be later, for now, you can still read them.



The location I decided was on the overhead console. I thought this would make it look somewhat stock as apposed to having random switches scattered around my dash. I used milling machine to cut the slots (more accurate than my dremel) and got everything lined up.

Here are all the switches in place:




I then routed the “fork” that I had soldered into the original harness up the a-pillar and behind the headliner so that it would reach the switches, all that was left was to plug them in, and here is the final product.



Hard to see, but this is the LED for the winch power lit up:



Note that I also installed my 4 switches that will run my roof top lights (once I finish that project)
 
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pyro4fun

Member
Looks good so far. I like the under hood mount. Have you thought about painting your switches with glow in the dark paint? Just an idea, in the photo thy seem hard to see (might just be the photo).
 

barlowrs

Explorer
Looks good so far. I like the under hood mount. Have you thought about painting your switches with glow in the dark paint? Just an idea, in the photo thy seem hard to see (might just be the photo).

Yes my original plan was to paint them. That is why I etched them, so that the paint has a recess to fill. I actually posted a poll here about painting or leaving them alone. Most voted to paint.

I will look into luminecent or glow in the dark paint at some point, but on my cealing, I doubt there is enough light to "charge" the glowing ones, so white paint might be all I can do.
 

nater

Adventurer
Are the switch covers reading backwards when the consol is installed? Looks like perhaps they need turned around?
 

barlowrs

Explorer
Are the switch covers reading backwards when the consol is installed? Looks like perhaps they need turned around?
No they are correct when they are installed, they are backwards on the ground..haha I triple checked that before I etched them..haha
 

Youngunner

Adventurer
great minds think alike! I put my solenoid in a sealed box and tucked it all behind the battery. I have to pop the hood to plug in the controller, but I'm working on in-cab controls in addition...

 
Again, great install! I opted for the contura series switches too. I'll get some pictures up of them all when I get a chance. And where do you work!?! You've got some awesome resources!
 

barlowrs

Explorer
Again, great install! I opted for the contura series switches too. I'll get some pictures up of them all when I get a chance. And where do you work!?! You've got some awesome resources!
haha yeah, I work in aerospace industry (I am an engineer) so I get access to all kinds of fun toys..haha

Thanks.
 

barlowrs

Explorer
Nice! I get access to most of those toys as well (mechanical engineering) but not a laser etcher. Now that's cool!
Yeah, industry is great. The laser etcher is a new thing we just picked up..the thing is IMPRESSIVE though. When we first got it we were playing around with it. We were able to etch a full sentance on the side of a small paperclip. You needed a magnifying glass to read it! The resolution is amazing:Wow1:
 

evanthebruin

New member
Nice job man. I wish we had an etcher like that. I've yet to use anything in my lab or machine shop for my 4runner but I have a few ideas for parts to be cut on our waterjet. Expo mech e's woot!:victory:
 

Appolyon

New member
I'm gonna have to ask where you got the Blue Sea switches.... I tried West Marine, but they have to special order for me, so where'd you get yours from? I'm actually planning to do nearly the same thing, (arming switch for winch, in/out, arming for lights, etc...)
 

barlowrs

Explorer
I'm gonna have to ask where you got the Blue Sea switches.... I tried West Marine, but they have to special order for me, so where'd you get yours from? I'm actually planning to do nearly the same thing, (arming switch for winch, in/out, arming for lights, etc...)
The blue sea I got from: http://www.boatfix.com/shop3/store/viewItem.asp?idProduct=6352

It was the cheapest place I could find..a LOT cheaper than west marine..haha.

My in and out switch is a OEM rear door (from 4 door) tacoma window switch.

Good luck, let me know if you have any more questions.
 

Appolyon

New member
Well now that you mention it.....

How has the winch held up? any major complaints?

I will admit that i'll probably mount the junction for the winch controls on the bumper, and not inside the cab, purely for the fact that if i'm out to be using the winch i won't want to run the cable out of the cab anyway, since i'll be at the winch anyway to get the cable....

I do like the laser etching... a lot... what would you charge to do that to a set for me?

Are you thinking of doing a dual battery setup? is there space to? I'm looking at possibly getting an 01-04 Taco, and i'm exploring options...
 
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