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Looking Backwards - rear facing cameras


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Good day all,

So, I am stewing about attending the annual Airflow (sorry, not the Century this trip) meet in Independence MO this fall with my 1936 C9.  The furthest I've driven this car in any one stint is about 25mi between my home and storage;  These trips have been uneventful - hopefully this is not making me over-confident about being able to make it to the meet and back.

Considering this trip leads me to the following inquiry...

I am seeking any information that anyone might have about rear-view cameras.  I have another couple of antique cars that are even worse for a short guy (me) to see out of.  I an thinking that a rear-view camera, especially if there is a wireless type might be the ideal solution.  I am thinking something portable, maybe that I could clamp onto the license plate, with a display I could have inside the car.  Given that I have antique cars, that are all 6V and both positive and negative ground, I suspect I will need to build some type of standalone power supply / battery to have something I can move between cars without doing any permanent wiring.

If anyone on the list has any ideas, or seen any products along these lines that look interesting, I'd appreciate a heads-up.
--
Best Regards,
Jon B Kanas
Email: kanas@qadas.com
Website: http://www.2experts.org
Longmont, Colorado; Cultural Center of the Universe

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  • Peter Gariepy changed the title to Looking Backwards - rear facing cameras

Jon, what I did to make stand alone power was make a rectangular 2x4 box cut a bottom plate from plywood and used a lawnmower 12 volt battery.These batteries don't have a lot of cold cranking amps but are sufficient for cameras and portable turn signals.I installed a cigarette lighter receptical as most of the portable cameras plug in.The only problem with using wood is the receptical needs grounding.To do this I ran a small ground wire with an alligator clip so it could be grounded under the dash.Most major auto parts stores have a good selection of  portable backup cameras both wired and wireless.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Good Afternoon all,

Thanks to everyone for their comments and assistance regarding rear-view camera options.  I selected a RVS Systems, model RVS-83112-BA camera system.  I have done a few proof-of-concept drives with it in my S-10 pick-up and Airflow.  I offer the following observations for anyone interested:

  • ·         This is a wireless system, with a Bluetooth link between the monitor and camera.  I have observed no interference or video quality degradation during testing.

  • ·         The 3.5” LCD monitor plugs into a cigarette lighter power source.  Is a color display, and shows camera battery health and Bluetooth signal strength on the monitor.

  • ·         The monitor consumes 2W at 12V (0.16A), therefore I should be able to get a day’s worth of service from a small rechargeable 12V battery pack to power the monitor in the 6V cars.

  • ·         The camera contains a rechargeable Li-Ion battery, therefore there is no wiring to the camera at all.  I charged the camera overnight upon receipt, and after approximately 3 hours of use it still shows full charge state on the monitor.  The camera has a 120 degree view.

I have found that if I mount the camera as low as the license plate, the view of the traffic behind me is distorted;  The relative positions of vehicles in adjacent lanes is unclear.  If I mount the camera immediately below the rear window, the view of traffic behind me is much better, clearly showing traffic and lane markings for adjacent lanes.  The higher mounting removes any reference point (rear bumper, etc) so when backing,  left-to-right position is good, however backing depth is not easily determined.

As an added bonus, because the camera is so portable, I could position the camera on my lift, watch as I approached the lift in the Airflow, easily getting it onto the lift in the exact position I wanted it, without getting in and out of the car repeatedly. 

Two complaints:

  • ·         As with many Chinese electronics products, the owner’s manual leaves a lot to be desired.  I found an undocumented  button on the camera that allows the image to be rotated to allow the camera to be positioned in any vertical or horizontal position, and display a “mirror image” in each position.

  • ·         When the camera is paired to the monitor, there is a flashing bright blue LED.  I think this will be annoying for any night driving, so a “black tape” solution may be required.

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You were able to get 6V - 12v inverters that were capable of powering a radio back in the days. Might be a bit easier as a perm ant power supply. Dang you could even rig in a relay or switch that only turned it on in reverse.

 

Nah you might wish to see at the same time you are moving forward.

just my two bobs worth.

BTW I have one here NOS I’m putting up for sale, but it would be shipped from Australia

Rodney 😀😀😀😀😀

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4 hours ago, rodneybeauchamp said:

You were able to get 6V - 12v inverters that were capable of powering a radio back in the days. Might be a bit easier as a perm ant power supply. Dang you could even rig in a relay or switch that only turned it on in reverse.

 

Nah you might wish to see at the same time you are moving forward.

just my two bobs worth.

BTW I have one here NOS I’m putting up for sale, but it would be shipped from Australia

Rodney 😀😀😀😀😀

I decided to build a standalone power box instead of using an inverter because I have a couple of other cars that are (+) ground systems so being totally wireless is (to me) a simpler approach to maintain portability between vehicles.  Also, I planned on building a pair of cup holders onto the top of the box, as I get really grumpy if I leave for an early morning car event without my coffee!   I can get a small, rechargeable AGM battery that will run the monitor for 18 hours to put in the base of the box. 

 

Once the current snow melts and a visit to the local scrapyards will be mudless, I want to see if I can find a suitable console from a modern car that will lend itself as the basis for a power box.  It would be nice to start with something with cupholders, lighter socket(s) and possibly a USB port already built in.  If I design this properly, I could set it up such that I can charge both the power box and the camera concurrently. Maybe one of those "mobile office" boxes that Americans love to have in their pick-up trucks.  I am an OK wood worker, but not nearly the quality of cabinetmaker that would be ideal for this effort.

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  • 1 month later...

Walmart has several dif. size 'boxes'.   Amazon has several 6v >  12v converters.    The last one I saw was about ~ $25.00 with a max of 10A output.      I like the stand alone agm batteries concept.   Easy to move between cars.    Different cap. so you can chose.    Using 'suction cups' to hold the camera where you want / need - works.   Hiding wires is a no brainer especially with bluetooth.     Since my cars (38-46s  and 35-58) are not 'show cars and I make them driving cars,  converting to 12 v became important.    Plus, converting to 12v  is basically  invisible.     Only the most disconcerting / sharp eye,  can tell.   JMHO 

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