Friday, February 26, 2021

Project-Zero: Warning Indicators

The Short Story

I'm going to go with the Summit Technologies HAWK Array rather than rolling my own. It's less expensive and would look better than what I would build for my own usage.

NOTE: This is a lie, I wound up rolling my own anyway.

The Less Short Story

For the purpose of testing my car's electrics I built a prototype indicator array. It half worked. I sunk all of the LED cathodes to a common chassis ground because I made bad assumptions. 

What indicators sink to what, briefly.

  • Discrete Source, Common Sink
    • Right Turn
    • Left Turn
    • High Beam
  • Common Source, Discrete Sink
    • Oil Pressure
    • Alternator
    • Brake


Reading it that way is a little confusing if you've not fully grasped that some things within the car are ground switched. I had the boys down in R&D whip up this janky diagram to help better illustrate the point. (Brown lines are ground/sinks)

How does the HAWK Array work in this configuration?

The HAWK indicator array is already wired up with exactly these indicators lamps with exactly this configuration of sources and sinks. It's like it was purpose built for British kit cars. (It was purpose built for British kit cars.)

What the other stuff about bulbs, watts, and field exciter circuits?

Depending, I may need to build a circuit that will excite the alternator so that it'll produce power at idle. It's a fairly simple circuit, especially if you're using an incandescent bulb. If you're using an LED, well, they offer little forward resistance so they might not excite the alternator and you need to bridge a resistor that will simulate the load of a 2-4 watt bulb. (@12V)  I might need to do this with the HAWK array, but I'm not 100% sure on that right now.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Project-Zero: Oiling System

I've gone back and forth on the cooling system on my car for a bit but I've come up with a solution that I like and am presently implementing.

The Problem:

The location of the engine and oil filter in the engine bay of a GBS Zero with a Ford Duratec engine sucks. A lot.  The filter sits on its side over an area where it will make an unholy mess when it's time to change the oil filter.  The problem is even worse if you're running with GBS' supplied oil cooler kit.

Exhibit A:

(The oil filter hangs out over a fuel line and some of the body work that would love to collect and trap some oil dripping out of the filter when it gets removed.)

The Solution:

The easy to say answer is "Install a remote oil filter mount." On the Generation 2 chassis, that's not as easy as it seems but I've managed to make it work out. The only down side of my solution to this problem is that I lose the oil thermostat so it will take a little longer for the care to come up to full temperature. Not much of a problem, to be completely honest.

  • Location - In a Generation 2 GBS Zero chassis locations for a remote mount oil filter are limited. In my car, the best place is beside the battery on the passenger's side.
  • Remote Oil Filter Mount - I sourced a used CV Products remote oil filter mount from Ebay. (-10AN inlet/outlet ports, 1/8 npt port (post filter), 3/4-16 oil filter nipple) This mount features angled inlets ports opposite from each other and outlet on top.
  • Oil Filter Takeoff/Bypass - I am using the oil cooler takeoff sandwich provided by GBS and a filter bypass plate from (Purchased on Ebay) In the future I might change to one of Mountune's oil takeoff plates but this setup should work for now.
  • Mounting Bracket - I built a simple, robust mount out of 1.25" (.125" thick) angle iron. It mounts to the chassis rail with some M6 rivnuts. (See the video.)

Exhibit B:

Foot Notes:

1. The reason that I have to lose the thermostat is that with the thermostat in place, unfiltered oil would be circulated through the engine until it gets to 180˚f and the thermostat closes. No bueno.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Project-Zero: Direct Fit Oil Filter Cross Reference

The following is a table of oil filters that should be direct fit swaps for my Zero. 

For future reference, the Motorcraft FL910S is about an inch longer than the supplied BluePrint  oil filter, I'll probably just use those going forward for that touch extra capacity.

Direct Fit (Per Rock Auto)Extra NotationsNotes

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Project-Zero: GBSゼロ - First Power

Project-Zero: LEDs and flasher relay

UPDATE (03/03/2021):

The flasher that I bought is complete and utter garbage. Do not buy it. It will kill your children, corrupt your dog, and run off with your spouse on a bank robbery spree.

Another thing to think about, the GBS Zero uses ISO standard pin outs for the flasher relay.

You can easily use Grote 44892 LED flasher unit.

LEDs and Flasher Relay 

GBS included a flasher relay intended for incandescent bulbs however they shipped LED front turn signals and incandescent tail/brake/rear-turn bulbs with the car.  This will result in a fast than desired flashing of the right and left turn signals. The quick solution is to just replace all of the remaining indicator bulbs with LEDs and flasher relay. (With an LED compatible relay)  While I'm at it, I've also purchased a set of LED H4 headlights.

I bought all of the needed parts at, part numbers are below.

  • Brake/Tail (red) - 1157 Socket x2 - 1157-R27-T-2PK
  • Rear Fog (red) - 1156 Socket x1 - 1156-R27-T
  • Reverse Light (white) - 1156 Socket x 1 - 1156-NW27-T
  • Turn Indicator (amber) - 1156 Socket x2 - 1156-A27-T-2PK
  • LED Flasher Relay - CF13GL-02 FL3-RED-K
  • H4 Headlights - H4-HLV7

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Project-Zero: Oil Pressure Sensor Wiring

AIM do make a 0-150PSI pressure sensor with an integrated Binder 719 connector, it's expensive. I have several spare functionally identical Packard/Delphi sensors laying around from past projects and a small handful of 719 connectors. The preference is to use what I have on hand that sets me up for less expensive replacement costs in the future, should the sensor crap itself. (Pressure transducers are a little delicate, they don't like a lot of heat and vibrations.)

This is the wiring/soldering game plan to connect up the “generic” Packard sensors to the AIM MSX dash that I’m using. Nothing too special, just a distillation of information from a couple of different sources to help keep me from jacking things up too bad. 

The Binder 719’s on the the MXS’s harness are of the 4-pin variety.  When looking at them from solder termination side, index tab pointed upward, the pins can be read as:

719 Male - From solder termination side

  1. Upper Right - Analog Signal
  2. Lower Right - Sensor Ground
  3. Lower Left - +12V (Battery)
  4. Upper Left - +5v (Sensor Vref)
719 Female - From solder termination side
  1. Upper Left - Analog Signal
  2. Lower Left - Sensor Ground
  3. Lower Right - +12v (Battery)
  4. Upper Right - +5v (Sensor Vref)
Packard/Delphi 3-pin Transducer - Looking at the pins on the sensor side
  1. Lower Center - Analog Signal
  2. Upper Right - +5v (Sensor Vref)
  3. Upper Left - Sensor Ground
Connecting up the +12V pin on the Binder connectors is no bueno.

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Project-Zero: ECU Mount

Originally I thought I might put the ECU on top of the transmission tunnel behind the aux switch panel but have since come to a different opinion on placement.  Instead I’m flying it on the passenger’s side of the scuttle/dash area mounted to a plywood tray/shelf.

The shelf is a piece of 1/8" plywood mounted with a few 3D printed brackets. (PETG) The plywood was a 1’x1’ sheet sourced from the local hardware store, fit into place and then cut down as needed.  It has ended up as a kind of funky shape but it works and finished off with some black paint it doesn’t even look that weird.

Monday, February 8, 2021

Project-Zero: Fuel Level Sender to AIM Cable Build

I ordered the Zero without instrumentation, I'm using an AIM MXS. Fuel level will go to the MXS as an analog input.

This requires a cable with a pull-up resistor between +5v and the signal. (AIM have a good description of it in this PDF.)

I used a 1.8K ohm resistor for the pull-up.