Wireless Charger Truck Mod Keeps Juice Flowing On The Move

Wireless charging is great tech, but its relative novelty means it may not be everywhere you want it. When one of those places is your vehicle, well, you make like [Braxen McConnell] and crack it open to install a wireless charger!

After dismantling the centre console, [McConnell] had to make a few cuts behind the scenes to make room for the wireless charger — as well as cutting down the charger itself. He also took apart the charger and flipped the board and charging coil around inside its case; the reason for this is the closer the coil is to the phone, the better. The charger will already be hidden behind the plastic of the centre console, so it’s no good to be fighting through the extra distance of the charger’s internals. The charger was mounted with double-sided tape, since it’s relatively light and won’t be knocked about.

[McConnell] tapped into the accessory circuit on his truck so it would only be drawing current when the truck is on — nobody likes coming back to a dead battery! Power comes from a cigarette outlet connected to a USB car charger, which then powers the wireless charger — it’s a little hacky, but it works! Once the wireless charger is plugged in and the centre console is reinstalled, [McConnell] was set! Check out the build video after the break.

Whether it’s designing your own wireless charging circuit from scratch, or leeching power from more dangerous sources, wireless power might just stick around for a bit longer than your standard gimmick.

[Via /r/DIY]

22 thoughts on “Wireless Charger Truck Mod Keeps Juice Flowing On The Move

  1. “Wireless charging is great tech” sorry but I think you mean a “cool” trick. As the technology reduces the efficiency of the charging, it leaks RF in close close proximity of the charging area and you can’t use the phone while charging (or at least no as easy as when using a cable. Wireless charging also has the problem of not being as practical as “a cable” meaning that you can only charge it in/around you home.

    Now seriously… with all these problems, do you still think it is great. Only to get rid of a simple connector. The could also have made the charging connector bigger/more durable, couldn’t they? Especially since the phones are getting larger and larger…

    1. @Jan: No argument that wireless charging isn’t nearly as efficient as a cable connected charger. But it has so many more positive attributes than charging efficiency: ease of use for the consumer, no proprietary connectors, etc. For example, my wife uses an Apple iPhone while I use a Samsung Android phone. But the Qi wireless charger in our car will charge either one by setting the phone on top of it.

      You mention that wireless charging isn’t practical unless you’re in/around your home as a response to an article about a guy installing a wireless charger in a vehicle? So [McConnell] has removed that “impracticality”. There are 14 car manufacturers building in wireless chargers as an option for some of their models. And since it is in a vehicle, it is easier and safer to use a Bluetooth headset for the phone than it is to hold it to your head while connected by a cable. You’re blocking part of your peripheral vision by holding that “larger and larger” phone to your head while driving.

      Yes, wireless charging is great. It takes less effort on the user to put it in/pull it out of the charging position (re-watch the video) than plugging/unplugging a cable that will eventually damage the connector. With the trend in removing connectors like the headphone jack, do you think that manufacturers would really take a step back and put in a bigger charging port?

    2. Given he’s running power cables willey nilley … and using red coloured cable for the 0V line… I don’t think this is a concern.

      Yes, it works, but by running the 0V line to some random ground post instead of parallel to the original +12V… he’s just made a massive loop for emitting RF.

    3. You talk as if it’s an either-or situation. You are aware that you can still plug the phone in if the wireless charging pad is not available, right? Otherwise criticism like this makes literally zero sense:

      “Wireless charging also has the problem of not being as practical as “a cable” meaning that you can only charge it in/around you home.”

  2. PS: thanks for the 3.5MB gif of a hand putting a phone in a hole… no my phone batteries depleted from loading the data and I need to recharge. Luckily I can use a cable and keep using the phone to read the other hackaday articles.

    PPS: just kidding ofcourse, hackaday, thanks for a great 2017 and I hope that 2018 will be just as fun on your wonderfull website.

  3. To all the haters.
    1 it is a real pain to keep plugging in the charging cable not to mention that the cables and connectors tend to get wonky over time.
    2; Yes I know it will not fast charge but when you are just driving around it would work just fine.
    Now the downside.
    1. It will not fast charge.
    2. My wife’s car supports android auto but only when the phone is plugged in. It would be great if there was a wireless option that you could use with a charging pad.

    i did not watch the video but if he is using red for ground or the wrong fuse he should fix that but adding a charging pad is a fine addition to a car.

  4. Nice job.

    I think that since you had everything opened up you should of added at least one more 5V power supply for other things.
    If it very cold were you live you are going to have a problem with your charger staying in place. I think it will end up dropping on you.
    I find that metal duck tape works great. It works very well in very very cold areas I find.
    It is one of my favorite tools.

  5. pfft. When someone rigs their phone as a “Joule Thief” that charges from the Rf emitted by all of the other peoples phones (being used while driving), then I’ll be impressed. x^D

  6. I don’t know anybody that does not sleep at least once a day. Seems that is plenty of time to charge a phone.

    The problem is the stylists and psychologists that determine how little power the battery can can hold and still sell. Marketing means that intangible traits are pushed to the foreground and really important things are obfuscated.

  7. I would of rather tied into the 15 amp power socket, if it was a switch accessory, than the 7.5 amp accessory circuit. It is more peace of mind having a circuit that has a higher amperage rating than a 7.5 amp circuit. Also, if the install would fail due to some form of short or catastrophic failure, would only render the power socket inoperable. The accessory circuit would tie into other accessories in the vehicle. Like your radio and possibly HVAC controls. Its best to look at the Haynes manual or AllData for a wiring schematic. I would also agree with dropping the inline fuse to a lower amperage like a 3 amp fuse.

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