Weatherproof USB Power Ports

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by Shov3BR, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    Thanks Low594. We think you hit the nail on the head. We are thinking BIG battery where that DR has a little battery.
    Our old XR600 has a Baja Designs kit that uses a dinky 700mA NiCad battery pack that would take no time at all to discharge with even a small load. The TAPP Lite 8mA quiescent drain would still take a few days to pull the battery down to where it wouldn't light the neutral light. However, with a GPS charging its batteries it's probably toast overnight.

    Bottom line, if your bike has a small off-road battery, be sure that your USB powered device is not plugged into the TAPP Lite overnight or wire the TAPP Lite to a switched source.

    Thanks again Low594, it looks like the mystery is solved. All we needed to do is pay attention:D
    -Shov
  2. Low594

    Low594 Adventuring Creep

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    Glad I could help!
  3. RamMan4x4

    RamMan4x4 Been here awhile

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    Low is right...I ran some tests this morning and pulled the battery to check the amp hour rating. The TAPP lite pulls 10 mA when not connected to anything...though that's as low as my meter will read so it could have rounded up from 8mA. The Garmin nuvi 250W connected pulls 170-190mA turned on and 70-90mA turned off.

    The battery is rated at 8amp-hour/10hour. I don't know what the last part means but I'll assume its just an 8amp-hour battery which gives me about 100 hours before it drains the battery with the garmin connected or 1000 hours with just the TAPP lit. These numbers also assume a fresh battery. Even with a battery double the size you would have 200 hours before my Garmin would drain the battery. Less time than that with some of the other GPSs that were tested.

    None of this is a deal breaker. I'm going to put the TAPP on a relay. Shov you guys may want to consider a relay kit option for people that want plug and play.
  4. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    You should be able to run TAPP Lite directly off of the switch. It only draws 500MA at full load.
    A relay never hurts if you have room to stuff one in somewhere.
  5. Low594

    Low594 Adventuring Creep

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    Eastern Beaver sells nice relays that are the size of a small thumb! I think they are 20A, more than enough!
  6. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    Easternbeaver has a full kit with the PC-8 fuse panel, relay and "mains" fuse. This fuse goes in the main feed wire and must be installed close to the battery to protect the high current wire. Like all of Jim's Easternbeaver stuff, the PC-8 is top notch quality. We particularly like the post and nut mains connections on the PC-8. You never have to worry about power loss due to loose mains connections.

    Another option is the Fuzeblocks FZ-1. http://www.fuzeblocks.com/index.php

    The fuse panel is about the same size as the PC-8 but has the relay built in. You still need a mains fuse in the feed wire which is not supplied but fuse holders are readily available at autopart stores.
    The FZ-1 has a slick fuse setup that allows you to choose whether a circuit is direct wired or switched just by moving the fuse from one position to another. There are three rows of fuse sockets. Put a fuse between the center row and the left and it's direct (they call it constant); or between the center row and the right and it's switched.

    Another nice feature is built in diodes to protect the bikes electronics from transient voltage spikes. This is particularly important on CanBus systems.

    One thing we don't like about the FZ-1 is that the relay is soldered in. This is good news bad news. The good news is that it makes for a robust connection and low profile. The bad news is that is has to be de-soldered to replace it if it fails; not something you can on the road. Automotive type relays are typically very reliable but nothing is perfect. There is a work-around if the relay fails out in the boonies. You can swap the fuses over to the direct side to get back to civilization but you have to remember to switch off any accessories that were changed over when you shut the bike down.

    We just purchased an FZ-1 for our new 990 Adventure. We haven't installed it yet but we'll let you know how it works out.
  7. RamMan4x4

    RamMan4x4 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the advice. I've been looking at the PC-8 from eastern beaver and the AP-1 from centech. Painless wiring has a fuse block like the FZ-1 that has a built in relay.
  8. el profe

    el profe Been here awhile

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    Just got my TAPP Lite in the mail today after ordering last Thursday. The ring terminals are soldered- I like that.

    My bike is probably going up on the stand for the winter, so I'm going to leave it off as it might just sit 1000 hours and drain the battery.:cry I'm going to look into that relay in the meantime- give me something to do as I stare out at the snow that's going to be falling before I know it.

    Looking forward to not having to worry about finding a place to plug in and charge my phone. Thanks for a great product and the quick shipping.
  9. bikyto

    bikyto Dans le doute...gaz!

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    How did it work out with your FZ-1?
    We talked in Tahoe, I was parked in front of your booth with CJ's bike.

    I'd still like to visit you guys if it's still ok. I'd like to run a few things through you (and get a few things from you)
    Thanks!
  10. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    Thx El Profe - always good to hear that we're doing OK with parts and service.
    *
    *
    Bikyto -
    We haven't had a chance to install the FZ-1 yet. We're builing up a pretty big pile of stuff for the KTM - (AKA the Purple Goose) so it's going slow. Just received a clutch cover and peg extensions from Craig. He sure does nice work.
    The FZ-1 may get some mods before we install it. We have a tiny PIC based circuit that is programmed to keep high power accessories turned off until the engine gets up to 600RPM and the alternator is up to a respectable output. The plan was to use the trigger-out to switch the FZ-1 relay. However, our circuit switches the (-) side of the relay coil while the FZ-1 switches the (+) so it can be triggered from any switched source. I can't decide whether to hack the FZ-1 or go with the PC-8 and an external relay.
    No problem with a get- together. We would welcome the opportunity to pick up where we left off at Tahoe with riding tips and the mods you made to your bike, especially your lights.
    Things are a bit chaotic with us moving our assembly area (again!) but we can always clear some space and time. Just let us know what works for you.
  11. el profe

    el profe Been here awhile

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    Just realized I should have bought another USB cable with the TAPP CAPP. Looks like I'll be making another order.:D

    Thanks again for the great product and the quick shipping.
  12. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    Cool beans. You know where to find us :D
  13. bikyto

    bikyto Dans le doute...gaz!

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    when could I come and visit? Pm sent
  14. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    Hey Don,

    I was wondering if you got the full-USB spec TAPP products in production. I'd like to upgrade from 1A to 3A so my DroidX charges better when in use.

    David
  15. WarHorse1961

    WarHorse1961 Adventurer

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    Bump for excellent products and outstanding customer service!:clap

    Thanks Don.
  16. bikyto

    bikyto Dans le doute...gaz!

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    Something tells me that they do... and that it's going to have additional design features. Looking good!:clap
  17. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    Yup, TAPP is back with a bunch of new features and 2.1A output for charging tablets such as the iPAD. We will formally introducing this week at Powersports Dealer Expo in Indianapolis.
    We have been testing a batch of pilot production (PP) units and they are everything we were hoping for and more. Full scale production won't start until the end of March due to a couple of PCBA components that have very long lead times but we're working on trying to move that up a bit.
    We stopped by Meat Popsicle's place and installed one of the PP TAPPs on his bike. As the first one in the field we're looking forward to hearing how it's working out.
    -Don B
  18. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    Hey Don,

    its worked great on the few short rides that I've been on, but I need a longer ride to test its performance keeping the phone charged while using the GPS functions for extended periods, which was my issue with the lower output model. I may just have to let the phone get low, and then hook it up while running the GPS and see how it does, because my next big ride is a ways off: the end of March when I finally get to explore Death Valley.

    Thanks for supporting your products so well and continuing to improve them!
  19. Shov3BR

    Shov3BR Tinkerer

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    Hi Dave,
    Thanks for the update. Keep us posted as you get more time with it. Sure wish I had time to make the Death Valley run before we head out on the Road of Bones expedition but it looks as though we'll just have the bike together in time for some short shakedown runs and then ship it to London.
    -Don B
  20. regnock

    regnock Been here awhile

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    These products look great! I'm looking for a solution that would connect to my Centech fuse box and power 3 usb devices. A iPhone, GoPro HD Hero 2 and Chatterbox X1 slim. Could you build this? If so how much?