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Old 04-11-2003, 10:50 AM   #1
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Default Dash Lights & Neon

I just have a few questions/concerns about wiring some neon into my car.

I drive a 91 SSE.

My car has a light sensor, so that when it gets dark outside, my night time driving lights turn on, and my dash lights inside the car turn on.
I've tested, and have successfully installed a single 10" tube into this circuit with an on/off switch. This means that the tube will only turn on if my dash lights are on. I have the ability to turn off the tube and still have the dash lights on.
I'm looking to install the following into my car.
Another 10" tube, 2 6" mini tubes, and neon pedals.

(I also might decide not to put the neon pedals in the car. They would be my 2nd set I've installed into the car, my first set nearly caught fire. I double checked my wiring on the first set and I had it correctly done, so I'm a bit warry about installing them again.)

I was wondering if adding all that extra neon would be too much for the circuit that is already powering my dash lights?
The circuit that controls the dash lights is fused. I'm thinking that adding all that extra neon might blow the fuse. If it does, should I risk putting in a high fuse?
Or should I put in a 2nd fuse, off the main circuit, just on the side of the neon on/off switch that is connected to the neons?
If I put a second fuse by the neons, what size should I use?
Would the second fuse protect my dash lights and/or neons?

I guess what I'm asking is, is it possible to add more lights/electronics to an existing circuit without risking damage to that circuit.

Someone mentioned that I might want to use a "relay" connected to the dash, and draw the power directly off the battery for the neons. I'm not sure how (or if) that setup would work.
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Old 04-11-2003, 12:41 PM   #2
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Those neon lights use hardly any power at all. I had six of them wired into the cig lighter in the back of the car without any problems(I think that was with a 10 amp fuse too). If you want to be on the safe side add a second fuse a 5 amp should be plenty, it might be a good idea to put them on a seperate switch since some law enforcement might not approve of them and ticket you for distracting lights or some such. I'd stay away from those lighted foot pedals too, I've heard nothing good about them.
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Old 04-11-2003, 03:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smellbird
I'd stay away from those lighted foot pedals too, I've heard nothing good about them.
If you really must put those in, I would wire them into the interior lights instead, so they come on when you open the door, which is really the only time when anyone is going to see those things anyway. (I mean, who are those designed to impress anyway: your feet? )

You would tap a power source, connect your neon pedals, then run the ground lead from the neon to the switched-ground circuit of the interior lights. I think there'* a floor light for the driver'* footwell right over the pedals that you could tap into. Just remember that your ground connection from the neon will need to go on the ground side of the footwell light, not its hot side.
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Old 04-11-2003, 04:41 PM   #4
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All the neon going into the car is for the floor. I've already mounted one tube under the glove compartment box, I plan to mount another under the drivers dash (making sure to keep it out of the way). The two mini tubes are going to be put in under the rear cargo compartments of the front seats. This way all tubes will be mounted "out of sight", thus just giving a soft glow on the floor of the Bonnie. I've already done all my interior lights in red, and these neon tubes will be red as well.

I was talking to some folks and they suggested using a relay.
Anyone have any idea if the following would work?
(and if so... where can I get an SPDT relay??)

Quote:
Using a SPDT relay:

This should work if the dash lights are turned on when a pos current is applied.

30 pin: pos neon wire
85 pin: pos wire from dash lights
86 pin: ground
87 pin: fused 12v constant
87a pin: fused 12 constant on a switch

This way they will turn on when your dash lights turn on or if they are off you can turn them on with a switch.


If you put a switch before the 85 pin then you can still have them off when the lights are on.
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Old 04-11-2003, 06:07 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merlin1
I was talking to some folks and they suggested using a relay.
Anyone have any idea if the following would work?
It will probably work, assuming the dash lights are turned up high enough to close the relay. Anything above 6 volts should be sufficient, I think. The point is that your neon is not going to dim with your dash lighting; it'll be either on or off, depending on whether your dash lighting voltage is turned up high enough to trigger the relay. I would make your relay connection off the brown wire on your headlight switch instead, which is your exterior lighting circuit, and will deliver a full 12-14 volts to your relay instead of a variable voltage from the dimmer.

You can see various wiring issues handled via use of these same relays (both 4-pin and 5-pin versions) in diagrams from the remote starter installation manuals at http://www.bulldogsecurity.com/pdf/RS102_112_122.pdf if that helps.

Anyhow, paraphrasing what you were told:

30 pin: pos neon wire -- This will be power from the relay to your neon
85 pin: pos wire from dash lights -- This will trigger the relay
86 pin: ground -- Ground for the relay circuit
87 pin: fused 12v constant -- Power feed for the neon
87a pin: fused 12 constant on a switch -- Alternate power feed for the neon (see below)

This way they will turn on when your dash lights turn on or if they are off you can turn them on with a switch.

When the relay is off (unpowered), there is a closed circuit through it, going in pin 87a and coming out pin 30. That'* why you can hook up a switched power supply to your neon through that pin. When the relay is triggered, pin 87a is turned off and pin 87 is turned on, or in other words, when the relay closes, its main input switches from whatever is coming in on pin 87a to whatever is coming in on pin 87. In either case, its output is pin 30, where you'll hook up your neon. (Yes, you can wire those pins the other way around, too, so that output goes one place when the relay is off, and another place when the relay is on.)

One thing I should point out is that this is a 5-pin relay, which includes that pin 87a for a "normally closed" circuit. You don't absolutely need that fifth pin; if you're not planning to add a manual override switch for your neon, you don't need it at all and a 4-pin relay will do instead. Radio Shack has both 4-pin and 5-pin relays available; the 4-pin is part #275-226 and can be found at their website ( http://www.radioshack.com ). The 5-pin is pictured on the BulldogSecurity website here: http://www.bulldogsecurity.com/images/Model757.jpg

It'* basically the same thing, either with or without the pin 87a in the middle. Any good electrical supply place should have them.

Quote:
If you put a switch before the 85 pin then you can still have them off when the lights are on.
True.
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Old 04-12-2003, 03:40 AM   #6
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me and a buddy guinuea rigged a neon set with temporary power nothing hard wired. i found the best way to mount the neon tubes were buy (3) 15" neon tubes i went red to match the interior dash lights. put one under each front seat and one on the bottom lip of the rear seat. the reason for this was it gave a good red glow to the interior without overflowing the interior with to much color. and the reason under the seat is because it gives enough glow to flow from under the seat to the front foot wells and to the rear floor. and i bought the little neon string and mounted it around the center console and up and over the dash guages and looks very good in my opinion. since i have an SE and only a traction control button i mounted the other 4 with toggle switches one for the underbody kit, one for the interior tubes for under the seats, one for the dash neon, and one for the neon in the air vents
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Old 04-12-2003, 08:13 PM   #7
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THis is what I did and it works perfectly


NOTE: I had the lights that plug into the cig lighters, I ran six lights but put three in to a box that had one wire and three into another hence only two switches to use)

Start at your positive terminal for your battery, start there with an o-ring and run that to a fuse (the closer to the battery the better) then run that wire that comes out of the fuse into your car (I found through the hole where the door connection is, is best) that same wire run it to a toggle switch (this part goes in on the powersource prong using a female connector) the if your neons are cigarette lighter ones cut off that end and split the positive and ground wire. run the positive wire to the switch and run the ground wire all the way back to the negative post on the battery.

All parts can be bought at Canadian Tire

Approx install time: 2 hours
Approx cost $50can

PArts needed
-----------------
four female connectors
1 fuse holder
1 25 fuse (just to be safe)
2 o ring connectors
lots of wire (I used over 20 feet on my install)
at least 6 terminals (the yellow ones that you pinch down at each end) I used way more so go more to be safe (besides you have some left over for the next time that way)
2 toggle switches

any other ?, email me at [email protected]
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Old 04-14-2003, 12:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ratmfan2118
run the positive wire to the switch and run the ground wire all the way back to the negative post on the battery.
No need to go all the back to the negative post on the battery; the car is negative-ground to begin with, so just run your negative lead to the closest bit of grounded metal nearby that you can find. A ground is a ground is a ground; it'll all get back to the battery eventually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ratmfan2118
Parts needed
[...]
lots of wire (I used over 20 feet on my install)
No doubt...
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Old 04-15-2003, 05:08 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acg_ssei
Quote:
Originally Posted by ratmfan2118
run the positive wire to the switch and run the ground wire all the way back to the negative post on the battery.
No need to go all the back to the negative post on the battery; the car is negative-ground to begin with, so just run your negative lead to the closest bit of grounded metal nearby that you can find. A ground is a ground is a ground; it'll all get back to the battery eventually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ratmfan2118
Parts needed
[...]
lots of wire (I used over 20 feet on my install)
No doubt...
good call, It is a lot easier, I did it my way cause everything was already open to I just put it through
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