Car Air Ionizer

I bought this little car gadget in order for my car to be less stinky on the inside when driving with no air circulation between the outside of the car and the inside of it. I'm not a smoker and I do clean my car very often but nevertheless more than once I had to deal with a general bad smell inside my car.

Now some of you would say "what's the big deal , just crack a window". I totally agree with that , but what if you can't or don't really want to open a window or circulate air between outside and inside ? for example , in cold weathers , or during rains or when you are with your girlfriend inside your car and it’s cold outside…

Ionizing the air seems to deal with particles of bad smell apparently ,but yet I didn't notice any considerable difference when using this device. I used it for about 3 months when the car was sealed from the outside and any improvement in the car's internal aroma wasn't noticeable (at least by me…).

Moreover , when hooking it up to the car's cigarette power socket it emits some sort of radio interference with the car's radio which sounded like a high frequency disturbing protracted noise in the car's speakers , noticeable when no audio signals are present and their volume is quite high.

I must confess I need more experimentation with this product in order to really get a thorough review on it and beyond that I would really like a device like that to work in my car. more work is needed to be done - first  , I have to solve the interference with the car's radio and second - I have to bring something smelly and stinky inside the car twice - one time with the device working and another time without it and try noticing any difference.

It terms of looks , this little gadget is very cool. It has a blue LED light around it and has a pretty slick design.

More to come on this product in the future.

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Tire Pressure Monitor

This is a great product that saves time and fuel by making your vehicle's tires pressure visually noticeable without having to use an external measuring instrument.

I found myself more than a few times refilling air in my tires only to find out I have been driving with a significant absence of air inside them for a long time.

I bought 6 of these, 2 for my motorbike and 4 more for my car. In addition to the usual daily\weekly oil checkup which takes a few minutes , this quick visual tire air pressure checkup could be added as a nice addition to this total short maintenance routine as well.

The product is actually a valve stem cam which is screwed instead of the usual valve cap. Unlike the usual valve cap which acts as a cover to the Schrader valve, this product not only covers the valve stem itself but also pushes the Schrader valve downwards in order to release the air pressured inside the tire and by that  , measuring the air pressure inside the tire.

Bottom line - cheap - about 2.15$ a piece , very effective and highly recommended.

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Car 1 to 5 Power Socket Splitter

I admit - my car is full of gadgets and they require power don't they? This is why I bought this:

Over time I added a lot of nice nifty gadgets to my car and over time I ran out of power sockets pretty quickly. I didn't buy that 1 to 5 splitter right away though, initially I bought a 1 to 2 splitter , then moved to 1 to 3 which was not enough pretty fast , so I tried connecting the 1 to 2 splitter to the 1 to 3 splitter and not only it wasn't enough , It made the 1 to 2 splitter to get overcharged and melting itself in the process.

After browsing E-bay for some time I found this amazing product which doesn't only does its job well but also looks awesome.

It is made of 3 main parts - the power sockets , a switch unit and the power socket connector.

Except the power socket connector , The main parts have a piano like finish which is black , smooth and shiny.  Each part is connected to one another by a long enough wire to place each part in an opposite end of the dashboard. So I had nothing to worry about placing the parts of this splitter , but how to place them.

Basically there are a lot of placing combinations I could pick , so I had to narrow them down to a few by considering comfort, ease of use , safety and aesthetics. Since I had to occupy all of the 5 sockets a lot of wiring would have to be organized as a result  + some of the gadget's wires were not long enough to reach the opposite end of the dashboard therefor I had to compromise , and to stick the power splitters in the middle of the dashboard right after the gearbox handle.

Positioning the switchboard:

The most obvious place to put the switchboard was as close as possible to the wheel or the rest of the instruments so I would have an easy approach to them without having to take my sight off the road. In terms of safety it is the best choice - close , in line of sight and reachable without having to get your eyes off the road. I would have placed the switchboard there if it wasn't for one thing - the strong blue LED light above each switch.

It's very very strong. These are not ordinary LED lights like you would see on any other electronic device , these are the kind of LEDs computer case modders or car\bike modders use.

After placing all together and powering up my car , all 5 blue LED lights projected their light directly to my eyes. I tried moving the switchboard a bit but I soon figured that the while the switchboard was in a good position , that fact alone would not prevent me getting blinded during night driving and the risk was too great to be just ignored from.

So eventually I placed the switchboard near the power socket splitter part right above the gearbox handle. That way no matter in which position I sat or looked I wouldn't be blinded. And I have to say it looks pretty awesome , the strong blue light is projected on the car's interior giving It a very cool looks.

Having a switchboard in this product was great idea. Initially I was looking for just a regular 1 to 5 splitter. The switchboard has a lot of advantages . the first is that it gives you a direct control over your car's electrical devices without the hassle of plugging and unplugging them manually, which is not only a hassle but ruins physical contact in time and endangers yourself if you do it during driving.

The products comes with a 3M 2 sided duct tape with a thin la with a thin layer of foam in the middle. I was very disappointed of it. When I tried placing the power splitter unit at the left end of the dashboard beneath it , gravity won the battle over the paste and it soon fell off. The tape is not strong enough to support a power splitter connected to various relatively heavy devices…

It is best , when using the 2 sided tape , to place the power splitter with its mass on top and not on bottom. But if I would have insisted I would have used a wax glue, but then again , the position of the power splitter (left end of the dashboard) wasn't good so extreme solutions like wax glue were quickly ruled out.

Finally after poisoning all 3 parts I now headed for the goal of concealing the wires, which was a pretty easy task considering the length of the wires.

Pros:

1.       Long wires between parts therefor flexible when it comes to positioning

2.       It has a switchboard with 5 strong blue LED lights which give it great looks and direct and fast control over the connected devices

3.       Nice smooth , shiny black finish

4.       Makes 5 power sockets out of 1

Cons:

1.       The strong blue LED lights are capable of blinding a driver when driving during night time

2.       The provided 3M 2 sided paste tape is a poor quality one

Price:

About 20$ on E-bay.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Car Power Socket to USB Converter

This is by far one of the most useful and cheap gadjets out there. As long as you have a generic car power socket in your car/motorbike/jet skis/ whatever other vehicle you might have – you could use this converter as well.
Though this is a 1 USB port only version there is also a version with 2 USB ports. From what i was able to find on E-Bay  , the double USB adapter doesn't come with a led light like the adapter iwth the one USB port.



The led light really adds a nice addition to the coolness of the product. Wheather inside your car or on your motorbike's dashboard  , the presents of a small light adds a lot to the overall looks.
The lights come in either red or green (i personally like the red one)

Now for some technical details-
Input voltage – 12VDC
Output voltage – 5VDC at 1A

Price:
Approximately 2.47$

Pros -
1. The adapter gives you the option of keeping your electronics essential to you alive and charged
2. Since it's a USB port – almost any device can be attached to it (depends mainly on what kind of plug you have on the other side of the USB wire)
3. Cheap
4. Looks nice and simple

Cons -
1. Unless you have a car cigarette lighter power socket splitter , you would need to remove the converter in order to plug in any other device directly to the cigarette light power socket.
2. Since it was designed to be very small , simple  , aesthetic and cheap , there is no room for more than 2 USB ports ,  there for it limits the number of attachable USB devices for 1 with the single USB port adapter and 2 with the doubled one.
3. The following con is not really a con because the products wasn't made to endure outside weather – it rusts. After riding my motorbike  in the rain with the adapter attached to the dashboard i noticed the LED light stopped working. It appears that rust that was made because of water contact prevented electircal contact between the socket and the adapter. Spraying WD-40 solved some of the issue by removing some layers of rust , but if you would still want to use this product outside of a confined space  i recommened using a rubber USB plug to seal the  USB port while not in use and another rubber ring to seal the space between the adapter's body and the power socket

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Creating a cheap helmet speakerphone solution

 

There is nothing like driving while listening to music , especially I you ride a motorcycle. Since an average helmet speakerphone solutions costs quite a lot I have decided to build something on my own. It wouldn't be perfect but I would get the main job done – get music\GPS navigation to my ears while driving my motorbike.

 

I tried a previous solution in the form of a button ear plug headphones that came with a bluetooth speakerphone which wasn't good for several reasons:

 

  • I had to put them on before putting my helmet on

  • while putting my helmet on wearing the headphones the latter sometimes got released off their grasp on my ears which made me take both and helmet and the headphones off and start over again

  • because the headphones were ear plugs , hearing the engine was difficult and it made me look at the RPM niddle instead of just hearing he engine. Not very safe if you ask me...

  • the inability to hear the environment and traffic made also things not safe.

  • The bluetooth speakerphone that came with the unit was hang from the helemt while I was driving. It had a little clip on which lost its graps on my jacket a lot of times.

I had figured I needed 2 main items – 2 speakers to install inside the helmet and a device that will transfer data wirelessly to them.

While browsing on E-Bay I found these:

 

the speakers are pretty simple , they come with a double sided stripe paste and a volume control unit and an audio cable extender . Installing them inside the helmet was easy.

After installing the speakers I glued the bluetooth speakerphone on the bottom left side of the helmet. I glued the volume control unit right above it for an easy access while driving.

The bluetooth speakerphone comes with a button ear plugs , a charger and a cable extender. Its functions are quite general and simple – forward and backward audio control , volume control , a pause button and a big button that has several functions - on\off , bluetooth attach mode and calling to contacts via voice recognition.

More functions of the led light:

  • steady red – while charging the unit

  • blinking blue – right after the unit has been turned on and it is searching for its attached device.

In addition it has a single powerful led light while turns red if there is no connection to a device and blinks every 3 seconds a blue light when having a stable connection to a device.

It looks really cool while driving your motorbike...

Since the helmet speaker’s audio cable is a bit long when it comes to the scale of a helmet I had to “handle” it and make it disappear by shoving it in between the helmet's hull and the internal part of the helmet.

I admit it doesn't look very aesthetic but it does the job.

The helmet speakers cost 4$ and the bluetooth speakerphone 12.5$.

Pros:

  1. A very cheap solution for someone who doesn't want to spend a lot of money on a genuine motorbike bluetooth speakerphone system

  2. Easy installation of the helmet speakers and gluing the speakerphone and the volume control to the helmet

  3. In case you lost the charger of the speakerphone you can use a Nokia charger instead

  4. depending on your smartphone abilities , with this installation you can listen to GPS instructions while listening to music while driving your motorbike.

  5. For all of you who need to hear the engine noise like in order to know when to change gears – since the distance between the ears and the speakers is quite big – about 1.5 CM in my case , hearing the engine noise and traffic noise is possible.

Cons:

 

  1. The helmet volume control isn't perfect and it is made at a very low quality which makes the volume be uneven between the speakers. A special spray for electronics parts cleaning can be used to overcome this problem.

  2. Since the microphone of the bluetooth speakerphone is built in and the speakerphone was glued on the outer side of the helmet ,it cannot be used for phone calls. Installing the unit inside the helmet right where the mouth is could be a sufficient solution to this issue. But since making phone calls while driving my motorbike wasn't one of my goals in this project I'm happy with theway it is.

  3. Looks – it looks a bit messy and improvised


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