Monday, January 26, 2009

12 Volt Conversion

At long last, today was the day I wired up my droid for 12 volt operation.

I needed to solder three wires together for the positive connection, and another three wires together for the negative. Two of the three wires come from the connectors that go to the two banks of batteries. The third wire on the positive connection goes through the 30 amp circuit breaker and on to the positive bus bar, while the third wire on the negative connection goes to the on/off switch, and on to the negative bus bar.

My soldering skills haven't gotten much better over the years, but I managed to solder the positive connections together.

Likewise, I soldered the three negative wires together. Not pretty, but I tugged on the wires and they held solidly.

I wrapped everything up tight with electrical tape. I wanted to top this off with shrink tubing, but I didn't have any with a large enough diameter.

With the batteries disconnected from the droid's electronics, I powered up and tested the voltage. 12.81 volts, looks good!

I got the wiring settled in the droid and connected to the bus bars, and flipped the switch. Everything that was connected (speed controller, Keycoder, sound card, dome drive) worked fine. The fact that I didn't blow anything up (yet) is major progress for me.

For now I have the H&A drivetrain on the droid, tomorrow I hope to wire up the NPC motors and try them out for the first time on the droid.

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