Rod's Rig - Round 2

Want to show off what you've done to your rig? or have a custom project to show? Post it up here!

Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Sat, 20 Sep 2008 7:45 +0000

Well I have been doing a bit more on my Car PC. I have been driving around for the last 2 weeks with a 1/2 finished system and no rear seat, But I gotta say, I love it!

Today, I got my Reversing Camera installed and also found time to tuck my blluetooth dongle in behind one of the interior panels. First, I tackled the reversing camera. This will give you an idea of what my rig looks like at the tailgate end:

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Because I have a canopy on my rig, I don't drive with the tailgate down so I decided to screw the camera onto the bottom of the tailgate. Anywhere else would have restricted the view. This is where I put it:

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It was a bit tricky to get the wiring up there. I had to replace the corrugated conduit that takes wires up into the tailgate for the reversing light. This is because I just could not push the coax for the video and the power wires through. I had to cut the conduit off as the factory version did not have a split in it. I replaced it with normal split conduit the same size but the split allowed me to get all of the wires in there. Looking down onto the open tailgate, you'd never know this was not factory:

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Once I got the wires into the tailgate, I joined them up to the tails that were provided with the camera and mounted the camera in the centre of the tailgate:

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Sorry, no pics, but I used some large shrinkwrap tubing on the plug in power connector and the RCA video socket at the end of the wiring tails on the camera so that the plugs could not come apart. I also did this with the bluetooth dongle, so the bluetooth pics below will give you an idea of how this works.

I ran the cable back into the back of the cab on the LHS where I shared the grommet that the fuel filler release exits from the cab. Under the car, I encased the video coax in corrugated split conduit which I fed all the way up into the tailgate.

I ran the video power leads back to the LHS tail light where I spliced into the reversing light to power the camera and drilled a hole and earthed the -ve wire after sanding off the paint. After checking that I had a good earth with a multimeter, I sprayed a bit of paint over the bare metal to keep rust at bay.

All of the wire connections I soldered in. The coax I used was a 5m wiring kit. I used an original connector at one end, and soldered on another RCA at the other end after trimming the length to suit.

So after testing that everything worked (and it did first time), I decided to permanently install the Bluetooth dongle behind a side panel up near the rear passenger's ear!

I used a USB extension lead, and cut off one end and soldered it to the USB screw in fly leads I had to mate with the off road hub I made. I staggered the joins so nothing would touch, used some insulation tape and finally replaced the shielding with some aluminium foil befoere adding a final layer of insulation tape.

I plugged the Bluetooth dongle into the USB connector and secured it with some shrinkwrap. Fortunately, I have a hot air gun which makes shrinking the tubing child play! I had also bought some self adhesive cable tie anchors from Jaycar and I thought this would be a good time to use them:

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Once I got everything ready, I slipped the dongle in behind the internal panel up near the top seatbelt mount for the rear seat. This shot is taken from the car door looking between the outer panel and the inner plastic trim panel:

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So now, the main wiring I have to do is to get the GPS puck tucked in under the plastic cowling where the windscreen wipers are. I bought a high quality 5m USB cable which I will solder on to a screw in connector for the hub. I hope it will work as it will be close to the maximum length in the USB spec!

After that one is done, the remaining wiring will be for the Armrest USB hub, and a few switches and controls to let me manage the Car PC frpom the cockpit.. Still got a lot to do.....
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby ROLLUX on Sun, 21 Sep 2008 5:51 +0000

hey mate,

nice work!!!

do you have to use a mini mb? or can u use a standard mb just asking cause i have a spare one.

cheers shane
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Sun, 21 Sep 2008 6:09 +0000

Hey Rollux, some special wiring I put in today just for you!

Image

Don't you love my new Laptop Power Switch?

People use all sorts of mother boards for Car PC's, you just got to watch power consumption overall, and make sure that the DC-DC power supply you use regulates through cranking etc. You probably need to use a 2.5" laptop HDD because of this. There is plenty of room behind the back seats, so you probably could fit anything in with a bit of thought and custom case fabrication... Some PS's will fit in the case and others (like mine) are designed to be external.
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Thu, 30 Oct 2008 7:05 +0000

Been a while since I posted something here. Been sooo busy. Anyway, finally got the plates for the Iron man Bullbar to tidy her up. Took ages to round them up, but they do exist. The Thais have no idea about Off road functionality as these hang down a bit, see how they go. Don't seem to affect clearance and approach angles though.

Image

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And you can see that the TJM under body guards have been doing their job too!
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby Hilux Max on Fri, 31 Oct 2008 6:04 +0000

good stuff mate......I would have thought that the under bar plates would have been more tucked in.....atleast something is there as a splash guard.

re: the Bashplates....imagine if they werent there and you hit the obstacle that you did :o :shock:

by the way, what did ya hit? those things are damn tuff and Ive hit mine pretty hard but not to dint it like that!

were you chasing tree stumps or sumtin ? :lol:

when's the suspension getting booked in?

you know you want those swampers ;)
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Fri, 31 Oct 2008 5:32 +0000

Mmaaxx, don't talk to me about suspension, but before I tell ya what's going on, first a much more important modification to report, See below.

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Really adds some bling factor don't you think Max? Maybe the gold girl should sport one also on account of some recent mud paddling and recovery by excavator... what'd ya reckon? At least I can say that mine is there on account of a 16 year old son, sick of the static cling to glassones not working. The experience in the front seat is now not such a white knuckle experince with 40 hrs under his belt Thank God!

Ok, on the suspension front, on account of having a great holiday travelling 4200 km over 3 weeks in NZ and celbrating my 50th birthday with a Maori warrior sticking a spear near up my nostril (but that's another story), I was oblivious to the world financial crisis. On my return, I was shattered to see the price of the Wizard kit had gone up 30-40% so $600 shocks were now over $900 (that's each) due to the crash of the Aussie Dollar against the greenback. The total bill came in at $4,660 which included custom made Kings rear leaf springs to suit the front. The really good news is that the dollar has fallen another 10c from the rate Brent at Wizard quoted me at...

So anyway, the long and the short of it, I simply couldn't justify the expense and have settled for a more modest Tough Dog kit at $2450 fitted. Also ordered a snorkel while I was at it and she all goes on on Wednesday! Thought I'd get in before prices start to rise...

Cheers

Yeh,the TJM gurads have paid for themselves on my last outing. Tree root in a mud hole on a reckkie for a club trip that I was too sick to go on in the end!

The swampers might go on the back burner for a while on account of my wife telling me that the Kimberley trip our club is planning might now be short enough from me to have enough leave to consider tagging along in July next year... I think I might stick to it being a cruizer and have a heap to think bout if we do decide to go.
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby Hilux Max on Fri, 31 Oct 2008 6:28 +0000

rodw wrote:Really adds some bling factor don't you think Max? Maybe the gold girl should sport one also on account of some recent mud paddling and recovery by excavator... what'd ya reckon?



HA HA HA F#$%N LMAO.....YOU KILL IT :lol: :D ;)

bit of a low blow....but I can take it......tell ya what, Im not looking forward to me kids driving the hilux when they grow up........ which is why Ive started teaching me 4 year old to drive now....she sits on my lap and steers the hilux in between trees in me backyard......plus the little quad bike she's got so Im hoping by the time Im in your shoes, she might actually have some experience before mixing with traffic.

good thing for you the hilux is a decent size and safe.
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby jamiecracker on Fri, 31 Oct 2008 6:46 +0000

i have given my 17yr old sis a few lessons in the lux....she has a few probs with it being so big but it is fun to see her freak out with smaller cars :D
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Fri, 31 Oct 2008 7:25 +0000

Jamie,
Bit of fun in the big truck, only just got to the parrallel park lesson, I think he fared better than the teacher!

Max, You spoil her, I learnt to drive on the old grey TE20 Fergie tractor! Yes it is good for kids to get the basics in the bush, my sister in law did first lessons with her kids and my daughter on the Airstrip, 1km long and wide enough to put down any plane, but some of the bigger ones might struggle to get off again. Had Lear jets on it, but weren't ours! But let me tell you, the traffic is a worry!

Oh and Max, Glad you approved of my last mod.. :lol:
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Sun, 02 Nov 2008 7:13 +0000

Well I got onto my CAR PC monitor install over the weekend. I am using this monitor:
http://www.xenarc.com/product/706tsa.html
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and a Dual DIN LCD display, I purchased from here for another brand of monitor from http://www.bybyte.com/ which worked out OK.

So I started by stripping the monitor out of the case which voided my warranty
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Then after removing the dash fascia
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and the radio, I stripped the mounting rails of the factory radio, placed the frame into position on the back of the facia where there are some DIN sized mounting guides
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and screwed the radio mounts onto the LCD frame through existing holes.

I had also bought some of the Toyota ears that are required if the larger factory radio is replaced with a DIN sized one. You can't get these from Toyota, but I bought them from Strathfield. go figure... So these ears bolt onto the outside of the mounting brackets to fill in the sides if a DIN radio is installed.

So the next step was to attach the ears, by again fitting everything up against the back of the fascia. It is critical you get these exactly positioned, straight and even up and down or the assembly won't fit in the facia later on.

Ok, so how to mount the monitor? I cut 4 L brackets from some scrap aluminium SHS. Then, I placed the montor into the LCD frame and drilled a hole in each bracket so I could screw the monitor onto the brackets using some handy screws on the monitor. Only 3 of the four holes were in use, but the thread is identical to a HDD mounting screw. Just check the thread length and add a couple of washers

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I lined everything up again and used a pair of vice grips to clamp the l bracket to the LCD frame, removed the monitor and drilled a hole and screwed the L bracket onto the LCD frame. It all worked out easy and everything ended up in the right position.

There is a separate glass touch screen in front of the monitor and the frame had self adhesive tape inplace to mount it but warned that you would break the glass if you removed it. I did not like this idea, so I simpley taped the touch screen to the monitor case which allowed me to obscure some of the touch screen surrounds that as not hidden by the LCD frame. This is what I ended up with before installing the assembly back in the dash:

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You can see the daughter board for the monitor buttons which I still have to work out what to do with.

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So the easy bit was putting it back in the dash, but I did have to rework my CB radio microphone mount again!

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In the shot above, you can see the daughter board for the monitor buttons

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I had hoped to mount them above the fresh/recirc Air Con control here, but the board is a bit toolong for this.

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The other trick a lot of people do is simply leave the daughter board in behind the dash, remove the Infra red sensor and use some wire to extend it to another convenient location. I am still thinking about the best way to go...
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Wed, 05 Nov 2008 7:01 +0000

Ah well, enough of this electronics stuff, let's get onto some real mods!

Finally got around to getting a suspension lift kit installed. In the end with the fall in the AUD, I could not justify the Wizard Coil over kit with the Total Chaos Upper control arms as the came in at $4,660 fitted.

Based on Mmaax's advice and after discussions with the supplier, we went with comfort ride rear leaves to provide best articulation.

Decided to go with a Tough Dog adjustrable kit and had Opposite Lock Springwood do the honours for me. I have now decided they are my 4WD shop of choice. What a pleasure to order something, make a date next week and get it all fitted with no stuffing round, no forgotton orders and no stock outages! Figured the Tough Dog stuff must be pretty good as all the shops say it is the best out there and TJM rated it better their own brand!

Anway, while I was at it, I screwed a good price out of them for a snorkel and had it fitted while I was there. I rushed home and it was raining and dark, but I braved the elements to get some pics for you guys, sorry the one of the rear is out of focus, I'll retake it on the weekend if I remember.

Here is what it looks like side on:

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And this is what it used to look like before I took the side steps off:

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The front end. Hope the CV angle is OK:

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The out of focus rear:

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And the wet Safari snorkel. Boring.. I am sure we have all seen one before:
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Anyway, before I left home I took some eyebrow measurements with an empty tank and this afternoon, repeated the measurements, but this time with a full fuel load which I am assuming is the reason why the passenger side was 5 mm lower than the right side. As you know (or would know if you read this thread), my Rig has a dual battery, winch and bull bar on the front and was still sporting factory springs as she is a bit low.

Wow! The front is 75mm higher on both sides, and the rear is a more modest 30mm higher. The lower rear does not seem to be out of place as the truck is now quite level. Have not had time to assess the rear to see if there are any issues with brakes, maybe on the weekend.
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby Hilux Max on Thu, 06 Nov 2008 3:24 +0000

Looking at the before and after pics I can only come to one conclusion........

Those sidesteps must have weighed a tonne???!!! :lol:

she's looking much better now.
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby Steve9R on Thu, 06 Nov 2008 1:18 +0000

only problem with removing those sidesteps are they actually protect the paintwork from flying rocks and road grime.. i take mine on and off whenever im going bush and put em back on for city.. as you know theres only 6 bolts holding em..
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Thu, 06 Nov 2008 4:19 +0000

Yes, I think I''ll put them back on on the weekend so the missus can climb in the rig when we head up to Janowen 4wd Park the following one for a 4wd club Xmas party.

The reason why they came off was to let Brooksy measure up a new Hilux for sliders, but he is still weeks away from being able to do someting. I had hoped there would be a more substantial slider on there by now...
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby Steve9R on Thu, 06 Nov 2008 7:42 +0000

yeah my kids complain that they cant get in when they're off too... I told to grow up! :) (they're only 5).. :)
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby 9W6VX on Thu, 06 Nov 2008 9:25 +0000

Rod,

Looking good!

:lol: :lol:
Cheers

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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Sat, 08 Nov 2008 7:35 +0000

Some days everything goes wrong. IN amongst the mods, I am still toiling away on this Car PC project. Earlier in the week, I pulled out the DVD out of the laptop, transplanted it into a USB enclosure and blew it up while I was testing it out of the car for no apparent reason on second use.

Today I had planned to wire in an ON-OFF-ON switch I bought a while ago so I can run the CarPC continuously from the 80 amp hour auxillary battery under the hood. Damn, I had lost the switch. Shops were not open, so I decided to mount the GPS puck somewhere permanent instead. I thought the best place for my GPS receiver would be here near the windscreen wipers because plastic is opaque to radio waves from the satellite:

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I knew there was a 5.0 metre cable limit on the USB spec, and I was well within that. So I cut off the USB connector, stuffed the wire through the firewall, removed the windscreen wipers and lifted the cowling up a bit. Plenty of room under there so I decided to put it right under the curved bit in the pic above. I wiped both surfuaces with Methylated Spirits and covered the top of the GPS mouse with double sided body moulding tape like this:

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The I pushed it up onto the plastic cowling to make it stick:

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Then I soldered an extended USB lead onto the other end in the car and plugged it into my hub behind the back seat. Bugger! it didn't work! OK, after some troubleshooting, I could isolate the device was not coming up. So cut off the end, round up a 4 port hub lying around and solder it onto the cable from the back of the car and run a 5 volt power lead from the Opus in the back up to the hub. I ended with something like this whh I cable tied up under the dash.:

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Beauty, it worked! Found 5 Satellites while I was parked under a tin roof. Anyway it will be handy to have USB ports up in the front and I will add an extension lead from the hub up ito the glove box or some other handy place.

Went off to buy a new switch hen turned my attention to the wireless network. Because I have a a fibreglass canopy which I had tested and found was reasonably opaque to radio waves, and becasue I did not want to have an antenna getting in the road of my roof racks, I decided to mount it in the canopy at the back corner beween the tailgate and the side window.

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There is actually a hollow section in the canopy corner which must be there for strength and it is open at the bottom, so I decided to mount the antenna there, Sorry I did not take a pic of it, but it is a good quality 5 db internal antenna about 8 inches long. I had a some self adhesive tabs designed to attach cable ties to, so I cable tied these to the antenna and poked it up into the little hidey hole like this inside the canopy:

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You can just see the gold pigtail connector at the base of the antenna sticking down. I was able to route the coax for the antenna through some conduit that was already in place for the light built into the canopy, so I did not have to drill any more holes in the car. I routed the coax back to the laptop under the vehicle and back in the cab and encased it in some corrugated conduit. Getting a bit crowded under there now with canopy power, fridge power, reversing camera coax, aftermarket diff breathers and now a wireless antenna. In the process, I broke the end off the pigtail connector. Not a major drama but annoyed that I have to go back and buy another connector as Jaycar is 20 minutes drive.

Finished just on 5:00 and went for a quick drive and the thing would not start up after I shut it down. PC has its knickers in a knot. Mucked about for ages, tok th ePC out of the car and mucked about some more. Found that while I was mucking baout with the coax, I had broken a wire of the startup and shut down switch. Very annoying! Ah well, another thing to fix tomorrow! Still have not fitted the switch into the dash yet.

I really think I need to extend the status LED on the Opus and wire in a LED that is patched into the USB 5 volt feed so I can see what is going on with the gear that is hidden behind a back seat that is bolted down and not easy to get in behind.

Gets a bit tiring becasue just about every job I do on this project ends up getting done twice becasue something goes wrong. Quite a journey of discovery it has been! Anywasy, getting close to done. Let me see what's left
1. Reflash the OPUS BIOS when the correct programming header turns up from Opus so it works in laptop mode.
2. Mount the ON-OFF-ON switch and the manual laptop power on/off button.
3. Install a DVD player in the console
4. Sort out the Monitor switches and remote control sensor
5. Mount some status LED's in the dash
6. Tidy up the wiring

Never mind, the list is getting shorter.
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby 9W6VX on Sat, 08 Nov 2008 11:43 +0000

Wow, that's some work projects there!

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Cheers

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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby Quinny34 on Wed, 19 Nov 2008 8:35 +0000

My screen should be rocking up this week... over the Xmas break I hope to get some time to get my Laptop installed and setup... :D

Will get some pics once done...

Nice job on this rig though.... :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
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Re: Rod's new Rig

Postby rodw on Fri, 21 Nov 2008 7:58 +0000

Hi guys, I've been collecting some stuff for some mods so here is what is on the go!

But anyway, before I got to collecting, here is the 4th accessory somebody else other than me has fitted, an Auto transmission cooler:

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we had hoped to slip in a difernt style like what they put on race cars, but we could not get it behind the grille and square with the airflow, so stuck wih the standard pinned to radiator jobby. Not ideal but Verne at Opposite Lock assures me that he's had one like this on his car for a few years with no worries and he should know as he used to live in the Kimberleys!

So anyway, back to the collection. First off, I collected these from a mate who traded out his GU and found they did not fit in his ne bull bar, so I scored a set of Lightforce 240's for $200.

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Not quite finished the wiring for these and have a lot more wiring to do as well, so to make the job easier, I made another one of these to put on the drivers side from the Dual battery as I got a bit of wiring to cram in under the hood:

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and the good guys at Opposite Lock found a second hand one of these that slips straight into the dash to turn the bitumen melters on:

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and it was free! (on account of me spending an obscene amount there in recent days!)

So then I went into Oldmac Toyota and bought a bottle of this:

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While I was at it I picked up a spare fanbelt for $46 and ordered some radiator hoses to toss in the back at $31 each.

The reason why I bought the coolant was because one of these turned up by registered mail today from http://www.helton.com.au

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and it came with a few bits and pieces like this:

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all of this cost just $306 delivered by regestered mail which is a lot cheaper than a Glind shower and it is only 200mm x 75mm in size, all copper like the Twine. Copper is the best material for heat exchangers. All going well, I hope t mount his little sucker under the factory battery tray (without putting a screw through the windscreen washer bottle. For this money, they only give you a cheap $20 shower pump that you drop in a bucket, so I dropped into Camec and picked up one of these for about $140 with the in line filter shown (with my 5% RACQ discount):

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The Shurflo 2088 is a much better pump than the Flojet that come with the Glind, but it should still fit in under the hood on the drivers side beside this:

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which I also picked up at Opposite Lock for $320 which was only about $30 more than the ARB pump that sized on somebody on this forum recently. OL say their staff have tested it in the real world side by side with the ARB (ie. one has ARB and another has Blue Tongue) and they pumped up a tyre in the same time but this is rated at 100% duty cycle at 50 psi.

I also stopped at an auto electrical supply store during the week and bought a few kilos of electrical fittings and relays, to get this all working. So as you can see, I will be busy again over the next couple of weeks... so stay tuned!

I think I have worked out where a 9 litre air tank will fit to finish off the compressor install.. I hope to collect that shortly with a bit more hardware....
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