Hard wiring in my portable GPS - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 3 Old 04-25-2008, 11:15 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Sierra Vista
Posts: 125
Hard wiring in my portable GPS

Has anyone else hardwired in your portable gps?

My GPS, eTrex Vista has a 12v cord that plugs into a power outlet. I have two cords. One is garmin brand and it stays in the outlet well. The other is off-brand and it's terrible.... always coming out.

It got me to thinking... why not cut the cord, crack open the male plug, move the voltage reducing "stuff" up further on the cord, put the "stuff" encapsulated in a golf-ball-ish size blob of epoxy with a pigtail for power, shrink tube it, put it in the bike permanently with a fuse on the pigtails; and then conceal the GPS side of the cord while not in use?

I don't want to have to plug it in, unplug it, have it slip out..... .
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post #2 of 3 Old 04-26-2008, 07:42 AM
SCraig's Avatar
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 3,722
It will work fine as long as you are aware that the "Stuff" is necessary. I had my ETrex done that way before I got another GPS.

I just unsoldered the wires from the voltage regulator board into the cigarette lighter plug and added some new ones a couple of feet long. Wrapped the regulator board in electrical tape and hid it under the fairing where it would stay relatively dry. I only used it like that about 6 months or so but I never had any problems whatsoever.

Scott Craig - Nashville, TN
Red '06 Suzuki DL650 - Red '07 Honda VFR800 - My Bike Page
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post #3 of 3 Old 04-27-2008, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Sierra Vista
Posts: 125
Well, I did it.

First I needed to make a little box to hold the voltage regulator board that is currently located inside the male end of the 12v GPS cable.

So... I found a motorola wall charger for an old cell phone. It's the rectangle wall charger with the fold-up plugs. I pryed it open, pulled it all out, and cleaned up the insides.

I took the gps charger plug and opened it up and took out the voltage regulator board.

I unsoldered all of the existing leads from the voltage regulator board.

On the power "in" side of the board, I soldered on new 10" pigtails.

On the power "out" side I resoldered the shortened thin leads that go the the GPS interface plug.

I then wrapped the voltage regulator board and newly soldered wires with 3M electrical tape.

I placed the regulator board into the modified motorola wall charger "box" that I made.

I taped that up nice and double side taped it up under the fairing.

Hooked up my newly installed power outlet to a relay to power it only when the tailight is on (key on) using Eastern Beaver's adapter.

I cut the power cable much shorter.

I then cut my + and - wires on my power outlet receptacle that I wired in a week or so ago and soldered in my 10" pigtails and remade the connection that I had just cut (basically I spliced my pigtails into the outlet receptacle wires.

Now my GPS cord is hardwired, I don't need to plug it in and have it fall out, I don't need to use either my GPS or my cell phone charger, and it's powered off when I turn the key off (thanks to the relay).

I works great.

All connections were soldered and shrink tube wrapped.

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