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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 21, 2018, 5:12 am 
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Joined: May 27, 2006, 9:46 pm
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Location: BC, Canada. eh?
Cool! I LIKE it

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 21, 2018, 9:28 am 
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My bad! I was thinking front marker/turn signal. Not side marker. You guys in CA need the side markers to flash? Or is this just a desire on your part?

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 21, 2018, 10:09 am 
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Location: Holden, Alberta, Canada
rx7locost wrote:
You guys in CA need the side markers to flash?


I don't believe it's a requirement. For me it's a safety thing being that the front signal is hidden behind the wheel and fender when looking at the 7 from the side (eg., an intersection)

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 21, 2018, 1:44 pm 
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Location: BC, Canada. eh?
Since I have to have the turn signals visible from the side, about the only place I can do that is on either side of the nose. Anybody whose view is more than 20" above ground level should be able to see them, so it makes sense for me to make them do double duty as side markers. If I were using clamshell fenders, I'd simply have put those teardrop-shaped combination signals/markers on top of the fenders (á la Lotus) and been done with it.

Now, I actually own a copy of the full government vehicle inspections manual for my jurisdiction. Well, I did own one, but it's currently "unavailable" (lent out, misplaced by the borrower, and not seen by him for the past several years). It is literally the "bible" for vehicle standards and inspections in this province, but I can't refer to it. Those manuals can't be obtained by anyone who isn't a currently-government-certified vehicle inspector, which I was (among other things) before I retired (I was a police collision analyst & reconstructionist for the last 15 years of so of my career).

Every detail of every standard to which we must adhere was in the manual (it was about 1,000 pages, in a huge binder). Things such as maximum inset from the longitudinal sides for mounting lights, range of permissible light emitter heights above ground, acceptable candlepower ranges for bulbs, foreign lamp types acceptable, etc. etc. were all in there. Unfortunately, the standards can't even be viewed online.

So, I'm having to go strictly by what I remember! When in doubt, I'm taking measurements from commercially produced cars as references. At least if I'm asked, I can point out other vehicles I've referred to.

I don't know about other jurisdictions, but here in BC, Canada, vehicle inspectors have an enormous amount of leeway in their application of the standards. It can range everywhere from the inspector simply checking that all the signals, brakes, lights, steering etc. work & the frame and alignment look good, all the way up to demands for working, professionally engineered ABS, airbags, electronic stability control etc. installed & certified.

Don't get me wrong - I don't want the car passed if it's unsafe in any way (overlooking the obvious constraints of the basic design of a Locost, of course!), but it's impossible for a home builder to meet all of the possible standards - even many (most?) production cars don't meet them all.

It's all about finding the right balance in an inspection facility, where common sense still exists & genuine "car guys", with 10W-30 for blood, run the show. Hopefully, the place I've found fits the bill. They certainly sound that way - I showed them pics of my build so far, and they were very excited about doing it. They even said they'd inspected two Cater...ms in the past few months, and they loved 'em.

Sorry - short story made long, but the point is that I'm trying my darndest to make sure I meet every standard I reasonably can, and placement & design of lighting are instantly visible to anyone looking at the car, so it's best they look correct at the start.

If need be, I can add extra side marker lamps, as horchoha has done, but I'm trying to avoid extra lights & extra wiring if I can get existing ones to perform all the required functions.

These are the front lights I got. They're very small, but quite bright. The globes & filaments of the bulbs inside actually extend out into the inside of the lens, so the lamps emit light well over 180 degrees. Eventually, I'll be converting them to LED bulbs, like the rest of the car will be but, currently, aftermarket LED bulbs are not approved in BC, so that will have to wait.

Attachment:
0021329_oval-amber-stalk-indicators-95mm.jpeg
0021329_oval-amber-stalk-indicators-95mm.jpeg [ 151.94 KiB | Viewed 915 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 8:54 am 
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Joined: September 22, 2005, 8:12 am
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Location: 4AGE in S.E. Michigan
ONLY a 1000 pages of CND regs!!!
Sounds like fun!! There is no way and average builder could even come close to meeting all the specs.
Like your parking lights. One of our SAE requirements for placement location of the parking lite, is based on the [measured] intensity of the head light and the parking lite so the turn signal can be identified. And we are not even talking about min physical locations between them or cross car span.
The only hope is a friendly inspection station or bribery :wink:
Dave W


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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 1:13 pm 
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Location: BC, Canada. eh?
Yeah, that's pretty much it! :lol:

I have discovered an...issue...with my system as per the circuit above. While congratulating myself as it all works as advertised, I had an epiphany - would it continue to work when the running lights were turned off? The more I looked at it the more convinced I was that it wouldn't work - the running light circuit provides the power to run the relay so, without it, the only power would be from the signals.

Sure enough, when I tried turning off the running lights, the signals didn't function. :BH: If I wanted to run with lights on all the time, as DRL's it wouldn't be a problem, but I want to be able to have them work either way. Call me silly...

In searching around on the 'net, I found a write up in a Mazda 6 forum by a guy who also wanted to do this. He devised a way to do it by adding a couple of diodes to the input wire at the bulb, in addition to the relay. It seems fairly simple, and is certainly cheap, but there are some counter-intuitive things in there I'm still trying to get my head around, like using the right side signal circuit to power the left side light & vice versa. :?: :shock: :?: The beauty of his circuit, IF I can get it to work, is that all the functions work, individually and collectively. There's no backfeed possible (which, as I understand it, is a good thing), and the alternating front vs. rear flash anomaly is no longer present.

Here's the link, in case anyone wants to take a look at it....

http://forum.mazda6club.com/electrical/248485-how-side-marker-lights-turn-signals-without-backfeeds-alternating-flash.html

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 1:19 pm 
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We are Slotus!
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Joined: October 6, 2009, 9:29 am
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Location: Tallahassee, FL (The Center of the Known Universe)
Got a solution for ya...
1) Move to Florida, preferably "The Villages" near Ocala.
2) If your hair isn't gray, dye it that color.
3) Put plates on your car from Michigan, or Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, or some other northern state. (Canadian plates would probably only add to the confusion... Maybe that's not a bad thing...)
4) At this point, you can either drive around with your blinker on all the damn time, or not use them at all, and be considered "perfectly normal"...

:rofl:

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 1:46 pm 
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Joined: May 27, 2006, 9:46 pm
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Location: BC, Canada. eh?
:D Well, I'm halfway there!! My hair is definitely grey!! Anyone who's ever been to Victoria knows that we're known internationally as "the home of the newly wed, and the nearly dead". Or, pretty much like Florida, except without the nice weather.

However - here, if you want to drive for miles with your blinker on, the rule is you MUST be in the far left passing lane, you MUST be traveling at least 20 mph under the speed limit, and you MUST be signalling a left turn as you do so (particularly if there is nowhere "left" that you can go from where you are)!

While being short enough to not see over the steering wheel is optional, it is strongly recommended. We always look for what appears to be a large cotton ball, below the height of the headrest, and a collection of stuffed toys or old hats on the rear parcel shelf...these indicators tell us what to expect!

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 1:55 pm 
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Come on down! Sounds like you'd be right at home... :mrgreen:

Country song title: "Blue Hair Driving in the Left Lane"...

:cheers:
JD "Blinker On" Kemp

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"Gonzo and friends: Last night must have been quite a night. Camelot moments, mechanical marvels, Rustoleum launches, flying squirrels, fru-fru tea cuppers, V8 envy, Ensure catch cans -- and it wasn't even a full moon." -- SeattleTom


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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 9:20 pm 
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Joined: August 27, 2005, 1:04 am
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Location: Kamloops, BC, Canada
To be fair, most of the regulations don't really apply to private passenger vehicles, but there's a lot to Wade through. I looked through my dad's copy when building mine, and I'm pretty sure the signals had to be visible from a 45° angle from 60' away in normal daylight. They're supposed to be as far as practical at the extreme sledges of the car. Mine are tucked into the sides of the nose cone, but I was lucky enough to have an inspector that just asked if everything worked. He did ask that I finish panelling in the passenger side of the transmission tunnel so that you couldn't see the road below before I insured and drove it.
Kristian

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 22, 2018, 9:57 pm 
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Location: BC, Canada. eh?
Now, THAT'S the kind of inspector I want!!

Vis-a-vis the turn signal/running light dilemma, I've discovered that our Regulations say you may have side marker lights and, if so, they should be mounted near the front of the vehicle. That seems to indicate (sic!) a lot of leeway there, and that they're only optional, not mandatory.

As you say, turbo_bird, the signals have to be visible 45 degrees to either side of the center of the vehicle, and visible in daylight at a distance (to 100 meters). That's not a difficult standard to meet - all of my current signal placement options would be in compliance, no problem.

I was worried that the front signals won't be visible directly from the side, but only if the viewer is within 2' of the road surface. Any higher, and they're visible almost 180 degrees around. I think that's all in keeping with the regs.

Even if they want me to have side marker lights, there are lots of teeny little marker lights (like 3/4" diameter) available for cheap. If need be, I could add some on "near the front" of the car, just aft of the front wheels, or maybe a bit forward of the firewall.

Wow! This electrickery stuff done got complixacated!!

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 23, 2018, 3:48 am 
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Location: Kamloops, BC, Canada
I used some Grote truck marker lights for my front signals. They're supposed to clip into a little plastic bracket and have a pigtail attach from behind, but I just glued them to the nose and soldered wires to the terminals. They're tiny, and most importantly, DOT approved. They're about 3/4" wide, 1.5-2" long, and stick out maybe 3/4". My original plan was a set of aftermarket flush mount signals for sportbike, but the ones I bought aren't DOT approved. I may still put them on someday though.
Kristian

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 23, 2018, 5:05 am 
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I like that idea!

I had originally thought of mounting my signals directly under my headlights, but we have a regulation that requires a minimum 4" separation between turn signals & headlights (presumably so that a driver facing the car from the other direction could still make out the signals, even when looking into the headlights). Mounting them below the headlights, with a 4" separation, would make them low enough they'd be blocked from view (from the side) by the front wheels & fenders, so that's out.

In addition, the center of the signal lens has to be a minimum of 15" above ground level. Considering the bottom of the headlights are 2-3" below the tops of the fenders, the height available might not be enough.

Mounting them to the nose, while not my favorite "look", certainly meets all the regs & improves signal visibility. It's a matter of maintaining safety, while trying to keep the units themselves as inconspicuous as possible.

Cater...am uses strange-looking torpedo-looking extensions to project the signals forward of the wheels. Interestingly, their lenses end up in almost precisely the same locations mine will be, so aside from the short, rubber stalks, mine should still look pretty good.

The scary part is going to be drilling holes in my beautifully painted nose. It has GOT to be perfect, the first time. LOTS of measuring first! Think I'll put a few layers of tape on, too, so as to reduce the chances of chipping the fiberglass & paint to an absolute minimum.

I'll post a pic once I take the plunge...

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 23, 2018, 8:34 am 
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I don't know own what they're called, but I've used drill bits that I think are meant for wood on painted surfaces with good success. They're still twist drills, but they are shaped differently at the tip. They cut the outside of the hole first.
Kristian

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 Post subject: Re: Long-term +2 build
PostPosted: February 23, 2018, 1:27 pm 
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I don't know own what they're called, but I've used drill bits that I think are meant for wood on painted surfaces with good success. They're still twist drills, but they are shaped differently at the tip. They cut the outside of the hole first.

A Forstner bit might be an interesting alternative. I've not tried one on fiberglass but they work great on wood. Not a twist drill, but they cut the outside perimeter first and chip out the center.

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