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Boxer Fuse Block Upgrade

Discussion in 'Boxers/TR/M' started by samsaprunoff, Feb 24, 2007.

  1. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Edmonton, AB Canada
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    Sam Saprunoff
    Good day Guido,

    Indeed I fully understand the efforts that one spends on one's hobbies :) As I mentioned, I can fully appreciate your efforts in your fuse boards and all the time and attention to soldering all of these components. I say this, as I, too, spend a ridiculous amount of time assembling some of my designs. On my side I am usually working on the opposite side of the sizes you do and use very small parts. A lot of the parts I use are about 1.5mm x 0.7mm in size (0.060" x 0.030"), but I am sometimes forced to use even smaller parts (1mm x 0.5mm or even 0.5mm x .25mm). For my prototypes I usually hand assemble the first few boards for testing and evaluation. Afterwards I setup automation assembly equipment to make more, as to hand assemble 300, 400, or more parts on the PCBs is very time consuming (several hours per board)... whereas, automated assembly takes only minutes. As a consequence I always design with scalability in mind... just in case :) . Attached is a picture of one of my recent designs that is all hand assembled (both top and bottom side assembly). Some components have multiple connections (some have "legs" and others are bonded to the part package... called QFN) and these have a separation distance of 0.65mm (0.025") to the smallest of 0.5mm (.020"). Soldering these takes patience, a steady hand, and a very specialized soldering iron and tip. Even so, soldering bridges can result... and they can be somewhat difficult to remove. Although I wear glasses I find that I have to remove them and use no magnification when I am soldering these parts.

    As for one's age... I fully understand, as I am a bit younger than you and I also wonder how long I can keep going :).

    Anyway, keep up the great work and clearly by your results you are obviously enjoying it!

    Cheers,

    Sam

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  3. tf308

    tf308 Formula 3
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    Dec 14, 2003
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    Tim
    Sam...I’m in for my 308qv


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  4. DonB

    DonB Formula Junior
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    Nov 11, 2003
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    Don Bartz
    OMG..just thought of this. GO TO CHINA! Have them do them for $1 each then sell them for $450...oh wait, doesn't Ferrari do this already? :)
     
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  5. DonB

    DonB Formula Junior
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    Don Bartz
    Sam..

    Do you still offer the fuse blocks for the BBi? I've got a friend who just purchased a BBi and will need to replace his blocks.

    Thanks,

    DonB
     
  6. buzzm2005

    buzzm2005 Formula 3

    Aug 23, 2005
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    Buzz
    Where did all the fuseblock interest go? These cars and their electrics aren’t getting any younger.
     
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  8. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Sam Saprunoff
    Good day Don,

    My apologies for missing your post. Sadly, no, I do not have any blocks available and I am unsure when I will be making more. I wish the process was easier and faster, but there is a lot making the blocks and so in order to offer them at a reasonable price I need to make a number of them. Adding to this Covid restrictions , base component availability, and even transport logistics are all over the map which adds to the manufacturing efforts.

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
  9. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Sam Saprunoff
    Good day Buzz,

    Who knows? What I can say is that I was burned by a number of f-chat members that committed to buying blocks and then ghosted me when I asked for payment and shipping details. In the end it took me about 3 years to sell off all the blocks I made for people who then disappeared. This was a lesson on my side, as I tend to be old school in how I conduct myself and so I go by a person's word. Obviously not everyone follows this method of business or conduct. What is also a sore spot is that I made these blocks as a service to the community and so I made little to no profit on these... yet another lesson. With that said I have since done a couple of limited production runs on my blocks when I had some spare time and so I do remake them from time to time, but without any formal schedule. Given everything that is currently going on with Covid issues and my work schedule it is highly unlikely that I will make any blocks for this season.

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
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  10. theunissenguido

    theunissenguido Formula 3
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    Jan 21, 2004
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    Guido
    Hi, Sam,...dont give up ! Even if you can help a few owners, they will express gratitude for it. I'm still making fuseboards when owners are asking for it. Luckely there is some competition, so I dont have to deal with all the cars with problems...:D
     
  11. buzzm2005

    buzzm2005 Formula 3

    Aug 23, 2005
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    Buzz
    Oh! I had no idea. I am sorry to hear this. Likely my bad for not actually following along with what was going on.
    I'd like to say I had a "similar" story with replacement windshield tire pressure stickers (remember those?) but in no way were the capital costs the same. More just disappointment with the community.
    Be well.
     
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  13. DonB

    DonB Formula Junior
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    OK Sam

    I understand all you've said...the harsh realities of a niche market!
     
  14. Supernaut

    Supernaut Rookie

    Dec 3, 2019
    34
    Annapolis MD
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    John Panek
    Good day Sam!

    I appreciate what you did for everyone regarding these problematic fuseboxes. It's actually inspiring to me as a budding entrepreneur. The thread up until this point has been such a saga these last 13 pages, including an interesting and useful tangent into the Dinoplex ignition. As a systems engineer I love this wonderful complex puzzle solving story, including the human element you just mentioned with frustration. I suppose people have more or less integrity depending on the situation.

    You were very kind with a useful comment on my first thread as an owner, regarding an old warranty card that was advertised here on Fchat years ago. I'll have a closer look at my BBi fuseboxes and suspect I'll be wanting a set if you do another run.
     
  15. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Sam Saprunoff
    Good day Guido,

    Thank you for your post and encouragement! I have not really given up, but rather more pensive with regards to these type of projects. I still make the blocks from time to time in small production runs... and I have even made a few sets for those that were in desperate need. These days the big issue is spare time, as it really seems that there are not as many hours in a day, as there used to be. I guess I am simply getting older :)

    Thanks again for your post and comments!

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
  16. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Sam Saprunoff

    Good day Buzz,

    It is all fine and as they say it is what it is and I thank you for your support and comments! As I said, the issue was and is on me with regards to my perspective on things. The big positive is that the ones that did respond and followed through demonstrated that there are still people that are fantastic and share similar attitude and beliefs. As they say, birds of a feather... As I mentioned to Guido, I still make my blocks from time to time when I am able and so I do try and assist others when I can. Interestingly, when I respond to some about not having blocks I can tell pretty quick the character of the person.

    Anyway, all is good and I appreciate your comments!

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
  17. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Sam Saprunoff
    Good day Don,

    Indeed, small and bespoke products can be a challenge to produce even at the best of times. As I said, Covid has added another level of issues. With that said things are on the uptick and so the real challenge on my side is finding and locating suitable base block material. The original block material is no longer made and so I have to spend some time finding replacements and if I can buy any in reasonable quantities and sizes. The original material only came in large sheets and were pretty heavy and so truck transport was the only option and was somewhat costly. With that said it is highly unlikely I will be able to make any blocks for this season. If this should change I will certainly let you know.

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
  18. samsaprunoff

    samsaprunoff F1 Rookie
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    Jun 8, 2004
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    Sam Saprunoff
    Good day Supernaut,

    Thank you for your kind words and I am always willing to help if I can.

    For your BBi, ensure you remove and inspect your blocks and if anything simply reflow solder around the rivets holding the fuse clips to the connectors. Also, lightly sand the fuse clip surfaces and fuses to remove any oxidation that may be present. The oxidation adds resistance which reduces the voltage to the load, but also increases localized heat. Lightly "pinching" the clips so that there is a great force squeezing the fuses will help too. Why you are there... and if you have access to an ammeter check the various circuit loads to see if any of them are drawing more than they should. On average the circuit load should not have an average current draw more than about 75% of the rated fuse size. Although the fuse rating may imply that this value should be the max load current, the reality is that if you draw this much current or slightly less the fuse will expire over time... a few hours perhaps.

    Lastly, some of the loads are fan motors, etc and these loads can increase over time do to age. Worn and/or oxidized brushes, oxidized motor commutator contacts, dry or aged grease surround the motor shaft/bearings, etc all contribute to motor "drag" which increases its current draw. So, even if things are working, they may be drawing more current than when they were new and this will contribute to issues. Consequently, I would recommend that these items be refreshed, cleaned, etc.

    Anyway, I will certainly let you know when I have blocks available.

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
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  19. Supernaut

    Supernaut Rookie

    Dec 3, 2019
    34
    Annapolis MD
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    John Panek
    Right on the money! I do similar maintenance with various electrical connectors around the house (light bulb sockets, receptacles, etc) and what you say makes perfect sense. You really had me at gold plating your fuse blocks, I was thinking around page 3 when I was reading this thread "I wonder if gold plating would help..."

    Do we think a light touch of dielectric grease to prevent oxidation would make sense as well or unnecessary? (on the OEM fuse clips and/or spade connectors, not your gold plated ones)
     
  20. DonB

    DonB Formula Junior
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    Nov 11, 2003
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    Florida
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    Don Bartz
    FWIW

    I replaced my factory fuse blocks on my BBi with the Birdman's Buss fuse blocks and they work really well. I was just looking for something a little more 'sanitary".
     

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