Sunday, August 20, 2006

AnywhereMap Saga: Part 2

After finally convincing myself that the AnywhereMap is working fine, I decided to go ahead and try to mount it in the airplane in a manner that would get some of the wires and the Wx Works box out of the way. After looking around the airplane for a spot to put the Wx Works box where I'd be able to see the status LEDs on top of it, I decided to mount it to the passenger side kick panel.

That panel turned out to be a real bugger to remove, and in the end turned out to be an even bigger bugger to put back. It's a pretty good location, though. I was able to coil up the extra 3000' (or so it seemed) of antenna wire and tuck it back there, and I was also able to mount the 12V power adapter I picked up at Wal-Mart for $5. The cigarette lighter power plug that comes with the AM package retails for nearly $200, so I was loath to decapitate it and try to figure out a way to get power to all three of the power cords it provides, so the 12V port solved that problem for the price of a fast-food lunch. I removed the automotive grade wiring that came with it and replaced it with aviation grade Tefzil wire, however.

Here you can see the Wx Works box, and just above it you can see the power port. The power plug is hanging loose with just enough slack to let it reach the in panel power plug, which is what I will be using until I run the wires from the new power port to a circuit served by the Avionics Master switch.

The three power cords that come from the power plug are a tangling nightmare that compares pretty well to the tangled mess of cheap necklaces from Co-pilot Egg's pre-teen jewelry box, so I got a length of spiral cable wrap from Aircraft Spruce and spent a somewhat tedious half hour using it to tie together the two cables that need to go up to the glareshield. That cable was then Adel clamped to the GPS power cord.

The GPS unit (right) and XM Wx antenna (left) are velcroed to the glareshield:

Here's how the installation looks from the Pilot's point-of-view:

I had bought a little suction cup mount for the XM antenna, but with this installation I no longer need it. No sense letting it go to waste, though. While I was doing all of the wiring work, Co-pilot Egg was busy fabricating a new set of chocks out of 3/4" PVC pipe and some 90 degree couplers. The old chocks that we s[spent an afternoon carving out of a 4x4 fence post won't fit under the new wheel pants, so we had to build a new set. Given my recent "forgot to remove the chocks" incident, I thought a good use for the now unneeded antenna mount would be to make myself a little reminder for removing the chocks:

The new chocks look great! Egg chose the paint, and I think she made a good choice for high visibility:


  1. Looks like the new chocks match the spinner. So when does young Egg start A&P school?


  2. Mel -

    She wants to have a go at nursing first, but I'm still working on her.

    She sure enjoyed hack sawing the PVC, and really, really liked the spray painting, so there's hope for her yet!