Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

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PillowSmuggler
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Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by PillowSmuggler » Sun Jun 14, 2015 9:55 pm

I have 4 led lights (18w) like XTC has (like this http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/351256107772" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; ) as I was impressed with them and thought I'd get more use out of them than my dream 50" 300W led light bar (one day my precious...)

I'll be mounting them direct to the roof rails, as I don't have (or frankly want) a full or half rack at present. I do however often use roof-bars which I like to move up and down the rails as required for the load. This makes permanently wired in lights a problem.

Thinking out loud, I was thinking of trying to make them adjustable so I could pop the lights on and off the rails or slide them up and down when I need them, including the option of putting all 4 on one side for extra lighting.

I don't want crappy coils of wire hanging around to allow the movement up and down, so instead I was thinking of neatly running a stainless steel strip along the inside edge of the roofrail (insulated by 3m double sided external grade tape) to be used as a switched +ve bus-bar, and using the rail itself as the negative. I'm not talking of tape inside the rail, but the outside face towards the car centre. None of my rail mounting stuff touches this part of the rail, so no risk of shorting.

I was thinking of using something like this as the +ve bus:
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/141671697264" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I can then 3d print a clamp that will both mount the light to the rail and make the electrical connections as the nut is tightened. I haven't fully thought that out yet, but worst case I'll have a separate electrical connector for each light which'd be easy. Total max power per rail would under 100W and I imagine the stainless will handle a mere 10 amps , so no need for fuses eh Stu? :whistle:

So, thoughts please? Is it a nuts idea to mount a live rail or do you think it'd be workable?


Regards, Dom.
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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by benp » Sun Jun 14, 2015 10:33 pm

erm no the idea isn't nuts as bus bars are bloody brilliant and used extensively in industry ... but they are either quite well insulated or a taught wire system (banned now I believe) that is "out of reach".

the only fail I can see is how to properly insulate it bearing in mind it will be seeing 80 mph winds and rain just mho but a bit of tape doesn't sound enough to me


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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by PillowSmuggler » Sun Jun 14, 2015 10:54 pm

Fair point Ben - trapping the front edge so it can't blow loose should be easy enough, but that 3m tape sticks like :poo: on a church shoe, enough to keep those led strips in place in my cyclone lighthouse. You think it'd need more? ?Any ideas?


Regards, Dom.
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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by Stu » Sun Jun 14, 2015 11:28 pm

Can't you just run wire in the rails? You wouldn't see it.

Or am I missing something? - quite likely!


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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by benp » Mon Jun 15, 2015 6:52 am

no idea tbh Dom in my mind I guess I am picturing a plastic protective sheath like crane bus bars use .. google insul 8 and I am sure images of what I mean will be there


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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by countrywide » Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:45 am

You can get tin plated copper bus bars, they are a bit easier to bend a little if you need to follow a profile.



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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by PillowSmuggler » Mon Jun 15, 2015 9:34 am

Stu wrote:Can't you just run wire in the rails? You wouldn't see it.
Or am I missing something? - quite likely!
I could run wire or tape in the rail Stu but I risk the various things I attach to the rail shorting the wire.
For wire, If the light was at the boot end instead of the front end I'd have 5' of slack to deal with, which is why I'm considering a static bus bar with a moving contact.
Ben wrote:...google insul 8 and I am sure images of what I mean will be there...
I see what you mean Ben; I think for my needs I'd need a plain profile rather than the figure 8 as I'd just be plugging in the top rather than having a slide follow the groove. I did think of a square-U section version of this to start with (though I hadn't found one I like), but wondered if I really needed the insulation to be so good for 14v...but now you have me thinking maybe I should.
Andy wrote:You can get tin plated copper bus bars, they are a bit easier to bend a little if you need to follow a profile.
That's a nice idea, I was looking at very much cheaper copper tape (for slugs :lol: ) but discounted it due to corrosion worries, well that and the fact it was thinner than a politicians promise; tin plated copper bars makes a lot more sense; I only chose stainless as the right grade doesn't corrode. I think the bus Ben's mentioned above is also tin plated, so that's all coming good, thanks :)

Now Ben's got me back on a bus inside an insulator idea, I'm remembering a configurable 13A socket system for network rooms which essentially had a very compact 3 bar bus running around the room and the sockets could be removed and placed literally anywhere along the bus. I'll start looking for a similar compact two bar system, the fact it'll be side mounted should allow the water to exit and the uPVC profile will keep most of the :censored: out. Back to the Google.

Thanks all :thumbright:


Regards, Dom.
2007 HSE Auto TDV6
Snorkel, Cyclonic air filter, GNVP Rock Sliders
78Ah Aux, Split charge, FBH Timer/Remote, Mantec sump plate
LED: Strobes, interior, camping, brake, running, sides
New Oil Pump, using 2SO at 1:400.

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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by Non Stick Nick » Mon Jun 15, 2015 5:17 pm

anything useful here...... http://www.cbf.uk.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; ???


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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by benp » Mon Jun 15, 2015 6:42 pm

it wasn't so much the figure 8 track I was thinking of but more the wrap round insulation for the conductor


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Re: Adjustable roof rail mounted work lights

Post by PillowSmuggler » Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:48 pm

Gotcha Ben :thumbright:
Plenty I like in there Nick, although not what I'm looking for right now. Will add that to my car parts favourites though :thumbright:


Regards, Dom.
2007 HSE Auto TDV6
Snorkel, Cyclonic air filter, GNVP Rock Sliders
78Ah Aux, Split charge, FBH Timer/Remote, Mantec sump plate
LED: Strobes, interior, camping, brake, running, sides
New Oil Pump, using 2SO at 1:400.

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