Saturday, February 7, 2015

Monitor mount for rear view camera

Choosing where to locate a 7" rear view monitor in a 21' Chinook is no easy task.  In a Ford E-350's cab there's just not a lot of space to work with!

There's not enough room on the dashboard to accept the base of a commercial articulating mount.  Hanging the monitor off a windshield suction mount blocks way too much of your vision; ditto gluing an articulating mount to the top of the dashboard.  Also there are probably a host of related legal requirements and/or risks to consider when mounting a device on or in front of the windshield.

I decided the center console was the perfect spot, but I wanted to find a way of attaching the monitor so that it would not block access to cup-holders or dashboard controls.  I wanted to avoid screwing into or otherwise permanently modifying the console.  I also wanted the monitor to be easily removable - a handy feature when cleaning the cab; and probably beneficial when leaving the Chinook unattended.

Here's what I came up with.  The monitor sits on top of the console and uses the original, unused, ash tray as its base.  This configuration provides a perfect viewing angle, is instantly removable, has a neat appearance, and retains easy access to dashboard controls, cup-holders and other cubbyholes.


Here's how the job was done:

1.  I pulled out the ashtray from the center console, and discarded the ashtray's hinged cover

2. I made a platform for the articulating mount arm.  On a table saw I cut a scrap of plywood to size (4.¾" x 5").  I ran it through the router table with a round over bit to radius the top edge.  I applied a coat of primer and a couple of coats of paint.

3. Because the ashtray sits in an angled depression in the console, some kind of a spacer is needed between the back edge of the ashtray and the underside of the platform.  I cut a scrap of 7/16" plywood, roughly trimmed it to the shape of the ashtray and planed / sanded it to the requisite thickness.  I then screwed the ashtray to the underside of the platform

4.  The resultant assembly fits into the ashtray space in the center console.  It is a snug, firm fit and the platform's base sits flat on the console.  I then attached the monitor's articulating arm to the top of the platform using adhesive and three screws.   


5.  I attached the monitor to the articulating arm, adjusted its position to the required height and angle, plugged in the power cord, and I was in business!  Removing the monitor is a snap - unplug the power cord and lift the whole assembly out of the console.  Easy peasy! 


4 comments:

  1. Very clever! I especially like ability to remove and hide the rear view camera when you leave the Chinook for an extended amount of time. I like how you made the platform level.

    So, now that the center ashtray has been used, where will you put the 2 pound bag of doggie treats? You know, those doggie treats you "toss" behind you while driving so that Dexter and Joani can scramble around in the back while you are bumping down the road?

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  2. It's very helpful and useful post,.
    dash cams

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  3. Some GPS's (my 7" Magellan 9250T-LMB and some others) have a Video-in that will switch to a signal from a back-up camera that has a power feed from your back-up lights. Only one screen required for 2 functions, with auto-switch. Still a bear to mount a 7" screen; but you only need one screen.

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  4. Some GPS's (my 7" Magellan 9250T-LMB and some others) have a Video-in that will switch to a signal from a back-up camera that has a power feed from your back-up lights. Only one screen required for 2 functions, with auto-switch. Still a bear to mount a 7" screen; but you only need one screen.

    ReplyDelete