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Discussion Starter #1
I got a Garmin 260W GPS device for Xmas. It's great, but I absolutely hate the bulky car charging unit that plugs in to the "formerly known as a cigarette lighter." and the cable stretching accross the car.

Is there a way to install a female USB port in the driver's side dash so I don't have to use the passenger side power port and keep the cable short?

Does anyone have a wiring diagram of how to do this with pics, too? How about where to get the parts to do this mod?

My next task will be to make a mount for the GPS so it doesn't have to be suctioned to the windshield or sit precariously on the dash.

Thanks.
 

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What a cool idea! I'd be interested to find out what you learn.
 

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The easiest and cheapest way would be to install another power outlet on the driver side in one of the bins on either side of the steering wheel, then insert a mini 12v USB charger similar to this:

There's lots of different makes and models of these chargers, I think Belkin makes one if you want to stick with a name brand.

Otherwise you'll be looking at a bit more custom work to get a powered USB port you can use to charge. Another option might be a powered USB hub but be careful since some hubs are more intelligent than others and won't power the ports unless it's connected to a host.
 

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hmmm

The easiest and cheapest way would be to install another power outlet on the driver side in one of the bins on either side of the steering wheel, then insert a mini 12v USB charger similar to this:
That may work! If I can keep the entire set-up behind the console so the usb adapter is flush with the dash it would be even better. Know where I can get the wiring diagram on how to do this?
 

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The easiest and cheapest way would be to install another power outlet on the driver side in one of the bins on either side of the steering wheel, then insert a mini 12v USB charger similar to this:



That may work! If I can keep the entire set-up behind the console so the usb adapter is flush with the dash it would be even better. Know where I can get the wiring diagram on how to do this?

There is a thread or two in the FAQ / How To's section on adding another 12v outlest.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Power Solved - Mount TBD

Thanks for the help, folks. I think I'll mount a 12V plug to the inside of the Driver's side console and plug in a handy usb adapter. I'm going to get the add-a-fuse thingy and give it a shot in the ext couple weeks. I'll be sure to post pics. If anyone has tips for GPS/phone mounts let me know -i'll search the folums. My idea is to mount between the tach and the center console like this:

 

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traffic?

Sounds like we're in the same Xmas situation! I got the 265w. I'm not sure if this is a concern for the 260 but I know the traffic information on mine is delivered only through the power adapter. It's some sort of FM receiver built in so that could result in some additional concerns for those of us with traffic capable models, ie having to possibly deal with this bulky cable somehow.
 

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Or you could just take a USB cable and wire it to an Add a Ckt. fuse in the under dash fuse panel. Slip the wiring past the dash radio cover like Snuff did.

The red wire is + and the black is - .

Wiring for USB wires here.

I think you will find that the plug mounted in the position you suggest will stick out too far. It may be an issue for your right knee under some conditions.

We were just out in your area for lights in the park. You should have joined us!

Dom
 

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Discussion Starter #10
another option

I'm planning on mounting the 12V "port" in the right side cubby, so i don't think extension out will be such an issue. If it fits, this http://www.yourdictionary.com/images/computer/_AUXIN.JPG plus the usb adapter may be perfect! I think I'll use the add a fuse. I want it to be as invisable as possible, but i'm also nervous about doing more than in absolutely nessesary to make it work.

That said, the 260w doesn't give traffic updates. anyone know where do get the whole aux + 12v unit other than the dealer$hip?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
cigarette lighter

I think the days of the cigarette lighter are over.... car companies should strat realizing the percentage of folks looking to use the port for electronics is far above the percent using it for a light. Besides, what are matches and lighters for?!

C'mon car companies... replace the 12v with a usb port and move the 12V someplace more useful
 

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While things are probably shifting toward the 5v USB power need, I think applications are still equally distributed among:
- 12v, 10-15amp
- 5v USB
- 120v AC

For example on my last vacation trip I used, in various combinations:
TomTom gps using its USB adapter
recharging a mp3 player off the same
an older hand held gps using its own (non USB) 12v adapter
150w inverter, used to charge a netbook

I also have a 12v air compressor, though I usually power that off a portable 12v battery pack. In the past I have also used the 12v battery pack to inflate an air mattress (using its own pump). I've also used 12v lights, though now all my LED lights work fine with their own batteries.

The 12v lighter socket is not the most reliable socket, but it can handle enough power to be useful for things like air compressors and inverters. A USB can't serve that purpose.
 

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i got a garmin for xmas as well, im going to hard wire mine in when the weather brakes, i hate the cold....
 
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