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Discussion Starter #1
Lane Change Signal/"KomfortBlinker" Mod kit ready to go forward if there's interest

Back in February, I posted about my lane change signal mod...

A number of cars have had a feature that is missing in our Kappas. That is the ability to just 'flash' the turn signal lever and have the car automatically blink the signal a number of times before switching off. It's especially usefull in lane change situations, where you don't need to turn on the signal and then off again (or forget it's on and trundle down the left hand lane with your flasher going forever :))

This seems more popular in European makes, but is spreading. I must admit I had not missed the feature - until my wife got her new car with it and now I really miss it in my Sol.

So, I took a look at the vehicle schematics and found it would be pretty easy for me to add the function. [...]

The device will hold the signals for three flashes by default, but I've programmed in a configuration mode that will allow you to change that to the length you desire (up to ~10 flashes max).

I'll hazard a guess that many/most here will have a response of "meh!" to this. But if anyone else IS interested, I thought I might even put together a kit of parts and do a small run of home-etched PCBs.

So it's been running and tested in my car for ~9 months without incident or failure and I feel comfortable enough to finally go ahead with producing a kit of parts if folks are still interested (as mentioned above). I would need at least 10 folks who want one to actually go ahead with the idea. The cost would be $20 for the kit and (undrilled) PCB, plus $5 for packing/shipping to the contiguous US. Not sure about Canada since I don't know the postal and customs costs/issues to there. I might also be reluctantly willing to pre-drill the PCB for an extra $5 or drill and mount the components for +$12.

The kit would include the preprogrammed microcontroller, all parts and the PCB. Plus clear heat-shrink tube as the 'box' and 12" of the 4 wires and a PCB connector to wire it in with (you'll still need to attach the wires in to your car - power, ground and right & left turn signal wires at the BCM, as shown below). The finished PCB will be ~1 x 1.5 inches (so, small) and can be tucked in to the BCM area, or attached with velcro.

So respond in this thread if interested and let me get a headcount to see if it's worth going further.

Note: I'm not gonna make money off this, maybe not even cover my expenses :).

 

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why not... you can put me to the list.. have the engine apart anyway due to exhaust cam phaser exploded.. I'll add this to my winter to do list....
 

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TS just make it an even $40.00 that way some of the different shipping costs will be covered. This way it will be drilled and components mounted making it easier to solder and also less PM's to you for questions.
 

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TS just make it an even $40.00 that way some of the different shipping costs will be covered. This way it will be drilled and components mounted making it easier to solder and also less PM's to you for questions.
:agree:

This sounds like a pretty cool mod, I'm in if you decide to make the kit. I also like LV's $40 idea. It does sound like it might make it simpler for everyone involved. I'm fine with however you want to produce the kit though.
 

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In! Will gladly pay a little extra for assembly.
 

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My 1970 Olds 98 convertible touted a "new" lane change feature for the turn signal. Indicating for a lane change was facilitated by the addition of a spring-loaded momentary signal-on position just shy of the left and right detents. The signal operates for however long the driver holds the lever partway towards the left or right turn signal detent. Before that, moving the lever left or right locked it on until the turn was completed (the self canceling feature) or the operator manually moved it back to the center position. Our cars all still have this lane change feature. This mod is for an "automatic" lane change feature. With all of the smart features being added, I'm guessing that a turn signal connected to your GPS and front radar will soon give us an anticipatory turn signal.

Just today I noticed a headline announcing that Toyota is investing $1 billion in artificial intelligence research. Diane commented "The real kind isn't working anymore?"
 

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Discussion Starter #8
OK, well a rough count of those interested indicates 6 folks on this forum alone, plus another 15 on the other two (Sky and Kappaperformance) so far.

One change to the price, though. Shipping (which I thought would be $5) will be $6 for a flat rate USPS box. So add another 1$ to the cost from before:

Kit of parts: $26 shipped
Pre-made: $38 shipped
(no one asked for the middle kit+drilled PCB)

So since we are well over the 10 minimum to go ahead with this (err, yay!), on to the next stage... I've set up an separate email account for this: Kappablinker -at- gmail dot com. If you truly want to get one (or more) of these, email me at that address (do NOT PM me or the box will fill up). I will then send you Paypal instructions for payment. Once I have cash in hand I will order parts and then start building (don't forget to give me your address - still US only!). Please be aware, I will only make a maximum of 30 sets! This may take some time so be patient, I will build and ship batches in the order of payments received.

Since I'll be out of town at a customer site all next week, I'll give you all that time to email me etc, and so should be ready to order parts next weekend.

Onward and upward!
Again: Kappablinker -at- gmail dot com
 

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Discussion Starter #9
UPDATE: I sent out Paypal instructions to those who emailed me on the Kappablinker email. Cut-off date for orders is Friday and there's quite a few who had shown interest who've NOT emailed me. Far more response from the Sky and Kappaperformance forums, interestingly.

If you want in and have not already done so, email me quickly, please.
 

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No love for Canadians. I posted interest early on, but can't change where I live.

Shipping to Canada is as easy as US. Go to post office, ship USPS regular post, use Canadian address, fill out contents/value sticker. The USPS website has a shipping cost estimator too. Generally its about 30% more than US shipping.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
No love for Canadians. I posted interest early on, but can't change where I live.

Shipping to Canada is as easy as US. Go to post office, ship USPS regular post, use Canadian address, fill out contents/value sticker. The USPS website has a shipping cost estimator too. Generally its about 30% more than US shipping.
For some reason I hadn't seen your 'interest' post - I don't have you on my list. Email me on the email address I posted above.
 

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Flat rate boxes ARE expensive to Canada. I had an antenna shipped from Detroit to my home in Canada for $6 so if the correct option is chosen, shipping to Canada doesn't have to be expensive.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
OK, orders are closed. I had 23 folks respond with their orders and it's on to getting in the parts now.

I've emailed this to the responders, but for information's sake for the rest of you... I happened to look into getting prototype boards made, rather than etching and drilling them all myself. Turns out it was more reasonable than I thought, if getting it done offshore. It would still cost me about 3-4 times as much per board (dollar cost) but save me a whole host of time masking/etching/cutting and drilling! I had to learn a PCB layout program and re-design the board/layout and also, it may take longer to be done and shipped. But the upsides are the boards would be more professional. They'll be 2-layer boards, pre-drilled with plated-through holes, as well as being silk screened and masked. Especially nice for those two who ordered the kit form!

Once I get everything in and an initial board built and tested, I'll post photos.
 

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Flat rate boxes ARE expensive to Canada. I had an antenna shipped from Detroit to my home in Canada for $6 so if the correct option is chosen, shipping to Canada doesn't have to be expensive.
Yes.


OK, orders are closed. I had 23 folks respond with their orders and it's on to getting in the parts now.

I've emailed this to the responders, but for information's sake for the rest of you... I happened to look into getting prototype boards made, rather than etching and drilling them all myself. Turns out it was more reasonable than I thought, if getting it done offshore. It would still cost me about 3-4 times as much per board (dollar cost) but save me a whole host of time masking/etching/cutting and drilling! I had to learn a PCB layout program and re-design the board/layout and also, it may take longer to be done and shipped. But the upsides are the boards would be more professional. They'll be 2-layer boards, pre-drilled with plated-through holes, as well as being silk screened and masked. Especially nice for those two who ordered the kit form!

Once I get everything in and an initial board built and tested, I'll post photos.
Sounds great. TS is an awesome forum resource. Cheers.
 

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Wish I had seen this.....darn, preassembled would be awesome.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Sorry for having been 'dark' for a while on this, but it's finally time for an Update!

I had had vendor problems with the wire I had ordered for the pigtails for this project. They did not send the full length I paid for and needed, so I couldn't really proceed until I was sure I had enough. Turns out they were in China (via Amazon), so after a week of emailing back and forth (12hours out of sync) and then more weeks of slow-boat shipping, I finally got the wire today! Meanwhile, I also ordered some logistical stuff I hadn't thought about at first (anti-static envelopes, address labels, packing supplies, etc) and also a $40 specialized crimp tool(!) for the tiny pigtail pin connectors. So now I'm ready to continue!

As I mentioned earlier, I decided to have the PCBs built instead of etching myself. Really glad to have the experience from this, despite having to learn a layout program. I used "FreePcb"for the layouts - basic but does the job. Then I ordered the PCBs themselves from pcbgogo.com in China (or possibly Taiwan) and couldn't be happier with the result. They came out perfectly, apart from my own mistake with the silkscreen on the bottom (doh! - but no biggy). I also have some spare boards (I had to order a minimum quantity), so can do another short run of these for those who asked after I closed the initial parts order - stay tuned.

Also meanwhile, I sent a kit to 2kwk4u (he lives near me and is experienced with soldering) to test out my kit build instructions. He gave me a lot of feedback on that, and then installed his built KappaBlinker kit and has confirmed it's working! Yay!

Also meanwhile (number 3), I've built and tested the first 10 boards - see the in-progress pic below with my "testbed" - and after crimping 40+ tiny pins tonight (agh), I should be ready to send those out tomorrow or the next day, when I can get to the Post Office. I will be mailing in the order of who paid first, as follows, and have included all the kit folks (only 3) since I won't have to build them:

stuck (x2)
1 LIL NDN
redragon
LeloSKYLANM
VinnieRL
reedred
CRiggleman
tf02 (kit)
bds
08Bluesky
Jim
shabby (kit)​
I'll be emailing the folks above directly, from the kappablinker email, and give the tracking info (not for Canada) and attach the installation instructions pdf. Then it'll be on to finding time between real work and Christmas, to build the next batch. Thanks to all who ordered, for your patience!



 

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Discussion Starter #19
The second batch of 10 boards has been built and dropped at USPS today!

This means the first order run is all but complete (2 boards left to build for folks that requested to wait 'til the new year). Which also means that I will be go ahead and do an second and final run in January. 10 people have expressed interest and I have 12 PCBs left (excluding the 2 above), so anyone who hasn't contacted me should PM me now, because if you're too late, that's it!

This batch is going out to the following:

dirtyrob67
SkyPilot
Jeremiah
vcliment89
Helios
cdnite
skersfan (x2)
Pdayrph
kwtoxman​

As before, I'll be emailing the folks above directly from the kappablinker email to give the tracking info.
 

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Thanks TS!

Just thought I would take a minute to say thanks to TS here on the forum. I received my kit the other day and I've got to say, he knocked it out of the park with this one. :thumbs:

Most commercial kits for doing this type of tinkering don't have anything nearly as understandable for directions and the quality of the parts/build look top notch as well.

TS and his knowledge are a real credit to the forum and I truly appreciate it. :grouphug:
 
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