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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking to see if anyone has tried this or something similar.

My idea is to have a compact LED light bar mounted on the outside of the van above the rear doors, likely near the back up camera and red light pods.

Something like this: https://www.amazon.com/MicTuning-MIC-5DP30-SR-Mini-Single-Visibility/dp/B00L0R5ZQQ

I want to connect this to the factory installed AUX switches to the left of the steering wheel.

My goal is to have an external light that I can use when setting up camp in the dark, working at night, or can be turned on when I need extra light when backing up.

I also have the unfit connection but don't know if the AUX switch has any leads that run to the upfit connections.

I appreciate any ideas or advice?
 

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I'm going to mount two smaller LED's facing down on the back of mine. I'll broably use a couple of the little square floods that the Jeepers use. Rigid is a popular brand. You can find lots of reviews on YouTube. I'm also thinking about adding some "rock lights" in case I'm out in the middle of nowhere and need maximum lighting to see everything in case I'm stuck, have a breakdown, need to see a really tough road, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have heard that the Rigid brand is the best but I can bring myself to spend over 10X more than what I am seeing on amazon for low cost LED lights. Are the really that bad? I could replace a cheaper light many many times and still come out ahead.
 

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Interesting find, those MicTunings. I was looking at marine lighting to do the same thing (see Attwood Marine Courtesy Lighting, for example, albeit a much weaker light). I just assumed that marine lighting should be about as waterproof and tough as anything you could buy. Just an impression. I could easily be wrong about that, since I'm not a sailor. I did notice, though, that the poor reviews on those MicTunings did all mention water leakage.

Gosh, they're bright. I'd probably put them on a dimmer. I could just see flipping the light on in the middle of the night to see who's messing around outside my van, and accidentally blinding a cop or something. Methinks that would make for a memorable night. :D

One other thing I noticed about those MicTunings. On their website, they note that there's an LED light in the switch that always glows. They say if you don't want that light on all the time, don't connect it directly to your battery. Instead, connect it through your fuse panel. I take that to mean, it would only be lit when you've got the ignition on. Else, you could just replace the switch with one that doesn't glow. The drain on the battery is probably minimal, but still...
 

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Upgrades from the E150. Rigging up "camp" lighting . Side and rear spots , ground "illuminators" color coded for side and rear. The illuminators are in the drain holes and the spots in the rear bumper corners and the bodyside moulding between pass door and slider.
Ground illuminators are on a 15 min timer . Spots are controlled by illuminated switches inside.
These LEDs are for truckers dolling up their rigs. The little ones fit snugly in the drain holes, but I left a few holes "oem". Got them on Ebay cheep ! I am also using loom that supports these LEDS , it's got bullet plugs every foot or so .
You gave me an idea to put one or two in the camera thingy. Light up the car trailer ?
After doing the bodyside lamp install I wouldn't recommend there. Maybe some thin alum angle behind the rocker with the lights in that , be easier.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
So here's my current plan. After a quick call with Rigid to discuss my plan I am looking at this light from Rigid 86610

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01553D4U4/

As I have a 2017 with the Aux switches and upfit it looks to be a (hopefully) straightforward job. The Aux switches are patched back to the upfit as shown here:

http://www.ramtrucks.com/assets/bbg/pdf/2016/van/docs/vf/eupfconn.pdf

Based on the diagram pin 15 controls is for Aux 1. I believe that I connect the + positive wire to pin 15 but I am not clear where I would attach the - negative to on the upfit to? Do I ground it to the chassis, if so is there a designated place to do this in the upfit area?

Anyone have a answer to that?

I plan to use 16 AWG wire for the connection which seems fine as the light only draws .75 amps.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The light arrived today. It's a bit smaller than I expected so it will fit nicely above the read door. I've ordered a 2nd one and the mate and lock connection for the upfit. The light came without a gasket so I will make one from a bike tube and seal it all with silicone rtv.

I plan to run the wire along the top of the passenger wall/roof and come down to the upfit connection via the pillar behind the passenger seat. If anyone has tips on how to do that I'd love to hear them. I am hoping that I can route through there without too much trouble given there is a curtain airbag there.
 

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The light arrived today. It's a bit smaller than I expected so it will fit nicely above the read door. I've ordered a 2nd one and the mate and lock connection for the upfit. The light came without a gasket so I will make one from a bike tube and seal it all with silicone rtv.

I plan to run the wire along the top of the passenger wall/roof and come down to the upfit connection via the pillar behind the passenger seat. If anyone has tips on how to do that I'd love to hear them. I am hoping that I can route through there without too much trouble given there is a curtain airbag there.
I have this light in my wishlist and my sparky will assist with wiring. I don't have the upfit connection, but I think he still intends to come in through the pillar. I'll let you know what he figures out, but it might be well after you are wanting to install your light.
 

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Really easy to do. There's a nice rounded "port" opening you can feel and all the wiring for the van rear runs up and out thru there. You'll be nowhere near the airbag as its over the pass window/door. Remove the rectangular "airbag" cover, torx screw and spacer. Remove the seat belt lower bolt. remove the black lower trim cover, screws and a tug on the snap to the B trim . There is a screw at the bottom of the B trim and the rest of the retaining is done by snaps inside the cover. The B cover is still loosely attached but can be shoved aside to feed wires . Now is the time to decide about any other wiring you might want out back. There is a "dead end" in the pillar under the seat belt retractor . I think your wires can emerge above the seat belt , but I forgot?
I had to run my wires on both sides of the belt. Be VERY careful NOT to interfere with the operation of the belt. Tie them down solid away from the belt.
And now your right over the fuse box area . Also encase your wires in split convoluted tubing available most everywhere. And when done ,torque the seat belt bolt correctly.
 

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I should mention I strung Trailer Ribbon all over up in the channels , just in case. The "ribbon"
is 4 different colored 16 gage wires bonded flat for trailer light wiring.
 

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Interesting light. I might need to mount a few of those on my van. I was going to say to do a lot of research on the off-brand LED lights on Amazon and eBay. A lot of the knock off light bars leak and fill with water when it rains.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
OK the install is done. I am very happy with the results as they cast a lot of light for 9W each. Here are some pics.

Tapped in to the Upfit connection to control the lights from the factory AUX switches. I used AUX 1 as it is battery fed not ignition fed.

I grounded the lights to a ground behind the 12v power supply at the back of the van.
 

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Thanks for the review of the light. I might get these instead. Does it come with any kind of a rubber gasket to seal it against the surface it mounts to? I'm planning on wiring mine into the house battery and switching it from the rear for loading gear in the dark.
 

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OK the install is done. I am very happy with the results as they cast a lot of light for 9W each. Here are some pics.

Tapped in to the Upfit connection to control the lights from the factory AUX switches. I used AUX 1 as it is battery fed not ignition fed.

I grounded the lights to a ground behind the 12v power supply at the back of the van.
These are the rigid lights you linked to earlier and posted a picture of? They look awesome!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
No gasket was included. I made some from 1/8 sheet rubber from Amazon. Then I sealed the perimeter with silicone rubber.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Here is another fun one. Rigid Ignite diffused flood 12w.

It's GoPro compatible so I got a magnet mount and a 12v switch and set it up as a move able light.

Porch light, Camp light etc.
 

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Thanks for this great info on exterior lights!

I've got a few of the Rigid 86610 lights coming from Amazon. I went with the "Used: like New" to save some $$. We'll see what actually arrives. Do you think rubber from a bike tube would work to serve as a gasket? Can you provide a link for the 1/8 rubber sheet you got from Amazon?

The Rigid Ignite looks awesome too...https://www.outsideonline.com/21362...ema-show-rigid-ignite-surface-mount-led-light
I'll just ordered one from Amazon Deals. I really like that this one is so versatile - the GoPro compatible feature is great.
 
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