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Fitting A Dash Cam To A Focus

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#1 talksy

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 07:38 AM

Hi, I am the happy owner of a 59 plate focus! - Collecting it at the end of the week.
I would like to know how easy it would be to fit a dash cam to the car. After witnessing many nutcases on the road, I would like to make sure I am covered in the future.
I used to have a fiesta and found it very easy to remove the passenger window pillar. Is it as easy on the focus or will there be air bags?

I will need to run a power cable from the rear view mirror round the passenger side, down into the dash and then if possible, I would need an additional cigarette lighter socket behind the dash. I would rather not have it plugged in to my existing two.

Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated. :)

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#2 GSM

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 09:46 AM

Hi, I am the happy owner of a 59 plate focus! - Collecting it at the end of the week.
I would like to know how easy it would be to fit a dash cam to the car. After witnessing many nutcases on the road, I would like to make sure I am covered in the future.
I used to have a fiesta and found it very easy to remove the passenger window pillar. Is it as easy on the focus or will there be air bags?

I will need to run a power cable from the rear view mirror round the passenger side, down into the dash and then if possible, I would need an additional cigarette lighter socket behind the dash. I would rather not have it plugged in to my existing two.

Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated. :)


It's really easy to do, you won't have any problems, shouldn't be any different from the Fiesta. There will probably be airbags, but they won't cause issues.

Just get an additional 12v socket of eBay for a few quid (really cheap), then you can just tap it into the wires for your existing sockets or into some other 12v source, plug in the cam and route the wire up the pillar and down behind the rear-view mirror.

The only problem I *thought* I had initially was that the 12v sockets on the Focus don't appear to go off with the ignition - they're on constantly, so I thought it might drain the battery to have a cam constantlly plugged in, and I wanted to have a source for my additional socket that DID go off with the ignition for that reason. But first I just left it plugged into my current socket for about 2 weeks overnight permanently as a test, and it didn't drain the battery at all, plus I quite like the idea of just recording 24/7 anyway now, so I just tapped into the same source as the current 12v sockets. No big deal :D.

You don't really need to wire it all the way behind the dash though, you can just have it behind the glove box and tap into the source near the fusebox. Or even just get some piggy-back fuses and plug straight into the fuse box there.

#3 Peejay1977

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 12:02 PM

I took the lazy option and bought a GoPro Hero 2 camcorder and used the self adhesive mount to stick to the dash, it records for over 2 hours on a single charge which is enough for me and the footage is full HD.



#4 Dan62

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 12:43 PM

A dash cam is a great idea, I use Dailyroads Voyager on my Android, its a free app and works in the background so you can use your Android as a satnav at the same time.

Never seen it mentioned on here so I hope it a new discovery for someone.

D

#5 jeebowhite

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 01:58 PM

Agreed, I use Autobox on my phone, paid £1.59 but I wanted a camera that recorded route, GPS speed and video, and it works for me!

You can get free android apps such as autoboy (a good free solution) as above, it hides in the background, continues to record and will allow you to utilise the satnav etc!

#6 talksy

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 11:28 AM

It's really easy to do, you won't have any problems, shouldn't be any different from the Fiesta. There will probably be airbags, but they won't cause issues.

Just get an additional 12v socket of eBay for a few quid (really cheap), then you can just tap it into the wires for your existing sockets or into some other 12v source, plug in the cam and route the wire up the pillar and down behind the rear-view mirror.

The only problem I *thought* I had initially was that the 12v sockets on the Focus don't appear to go off with the ignition - they're on constantly, so I thought it might drain the battery to have a cam constantlly plugged in, and I wanted to have a source for my additional socket that DID go off with the ignition for that reason. But first I just left it plugged into my current socket for about 2 weeks overnight permanently as a test, and it didn't drain the battery at all, plus I quite like the idea of just recording 24/7 anyway now, so I just tapped into the same source as the current 12v sockets. No big deal :D.

You don't really need to wire it all the way behind the dash though, you can just have it behind the glove box and tap into the source near the fusebox. Or even just get some piggy-back fuses and plug straight into the fuse box there.


Hi, thanks for taking the time to respond. I have a ford 3 year warranty. Will I void it by adding a socket and running the cable? Never had a car with warranty, so don't know how it works.
I am certain that my sockets go off when you take out the key.



I took the lazy option and bought a GoPro Hero 2 camcorder and used the self adhesive mount to stick to the dash, it records for over 2 hours on a single charge which is enough for me and the footage is full HD.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FsQw0BCdFc

I did think about going for a similar option to you, but I don't think I would use it much as I would forget to charge etc.
Ideally, I would like something which I can just put on record at start of journey and leave running without worrying about batteries etc.
I had seen these:

ITRONICS ITB-70G Car Black Box Drive Recorder

and also came across the Road Hawk model:
http://www.roadhawk....ra/prod_18.html

They are not cheap, however after being involved in one of these suspect rear end shunt scams a few years ago, I would rather spend that money and drive with confidence.

Thanks for all of your advice :)


#7 GSM

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:03 PM

Hi, thanks for taking the time to respond. I have a ford 3 year warranty. Will I void it by adding a socket and running the cable? Never had a car with warranty, so don't know how it works.
I am certain that my sockets go off when you take out the key.




I did think about going for a similar option to you, but I don't think I would use it much as I would forget to charge etc.
Ideally, I would like something which I can just put on record at start of journey and leave running without worrying about batteries etc.
I had seen these:

ITRONICS ITB-70G Car Black Box Drive Recorder

and also came across the Road Hawk model:
http://www.roadhawk....ra/prod_18.html

They are not cheap, however after being involved in one of these suspect rear end shunt scams a few years ago, I would rather spend that money and drive with confidence.

Thanks for all of your advice :)


I honestly don't know if it would invalidate your warranty. But even if Ford themselves were to tell me that it wouldn't, I wouldn't trust that.

I recommend that you fit it, and any time you take it to a dealer for warranty work or services, you remove the dashcam from the screen and tuck the wiring away until you get it back.

If your 12v sockets go off with the ignition and you want to keep a camera rolling during the night then you'll need to tap into a 12v live source from something that DOESN'T go off with the ignition.

#8 talksy

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 03:05 PM

I honestly don't know if it would invalidate your warranty. But even if Ford themselves were to tell me that it wouldn't, I wouldn't trust that.

I recommend that you fit it, and any time you take it to a dealer for warranty work or services, you remove the dashcam from the screen and tuck the wiring away until you get it back.

If your 12v sockets go off with the ignition and you want to keep a camera rolling during the night then you'll need to tap into a 12v live source from something that DOESN'T go off with the ignition.


Hi there, thanks for your reply.
Ok, I think your suggestion sounds good, at least then I am playing it save with regards to the warranty. I could just imagine them finding something to allow them to wriggle out of covering me under warranty.
A dash cam I have found which is quite impressive is the:


Posted Image
BlackVue DR400G-HD.
It is not too expensive, and seems very discreet.
I am going to look into it and read the reviews a little more.

Another quick question, is there already power in the area above the rear view mirror? I seem to remember reading on here somewhere about ambient light power wires in that area? Or am I going mad?

Thanks again for your helpful post.

#9 GSM

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 04:25 PM

Hi there, thanks for your reply.
Ok, I think your suggestion sounds good, at least then I am playing it save with regards to the warranty. I could just imagine them finding something to allow them to wriggle out of covering me under warranty.
A dash cam I have found which is quite impressive is the:


Posted Image
BlackVue DR400G-HD.
It is not too expensive, and seems very discreet.
I am going to look into it and read the reviews a little more.

Another quick question, is there already power in the area above the rear view mirror? I seem to remember reading on here somewhere about ambient light power wires in that area? Or am I going mad?

Thanks again for your helpful post.


If you have ambient lighting installed, then the wires will be there yes. However, the ambient lighting goes on and off so they're not a good permanent live source to tap into.

#10 talksy

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 11:02 AM

If you have ambient lighting installed, then the wires will be there yes. However, the ambient lighting goes on and off so they're not a good permanent live source to tap into.


I don't think I do have it, if I didn't, is it easy to fit? - would the wires already be there? And yes good point, it doesn't always stay on, so no good tapping off of that for the camera.

#11 jeebowhite

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 01:16 PM

Ideally you need to wire in a specific line and use a fuse tap off another permenant feed (e.g. alarm) you could then wire into that.

For me, I just plug in a USB cable and that charges my phone as I drive, and the autobox does the rest. Granted I am running a 2mp camera, it might not be the clearest image for granular details, but it gives irrefutable images for an insurance company. Team that with reading the number plate allowed so my phone records the audio, I then get more than enough information to prove that I am not the eedgit.

The other benefit (and I suppose shot in the foot in some respects) is that my phone will record the GPS speed I am travelling at, so if some pratt pulls out on me at 40 while I am doing 70 on a motorway, I cant be accused of driving to close, again, it all gives relativity of speed and space to the video.

#12 talksy

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:33 PM

Just to let you know, I got my dash cam in and running very well. When I get some time I will upload some pictures.

#13 Paddy H

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 01:24 AM

Which one did you get talksy? Im currently looking at cams.

#14 .Ryan

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 05:08 AM

Me too, wanting something that is as covert as possible, maybe bullet cam style.

#15 talksy

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 08:13 AM

Which one did you get talksy? Im currently looking at cams.

Me too, wanting something that is as covert as possible, maybe bullet cam style.


Hi I'm on ipad and it won't copy nd paste at the mo but scroll up to post #8, blackvue dash cam. That's the one I went for.
Not that covert but works very well. I took the a pillar plastic cover off and ran the power wire up it. Unscrewed the glove box and ran the cable down at the moment it comes out in the foot well and I just plug it into the cigarette lighter. Its got all the things s road hawk has such as sound recording, GPS, GeForce sensor. Has 16gb memory. After I got it, I emailed road hawk and explained I had found a product much cheaper and would they be prepared to lower their price lol. They came back saying it was nothing like theirs and only had a years warranty where theirs had 2. Visually I think it looks much better than the road hawk. Software is good for it. The thing which I really liked is the parking mode. I have been very unlucky over the years with t0ssers hitting my car whilst it is parked (twice in a pub car park, once at work), so this feature really appealed to me. I noticed quit a few bad reviews for the device online, but they brought out a newer, updated one, the one I have, and I have experienced no problems at all with it. Hope that helps :) oh and I installed it mid September nd it had been in the car ever since and used on a daily basis on work days.

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