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Old 12-03-2010, 08:43 AM   #47
BMWzenrider
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Joined: May 2003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by testrider View Post
I recently saw a fancy power distribution unit that has a remote wireless control panel to let you switch on/off any of the circuit and it can be used as temperature control for the heated gear too:

http://www.arborealsystems.com/Dispatch_1.html
This would be a much better system if it were truely waterproof not just "water resistant".

I would also prefer if the two modules communicated via a wired plug that also supplied power for backlighting the display on the control unit. As it is, the control unit needs to be opened up repeatedly with six screws to replace the double-AA batteries. Not the best design.
Garmin manages to have a totally watertight mini-USB plug on their GPS units. They could have used a similar port to connect the two devices and probably reduced complexity, cost, size of the controller (no battery compartment); AND increased reliability (no wireless linking/interference issues), as well as made the controller fully waterproof due to no need for user access inside of it.


IMHO, the build quality of the distribution box is questionable as well.
To my eyes, it looks like someone took an off-the-shelf project box and cut it out for the various I/O ports/wires. It isn't sealed at ALL.
And what is up with the "optional" waterproof roll-top bag as a stop-gap way to keep water out of the distribution module???
First of all, it is a hokey way to address the issue, and will probably be compromised due to vibrations/rubbing in short order.
Second, Even the area under the seat can get wet pretty easily in a good rain, if the distribution module is not sealed against water intrusion that bag should be part of the standard package!

I can sorta understand using the barrel connectors for the heated gear switched circuits, although they really should be pigtails to extend outside of the roll-top bag so that they can be disconnected easily when not in use.
But for the other two generic switched circuits, barrel connectors make no sense at all. You want something that will be a permanent connection.

The whole thing just seems like it needed a looking over by a design engineer who actually rides. It seems like it was designed by a software guy...
And that is just what I can see from a quick look at their website...

Otherwise I can see where it could be an interesting product...
But that is just my opinion...
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