TB quad brakes/dual turns on the cheap (halogen and LED verified)

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
f5fa06b0.jpg


This modification makes it so that:

When the brake pedal is pushed, the top and middle bulbs bright filaments light up.
When the turn sig is pressed, the top and middle bulbs flash the bright filaments.
When the brake is pushed and the turn sig is on, both bulbs flash the bright filaments.

Note: My TB has a pair of may03 modded tail light boards that were modded so that both dim filaments light up when the parking lights are on. Dual parking lights are not part of this mod, and are not required to have dual brakes/dual turns. (They do look good though).

So, here's how I did it.

f4446a7c.jpg


I didn't want to cut the factory tail light wiring. So, I bought a M/F connector kit from Ballenger to make a harness.
Note: you don't need the harness if you don't mind cutting your tail light plug. Keep in mind that if you do, you will have live wires that are not connected to anything. If you do it that way, tape those suckers up good.

bb09b51a.jpg


I made the harness so that 3 out of the 5 slots were used on the male side. This way, the factory tail light connector turn and brake wires were not hanging out in the open. On the female side, a single wire had female pins installed on each end. Those pins were put into the turn and brake cavities. Then, I stripped 3/4" of the insulation, and twisted/soldered a length of red wire to it. (TXBlazer I told you I would use red lol)

bfc74651.jpg


For the left harness, the red wire was tied into the yellow wire at the trailer connector harness. For the right harness, the red wire was tied into the DARK GREEN wire in the trailer harness. Keep in mind that there is also a light green wire in the trailer harness and that is not the right one. If you're in doubt, you can easily check it with a DMM. Brakes on = B+; right turn on = flashes B+.

32c8c56a.jpg


This is a fancy diagram courtesy of my mspaint skills. Yes, it's that easy.

If you want to save $31 in connectors and the cost of a crimping tool, you can do it without the harness. Then the mod will cost under $10.00, BUT YOU WILL BE CUTTING THE FACTORY TAIL LIGHT HARNESSES IF YOU DO IT THIS WAY:

1aa832a2.jpg


Just keep in mind that those wires that you cut for brakes and turns will still be live.

This was done using halogen bulbs. I'm waiting on some parts to verify that this will work with LEDs. I'm not sure if/how this will work with load resistors for turn signal hyperflash. If you guys running LEDs want to try it before I can, go for it...but your safety is not guaranteed.

UPDATE 5/5/12: This is confirmed to work with LEDs as well. You'll still need to use load resistors for turn signal hyperflash just like you would when you convert to LEDs. Thanks to Short Bus for being the first person to do it with LEDs and confirming that it works!

Also worth mentioning, even with the factory turn signal circuits in the rear not hooked up, the halogens do not have hyperflash when the turn sigs are on.

Fancy tests:
Before
Brake fuse 34 - 4.2A @ 14.43v
L-turn fuse 38 - 5.4A @ 14.41v
R-turn fuse 43 - 5.4A @ 14.41v
After (these will now be your rear brake/turn fuses, in the front fuse block)
TRLR LT fuse 51 -
turn - 4.3A @ 14.61v
brake - 4.2A @ 14.61v
turn + brake - 4.9A @ 14.61
TRLR RT fuse 50 -
turn - 4.2A @ 14.61v
brake - 4.3A @ 14.61v
turn + brake - 4.9A @ 14.61

When it gets dark I'm going to get more pics and I'll also have a vid for this.:cool:

Also, shout outs to my man Chris (TXBlazer), without him this would not have been possible!!!

[video=youtube;4zcmmPITB8g]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zcmmPITB8g[/video]
 
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Short Bus

Member
Dec 2, 2011
1,906
I'll be doing this soon, but I'm a cheap bastard, so no fancy harnesses for me.
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
Short Bus said:
I'll be doing this soon, but I'm a cheap bastard, so no fancy harnesses for me.

I don't know when I'll have my modded LED boards ready so if you do yours first, post the results!!!!:cool:

I'm a LED noob so I'm guessing the load resistor would also be on the brake/turn wire. How that will all work, I have no idea. But we're gonna find out. Plus, if it doesn't, I have a backup plan.
 

kardain

Member
Dec 16, 2011
557
MAY03LT said:
I don't know when I'll have my modded LED boards ready so if you do yours first, post the results!!!!:cool:

I'm a LED noob so I'm guessing the load resistor would also be on the brake/turn wire. How that will all work, I have no idea. But we're gonna find out. Plus, if it doesn't, I have a backup plan.

If it is needed, you just jump the brake/turn wire to ground... Same as if a load resistor was going on a vehicle with a combined brake/turn lamp from the factory.
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
Andrew, you're one smart dude. I wanna be like you when I grow up! :tongue:
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
kardain said:
If it is needed, you just jump the brake/turn wire to ground... Same as if a load resistor was going on a vehicle with a combined brake/turn lamp from the factory.

That's what I'll do then. Thanks man!:cool:

Blckshdw said:
Andrew, you're one smart dude. I wanna be like you when I grow up! :tongue:

The only thing I can take credit for is bringing this to the community. Without TXBlazer I'd be showing you guys a dual-relay harness with diodes and stuff. This is much, much easier.

And who wants to be like who? You're an originator on another level, I'm just some guy with wire cutters and tape.:biggrin:
 

BOOMERZ

Member
Dec 5, 2011
94
Did this today while i was replacing blow out bulbs and installing my strobes , now i just need to get ahold of some spare boards or modded boards to do dual parks. had a few TB pass buy and look like WTF is he doing to it :biggrin:
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
BOOMERZ said:
Did this today while i was replacing blow out bulbs and installing my strobes , now i just need to get ahold of some spare boards or modded boards to do dual parks. had a few TB pass buy and look like WTF is he doing to it :biggrin:

Right on man!!! :wootwoot:

I had a TB behind me last night and I thought "I wonder if he notices the brakes":cool:
 

Gump2773

Member
Feb 21, 2012
147
MAY03LT said:
Right on man!!! :wootwoot:

I had a TB behind me last night and I thought "I wonder if he notices the brakes":cool:

HAH! :rotfl: :rotfl:
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
Nicce job. May actually do this mod. I tend not to mess with the lights, but this is pretty simple.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
kardain said:
If it is needed, you just jump the brake/turn wire to ground... Same as if a load resistor was going on a vehicle with a combined brake/turn lamp from the factory.

Whoa whoa, I hope you don't mean attaching the brake/turn wire directly to ground. That is a short circuit and will blow fuses, which I suppose will prevent hyperflash but you won't have anything at all :raspberry:
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
HARDTRAILZ said:
Nicce job. May actually do this mod. I tend not to mess with the lights, but this is pretty simple.

Thanks man!

Me007gold said:
Any plans to sell these harnesses?

Yes indeedy. Details to follow in the next week or so.:cool:

Sparky said:
...which I suppose will prevent hyperflash but you won't have anything at all :raspberry:

:rotfl:

TXBlazer said:
Looks awesome Drew.....The video would have been so much more Awesome if you had those mirror LED's installed.....:rotfl:

Thanks boss! And I'll have something just for them:biggrin:
 
Jan 2, 2012
72
Sparky said:
Whoa whoa, I hope you don't mean attaching the brake/turn wire directly to ground. That is a short circuit and will blow fuses, which I suppose will prevent hyperflash but you won't have anything at all :raspberry:

I think the post he replied previously mentioned installing a resistor in the brake/turn wire. He was just stating that the resistor needed to be grounded, not just inline if he was going to use it. I hope anyway :undecided:
 

kardain

Member
Dec 16, 2011
557
xx_gearhead_xx said:
I think the post he replied previously mentioned installing a resistor in the brake/turn wire. He was just stating that the resistor needed to be grounded, not just inline if he was going to use it. I hope anyway :undecided:

Exactly. Attach the load resistor to the brake/turn and ground wires.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
I figured as much, but just wanted to clarify (maybe for others that might not quite understand that). Also, I couldn't pass up the chance to razz him a little bit :tongue:
 

kardain

Member
Dec 16, 2011
557
Sparky said:
I figured as much, but just wanted to clarify (maybe for others that might not quite understand that). Also, I couldn't pass up the chance to razz him a little bit :tongue:

Hahaha. It's all good. I'm not one to get upset being called out on something :biggrin:
 

Short Bus

Member
Dec 2, 2011
1,906
CONFIRMED: This works with LED's and modded boards also. And yes, you do need resistors :smile:frown: I was hoping to use them for LED's up front)
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
TexazReece said:
Nice mod for the quads bro

Thanks!

Short Bus said:
CONFIRMED: This works with LED's and modded boards also. And yes, you do need resistors :smile:frown: I was hoping to use them for LED's up front)

Awesome!!! Thanks for the update!:wootwoot:
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
Short Bus said:
CONFIRMED: This works with LED's and modded boards also. And yes, you do need resistors :smile:frown: I was hoping to use them for LED's up front)

I thought you could use one pair of load resistors to cover front AND back?
 

Short Bus

Member
Dec 2, 2011
1,906
Blckshdw said:
I thought you could use one pair of load resistors to cover front AND back?

From my understanding, you can if you use 3 ohm resistors, but I have 6 ohm resistors :frown:. (someone please correct me if I'm wrong)
 

Matt

Member
Dec 2, 2011
4,009
Short Bus said:
From my understanding, you can if you use 3 ohm resistors, but I have 6 ohm resistors :frown:. (someone please correct me if I'm wrong)

You are correct...just get some 3ohms and change them out you lazy bugger! :raspberry:
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
So I didn't need these 6 ohm "bricks"?:rotfl:
 

Short Bus

Member
Dec 2, 2011
1,906
MAY03LT said:
So I didn't need these 6 ohm "bricks"?:rotfl:

The 3 ohm look like they'll be the same size.

[EBAY]150612934325[/EBAY]

You can use 1 set of 3 ohm resistors or 2 sets of 6 ohm resistors for front and rear leds.
 

Matt

Member
Dec 2, 2011
4,009
MAY03LT said:
So I didn't need these 6 ohm "bricks"?:rotfl:

Ahhh, if you only wanted to test LED's, then no. I don't know too much about electrical, but I know enough to be dangerous! :eek::crackup:
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
Short Bus said:
The 3 ohm look like they'll be the same size.

[EBAY]150612934325[/EBAY]

You can use 1 set of 3 ohm resistors or 2 sets of 6 ohm resistors for front and rear leds.

Yup those be the bricks! I was expecting them to be a little smaller but all they need to do is work.:biggrin:

Matt said:
Ahhh, if you only wanted to test LED's, then no. I don't know too much about electrical, but I know enough to be dangerous! :eek::crackup:

LMAO.....I'm still a noobix when it comes to this LED stuff but I'm getting there 1 ohm at a time.
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
Matt said:
Short Bus said:
From my understanding, you can if you use 3 ohm resistors, but I have 6 ohm resistors :frown:. (someone please correct me if I'm wrong)

You are correct...just get some 3ohms and change them out you lazy bugger! :raspberry:

:yes: Just sell the old ones to whoever comes along next needing load resistors, and you're set. :thumbsup:

MAY03LT said:
LMAO.....I'm still a noobix when it comes to this LED stuff but I'm getting there 1 ohm at a time.

:biggrin: That's how it starts... :wink:
 

kardain

Member
Dec 16, 2011
557
Now, I'm not trying to threadjack... if this can be figured out, it is another cheap method. The components can be had for a couple dollars, and some generic perf board from isn't too expensive...

I've been working on a spliceless method for some time now (I don't like splicing if it is not absolutely necessary)... Started with PCB relays and diodes, however the turn signals blinked out of phase with the fronts when the brakes were depressed.

That didn't sit too kindly with me, so on to tail light converters... the things that you would install in line to convert separate brake/turn to a combined wire... these are used on tow vehicles that don't already do it for you (like ours).

It's thin enough that it can be integrated directly in to the circuit board (when removed from the casing and cut in half to separate the right side from left)

This is an example of one

dwYjJ.jpg


And here are the guts

ryGci.jpg


I got it to mostly work, but the electronics in the GMT's are all kinds of messed up. Testing it first on my Cavalier that has been modified to separate the brake and turn lights (GM export), the converter worked flawlessly to combine the two signals in to a single wire. I already had the tail lights out, so it was easy enough to test. The test was just using the left turn and brake inputs.. the right turn input was not hooked up.... blinker worked, brake worked, brake on and blinker on worked, 4 ways worked with brake on and off.

These are the tails I first tested on (the car uses a standard 5 pin flasher)

kif7923fx8.jpg


"OK," I said. "Lets test it on the TB."

Well, after hooking up the left turn and brake using some jumper wire (Home Depot had some doorbell wire that works great, solid core and thin gauge, fits in the tail socket pins perfectly... 500ft roll for like $20), I got nothing. I had to hook up the right side of the converter...

Everything worked except for 4 ways, and the blinkers were in sync front to rear.

Thinking the issue may have been the right side circuit, I cut the trace on the brake wire that went to the right side... It worked the same as if the right wire weren't hooked up.

Here is the circuit diagram, I'm not sure on the transistor symbol (PNP is shown, though it very well could be an NPN)... I'm not too well versed on transistors. All the other labels are straight from the components themselves. Click for larger size



If anyone wants to go from here, have at it...

Oh, and this worked with incandescent and LED bulbs

(edited to add pic)
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
I'll admit, I know less than squat about transistors, but according to that diagram, both turn signals are connected to each other on the blue line? :confused: I can't wrap my brain around why that's necessary. :no:
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
GMT360s have their wiring all sorts of screwed up. It has really thrown a wrench in the works for what I've been trying to do up front :no:
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
Sparky said:
GMT360s have their wiring all sorts of screwed up. It has really thrown a wrench in the works for what I've been trying to do up front :no:

:undecided: Care to share any details on this mod of yours?
 

kardain

Member
Dec 16, 2011
557
Blckshdw said:
I'll admit, I know less than squat about transistors, but according to that diagram, both turn signals are connected to each other on the blue line? :confused: I can't wrap my brain around why that's necessary. :no:

Yeah, they are connected to the base pins on the resistor side via the stop wire. Here is the PCB trace layout...

k0PsN.jpg
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
Well guys I have an update on the harnesses and it's not a good one. They've been in the TB for two weeks now.

Last night I noticed the park lights on the drivers side looked a little dimmer then the pass side. With a tap on the lens (that is the first step, right???) they went bright again.

I depinned and inspected all 16 crimps and these 2 had spread.

Park + pin on d/s female connector...

1c887f60.jpg


Turn + pin on the same connector...

27a1726e.jpg


I know these things were LEGIT when I built the harnesses so I'm really thinking that the bass is the root cause. My system can move things in other vehicles and with these connectors a foot or so away from the port it is a strong possibility. But I can't rule out an assembly error.

That being said, these connectors are unacceptable to my standards and I'm not ready to offer them at this point. I'm going to get another crimping tool and another pair of connectors and try again. Between gathering parts and testing this could take a month or so.

Since the pass side is still 100%, I left it in the truck. I did the cut harness version on the drivers side and this is what I did.

I cut brake + and turn + in the vehicle harness (staggered the cuts)

79ef013d.jpg


I slid some adhesive-lined heat shrink on the body side and gave them the heat.

893746ce.jpg


The connector side was spliced into the wire that goes to the trailer harness.

6bacfefc.jpg


And this is what I ended up with, although I did tape the harness up after this pic was taken.

a78de32c.jpg


So, for you guys that want the harnesses I'm sorry to keep you guys waiting but the last thing I want is for you to have a problem with one of my products. Just like my dual park boards I want to say with confidence that these things will last you the life of the vehicle.

I'll have another update when the time comes!:cool:
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
:undecided: That sucks, but at least you were able to come across this issue beforehand.

Not sure how feasible, or how interested you'd be in going this route, but you could always put a small solder joint in there as a lil insurance. When I did my headlights and beefed up the interior wiring, since I had to recycle the pins, I had to grind off the existing crimps. Soldered the larger gauge wiring in, and it's been good to go ever since. :biggrin:
 

MAY03LT

Original poster
Member
Nov 18, 2011
3,412
Delmarva
This is why you're the originator and I'm just some guy with wire strippers! That is a great tip and since you know I love soldering things I am going to do that on the protoharnesses volume 2!!! Thanks!!!

BTW your sig is awesome.:thumbsup:
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,657
Tampa Bay Area, FL
MAY03LT said:
This is why you're the originator and I'm just some guy with wire strippers! That is a great tip and since you know I love soldering things I am going to do that on the protoharnesses volume 2!!! Thanks!!!

... and you're the guy with the sparkling 'on-camera' personality worthy of his own TV show :lightbulb: You know if there's a mod involving lighting, I'm more than glad to help out! :wootwoot:

MAY03LT said:
BTW your sig is awesome.:thumbsup:

Thanks, now if I could only mod some type of device to make it a reality... :suicide:
 

Yacdogg

Member
Apr 27, 2012
92
MAY03LT said:
So, for you guys that want the harnesses I'm sorry to keep you guys waiting but the last thing I want is for you to have a problem with one of my products. Just like my dual park boards I want to say with confidence that these things will last you the life of the vehicle.

I'll have another update when the time comes!:cool:

It's Okay, I'll be glad to wait. :thumbsup: for the update
 

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