Tuesday 22 February 2011

E39 Audio: On/Off Switch for the Amp/Subs

The system remote shuts off with the ignition [see: Getting a Remote Signal for the Amp], so I've no worry about getting a flat battery, but it would be nice to have a manual On/Off switch inside the cabin so I can mute the subs while driving if I need to, without having to cut out the rest of the speakers.

While I had the back seats out I ran a wire through the bulkhead into the o/s rear footwell [see: Adding an On/Off Switch], so I got hold of a beacon-switch from a tipper at work to fit inside the cabin. The plan was to run the wires out from the middle of the seat and under the carpet on the transmission-tunnel, then fit the switch inside the armrest-compartment. Neither of these panned out. Running the wires under the carpet is doable, but to lift the carpet [and the sponge backing] up enough involves completely removing the armrest console, as well as all the side trim and clips, so I've taken a shortcut for now and run the wires under the trim below the o/s door, then under the driver's seat and through a gap in the side of the console. The wires are exposed, but they're well hidden and I've made sure to keep them well away from the seat-runners.

As for the placement of the switch, which is over an inch deep with the wire terminals on, it turns out there's just no room for it inside the centre-console. The base of the armrest-console is a solid steel tray with an electronics-module right under it and the storage-tray below the armrest angles up to fit flush with it too. I don't want to go further forward on the dash and mess up the wood so I've fitted it in the storage-slot under the rear air-vents. The plastic slot was missing anyway and the vents were hanging loose, so at least it looks complete now even if it's a pain to reach. Not a problem for people in the back though and that might not be such a bad thing if one is screaming we've missed our turn-off and we can't hear over the drum and bass. I just used a piece of thin plywood for the panel, covered in the leftover vinyl wrap from my ScoobyLab stickers. It's a bit shiny, but the vinyl gives it more of a trim look than black paint.

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