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Am I the only one struggling?  On my CMX with the Unimog 406 body there is a receiver with build in LED controls for the head/tail lights, brake lights and the indicators.  There is a TLU01 unit with a Graupner switch so 3d channel can switch the rooflights/searchlicht on/off. There's a servowinch on the 4th channel. 

To replace the battery the body must be removed. As all the lights are on the body there are a lot of wires going from the body to the chassis. 

For now the light unit and receiver are mounted to the body, the esc is mounted to the chassis. But I feel it's not optimal.

Before I start to finish my Trx4sport based project (Lights on the chassis and on the body, 2 winches...) I'd like to hear how you guys avoid the "wire-spaghetti" between body and chassis that I'm getting...

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I can't help you except saying that I share your concern about the cable spaghetti. Undoing tiny cables from a TLU01 (or similar unit) gets tedious pretty quickly. Not to mention the risk of ripping something off.

I guess someone needs to bring the light tech (or at least the cable spaghetti) out of the stone age ... or just give us more robust connectors.

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I mount the light unit to the body where possible, the only connector I have between the body and chassis is a power wire. If I have lights on the chassis too, I set everything up on the chassis with a Y connector and just use a single connector for the body lights. It can get hairy with a lot of lights, that's for sure. 

I've seen a lot of guys build a set of connectors into the body mounts, I've never done that myself. 

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7 minutes ago, OldSchoolRC1 said:

build a set of connectors into the body mounts

A pogo pin magnetic bar would be good for that, it’s a system I’ve been looking into as the connectors only usually cost a couple of quid depending on amount of pins etc. 
 

I’ve noticed some newer light systems are coming with a ribbon cable that lets you use one connector for all the lights and is a lot easier to unplug. 
 

Another plan might be a hinged body mount, that way you don’t have to unplug anything (most of the time).

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45 minutes ago, OldSchoolRC1 said:

the light unit

I switched to a receiver with build in LED controller but this means all light connectors and all control connectors (steering,  throttle, winch, switches,...) have to go to the same little box. Most lights are on the body and most controls are on the chassis...

So what seemed like a perfect idea (receiver with build in LED controls) might not be.

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Does one of you own or know of a light unit that allows to remotely switch on/off the front/rear running lights and has indicators (left/right with steering - all 4 on demand), brake light(s), reverse light(s) and at least 1 extra (for a lightbar on the roof) but preferably 3 that can be remotely switched on/off?

And that doesn't cost a fortune? 

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I’m eyeing up a few looking for much the same. I’ve seen the MyTrickRC one, Boom Racing have one for the BRX02 that looks like it’s most of the way there. 
What I’m finding out is that if you want good features it’ll cost 50-70 quid minimum. I’m not really against that price but haven’t jumped in yet as I want to absolutely certain before I part with money. I’ve looked at AmPro’s light series too and the MyTrickRC one is the best I’ve seen but not quite all I personally want, so my search/research continues. I found a Bierer(the 1/14 truck stuff) and another independent one in Germany but my German is not great in any fashion and they seemed complicated from the outset. 
 

I would happily go the Arduino route but my skills are not entirely up to that, I can wire it easy enough but some of the more advanced(to my skillset) coding pickles my head. 

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54 minutes ago, ad456 said:

1/14 truck stuff)

Those are mostly very costly 

 

55 minutes ago, ad456 said:

the Arduino route

That would open a whole new world of possibilities but just as getting into 3D printing myself I'm afraid it would eat away my already restricted RC time for a very long time before I could really benefit. 

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nice one @Shergar, that scaleclub one looks interesting too. 

Now I’ve got me wee lad to bed now so had peace to go through what I’d been looking at. 
I’m pretty much after this recipe for functions or close.


shared brake and rear lights

reverse lights

on/off for indicators as I don’t always want them going as I drive a curve/corner 

headlights that don’t go higher/on when I drive forward.

Switchable hazard lights would be a bonus

Extra channel for light bar is always good

and if a channel is there to say, manage the system that can be handy  

 

Scale-man.de is the German one I couldn’t think of. Has some nice sounding controllers at various prices. Look like they have a few tricks all the way to winch controller included on one system. Haven’t looked at the docs yet though so don’t know all the functions. Pricing varies but no stock just now. 
 

The Boom Racing KUDU for the BRX02 models has 4 channels and I haven’t managed to look into the functions properly. I think it’s £50 or thereabouts which will be fine if it actually does what I want.

There is another I found on eBay that I’ve not seen before, it uses a ribbon cable that can be detached for ease of body removal. I’m gonna look further and then maybe take a punt at £15 to see how it fares. 
 

The MyTrickRC one is the one I saw on the AmPro video and it looks good too, I must watch more videos on it too as it looks pretty good. It’s about $80 in various incarnations on Amain.
 

I haven’t really finished properly looking around as I’m taking my time before ending up with more light systems that don’t work in a fashion I personally like or are just downright terrible. I’ve got 3 now and 1 will maybe useful for something and another is simply a disco box, the other skirts somewhere in between.

I wanna spend a bit more, get something better but wary of ending up with more spares box fodder. If any of them turn out good I’d be buying a few for different cars. 

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I feel your pain, and it's something I've struggled with too.  Here's my thoughts:

- I don't use separate light controllers any more.  I used to, but my crawlers go out in all weathers, and I got tired of them dying.  I've come to realise that working indicators, brake lights etc. for me is really just a gimmick on a crawler (although I respect that others want this and in no way do I mean to undermine that).  Cutting down to just headlights, tail lights, roof lights and (in some cases) rock lights means way less wires

- I install switches so I can turn on the head/tail lights, roof lights, and rock lights separately.  It's nice to have these accessible without having to lift the lid - but it's a work-in-progress on most of my trucks

- I wire my own lights, I don't buy pre-wired kits.  So I can make my wires exactly as long as they need to be.  I generally braid them too, so they are easier to manage, and I use spiral wrap to keep multiple braids together

- Where possible, I hot-glue or silage-tape my wires onto the body to stop them moving around.  Hot glue doesn't generally mark the paint but it can come off after a time, silage tape has the double benefit of strengthening the body, protecting against internal scratches, and damping sound.  Silage tape is basically wide, black duct tape

- I prefer hinged body mounds, that way I can have my wires routed down near the hinge so I don't need to unplug them to change batteries or do minor work on the chassis.  I've fabricated hinged mounts on 2 of my rigs

- I invested in a good crimping tool and various sets of connectors, including multi-wire connectors so I don't have lots of plugs to worry about, just one big one

- If my body isn't hinged, I allow a little extra coil on the body side (but not too much) so I can take off the body and lay it beside the truck without having to unplug the wires

I did start work on an Arduino-based light unit for crawlers some years back, and ultimately it would have had functionality for indicators, brake lights, switchable headlight modes etc., but it's time-consuming work and I got tired of it.  I think I abandoned it because I was also trying to act as a bridge between the receiver and the ESC and servos, so I could have cruise control, inertial braking, motor inhibit, winch inhibit, one-handed driving mode and various other clever things, but since I can now do 80% of that direct off the Tx, plus the potential for it all to go hideously wrong if the Arduino crashes or gets bugged on full throttle, I could probably go back and make a way simpler controller project that people could download from Github and build themselves.  One of these days I'll find the time to do that :lol:

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40 minutes ago, Mad Ax said:

hinged body mounds

I think I'm going to give that a try on the CMX Unimog.

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