good sugestion, yet i think it would pose a few difficulies in my case.
in order to switch to reverse there's some sort of ring below the knob of the shifter that you need to pull up that would interfere with the wires.
switching gears on my car also reaquires quite some force for some gears too so i'd rather keep it clean, i woudn't want tot hurt myself on the button, or accidently activate it.
anyway i'm off to the car to start working on the system! i'll take some pictures!
pictures of the progress
resistors soldered to the buttons
we have red light!
we have green light!
wires connected to the relay
click click click.... :)
i've cut some plastic out of the lid of an icecream box to make the backingplate for the buttons, the grey plastic came from a frisbee.
Very Nice -- looks good so far :thumbup:
more progress on the buttons, basic setup and internal wireing of the system is complete, now it just needs to be hooked up to the cars electric system.
here's the standard center console. (pretty 80's ...with mechanical climate controle :D )
however there's more to it than meets the eye!
drill a hole in the back of the ashtrey (the plastic was very hard and i should have used progressive drill sizes rather than try to do it in one go, as a result a piece of plastic snapped out....fortunately not to big)
make a hole in the ashtrey resess this plastic was softer and after drilling 6 little holes a nice rectangle could be filed out
after trying many things i setteled for a cardboard insert... easy to work with, cheap strong.... the top cover of my dashboard as well as the interior roof cover are made of some sort of car-like matherial as well... pressed to shape and covered with a leather like film, it's actually quite a warm and strong matherial.
i gave the cardboard incert a coat of underbody spray (for lack of regular black paint) gave it a gloss coat once dry and intalled all the buttons and the wireing at the back. i think the finish matches the rest of the interior quite well. the buttons are illuminated and the ashtry already had a little light bulb in it. so they will stand out :)
now i only need to incert a relay to cut power to the ignition and bridge the original starter key with the green button.
Being cheap I used a lot of factory parts.
When my keyswitch fell out in my Escort I used a headlight switch from a mid to late 80s T-bird.
This gave me an accessory possition and a run position and looks factory in the spot where the switch for the rear defroster should be.
Has plenty of apacity and enough poles that I didn't need to double up any wires.
Starter is a simple momentary switch that only had power when the ignition was in run and the clutch is depressed.
My buddy liked mine and built his with the original switch in the console with a cable and a slider on the shifter. click one is assesory, click 2 is run and pull all the way up is starter. He can control it with his middle finger while his hand is on the shifter.
Its just wiring, determine your dream and then make it work!
most inovations are there to facilitate lazyness ;)
Nice project, lunarhighway!
Coincidentally I'm doing just about the same thing on my 1996 VW Golf.
Further coincidentally I've also accommodated my buttons in the console ashtray, though not as elegantly as you.
Ultimately I want to have the engine shut off automatically whenever I'm coasting (down to idle speed; my engine only does this above 1700 RPM), as well as auto start/stop at stoplights (using the BMW Efficient Dynamics algorithm -- if gear in neutral and clutch pedal released, shut off; when clutch touched, restart). I've bought a microcontroller to do this but I've just started to learn how to program it.
In the meantime I've been switching manually, simulating the algorithm that the microcontroller should do. I just installed the starter button a few days ago so I don't have any results yet, but it's very convenient.
With my last tankful of gas using only the coast shutoff switch my fuel economy improved from 6.9 to 6.2 l/100km, about 10% improvement (though there may have been other factors contributing)! So that's good motivation.
Acting on a tip from the owner of Black Fly #2 Firefly, I do the engine cut by interrupting the signal coming from the Hall transducer mounted on the distributor, which normally tells the ECU when cylinder #1 is at top dead center. If there's no signal the ECU thinks the engine is off, shutting off sparks and injector. A side effect is that the tachometer gauge goes to zero and the oil pressure light comes on (though the oil pump is mechanical and still running -- I hope).
So keep it up -- your friends will be impressed that you can teach your old car new tricks!
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