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Old 08-27-2006
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Tail Gate Switch

I have given this alot of thought and have come up with an idea. dad says that mounting the switch below the bed wont work cause the vertical pressure on the switch from the tail gate will break it. so, I was thinking, since the tail gate doesnt actually touch the bed, it kinda just latches, I have two solutions.

1) make a little bracket to mount the switch - this is kinda in the air since i think stuff will get caught on it.

2) this idea - im not to sure of how i could make it work but heres the idea,
run a feed wire from the battery to the latch on the bed for the tail gate, somehow attach that wire to the latch and then run a wire inside the tailgate and then back to the bed and to a light in the cab. the idea here is that when the tail gate is down, the circuit ir broken and the light comes on, when the tail gate is up the circuit is completed and the light goes out. I thought about doing the opposite, but the light being "on" when the tail gate is down i think is more of an attention getter.

also, since regardless of what i do, the light cant stay on all night or ill wake up to a dead battery, i was thinking, i could use my feed wire by tapping into the pwr for my radio, using one of them lil plastic splicer thingies, this way when the truck is off, the light is off, but when the truck is on the light will come on - IF the tail gate is down....

thoughts?
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Old 08-27-2006
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Sounds like a good idea. You have a tonneau? I've seen a few threads on this topic by members with tonneaus and **** flying out of the bed not knowing the tailgate was down. lol I'm sure the members that have done this will chime in.
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Old 08-27-2006
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I would try to adapt a plunger style door ajar switch as used on most older cars and some current ones. This would be a logical choice since it is designed for your intended use and most have some form of weatherproofing. I think the best place to mount it would be the vertical area where the gate closes.

For power, you could probably tap any "hot in run", "hot in run/start" or "hot in run/acc" wire. However, a slick way to do it would be to use the light green/orange "battery saver" circuit instead. The power to this circuit is hot when the ignition switch is on but turns off 10~15 minutes after you shut the ignition off, so no worries about a dead battery.
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Old 08-27-2006
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Personally, I would use a magnetic door contact to drive a relay to turn the light on. No moving parts, nothing to get messed up by water, salt, dirt, and movement.
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Old 08-27-2006
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well i did "steal" the door ajar switch off our old - now parked e350 which i was gonna use... tho fire rangers idea sound pretty decent too, ill hafta look into it.

and im actually the one who came up with the idea, i dont think anyone has done it yet tho.
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Old 08-27-2006
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switch for what? I must have missed something
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Old 08-28-2006
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I think he means the "door ajar" light on the dash ... I could actually really benefit from something liek that .. I cant tell you how many times Ive driven down the highway with my gate down without realizing it because of my tonneau
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Old 08-28-2006
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To add to that... I can't tell you how many times I've stepped on the accellerator only to hear a loud crashing sound as everything in my bed goes flying out the back.
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Old 08-28-2006
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man that must really suck
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Old 08-28-2006
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I put my tractor's mower deck and boxes of electrical parts into the road once. That was the worst I can recall.
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