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La Chuparosa

Electronic Cruise Control Installed on 1150RT!

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La Chuparosa

Well I completed my project this weekend.

 

Do you ride the venerable 1150RT? Would you like to have electronic cruise control like it’s younger…bigger brother…the 1200RT? Anything is possible. But like most things in life if it’s worth doing it “ain’t gonna be easy”. This farkle project is no exception to that rule. But boy oh boy is it ever worth it.

 

Recently I installed a universal electronic cruise control on my 2008 Kawasaki Concours14. The result of that project was absolutely “wunderbar”. It made long distant travel sooooo much more enjoyable. Now I could actually watch the road instead of being constantly concerned with my speed and dealing with “tax collectors” (read police).

 

In the wake of this success I decided to tackle same project on my 2004 R1150RT. The following is a summary of the installation process.

 

The cruise control is a Rostra universal electronic cruise control. I bought mine at www.Murphskits.com. Murph sells all sorts of gadgets and farkles for motorcycles. However the Rostra is an automotive cruise that many have adapted to motorcycles much like the vacuum based Audiovox CCS 100. However the Rostra is superior in my opinion because it is not subject to engine vacuum a weakness of the Audiovox IMO. The servo of the Rostra is totally electric.

http://www.murphskits.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=369

 

I will say at the outset installation of this system on the Concours14 is much more straight forward than the Beemer boxer. First is the throttle control. On the C14 accessing the throttle arm and attaching the Rostra cable is very much like a car and requires little modification. All throttle bodies are controlled by a common shaft/arm. That arm is readily accessible and easy to attach the rostra cable.

 

The RT throttle system with the bowden box (cable distribution box) requires serious surgery. If you are not comfortable with Dremel and performing such “surgery” then I wouldn’t advise doing this mod. However once you see how it’s done it’s really not a big deal.

 

Second is the speed sensor portion of the system. The Kawasaki has a VSS wire that is easily accessed and spliced into the Rostra harness. The Kaw’s output is a square wave (digital signal) which is directly compatible to the Rostra’s “brain”. The BMW has no VSS (vehicle speed sensor). It does have a wheel speed sensor for the ABS system. But I never could get the Rostra to sense it so I had to use a wheel speed signal generator that employs a coil and wheel mounted magnets.

 

With this system, due to the Bowden box design for the throttle cables I employed the use of a slack tube fabricated from 1” PVC. It is simply a container that isolates cable/chain slack from any potential snags.

 

There is some minor fabrication one must do to adapt the Rostra automotive cruise to your 1150RT. But once complete the reward is well worth the price of admission. I have less than $300 invested in the kit.

 

The first section of this document will deal with the mechanical aspect of the installation. The second section will deal with the electrical wiring.

 

 

MECHANICAL

 

 

The first hurdle to clear is mechanically installing the control module (black box) and cable. On most cars and many motorcycles one would simply attach the Rostra controller cable to the throttle arm. The throttle arm on an inline four like the Concours control ALL TBs (throttle bodies) simultaneously. However due to the fact the 1150RT is a boxer and has 2 TBs separated by the crankcase each TB is controlled independently by it’s own cable. These TB cables go into a cable distribution box (Bowden box) and are attached to a wheel. The twist grip cable is also attached to the same wheel. When you twist the grip it in turn rotates the wheel and actuates the TBs.

 

001.jpg

 

Pretty ingenious really but it makes the installation of a universal controller like the Rostra much more challenging.

 

The Bowden box is under the battery/ABS module tray. I removed the hoses and wiring for the right side of the tray to access the Bowden box. Depress the retainer clip underneath the bowden box to release then slide the box out to access it. You will need to unscrew both TB cables to get to it. I made a note of the cable position by counting threads so as not to get the carbs out of sync. When I re-installed the cables I returned the thread adjusters to the exact same position as noted.

 

Remove the cable wheel retainer clip and pull upward on the wheel to take it out of the bowden box. Remove all the cables from the wheel.

 

At this point I will tell you I recommend purchasing an additional Bowden box (cable distribution box) from BMW. I bought one before I started this project and studied it for a few days before I attempted this install. The box and wheel only cost $36 … cheap insurance.

 

Take the removed wheel and notice it has three (3) cable grooves. However it only utilizes 2 of them…the upper and lower. The middle groove makes an ideal place to attach the Rostra control cable. But a little surgery on the wheel must be done first.

 

Take a cutting wheel with your dremel or a dremel sanding disk…turn it on edge and complete the cable groove toward the aft portion of the wheel (away from the head of the twist grip cable). This will allow the cable to work freely in the bowden box like the other cables. With my modification I used a bicycle cable kit I bought at WalMart as the intermediate cable between the Bowden box and the “slack tube” which I’ll address later in this document.

 

002.jpg

 

Next drill a hole through the wheel adjacent to the hole of the twist throttle cable retainer. It must be large enough to allow the cable head to seat securely in the groove similar to the way the other cables are retained in the wheel.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

003.jpg

 

Notice the retainer hole for the additional cable goes through the twist grip cable groove into the middle groove. DO NOT drill through to the top (TB cable groove) cable groove. Drill slightly into the wall of the top cable groove…enough to countersink the head of the intermediate cable for retention.

 

When finished your wheel should look something like this:

 

004.jpg

 

You will likely have to alter the thickness of the intermediate cable head so the twist grip cable will have ample clearance to properly seat in it’s groove. When done properly the twist grip cable will actually act as a retainer for the head of the intermediate cable to keep it secured.

 

Next you’ll need to take a cable adjustment nut (like that found on a bicycle brake control) and install it into the Bowden box. The one I used was 8mm thread. I drill the appropriate hole and threaded it to accept the cable nut. Be careful to line the hole up with the position of the middle groove on the wheel since this IS the groove the intermediate cable will fit into. Then thread the cable head through the hole and screw the nut into the threaded hole. Don’t forget to reattach the twist grip and TB cables!

 

Now re-install the cable wheel onto the pivot shaft and snap the retainer ring back onto the shaft and your mod should look something like this:

 

 

005.jpg

 

The other end of the intermediate cable serves a “slack tube”. The the Rostra needs roughly 40 mm of slack to operate properly. When you twist the throttle open the Rostra cable must slide back and needs slack to accommodate this action. You don’t want slack in exposed cables under fairings because of danger of hanging on something over time. So I built a “slack tube” to contain the needed slack in the cable. I made it out of 1 inch PVC and cut a window in it. The window serves two purposes. One is to facilitate the installation of a ball chain (to facilitate the slackened cable) the other is to allow you to physically observe cable slack and tension later on in the install for trouble shooting purposes.

 

 

 

 

 

006.jpg

 

For the intermediate cable (left end of tube) a 3/16 x 1/8” pipe thread compression fitting worked perfect on the intermediate (bicycle cable). The Cable from the Rostra actuator used a ¼ x ¼ pipe thread compression fitting. The compression collar will secure the cable in the tube.

 

I mounted the Rostra module under the triple tree. It was one of the few places with ample room. You could mount it behind the pillion where the tools go but then what would you do with your tools? The space under the triple tree clamp is dead space that you might as well use for this.

 

007.jpg

 

I drilled a couple holes in the frame and bolted the Rostra bracket to the frame. When mounted in the center of the space it does not bump the front forks.

 

Next I installed the Control Pad to the left side handle bar. I simply removed one of the screws in the control enclosure and screwed the control pad base plate to it. The base plate costs a little extra from Murph…but it well worth it for the simple fact I didn’t have to “make my own”. I already had enough fabrication to do with this install. I don’t need any more!

 

008.jpg

 

One note: Before you install the control pad you should “waterproof it”. Remember this system is designed for a car…not a motorcycle. The control pad Murph sells is also. However many others have sealed this pad with success by simply prying the cover off and thoroughly sealing it with clear silicone RTV. Another thing you can do is employ a “rain condom”. Simply cut the finger out of a larger surgical glove and slip it over the switch at the first sign of rain. This has worked well for me. However you can also pry the cover off the switch and seal pad with clear silicone then close it back up. The fact that the control pad of this system isn’t water proof is one of the drawbacks of this system. But the alternative is from “Oz” and cost over $1000!

 

Finally I installed an auxiliary wheel speed sensor. Some people have told me you could employ the ABS wheel sensor…but I never could figure it out and was forced to employ an auxiliary wheel speed signal generator. There is one made specifically for the Rostra. It’s plug and play. The only place I could figure out to mount it was the front wheel. I fabricated a bracket out of aluminum plate and mounted this plate with the generator coil to the screw hole on the low left side of the left front fork receiver.

 

Then I placed nickel magnets into the heads of the torx screws that secure the right brake rotor to the front wheel. Using washers I shimmed the coil to within roughly 3mm of the magnets so they’d generate a signal as the wheel spins. Be sure the polarity of the magnets is all the same. It matters not if the north or south pole is facing the pickup coil as long as they are all oriented the same way.

 

 

 

 

ELECTRICAL WIRING

 

Oh Boy!!! Now the funs starts!

 

I hate electrical CRAP. Wiring looms all look alike to me…A RATS NEST! Tesla and AC/DC are rock bands…Ohm is a place I hang my hat.

 

Electrically speaking I AM A MORON. I freely admit it! I know just enough to be dangerous and yet somehow I wired this bitch and it worked. But not until hours….days…weeks of trial and error. Arrrrrgh!

 

In reality there are just a few circuits to deal with on this unit. However the Rostra comes with an install manual for your reference. You should refer to this manual frequently. Rostra also provides a tech support number. But they may frown upon adapting their unit to a motorcycle.

 

The wiring looms of the main module consists of these:

 

Orange – Enable/engage light

Light green – neutral safety or clutch switch

DK Blue – tach signal not used on the 1150 RT

DK Green – set/coast

Gray – VSS sensor (vehicle speed ) not used on the 1150 RT

Brown – ignition power

Yellow – resume/accel

Black – ground

Violet – negative side of brake switch

Red – positive (hot) side of brake

Light blue and black on separate plug _ aux wheel speed generator (you will use this for the coil/magnet assembly on the front wheel)

 

The control pad/switch consists of these wires:

 

Red, brown, DK green and Yellow. These wires plug directly into the corresponding colored wires on the main loom. In addition, depending on which switch you use, there is a gray and black wire on the control pad. Grey goes to V+12DC and black to ground. On this system all black wires go to ground. And ground is very important. If your ground is compromised or weak the Rostra WILL NOT ENGAGE. Make sure you have a clean ground with low resistance.

 

ORANGE enable light

 

I highly recommend the use of an engage light. It affords the operator the ability to troubleshoot this system. All this light does is let you know that the servo is engaged and tension is being applied to the control cable. This is very important when troubleshooting because it allows you to narrow down whether the problem is electrical or mechanical.

To wire this circuit you’ll need to mount a small 12v indicator light in the dash. I installed mine on the left side of the dash between the speedometer and the aux lamp switch. I used something like this:

 

 

009.gif

 

Wire one side of the light to the ORANGE rostra wire and the other side to 12v+ accessory (switched power).

 

LIGHT GREEN - NEUTRAL OR CLUTCH SAFETY

 

The neutral safety (or clutch) wire will disengage the Rostra if the clutch lever is pulled. This is the secondary safety release. The primary being the brake switch circuit. To wire this simply splice the light green wire into the ground side of the 1150RT clutch switch circuit. I found mine in the small black sheath from the clutch control on the left handlebar going down to the dash. I cut a small slit in the sheath, pulled the BLACK/GREEN wire and crimped a barrel splicer to the wire splicing the Rostra’s light green to the RT’s black green wire. I recommend inserting a crimp type plug (female/male) in this wire so it can be disconnected later. This will facilitate troubleshooting and diagnostics.

 

DARK GREEN – set/coast

 

The dark green of the Rostra should be soldered directly to the dark green on the control switch.

 

BROWN – ignition switched power 12v+

 

Self explanatory

 

YELLOW – resume/accel

 

Solder directly to YELLOW on the control switch loom

 

BLACK – ground

 

Make sure you have a good ground. This is kind of like trailer lights. You can have everything wired perfectly…but if your ground is compromised the lights will operate sporadically.

 

 

VIOLET – negative side of brake switch

RED – positive side of brake switch

 

Bear in mind this system was designed for a car. I am adapting it to a motorcycle. A car only has one brake control (pedal) and thus one switch. A bike as you know has two (pedal and right hand lever). We must set it up so that either control will trigger the Rostra to disengage. In order to do that we’ll employ the use of a five pin relay.

 

The Rostra MUST SENSE GROUND in order to ENGAGE. When it senses voltage it will disengage. The ground circuit for this leg must be a solid ground and needs to have less than 3 ohms of resistance in order for the Rostra to reliably engage. The instant the Rostra senses anything thing else it will disengage.

 

I installed a relay under the rear tail housing adjacent to the brake light assembly. I routed the VIOLET Rostra wire to the relay’s 30 pin. Then I wired the Yellow/Gray brake wire from the 1150RT to the relay’s 87 and 86 pin. Next I grounded both 87a and 85.

 

010.jpg

 

011.jpg

 

The RED wire from the Rostra merely needs 12v+. It doesn’t have to be from the hot side of the brake switch. So I wired it into a “switched” (accessory) 12v+ source.

 

Essentially what this does is it allows the Rostra to be triggered from either front brake lever or rear brake pedal because either will trigger the brake light. So anytime the brake light is activated the Rostra will disengage. In the “normal” position the relay allows the Rostra to sense only ground. But once the brake is applied 12v currrent switches the relay and the Rostra no longer senses ground causing the unit to disengage.

 

LIGHT BLUE AND BLACK – Optional signal generator

 

With the 1150RT there is no available VSS so I had to use an auxiliary wheel speed sensor. I purchased it from summitracing.com.

 

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/RPC-250-4165/

 

This hardware cost about $25. It installs on the front wheel and it is wired directly into the light blue/black wire on the Rostra loom. It’s a simple coil/magnet arrangement that sends a pulse everytime a magnet passes near the coil.

 

 

rpc-250-4165_w.jpg

 

I couldn’t figure out how to use the supplied magnets in conjunction with the RT’s wheel. I’ve seen how others have done this and I followed suite. I bought some ¼” nickel plated neo-dym round magnets and some 1/8” round magnets. I then glued the small magnets to the center of the larger nickel plated magnets with a drop of super-glue.

 

012.jpg

 

The smaller magnet will fit into the head of the Torx bolts that secure the front rotor to the wheel. This prevent the ¼’ plated magnet from flying off the wheel via centrifugal force. I’ve tested this up to speeds of 100 mph and they held fine.

 

I fabricated an aluminum bracket to bolt the coil to then bolt the coil/bracket to the available bolt hole on the lower left front side of the front fork like so.

 

013.jpg

 

This photo show the magnets already in place. The blue and whit wires from the wheel speed coil connect to the light blue / black wires on the Rostra unit. I put the wires in ½” shrink wrap for a sheathing to finish out the look and protect the wires.

.

014.jpg

 

The clearance between the magnet face and the coil face needs to be 3mm or less for the coil to generate a signal. Secondly….this is IMPORTANT! Make sure the same pole of the magnet face outward. It makes no difference if it is north or south but they must be same. One way to determine this is by stacking all the magnets. They will orient themselves accordingly. Then mark them on one side before gluing them together..

 

DIP SWITCH SETTINGS

 

I experimented with a variety of settings for this bike and the best I came up with was this.

 

All switches are "OFF" except 3, 4 and 11.

The Rostra seemed to control the best with these settings for me. Your mileage may vary. The dip settings are explained briefly in the manual.

 

DIAGNOSTICS

 

In order to put the system in diagnostic mode you must “unplug” the neutral safety or clutch safety wire. Then you turn the key to on and press resume/accel while hold the power on button. Next to the dip switches in the Rostra is a small LED. It will light up under a variety of conditions. Just read the troubleshooting guide in the Rostra manual and it will step you through it.

 

SUMMARY

 

It took me 4 days to install this. But then again I’m pretty inept mechanically and electrically. To be fair I had to spend a lot of time figuring it out, fabricating, and modifying to make it work. I’m guessing a more skilled individual could do it in half the time or less.

 

I’ve tested this system from 40 to 100 mph and it works well. I’ve also tested it on flat roads and very hilly terrain as well. So far I’m pleased.

 

Total cost for me was less than $300. But the convenience of riding with an electronic cruise control is priceless.

 

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jfremder

Great write up Cody. Thank you for taking the time. The mod to the Bowden Box and the slack tube solve the two problems I've had with attempting this. Kudos for those two creations!

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smiller

Dude! Awesome job! Great writeup too, better than many sets of professional instructions I've seen.

 

Just FWIW, the Audiovox CCS-100 would probably be a good candidate too, and only about $100. It does use a vacuum modulator instead of electrical but there's plenty of room to install the modulator in the tail section and the oilhead engine makes plenty of vacuum so operation is transparent. One advantage of the Audiovox unit is that it simply connects to the coil input for speed indication so no separate speed sensor interface is required.

 

With regard to waterproofness of the control head, the Rosta and Audiovox units appear to use exactly the same control unit. I've had mine installed for a while now and no problems with the controls so far. I did attempt to 'waterproof' the unit as you suggest and maybe that has helped, but sometimes I wonder if it also might hurt in that if it isn't completely waterproof then such an attempt can cause water/moisture to collect in the unit (instead of drain out), doing more harm than good. But again, so far so good with my installation. Plus with the Audiovox (and perhaps the same with the Rostra) you can create your own generic control unit if desired since the inputs are all programmable (i.e. you can program them to be NO or NC, momentary or continuous, etc.) Thus if you like you can build your own custom controls into your existing switchgear for a nice custom install. I was planning on doing this but just haven't gotten round to it... no real incentive there as long as the original control continues to work as well as it does.

 

Anyway, excellent work on the bowden box interface. I did my install on an early RT that used the single cable (no junction box) and as a result the throttle interface was very straightforward. But I knew there had to be a solution for the 1150 (and later 1100) bikes, great job and great post.

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tallman

Wow.

Another thing I won't be doing as it is beyond my capabilities.

(That and mine come w/CC).

Excellent write up and kudos for getting it to work properly.

:clap:

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La Chuparosa

Actually a member here posted photos of how he did same a few years ago. But he never completed it. And he never did a write up.

 

I improved on his mod to the cable wheel in the bowden box I think. And the more I think about it I believe I can even make my mod a little better. The problem I had with my mod was drilling a 1/4" hole in the side of the wheel to insert the bicycle cable head. But the hole was so big I fear it compromise the strength of the wheel slightly. Next time I would recommend using the smaller cable head and drilling a smallern (1/8"?) hole into the wheel leave more of the orignal wheel material intact retaining more material strength.

 

 

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La Chuparosa

Smiller - I believe the control pad/switch is not waterproof. I washed my Kawasaki with a low pressure garden hose. Afterward the cruise would not engage until I pulled it apart and dried it with compressed air. Then I did what you did...silicone sealant.

 

I dunno if ATV will actually seal it but I don't see how it can hurt. I've talked to a lot of guys that swear by it and say their switch has held up several years through severe rain.

 

Thanks

Edited by La Chuparosa

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smiller
Smiller - I believe the control pad/switch is not waterproof.

It definitely isn't. I was only suggesting that sometimes attempts to waterproof a switch can do more harm than good, in that it's sometimes better to just let water pass through than risk trapping it (note that is how most OEM motorcycle controls work.)

 

But I felt that the resistive (vs. dry contact) switches used in the control box wouldn't like getting wet so I sealed it. Time will tell but so far so good.

 

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twocyl

I'm curious about the accuracy of a cruise that works off rpm vs speed. The type that works off rpm has been used for (do it yourself) installations on autos for years and I have found them to not to hold the speed as closely as the speed driven type. Of course, a car with an automatic trans is a different animal than a bike with a gearbox. I'm thinking of adding cruise to my RT and am trying to make up my mind which way to go. I assume that the factory uses the speed signal on the bikes that they offer cruise on???

 

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smiller
I'm curious about the accuracy of a cruise that works off rpm vs speed.

That might be an issue with an automatic transmission but with a manual transmission speed and rpm are solidly linked and measuring one is virtually as good as another. The Audiovox unit (when detecting rpm) works just as well as any automotive cruise control I've had experience with.

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RBertalotto

GREAT POST!

 

I installed the vacuum unit on a number of motorcycles starting in 2003. I wrote a whole "How To" that I've sent out to over 1000 folks.

On some bikes it's a snap. BMWs, being BMW, it's a bit more difficult but your solutions are beautiful.

 

A couple points. Rostra make all the cruise controls for Audiovox. The vacuum units are not anywhere as smooth as the electronic unit. And most motorcycles with less than three cylinders lose vacuum on long uphill grades and the cruise will disengage or lose speed. No issues with the electronic version.

 

There are two versions of the controller you used. One has the "engage" led built in. Along with an "on" led. The version you are using doesn't have this feature. Both versions are available through Rostra or their distributors.

 

P1000076-vi.jpg

 

P1000079-vi.jpg

 

The front of the controller is mostly waterproof. The rear of the controller is where the water enters. Easily sealed with RTV. I've had a couple of units that were not sealed in the front, in terrible downpours with no issues, but a pressure washer might be a problem.

 

I have the whole "How To" on my web page for more info including wiring diagrams for relays for the clutch circuit and the brake circuit.

 

www.rvbprecision.com

 

Thanks!

 

 

Edited by RBertalotto

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La Chuparosa
I assume that the factory uses the speed signal on the bikes that they offer cruise on???

 

I assume the 1200RT has an OEM VSS like my Concours14. The wire I tapped into on my C14 was a square wave output and directly compatible with the "GREY" wire on the Rostra.

 

The 1150RT has no VSS. It employs a standard analog gear and cable to drive the speedometer. The ABS wheel sensor might be used. But I never could figure out how to get the Rostra to recognize it ...if at all. Someone else with a little more tech savy might be able to accomplish this. Besides I wasn't all hopped up on modfying the ABS wiring at all strictly from a safety standpoint.

 

Lastly regarding the ABS system on the 1150RT...

 

I talked to a BMW master mechanic about this signal generated. He said it was low current AC. It would pulse everytime a bar/space on the sensor ring passed the coil. I got to thinking there are 100 bar/spaces on that ring. The tire OD is like 27 inches. So every 27 inches you travel the system would pulse 100 times. Do the math (inches per mile) and you get a pulse rate in excess of 234,000 per mile! The Rostra will recognize pulse rates in a range from 2000 to 33,000 pulses per mile. So I fear the pulse rate of the RT’s ABS sensor is way out of range and might no work anyway.

Edited by La Chuparosa

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La Chuparosa
GREAT POST!

 

A couple points. Rostra make all the cruise controls for Audiovox. The vacuum units are not anywhere as smooth as the electronic unit. And most motorcycles with less than three cylinders lose vacuum on long uphill grades and the cruise will disengage or lose speed. No issues with the electronic version.

 

Agreed on both points. I've used the vaccum unit. Worked great in most instances. But on long uphill climbs it will simply disengage on smaller bikes with limited vaccum. And even a bike like the C14 it looses speed. One of the members at Concours.org (world renowned "tinkerer" Fred Harmon ;)) complains tht his C14 doesn't control well at high altitudes on long uphill grades. Makes sense really. He is changing his Audiovox CCS to a rostra from what I understand.

 

Finally, the Audiovox CCS 100 on a bike generally requires the use of a vacuum reservoir. This is yet another space consuming piece of hardware on a vehicle (namely a motorcycle) that already has limited space.

 

Having said all that I know a lot of people that use the CCS 100 and love ‘em.

 

Edited by La Chuparosa

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La Chuparosa

Quick update:

 

My solution for the wheel magnets MAY have the propensity to fail The "super gluing" of the small mags to the larger one could break. Super glue is brittle...strong but brittle.

 

A better solution is this... 1/8" diameter x 1/8" thick neodymium cylindr magnets.

 

http://www.kjmagnetics.com/proddetail.asp?prod=D22%2DN52

 

These will fit directly into the torx head bolts with no needed modifications.

Edited by La Chuparosa

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twocyl

If the abs sensor is like all the ones I have tested, it produces a curved ac signal. If the cruise controller is looking for a square digital signal, it isn't going to be very happy. I wonder if there is such a thing as a converter? Probably, but I'm not an electrical engineer.

 

 

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RBertalotto

La Chuparosa I sent you a PM............Thanks

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smiller
A couple points. Rostra make all the cruise controls for Audiovox. The vacuum units are not anywhere as smooth as the electronic unit. And most motorcycles with less than three cylinders lose vacuum on long uphill grades and the cruise will disengage or lose speed. No issues with the electronic version.

Well again, just for the sake of completeness I have to point out that the concerns you note simply do not exist with the Audiovox installation on my bike. The unit is very smooth in operation and lack of sufficient vacuum signal has never been an issue. Plus not having to mess with fabricating and installing speed senors, nor a clutch interface, and saving a few hundred dollars to boot sure makes it seem like a pretty reasonable choice to me. About the only real advantage I would see with the electronic unit would be the space savings, and that might indeed be important in some applications. But there's room for either option under the bodywork of an RT (I have the modulator and a vacuum tank installed in the rear section with some room to spare.)

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La Chuparosa
If the abs sensor is like all the ones I have tested, it produces a curved ac signal. If the cruise controller is looking for a square digital signal, it isn't going to be very happy. I wonder if there is such a thing as a converter? Probably, but I'm not an electrical engineer.

 

 

The rostra has a dip switch that allows it to read either square wave or sine wave (digital versus analog). I had it set to sine wave and used the optional generator input. Still rostra wouldn't see the "curved ac" as you call it or Sine wave. The problem is likely the fact that the pulse is simply TOO fast.

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La Chuparosa

Quick update:

 

It's been raining so much I've just recently gotten to thoroughly test this system. It works well. But after some tweeking it works better.

 

I've experimented a lot today with the dip switches and discovered setting the Sensitivity gain to "LOW" and the pulse rate of the speed sensor to 6000 per mile significantly improves the responsiveness of this Rostra's installation.

 

Now all switches are "OFF" except 1, 4 and 11 are set to "ON". With these settings the control seems to pickup as low as 30 mph and holds well up to 100 mph. It may hold speed beyond 100 but I have not tested it there yet. At 30 mph the control is very "jerky". But at 45 it is very smooth. I don;t see this as a problem since most will never use it at speeds below 40-45.

 

 

Edited by La Chuparosa

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La Chuparosa

Update 2:

 

I've put about 5000 miles on my RT with this Rostra cruise and no problems. Works perfectly and holds rock solid even in the Ozark Mountains it held very close...within (+-)2 mph.

 

Later this season I will be taking it to the Rocky Mountains. It should prove an interesting test.

 

I know one thing for sure...an electronic cruise makes long trips so much more enjoyable.

 

 

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RBertalotto
Plus not having to mess with fabricating and installing speed senors, nor a clutch interface,

 

Just so we all understand. The two units, vacuum and electronic, are wired in exactly the same way. If your bike has a "VSS" these is no need for magnets or other outboard speed control senders on either unit. And if you decide to use the clutch release idea, it is the same for both units....

 

 

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smiller
Plus not having to mess with fabricating and installing speed senors, nor a clutch interface,

Just so we all understand. The two units, vacuum and electronic, are wired in exactly the same way. If your bike has a "VSS" these is no need for magnets or other outboard speed control senders on either unit. And if you decide to use the clutch release idea, it is the same for both units....

Well in my quote above I am referring to the Audiovox CCS-100 unit, and it is not wired the same. The Audiovox unit does not require any VSS or speed sensor interface (it simply connects to the coil output since in a manual transmission vehicle engine rpm equates directly to speed) nor does it require any clutch interface (instead it immediately disables cruise control if it detects any uncommanded rise in rpm.) Because of these features it's a very easy install, electrically at least.

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La Chuparosa

I'm not sure how the Audiovox is wired. I don't think the Audiovox vacuum unit will utilize a VSS input. The Rostra will.

 

However I believe both units use the same "clutch" wire.

 

I'm sure the Audiovox is a fine unit. I just chose the Rostra because It doesn't require vacuum reservoir. And I understand from Fred Harmon it holds better than his Audiovox. Your mileage may vary and probably does. :grin:

Edited by La Chuparosa

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smiller
I don't think the Audiovox vacuum unit will utilize a VSS input. The Rostra will.

The Audiovox unit will utilize a VSS input if desired (required for vehicles with automatic transmissions), but there is no need for it with a motorcycle.

 

However I believe both units use the same "clutch" wire.

No, as described above the Audiovox unit does not require a clutch wire.

 

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RBertalotto
Well in my quote above I am referring to the Audiovox CCS-100 unit, and it is not wired the same

 

I've installed over a dozen of the CCS-100 and every single one of them was hooked into the VSS. I'm not saying you can't use some other trigger, but I always use the VSS.

 

No, as described above the Audiovox unit does not require a clutch wire.

 

In every installation I've performed, regardless of the type of motorcycle, if I didn't use the clutch interface wire to disable the cruise, the engine would rev to extreme RPMs before the CCS-100 or the Rostra would disengage. The clutch interface is immediate and certain.

 

The Audiovox unit is made by Rostra. A simple rebadge.....

 

 

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smiller
I've installed over a dozen of the CCS-100 and every single one of them was hooked into the VSS. I'm not saying you can't use some other trigger, but I always use the VSS.

The 1100 and 1150 don't have an accessible VSS, and besides the instructions say to simply connect to the coil. I'm not sure why you would do otherwise, but OK...

 

In every installation I've performed, regardless of the type of motorcycle, if I didn't use the clutch interface wire to disable the cruise, the engine would rev to extreme RPMs before the CCS-100 or the Rostra would disengage. The clutch interface is immediate and certain.

Dunno what to tell ya, come on over and I'll show you one that works properly. If I pull in the clutch the rpm blips up maybe a few hundred rpm and cruise disengages. As far as 'certain' is concerned, the function is fully electronic and requires no external switches or wiring... seems certain enough, maybe more so.

 

The Audiovox unit is made by Rostra. A simple rebadge.....

The Rostra unit cited in the OP is an electric unit and the Audiovox uses a vacuum servo, and the programming dip switches and circuit boards of both units are not even remotely identical so they obviously are not the same units.

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La Chuparosa

I don't think he said they were "identical". He just just stated a fact. Rostra makes the audiovox unit and rebadges it.

 

Yes the Rostra is electronic and the Audiovox is vacuum. And as such the Electronic version is far and away superior in my opinion. Your mileage may vary...and likely does. :wave:

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