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Thread: Finding signal for brake/reverse lights?

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  1. Finding signal for brake/reverse lights? 
    #1
    Join Date
    06-03-2003
    Location
    MO
    Posts
    633
    Hey guys,

    I'm planning a little conversion project on a New Bright RC car to a hobby-grade performance vehicle...don't worry, done it a few times already.

    My question is, since it will be an electric car, is there any way at all, whether it be a certain ESC or some controller that watches motor power or something, to be able to accurately activate brake and reverse lights?

    Thanks!
     

  2.  
    #2
    Join Date
    08-19-2002
    Location
    Wichita, ks
    Posts
    10,365
    You should be able to get an Arduino to do what you want, and you'll learn how the circuit works in the meantime, as well as be able to do all kinds of other things with it.

    Aside from that, there's been a few things out in the past but they've never worked how I wanted them to. I have an old Tamiya brake light controller that turns on the brake lights when off-power. But it runs on a capacitor that charges while it's getting power, then releases the energy stored when off-power. So they don't stay on forever, and they come on when you're not on the brakes. With an arduino controller, you could tell it to send the brakes on when it sees the right pulse range from the receiver. It'd probably be an extremely simple circuit and program, really.

    -Eric
     

  3.  
    #3
    Join Date
    06-03-2003
    Location
    MO
    Posts
    633
    Eric, I'm guessing you might know about how to program, or expansion cards available?

    Is there a way to detect it on a brushless motor, since they're essentially small 3 phase AC motors....or would I have to use an RPM/rotation direction sensor or something?
     

  4.  
    #4
    Join Date
    08-19-2002
    Location
    Wichita, ks
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    10,365
    I'm sure it could be done... Maybe you could pick up on the rpm from the wires, and whenever it's decreasing you could set off the lights. I don't know how though.

    Still seems like the easiest way would be just to have something see when you're actually sending a brakes/reverse signal from the transmitter.

    There may even be something on the market. I just haven't looked.

    -Eric
     

  5.  
    #5
    Join Date
    12-28-2009
    Location
    Ruds Vedby, Sjealland, Denmark.
    Posts
    817
     

  6.  
    #6
    Join Date
    06-03-2003
    Location
    MO
    Posts
    633
    Quote Originally Posted by rccardude04 View Post
    I'm sure it could be done... Maybe you could pick up on the rpm from the wires, and whenever it's decreasing you could set off the lights. I don't know how though.

    Still seems like the easiest way would be just to have something see when you're actually sending a brakes/reverse signal from the transmitter.

    There may even be something on the market. I just haven't looked.

    -Eric
    Yeah, but then my reverse lights would come on a lot when I'm just trying to stop.
     

  7.  
    #7
    Join Date
    08-19-2002
    Location
    Wichita, ks
    Posts
    10,365
    Quote Originally Posted by 2.5 guy View Post
    Yeah, but then my reverse lights would come on a lot when I'm just trying to stop.
    LOL I missed the reverse lights part!

    Maybe you could make it require double-pump for the reverse lights like most ESCs like to see.

    That Tamiya unit is a good idea... Might read through the instruction manual on that. It'll tell you exactly how everything works.

    -Eric
     

  8.  
    #8
    Join Date
    03-31-2017
    Location
    Mead, WA, USA
    Posts
    1
    They "watch" power because the lighting system routes through Channels 1 and 2, this way it knows what your ESC is doing, gas, coast, brakes or reverse and it senses if you're turning right or left from what your servo is doing for signals right and left. This is as simple as I know how to explain it.
     

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