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  DIY- Armrest LED
calvino
10-31-2006
so I was driving today at night and the front center dome light burn off so I could not see anything
I...
  #22  
By neuronpetkowski on 11-01-2006, 11:43 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by StewtheBassman
Wouldn't it be more uniform to do the mod with the BMW Amber lighting? Could that be done?
This is a very cool mod Cal.
I agree with Stew, if there were an LED the same as the ambient lights in the vehicles, it'd be cool...er.
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  #23  
By FrankoQ on 11-01-2006, 01:48 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by neuronpetkowski
This is a very cool mod Cal.
I agree with Stew, if there were an LED the same as the ambient lights in the vehicles, it'd be cool...er.
and install a pressure switch so the light only comes on when the arm rest is lifted.
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  #24  
By StewtheBassman on 11-01-2006, 01:53 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankoQ
and install a pressure switch so the light only comes on when the arm rest is lifted.
I had thought of that but whoa!!!!! Too fancy!!
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  #25  
By thd13 on 11-01-2006, 03:15 PM
Very nice Cal! Once again, great thread!
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  #26  
By calvino on 11-01-2006, 06:24 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rlc
Is there any visible light bleeding through the gaps when the armrest is closed?
Nope and you don't need a preasure sensor remmeber that the center storage is like a little freeze ( to keep your water cool) so is complectly sealit (open your center storage and you wll see that it have like a ruber so the cold dont get out, yea it will be nice if there were a way to get the OEM ambient lights. but this ones are preaty close and the distrocion that the water do to the light, it make it look like OEM style
Last edited by calvino; 11-02-2006 at 12:33 AM.
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  #27  
By StewtheBassman on 11-02-2006, 12:20 AM
Yah, I was wondering if the red light made a lot of heat, but I guess if you're using the AC that's cool.....but here in Canada we have the heat going all winter!! That's hot!!
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  #28  
By calvino on 11-02-2006, 12:32 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by StewtheBassman
Yah, I was wondering if the red light made a lot of heat, but I guess if you're using the AC that's cool.....but here in Canada we have the heat going all winter!! That's hot!!

LED don't produce any heat stew they don't have a filament they are illuminated solely by the movement of electrons in a semiconductor material. so you don't have to worry about that
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  #29  
By Neon21db on 11-02-2006, 12:45 AM
I take it that the light is always on except for when the car is off?
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  #30  
By calvino on 11-02-2006, 12:50 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neon21db
I take it that the light is always on except for when the car is off?
yea because I connect it to the power outlets (were you plug for cellphone or ipod on teh console) and they turn off as soon as you turn off the car and they turn on again went you turn your car on or put it in the ACC position ( pressing the start with out the foot on the pedal)
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  #31  
By txusa03 on 11-09-2006, 10:07 AM
nice work cal and it seems to matches the amber light on the dash.
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  #32  
By Chesmu on 12-09-2006, 10:58 AM
good job calvino! again. I did your "happy robot" mod without quick-connects - the damn things were hard for emto work with.... so this one mich be out of the questions. I was just thinking how dark it was in the armrest area the other night. YOu are the master of the affordable/ingenious mod.
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  #33  
By E91 Dude on 12-09-2006, 08:30 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chesmu
good job calvino! again. I did your "happy robot" mod without quick-connects - the damn things were hard for emto work with.... so this one mich be out of the questions. I was just thinking how dark it was in the armrest area the other night. YOu are the master of the affordable/ingenious mod.
I'm curious how you did the happy robot without quick connects? Care to help a member who will soon undertake the happiness of the backseat robot? Thanks.
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  #34  
By FrankoQ on 12-09-2006, 10:03 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by E91 Dude
I'm curious how you did the happy robot without quick connects? Care to help a member who will soon undertake the happiness of the backseat robot? Thanks.
Use regular house wire connectors for 14 or 16 gauge wire.
That's what I used in my angry robot.
quick connects are a pain.
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  #35  
By slant83 on 01-11-2008, 11:47 PM
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Calvino..

I did your mod..Amazing!!! I did it slightly different. I mounted an LED (purchased from pep boys since their LED has a plastic trim piece to make it look more stock after drilling the hole) and mounted only one next to the coin slots..fed the wire under the console, under the rubber tray and spliced it into a short cig lighter adapter. It seems to be too much of a pain in the a$$ to remove the center console to access the wiring (steptronic/coupe). I may eventually tap into the ashtray light or the steptronic gear selector light so it is "switched" with the lights.

I'll show you at the SoFLA BBQ on Jan 26
Last edited by slant83; 01-12-2008 at 07:27 PM.
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  #36  
By slant83 on 03-02-2008, 08:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2007_E93 View Post
I did this as well with a few modifications. I mounted it next to coin slots to give more uniform dispersion. I also used the 5mm Red-Orange LED from www.theledlight.com to match nearly perfectly. I had to use a 330 ohm 1/4 watt resistor in line with the positive end. I also mounted it using Clear Epoxy and it looks factory (LED lasts 100k hrs,...will not need to change it). Lastly, I had no trouble removing center console. Just lift hard and it unclips. Then I wired in parallel with the ashtray light LED. At the front there is a white 3 pronged plug with a brown wire on the far left (GND) and the pink/purple wire on the far right prong (7.5V measured with voltmeter) as the power (switched on with headlights). Looks PERFECT and NO CODES!

On your e93, is it a manual or auto? Do you have a iDrive knob? I'm going to finally lift my console to hardwire in parallel. Why did you need the resistor for such low wattage/amperage? The LED draws such low current
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  #37  
By SoQuick on 12-25-2008, 05:34 AM
sloppy install, way to bright
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  #38  
By E90 ANdy on 12-26-2008, 01:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slant83 View Post
On your e93, is it a manual or auto? Do you have a iDrive knob? I'm going to finally lift my console to hardwire in parallel. Why did you need the resistor for such low wattage/amperage? The LED draws such low current

I did mines today and you do not need any resistors. Just connect the LEDS to the existing LEDs in the center console
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  #39  
By Palmsurfer on 03-05-2009, 12:58 AM
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Another variation...

This is the same basic modification except thereís no drilling and it costs $20:

1) Buy the 15Ē LED Flex-Lite kit #CZ-181R (got mine at AutoZone for $19.99 + tax)
2) Cut the wires attached to the LEDís to remove the switch and battery pack
3) Toss the switch (keep the batteries for an LED flashlight or something)
4) Remove the rubber tray from inside the armrest
5) Remove the back of the armrest (as described in the link above)
6) Slide the LED wires through the opening in the bottom of the armrest nearest the A/C plug
7) Connect the WHITE wire to the RED (same as illustration)
8) Connect the BLACK wire to the Brown (same as illustration)
9) Check to ensure the LEDís work (important step)
10) Replace the rubber tray while holding the LED strip so that the wires go down behind the rubber tray at the back corner nearest the A/C plug
11) Remove the adhesive strip from the LEDís
12) Beginning at the corner nearest the A/C plug, press the light strip against the armrest just above the rubber tray.
13) DO NOT PRESS THE LEDís TOO TIGHLY INTO THE CORNERS: ITíS UNLUCKY, WHICH IS WHY THIS IS STEP 13!!!!
14) Continue adhering the LED strip all the way around

It took me about 20 minutes, but most of my time was spent trying to figure out the best way to position the LED strip inside the armrest.

You could also put a small hole in the back corner of the rubber tray, run the wires through hole, and adhere the light strip around the bottom of the rubber tray. I like to avoid holes, and I prefer the lights above the stuff Iím trying to find in the darkÖbut suit yourself!

Next, I'm going to buy a glove box switch (vintage BMW or generic is about $8 on eBay), insert it at the back of the armrest, and rewire the lights through the switch. In this way, the lights will only be on when the armrest is opened. I'll post instructions and pics when finished. (Switch mod will require drilling )


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  #40  
By karlytobmw on 03-19-2009, 04:05 PM
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your sport shoes are realy nice
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  #41  
By ramirez330i on 05-31-2011, 08:41 PM
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Pic

Could you post a pic of the red light in the dark when there isn't s water bottle reflecting the light. I feel like it wouldn't look nearly as cool.... Thanks
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  #42  
By mariz987 on 10-25-2011, 03:39 AM
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I just red the thread and the mod and installation guide is easy to follow and really cool. but what color should I choose?
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  #43  
By joro2077 on 11-13-2011, 03:53 PM
Niceeeee
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