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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I got sick of opening my trunk every time I drove the car (to unplug the trickle charger) and every time I parked the car (to plug the trickle charger in).

Here's my solution - a 12V magnetic connector mounted on the bottom of the license plate, with a mating connector pigtailed to my existing charger cable.

Takes me a grand total of two seconds to connect the charger now...and one more second to remove the car from the charger.

Here's a (really) quick video of the system in action...






I ordered the connector kit through eBay (got it from the UK, took about a week to get it delivered).

Here's the link (don't know how long this link will work, though)

If the link no longer works, try searching for "12 Volt DC Power Magnetic Connector".

The connector comes in pieces...



Which I wired to an extra charger cable I had...



Here's a picture of the completed harness...



Next, I had to make a bracket for the car. Rather than drilling a 1-1/8" hole in the rear clam, I made a bracket that simply attached behind the license plate (using the license plate screws on one side). Here's the bracket; it's cut from some 1/8" aluminum plate I had lying around...



Here's a picture of the bracket with the connector installed, before I installed it on the car...



In order to get the wire through the clam and over the battery, I notched out a small...notch...in the license plate light, to allow room for the flat power cable to snake through. Again, I didn't want to drill holes in the clam and, this was really the only part I had to irreversibly modify (and I could get a new one if I need to)...



And, finally, one of the greatest features of this is, if I forget and leave the trickle charger connected...and drive off...the connector simply pops off (and the dust cover on the car snaps closed). To ensure that nothing bad happens, I put a small anchor in the wall of the carport, and tie-wrapped the cable to it, so it would pull on the wire, not on the charger...



This is how I spent my Saturday afternoon. The whole thing took me (and a friend) about 3 hours, and cost about $50.00.

As with any post I make, questions and comments are always welcome!
 

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Good work!

Amazon UK will not ship to me here.
 

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Awesome diy!
My trickle charger is a bit of a PITA to plug in so I don't do it as often as I should. This would definitely alleviate that issue.
Looks like they're out of stock now though. Hopefully more sets will be available soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Good work!

Amazon UK will not ship to me here.
Thanks. I got the part on eBay, not Amazon. This shipping was a little ugly (like $13.00 on a $40 part) but they shipped it to me in VA.

Love this. How did you make the connection to the battery from the magnetic connector?
Thanks.

The back side of the magnetic connector is just two spade terminals. I made a jumper cable to go from the existing trickle charger pigtail (because A- it was already hard-wired to the battery and B- it has a in-line fuse) to the back of the connector.

What I did for the whole project was bought a 25' charger extension cable...and cut it in half. I used one half (which had 12+ feet of wire, plus the connector I needed) for the part to go from the charger to the car, and the other half to go from the plug on the battery to the connector on the back end of the car.

The only thing I had to do to the cable inside the car was crimp a couple of spade plugs on the end of it to plug into the backside of the connector.

If I didn't already have the pigtail, I would have installed an in-line fuse, and terminated the wire with some ring terminals. But, with the charger pigtail already there, the inside of the car was the easy part.
 

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Very cool.... :bow:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Why not to charge through "cigarette" 12v socket?
I certainly could. But, that still means opening the door, plugging it in, closing the door...and reversing the process to take it off the charger.

The external connection makes life much easier, and the magnetic connection makes it effortless (and idiot-proof - you CAN'T connect it backwards)
 

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Sweet! I have a pigtail off my battery, so I'm happy enough with that. It is definitely an annoyance though to work around the wire and I wrapped it in foam so as to not scratch up my pristine (sarcasm) paint.




Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
For anyone curious, a quick update.

The "oops, I forgot to unplug it" feature actually works!

Yesterday...I forgot to unplug it. We were going out to dinner, and I had to move some vehicles around last-minute to get it out of the driveway. Jumped in the car, pulled out of the carport, and heard a "click"...and realized what it was!

Everything was fine. The connector popped off just as it was designed to. Very handy.
 

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Saw this in person today. Really slick! I'm going to order one for my "neglected" RX7. :wink2:And hopefully get the car pulled into the garage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
@Habious I love the whole concept and I'd like to mimic it. Do you see any challenge with cable routing if I have a clam hinge?
I don't imagine any insurmountable challenges, but you might have to get a little more creative with the wire routing than I did.

On a clam hinge install, where is the battery? Is it relocated to somewhere that doesn't move, or does it stay in the OEM location?

No matter what, there's wiring in the clam (for the taillights and the license plate lights) that has to be dealt with on a now-moving piece. I think, whatever the solution for that could be duplicated with the wiring for the charger connector.
 

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I don't imagine any insurmountable challenges, but you might have to get a little more creative with the wire routing than I did.

On a clam hinge install, where is the battery? Is it relocated to somewhere that doesn't move, or does it stay in the OEM location?

No matter what, there's wiring in the clam (for the taillights and the license plate lights) that has to be dealt with on a now-moving piece. I think, whatever the solution for that could be duplicated with the wiring for the charger connector.
With the Clam Hinge, the battery moves from the stock location to up by the firewall.

In the case of the stock wiring harness, there's a connector in the trunk that you disconnect when you tilt the clam. There is technically a way to route it, so you don't have to do that every time, so maybe I'll investigate that when I do this charger mod. I was just so tired after doing the hinge that I didn't want to mess with the wiring.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
With the Clam Hinge, the battery moves from the stock location to up by the firewall.

In the case of the stock wiring harness, there's a connector in the trunk that you disconnect when you tilt the clam. There is technically a way to route it, so you don't have to do that every time, so maybe I'll investigate that when I do this charger mod. I was just so tired after doing the hinge that I didn't want to mess with the wiring.

Thanks.
Based on that, it sounds like you could do either solution for the magnetic charger connector as well.

Either you could do the more "creative" wire routing (and leave enough slack) to leave it all connected when you tilt the clam, or you could just add a quick connector onto it.

In fact, now that I think about it, I just have a fused pigtail on the battery (with a polarized quick disconnect), and a length of wire (with a matching quick disconnect) going to the magnetic connector by the license plate.

Only downside to that solution is you have to remember to unplug this when/before you tilt the clam...or you'll be playing the theme from Deliverance on your banjo-string wiring when you open 'er up.
 

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This is great. I am going to do this. I'll probably design and 3D print a housing for it. If I spend enough time on it, maybe it will look factory.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
This is great. I am going to do this. I'll probably design and 3D print a housing for it. If I spend enough time on it, maybe it will look factory.
Would love to see what you come up with!

I might be your first (and possibly only) customer for one.

I just made a simple bracket out of some sheet aluminum I had lying around the basement.
 
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