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  1. #1

    DIY 12v Power Supply Cable

    Hi Folks,

    I've just received my Auto Kit incl. power supply for a Colorado. I really wanted to hard wire the power supply into the car (so it's not plugged in to the cig lighter socket but figured it would have a fancy plug on the GPSr end. But no, the power supply connects to the unit via the USB plug.

    So my question is, what is in the cig lighter plug end of the power lead? Is it just a big black box with nothing in it other than an LED and fuse? If I grab a USB cable, cut the end off and wire it into a plug (with fuse) from an auto supply place, with that work?

    I am sure there is no gadgetry in the plug but want to check before I do something I may regret. I also don't want to destroy the plug I just bought! I am astounded at the price of the these. Even on Ebay the generic knock offs are getting upwards to $50!

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Perth, WA. AU
    Blog Entries
    D I C K Smith electronics has a cigarette lighter socket that you can attach wires to and plug in the kit you have.
    The sun rises and sets, the moon wax and wanes, oceans ebb and rise, warmth of spring and the coolness of autumn and my heart beats as if I belong to them all.

  3. #3
    That's an option, but I want the wire to run from the mount on the windscreen, to the front (or is it the back) of the dash (near the windscreen) then down through a small hole into the bowels of the dash were it would be hard wired in permanently. The cord I have now would live in the wife's car.

    I did mention wiring a bought plug to a USB cable but that was meant for illustration only. One end would be on the dash to connect to the GPS, the other connected to the wiring loom under the dash.

    Hope that makes sense. Just hate having wires dangling all over the place particularly down the face of the dash.

    The only thing that might be inside the OEM plug might be a voltage regulator to limit the voltage to 12v (cars system can get to 14.5 in normal circumstances) but these are cheap and easy to wire in.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Oran Park, NSW
    I'd bet that cable converts 12v down to 5v - anything designed to charge off USB will be 5v.
    You can simply buy a cig lighter socket and wire it up behind the dash to get it out of the way, or you can split open your cable's cig lighter plug and wire directly to the little circuit board that's inside.

    EDIT - I bought a 12v to 5v car usb charger the other day off ebay for less than 5v - it was part of a phone charging kit, that might be a cheap way of not wrecking yours
    to a person with imagination, a map is a window to adventure
    - Sir Francis Chichester

  5. #5
    Thanks, that's the info I am after. I can rig a 5v regulator no dramas. In fact I have one at home!

    I will sacrifice a USB cable, bare the ends of the wires and connect the female end to the OEM power lead (whilst plugged in) so I can measure the voltage.

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