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Old 02-03-2010, 01:20 PM   #1
JDS968
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Default 968 V1/Garmin Hardwire

Hello Rennlist.

I'm thinking I really should set up a hardwire kit in the 968, because the cigarette lighter socket seems to be in some way damaged...it's gotten progressively "looser" to the point where plugs just fall out of it now.

While we're on the subject, has anybody ever heard of this issue with those 12v sockets, and if so, is there an easy fix?

Anyway, back on topic, has anybody here installed the V1 hardwire kit yourself? And if so, where did you route it/what did you do with the interior pieces (remove, loosen, pull back, or just shove wire under them?)

I appreciate any advice. If it helps, I like to mount high and just left of the RVM. This is the hardwire setup I already have in the VW GLI:

Click the image to open in full size.

While we're at it, does anybody know anything about hardwiring the Garmin nuvi? The battery life is great, but I'd be much more comfortable with it if I didn't have to recharge it after using it. Garmin doesn't seem to sell any kind of a hardwire kit like Valentine Research does. Is there some way to just cut up a microUSB cable and graft the wires onto some kind of a fuse in the fuse box? I'm perfectly happy slicing up wires and soldering and wrapping them together, but I really don't know where to start here and I don't want to blow up the electrical system.

Thank you in advance!
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Old 02-03-2010, 01:24 PM   #2
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I can't help you, but make sure whatever rig you set up it can be completely invisible when parked. I'm not in a high crime zone, but thieves will ransack a car if they see a powercord coming from the dash just to see if they can steal a head unit under the seat or in the glovebox. Apparently they even check the windshield to see the 'sucker' mark where the head unit was attached.

And first post, tell us about your car.
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Old 02-03-2010, 01:33 PM   #3
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I just hardwired my V1 a couple months ago into my 968. I tapped the power off an unused relay under the dash (Just use a test light to figure out which one is hot). I had to modify the spade connector a bit as it was too wide, just cut it down a bit with my dremel. Just find a good ground, there's a few good spots down there, I found on near the steering column that worked. I then ran the wire up the A Pillar and just tucked it neatly under the trip work. My V1 sits just above the rear view mirror on the passenger side.
Next up, remote display.
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Old 02-03-2010, 05:37 PM   #4
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^^^Welcome on rennlist to both of you but it will be nice to know who we are talking to.
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Old 02-03-2010, 05:50 PM   #5
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I tapped the dome light for tom-tom power; there's battery-constant 12v+ up there (fused) and the dome light switch controls how the ground is handled for the light (either through the door pin/delay or constant on)
There's a bit of room up inside the header beam on either side of the light to let you tuck up wires and such. I was able to hack open a lighterplug-style power cord and just tuck the guts of the power supply up into the header next to the light (suitibly wrapped with electrical tape fo insulation). I even wired it up to a mini toggle switch. The mini-USB pulg comes out through a little notch I made in the visor clip on the passenger side.
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Old 02-03-2010, 08:20 PM   #6
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Irrelevant now that you are hard wiring but the lighter socket is larger than other cars, try and use the compressor that came with the car in another vehicle and it won't fit. Because it's larger it's often hard to make and keep a good connection, they use to make an adapter for it but don't know if they still do.
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Old 02-03-2010, 08:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedBump View Post
Irrelevant now that you are hard wiring but the lighter socket is larger than other cars, try and use the compressor that came with the car in another vehicle and it won't fit. Because it's larger it's often hard to make and keep a good connection, they use to make an adapter for it but don't know if they still do.
Thanks, I didn't know that. I'll have to check to see if mine works on my BMW, because that's where my compressor is now.
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Old 02-03-2010, 10:47 PM   #8
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Most of the garmins require a higher current than is normally available from a "standard" mini USB.
The device looks for a specific resistance between two of the contacts which is proprietary to them; not that it's a secret and don't tell anybody, it's just that they're the only ones who use it.
You can get another adapter that works with the garmin, then just hack the case apart and hardwire the wires that went to the lighter contacts, but you may end up having buying one from them at $29 instead of the $8 wallyword version.
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Old 02-04-2010, 08:31 AM   #9
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I've had a Garmen Quest since 2004, which, even though primitive by today's standards, seems to do everything I need and pretty well. I have that plugged into the cigar lighter socket, as it has a speaker integrated with the plug.

I also have an Escort 8500 x50 (blue diplay) and ZR3 laser shifters (front only), which are also now a generation old but work quite well. I used the Escort "Smart Power Cord," cut the back off a fuse (I think it's the #7 fuse) and soldered the power lead into one of the spades, then ran the lead around the door sill and underneath the left bottom corner of the dash, where the junction box ("controller") is held in place with adhesive velcro tape under the dash. It's not a hard, permanent installation by design. I could remove it all in a minute or so, except the front shifter themselves which are hard-mounted (with screws) into the front bumper cover.

From the controller box, the power cord to the radar deterctor itself is run up and around the left side of the dash, and stuffed in the crevice along the front of the dash and the bottom of the windshield, and concealed with foam tape. I have the 8500 mounted low and centered, so it gets a clear signal both from the rear and from the front just above the windshield wipers.

When I remove the radar detector, the power cord can be easily pushed into the crevice at the bottom of the windshield, out of view.
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Old 02-04-2010, 12:38 PM   #10
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Sorry for not introducing myself...I've got an alpine white/marine blue '92 968 coupe tiptronic (unfortunately) with 36k original miles. Pretty much cherry. Live in Atlanta, GA. Joined PCA but haven't been out to an event yet. Also drive a 2008 Audi A4 2.0T 6sp manual quattro w/modified shocks/struts/sway bar.
Sold my 1974 MGB roadster and acquired the 968 last July. The 968 has been in my family since 1998.
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Old 02-04-2010, 01:11 PM   #11
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Don't appologize for having an automatic.
Manual cars are not for everyone.
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Old 02-04-2010, 01:24 PM   #12
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I would prefer a manual, but since this car has been in the family for so long, I didn't really have a choice. I will admit, it is handy to have sometimes in Atlanta traffic jams. At least my other car is a manual so I've got that outlet. Just need more than 4 gears in this car, IMHO.
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Old 02-04-2010, 04:05 PM   #13
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Sorry for the gargantuan post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damian in NJ View Post
I can't help you, but make sure whatever rig you set up it can be completely invisible when parked. I'm not in a high crime zone, but thieves will ransack a car if they see a powercord coming from the dash just to see if they can steal a head unit under the seat or in the glovebox. Apparently they even check the windshield to see the 'sucker' mark where the head unit was attached.
Good advice, I am familiar with that. South Florida certainly isn't a "safe" area, but I've been running the V1 and Garmin for years in a variety of cars without taking the mounting hardware down when parked, although the V1 and Garmin themselves ALWAYS go in the glove box (usually locked).

In the 968 however, I've got an opaque vinyl strip across the top of the windshield. I usually mount the V1 just barely low enough to peek out under the strip, and the mounting bracket is hidden by it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damian in NJ
And first post, tell us about your car.
1992 Guards Red 6-speed coupe.

Equal-length headers, a bit of ECU tweaking, catless minimal exhaust system, and always was one of the stronger 968 engines in the first place...probably about 250hp at the crank.

Lightweight flywheel, race clutch (it's really like an on/off switch, almost no slip, and a real bitch at stoplights.)

M030 suspension, stock brakes with Performance Friction pads and always filled with Ate Super Blue, extra air ducting to all four rotors.

Partial cage, Sparco Pro2000s, Schroth HANS-compatible 6-points.

Most of that silly interior carpeting, sound insulation, rear wiper, toolkit, spare tire, etc pulled out. Or in the case of the spare, pulled out and then lost :\

For street use, original 16" wheels wrapped in the world's oldest set of Yokohama A032rs (I'm not even joking). For track use, Forgelines wrapped in Hoosiers.

Odometer doesn't work, horn doesn't work, air conditioning doesn't work, hatch release works from the button but not from turning the key in the lock, roof panel only goes up when it's in the mood Always more work to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sears968 View Post
I just hardwired my V1 a couple months ago into my 968. I tapped the power off an unused relay under the dash (Just use a test light to figure out which one is hot). I had to modify the spade connector a bit as it was too wide, just cut it down a bit with my dremel. Just find a good ground, there's a few good spots down there, I found on near the steering column that worked. I then ran the wire up the A Pillar and just tucked it neatly under the trip work. My V1 sits just above the rear view mirror on the passenger side.
Sounds good!

If it's not to much trouble, is there any chance you could snap a photo or something to point out where you found it? I'm kinda visual, like that

Quote:
Originally Posted by ernie9468 View Post
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernie9468
it will be nice to know who we are talking to.
You mean like, name?

Hi, I'm Josh

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpk View Post
I tapped the dome light for tom-tom power; there's battery-constant 12v+ up there (fused) and the dome light switch controls how the ground is handled for the light (either through the door pin/delay or constant on)
Do you leave the dome light on when you're driving? Otherwise it seems like it would only charge the satnav (or run the RD, if it's for that) when you open the door.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedBump View Post
Irrelevant now that you are hard wiring but the lighter socket is larger than other cars, try and use the compressor that came with the car in another vehicle and it won't fit. Because it's larger it's often hard to make and keep a good connection, they use to make an adapter for it but don't know if they still do.
That's pretty weird. Plus I think mine might be getting worn or stretching out even further.

Why would they do that, anyway? It's not there weren't a whole lot of people plugging things into lighter sockets in the early '90s.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpk View Post
Most of the garmins require a higher current than is normally available from a "standard" mini USB.
The device looks for a specific resistance between two of the contacts which is proprietary to them; not that it's a secret and don't tell anybody, it's just that they're the only ones who use it.
I thought I've charged it successfully before by plugging it into a computer USB port? Maybe I'm misremembering :\

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpk
You can get another adapter that works with the garmin, then just hack the case apart and hardwire the wires that went to the lighter contacts, but you may end up having buying one from them at $29 instead of the $8 wallyword version.
Plus shipping :\ With the device, the updates, the accessories...I should buy stock in Garmin.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdhayward View Post
I also have an Escort 8500 x50 (blue diplay) and ZR3 laser shifters (front only), which are also now a generation old but work quite well.
Have you read up on the latest testing? Even as of a few years ago, the ZR3s were really performing abysmally against the latest LIDAR, and even the ZR4s were pretty marginal. Plus I always get lasered from the rear anyway. I'm thinking pretty seriously about investing in a quad Laser Interceptor setup.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdhayward
I used the Escort "Smart Power Cord," cut the back off a fuse (I think it's the #7 fuse) and soldered the power lead into one of the spades, then ran the lead around the door sill and underneath the left bottom corner of the dash, where the junction box ("controller") is held in place with adhesive velcro tape under the dash. It's not a hard, permanent installation by design.
Sounds like an excellent idea, and would be even easier with the V1's hardwire kit.

Last edited by JDS968; 02-05-2010 at 02:26 AM.
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Old 02-05-2010, 10:56 AM   #14
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JDS-I'll try and take a couple this weekend. It's pretty tight so we'll see how it works out. I'd recommend using the search feature, this topic has been addressed on this website and some other 968 sites before and that's where I got the idea. I'm not that creative unfortunately (at least with electronics).
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Old 02-05-2010, 11:25 AM   #15
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I participate on the RadarDetector forum, so, yes, I know of the statistical data regarding my gear. Like I said, it's a prior generation. The tests rather assume every LEO in the nation has the latest and greatest whiz-bang speeder-catcher stuff, which simply isn't true.

I got nabbed on the 2-lane highway between Ridgway and Telluride, Colorado last year by a CO trooper using X-band, as I was coming around a sharp curve at just the moment he happened to be coming the other way. No radar detector would've changed that. I have limited experience with the "instant-on" radar and troopers hiding behind bridges and such. If you read the Cannonball journals and the like, it seems a lot of state-of-the art equipment was useless against competent LEO tactics.

On a straight road, really, any decent detector is going to give you a radar warning long before a LEO actually knows which car is speeding in his range.

As for the lasers, no matter which brand you use, you have to be vigilant: always looking around you and ahead of you, and always ready to hit the brakes quickly when the laser warning blares. If you're talking on the cell phone or jamming to the tunes, you're simply not paying enough attention to be driving fast and shouldn't be.

I can say, however, I've lost count of the number of times the car RIGHT NEXT to me got pulled over, simply because I had some warning and could slow down before LEO got a reading. It's quite a rush, seeing the blue/red lights flashing and approaching fast from behind, then pulling over a car in front of or next to you.
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Old 02-05-2010, 11:25 AM
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