One of my recent projects has been to add a Sharp Long Range Infrared Distance Sensor GP2Y0A02YK0F to the data logger to measure front end travel. This sensor is requires 5 vdc power, which should have worked with my RPM Data Logger, but I learned that the sensor required more current than the logger could provide. So we had to add another power supply to run the sensor. We really didn't need much current for this project, but most power supplies are way overkill for something like this. Then I got to thinking, hey USB is 5VDC! So... I got a cheap $3 Belkin USB Phone Charger, took the case off it and presto - cheap 5vdc power! Turns out the little power supply worked great, sensor now works fine and we'll see how it works for detecting ride height on the front end, hopefully this will be handy for monitor shock reaction, etc. 2016 Update - I ended up removing the Sharp Sensor and switched to a Banner infrared sensor during 2015 season. The Sharp sensor worked in the shop, but just had too much noise in the data logger to be useful. The banner sensor on the other hand, worked without a hitch, it was noise free and worked great. Just an FYI, I wouldn't recommend the sharp sensor, you might be able to make one work, but it's going to take some effort to get the noise out of it.
We've been making decent progress on the Nova over the last few weeks, and now are moving into getting the electrical systems installed. This weekend got the new Quartermax switch panel mounted on the cage after having a heck of a time trying to find some 1.625 roll cage clamps. I was just about ready to start hacking some out of raw aluminum when I thought about taking a pair of my old weight bar aluminum clamps made for 1.750 tubing and putting a "shim" inside of them to make them fit. After playing around with that a while, I found that some rubber inner tube material was just about the perfect thickness, so I RTV'd the rubber to the ID of the clamp, and poof... Perfect fitting clamp that is perhaps a bit overkill for mounting a switch panel, but the best part is I didn't have to spend zip as I already had the clamps laying around and they won't fit anywhere on the car anymore. Here's a close up of the Quartermax switch panel when we were testing the LED indicators. I know a lot of people like the newer style rocker switches, but I really like the idea that I can buy one of these old school toggle switches practically anywhere. I certainly don't need 4 boom buttons, but they'll be wired up regardless just in case we want to put 4 stages on the ol' gal. Chris & I also got the main power and battery cables all ran this weekend, new for this year is 2ga lightweight copper clad aluminum wire from Mechman.com. I was very impressed at how flexible it was, unlike typical battery cable or even welding wire. I intend on doing some voltage drop measurements to see how well this stuff performs, but it's certainly much lighter than straight copper wire and will help a little for weight savings. Other projects completed this weekend were a new mount for the trans puke tank, trans cooler lines all hooked up, new lightweight 16 volt battery installed and wired, and got the dry sump lines all finished up. Routing all those lines is no small feat, and the braided stainless line is about as fun to work with as wrestling a porcupine!