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LED projector upgrades

HammaMan

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Just about finished up installing projectors (w/ glare free) on my truck w/ out the need for suspension height sensors. The low beam cutoff is adjustable in-cab with a little knob. No more issues with leveled trucks / custom brackets / headlights not appropriately level. Turn the knob and adjust the beam height. Also found a way to fix leveled / lifted trucks that error out due to sensor position.
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OleMustyBag

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Just about finished up installing projectors (w/ glare free) on my truck w/ out the need for suspension height sensors. The low beam cutoff is adjustable in-cab with a little knob. No more issues with leveled trucks / custom brackets / headlights not appropriately level. Turn the knob and adjust the beam height. Also found a way to fix leveled / lifted trucks that error out due to sensor position.
I am Very interested in this! What did you use for the knob? Is it wired into the HCM? Pics?
 

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I am Very interested in this! What did you use for the knob? Is it wired into the HCM? Pics?
I"m spoofing the sensors themselves. Instead of wires running off to the wheels, it's done within 12" or so of the unit. Still trying to find the 'best' spot for the knob as whereas an amp knob can be hidden, if you're adjusting lights you want to see what's going on.
 

OleMustyBag

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I"m spoofing the sensors themselves. Instead of wires running off to the wheels, it's done within 12" or so of the unit. Still trying to find the 'best' spot for the knob as whereas an amp knob can be hidden, if you're adjusting lights you want to see what's going on.
Oh ok so you used the sensor as a knob and took the arm off of it?
 

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Oh ok so you used the sensor as a knob and took the arm off of it?
No, this is my own circuit. The goal was to eliminate the need to spend ~$200+ for ride height sensors and running wires to them while adding the ability to adjust the height of the lights sitting in the seat.
 

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HammaMan

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The funny thing is that I'm also working on an auto leveling system for my airbags --- that uses the rear sensor. Ai directed me towards the components I needed and then wrote the code for controlling the variables. Welcome to the future.
 

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The funny thing is that I'm also working on an auto leveling system for my airbags --- that uses the rear sensor. Ai directed me towards the components I needed and then wrote the code for controlling the variables. Welcome to the future.
That sounds awesome keep me in the loop on that!
 

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This isn't even the fully simplified harness (first test harness). The red X pair isn't even needed (terminates just outside of the plug itself. Just have to find a spot for the knob / headlight height adjuster. I've further simplified the run to the headlights as well. Also only requires a single pin into the BCM. Tested / working w/ glare free.

Ford F-150 LED projector upgrades 1714006269185-f9
 

OleMustyBag

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This isn't even the fully simplified harness (first test harness). The red X pair isn't even needed (terminates just outside of the plug itself. Just have to find a spot for the knob / headlight height adjuster. I've further simplified the run to the headlights as well. Also only requires a single pin into the BCM. Tested / working w/ glare free.

1714006269185-f9.png
That’s nice! Great Idea! Do you have problems with the other sensor not being in place?
 

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That’s nice! Great Idea! Do you have problems with the other sensor not being in place?
Which sensors? The HCM relies on the front left and rear left. The HCM sees the front sensor as a static value, though I've incorporated a calibration adjustment feature to provide additional elevation by simply running calibration then cutting a wire (could also be made a switch or momentary button). Think of it like this, it will calibrate near stock height and then a wire is cut and the truck thinks the front has a couple hundred pounds more on the front axle (lights point up). Then using the knob the height is brought back down as if a couple hundred pounds has been added to the rear.

Then from there on the beam cutoff can be adjusted as needed as the signal is being spoofed when the knob removes or adds virtual weight to the rear of the truck. When it's where you want it, it remains. If a trailer or other significant mass is added the beam height is simply adjusted. The factory sensors don't account for tire deflection and can over or under compensate, especially if the tires aren't factory and have different loading characteristics. LT tires for instance can result in the the beam being artificially lower than needed as they don't compress as much as factory SL tires. For smaller rims the changes can be even more drastic.
 

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OleMustyBag

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Which sensors? The HCM relies on the front left and rear left. The HCM sees the front sensor as a static value, though I've incorporated a calibration adjustment feature to provide additional elevation by simply running calibration then cutting a wire (could also be made a switch or momentary button). Think of it like this, it will calibrate near stock height and then a wire is cut and the truck thinks the front has a couple hundred pounds more on the front axle (lights point up). Then using the knob the height is brought back down as if a couple hundred pounds has been added to the rear.

Then from there on the beam cutoff can be adjusted as needed as the signal is being spoofed when the knob removes or adds virtual weight to the rear of the truck. When it's where you want it, it remains. If a trailer or other significant mass is added the beam height is simply adjusted. The factory sensors don't account for tire deflection and can over or under compensate, especially if the tires aren't factory and have different loading characteristics. LT tires for instance can result in the the beam being artificially lower than needed as they don't compress as much as factory SL tires. For smaller rims the changes can be even more drastic.
That’s awesome!
is the knob just a potentiometer?
So then for the air bag idea you could use the front static signal as the reference and have the system air up the bags until it’s back to “level” with where ever you had the knob set before the load was added?
I am interested in the auto level on the air bags. I am constantly having to inflate and deflate them.
 

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A potentiometer is part of it. For auto leveling it really depends on how accurate you're wanting it. Factoring tire deflection requires more logic and measuring the fender height. An ESP32 device is perfect for this as you have to control solenoids, possibly the air compressor, as well as factor in tire deflection. If it can read OBD data you could even factor in tire pressure. You also want pressure transducers as a backup. With a 4 channel manifold you can also set channels for doing automatic tire inflation/deflation (you still need to connect the hose to the tire) with very little additional work.

For the powerboost this becomes much easier as you can power larger compressors using HV vs the limitations of 12v compressors. Another factor with airbags are the simple slip-in sharkbite style connectors - they leak to varying degrees. Not sure if your issue is varying payload or air leakage. Part of the logic could be at regular intervals when the vehicle is stopped it will make an adjustment if needed. It sounds more complicated than it is. When unloaded you can set it to 2psi or so and open a cross bleed valve to minimize ride impact.
 

OleMustyBag

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A potentiometer is part of it. For auto leveling it really depends on how accurate you're wanting it. Factoring tire deflection requires more logic and measuring the fender height. An ESP32 device is perfect for this as you have to control solenoids, possibly the air compressor, as well as factor in tire deflection. If it can read OBD data you could even factor in tire pressure. You also want pressure transducers as a backup. With a 4 channel manifold you can also set channels for doing automatic tire inflation/deflation (you still need to connect the hose to the tire) with very little additional work.

For the powerboost this becomes much easier as you can power larger compressors using HV vs the limitations of 12v compressors. Another factor with airbags are the simple slip-in sharkbite style connectors - they leak to varying degrees. Not sure if your issue is varying payload or air leakage. Part of the logic could be at regular intervals when the vehicle is stopped it will make an adjustment if needed. It sounds more complicated than it is. When unloaded you can set it to 2psi or so and open a cross bleed valve to minimize ride impact.
Yes I am always loading up tools or hauling items and pulling a trailer and in between I have an empty bed so it has become a never ending airing up and deflating of the bags. Also when I went up to Colorado from Texas I kept having to deflate the bags because of the change in atmospheric pressure the back of the truck kept raising up. I remember ride tech used to have a system similar where each wheel had a sensor and you could raise or lower the entire vehicle to different ride heights and the computer would keep it level. I will have to look into that. I am pretty good with computers and electrical but have never done any code. So that could be an interesting challenge.
 

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This (for now, generic knob)
Ford F-150 LED projector upgrades 1714610141824-rz

Enables this range. It doesn't look like much but it's quite a bit in actual light throw. Site won't accept the vid.

Ford F-150 LED projector upgrades 1714610451831-3y

Ford F-150 LED projector upgrades 1714610490621-no
 

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Did some more testing. Used stock values on the position sensor values for calibration and can correct with the knob. Looking at ways to correct leveled trucks w/out having to build custom brackets. While the position sensors will report values of for example 1-100, The HCM doesn't like receiving values outside of ~15-80. If stock front is say value 20 and you level it, it can end up at 14 and HCM errors. A device could be theoretically be plugged in in-line at the sensor that could make it believe the values are all +10 and the headlight adjustment screws be used to then level out the beam heights to level.

Without the LED outage detection lines run to the BCM from each headlight, the IPC blinker indicator hyper flashes (it's a programed behavior that acts like old school blinkers when a light is out) with all LED lighting. However, the exterior blink rate is correct as the BCM fets behave correctly and flash at standard intervals. Unsure of remedy though I have 6 spare lines run between the cab and under-hood and could just connect appropriately. This project was to simplify the install as much as possible and outside of the IPC blinker indicator, was a complete success. I may play with resistance values to see what the minimum needed current is without running discrete lines for no other reason than to collect the data. Given it's only for the blinker itself I'm not worried about turning blinks into heat.
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