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Jeep CJ7 Wiring Series- Mounting MASTERCELL

We’re progressing on wiring our 1979 Jeep CJ7 with our Infinitybox system.  We spent some time this weekend fabricating the mounts to hold the MASTERCELL.  In a previous update, we found the best location for the MASTERCELL.  We wanted it in a location that was close to our switches.  That makes the input wires short and easy to run.  We also wanted it located in a place that was easy to access for troubleshooting.  Locating the MASTERCELL behind the glovebox door was the ideal location.  You can catch that earlier video update at this link.  

Location of MASTERCELL behind dash of 1979 Jeep CJ7

Location of MASTERCELL behind dash of 1979 Jeep CJ7

The glovebox is small and generally useless in the Jeep.  It is also unsecure.  We’re going to be installing a locking center console for security later in the project.  When you take out the plastic glovebox, there is a good amount of space between the dash and the heater box.  That is a perfect location for the MASTERCELL.  We can simply open the glovebox door to access the MASTERCELL for troubleshooting and any updates that we’d want to make.

We bought a new dash panel from Quadratech.  They’ve been a great resource for a lot of the Jeep-related parts that we’ve needed over the project.  We have the dash on a bench in our lab and we’re going to do most of the wiring remotely.  Once the dash is done, we’ll drop that into the Jeep and make the connections to the POWERCELLs and other things with simple connectors.

Infinitybox MASTERCELL temporarily mounted behind dash in 1979 Jeep CJ7

Infinitybox MASTERCELL temporarily mounted behind dash in 1979 Jeep CJ7

We fabricated a few simple straps from 1/16″ low-carbon steel.  The two vertical straps bolt into the existing dash holes for the deleted glovebox.  The two horizontal straps are riveted to the vertical straps.  The MASTERCELL mounting plate will be riveted to these horizontal straps.

Mounting bracket to hold Infinitybox MASTERCELL behind dash in 1979 Jeep CJ7

Mounting bracket to hold Infinitybox MASTERCELL behind dash in 1979 Jeep CJ7

Mounting bracket to hold Infinitybox MASTERCELL behind dash in 1979 Jeep CJ7

Mounting bracket to hold Infinitybox MASTERCELL behind dash in 1979 Jeep CJ7

For now, we have the MASTERCELL mounting plate held to the horizontal straps with double-sided tape.  We’ll permanently mount these parts together after we paint the straps and double-check the clearances behind the dash.

The end product is clean, rock solid and will properly support the MASTERCELL under all driving conditions.  All of the dash and switch wiring will be clean and short.  The MASTERCELL will be accessible for anything that we need.  Keep checking back for updates.  In our next steps, we’re going to be wiring the rest of the things on the dash.  This includes the headlight switch wiring, the gauges and the wiring going to the steering column.

You can catch the entire Jeep wiring series by clicking this link.  

You can also contact our technical support team with any questions by clicking this link.  

 

Jeep CJ7 Wiring Series- MASTERCELL Location

Over the next few videos, we’re going to continue our theme on good planning.  Specifically, we’re going to talk about picking the best locations for the major components that come with your Infinitybox system.  We’re installing our 20-Circuit Kit with inLINK and inRESERVE in our 1979 CJ7.  To get the most out of our install, we want to pick the best locations for the MASTERCELL, the front & rear POWERCELLs, the MEGA fuse holder and the inRESERVE solenoid.  We’ve broken this up into 5 different videos, talking about what you need to consider for each part.  This video covers picking the best location for your MASTERCELL.

The Infinitybox MASTERCELL

The Infinitybox MASTERCELL

The MASTERCELL is the brain of your 20-Circuit Kit.  It connects to all of your switches.  These include your ignition switch, turn signal stalk, brake pedal switch, headlight switch, fuel pump & cooling fan trigger and any other accessory switches that you may have in your car or truck.  The MASTERCELL sends commands to the POWERCELLs when you turn a switch on or off.  You can learn more about the MASTERCELL and what it does by clicking this link.

There are two important things to consider when you’re picking the location for your MASTERCELL.  First, you want the MASTERCELL as close to your switches as possible.  This keeps the wiring short and makes it easy to install.  Second, you want to have easy access to the MASTERCELL for troubleshooting and diagnostics.  There are tons of diagnostic features built into the MASTERCELL.  You can learn about them at this link.  To access these features, you need to be able to get to the MASTERCELL, remove the protective cover, press the buttons and read the inSIGHT LCD screen.

In our 1979 Jeep CJ7, we’re going to mount the MASTERCELL in the glove compartment.  There is a convenient open pocket behind the door for the glove compartment.  This puts the MASTERCELL close to all of the switches on the dash.  That will make the dash wiring short and efficient.  With the door open, we can easily take off the MASTERCELL cover, press the buttons and read the inSIGHT screen.  When we close the door, the MASTERCELL disappears.

Picking the best location for your MASTERCELL will make your switch wiring simple and efficient.  It will also make troubleshooting and diagnostics easier if you need them.  Keep watching for more in our 1979 Jeep CJ7 Install Series.

Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel and click the bell icon so you get notified when we post new videos in the series.

Click on this link to get to the main page for the 1979 Jeep CJ7 wiring project.  You can find all of the videos on one place there.  

You can also click here to contact our technical support team with any questions about your car or truck wiring project.  

Infinitybox CAD Models

Our customers are a unique breed of builder and fabricator.  They wire their cars and trucks with our Infinitybox system for a lot of different reasons.  To start, our system lets them simplify their wiring.  More importantly, our customers want more than just a plain, basic electrical system.  They want the same electrical features in their project that they have in their new, daily driver.  Our Infinitybox system lets them do that.  Since our customers are tinkers, makers and builders, they are using the latest solid modeling technology to virtually mock up their cars and trucks to make the project go more smoothly.  We get a lot of requests for CAD models for our cells, so we’ve made them available to our customers.

The introduction of on-line CAD tools like Audodesk’s Fusion 360 gives anyone in their garage access to very powerful and intuitive solid modeling tools.  You can import the CAD models for the Infinitybox MASTERCELLPOWERCELL and inMOTION cells into your projects.  You can check fitment, verify wire routing and make sure that you can access the cells, all in the computer before you cut any metal.

We have the solid models for the MASTERCELL, POWERCELL and inMOTION cells available in STEP and IGES formats.  Click on this link to contact our technical support team and we will send you the models.

MASTERCELL Error Log

Our Infinitybox system is full of tools that help you wire your car or truck faster.  There are troubleshooting and diagnostic features built in that tell you simply what is going on in your car.  This link will take you to our Troubleshooting and Diagnostic manual.  This blog post covers the most sophisticated of the troubleshooting and diagnostic tools in the Infinitybox 20-Circuit Kit.  The MASTERCELL is always watching the critical parameters for the POWERCELLs and inMOTION cells that are attached on the Infinitybox CAN network.  The MASTERCELL Error Log holds any records of problems with these critical parameters and lets you easily access them for advanced troubleshooting.  This may sound really complicated for a wiring system used in hot-rods and resto-mods, but this powerful tool lets our technicians help you when things aren’t working correctly.

Each of the cells in the Infinitybox system monitors their own health.  Every second, they tell the MASTERCELL how they are doing and report if they’re having any problems.  If there are problems, they are kept in the MASTERCELL Error Log.  You can easily access the MASTERCELL Error Log by simply pressing the “HOME” and “SCROLL DOWN” buttons under the inSIGHT screen on the MASTERCELL.  You press these two buttons at the same time, hold them down for one second then release them at the same time.  After you do this, the MASTERCELL will display any errors that it recorded on the inSIGHT screen.  The MASTERCELL can hold 8 errors in memory and displays them in order.  This video will show you all of the details about the MASTERCELL Error Log.

There are three key values that are important to the Infinitybox system.

The first is battery voltage.   The system needs a minimum voltage to operate safely.  This is set at 7 volts.  There is also a safe maximum operating voltage.  That is 20 volts.  If your MASTERCELL or POWERCELLs measure their input voltages outside of this acceptable range, they will record it in the error log.

The second critical parameter is temperature.  Each Infinitybox cell has a temperature sensor built onto its printed circuit board.  If the temperature of that board exceeds a safety limit, the cells report it to the MASTERCELL and it is stored in the error log.

The last critical value is for the POWERCELL.  It is what we call the Charge Pump Voltage.  Every POWERCELL board has a part of its circuit called a Charge Pump.  It does what the name implies.  It pumps up charge to safely turn on and turn off the MOSFETs that control the POWERCELL outputs.  If the charge pump voltage falls below a set level, the POWERCELL sends a message to the MASTERCELL and this is recorded in the error log.

As we mentioned earlier, the MASTERCELL Error Log is an advanced diagnostic and troubleshooting feature built into the Infinitybox system.  It is rare that errors occur.  You are probably never going to need this feature.  It will help our team get your system going if you do have problems with the Infinitybox system in your hot rod, street rod, kit car, resto-mod, race car or Pro-Touring build.

Click on this link to get in touch with our team if you have additional questions.

MASTERCELL Input Troubleshooting and Diagnostics

Our Infinitybox system has powerful diagnostic and troubleshooting features built into it.  The MASTERCELL in your 20-Circuit Kit includes our inSIGHT LCD Screen.  This screen is your window into the Infinitybox system and it gives you access to the MASTERCELL Input Troubleshooting and Diagnostics.  By pressing a few buttons on the MASTERCELL, you can put it into its Messaging Mode.  This blog post and the attached video will show you how the Messaging Mode can help you wire your car faster and identify problems easily.

All of your switches connect to the MASTERCELL.  These include your ignition and starter switches, your turn signal switches, your brake pedal switch, the switches for your lighting, your fuel pump and cooling fan triggers and any other switches that you have for your accessories.  The MASTERCELL continuously watches the state of your switches.  If it sees one of these inputs turn on or off, it sends commands to the POWERCELLs or inMOTION cells in your system and commands them to turn an output on or off.

The MASTERCELL can be put into its Messaging Mode.  This mode opens up the MASTERCELL Input Troubleshooting and Diagnostics feature in your Infinitybox 20-Circuit Kit.  To put the MASTERCELL into Messaging Mode, you simply press and hold the “SCROLL UP” and “SELECT” buttons under the clear cover.  These are the two buttons on the right, under the inSIGHT LCD screen.  Press these buttons together, hold them for one second then let them go.  You will get a message on the screen that says “inSIGHT WILL DISPLAY ALL INPUT CHANGES FROM ANY SOURCE”.  You will also note that the back light of the inSIGHT LCD will turn on and stay on.

When you turn any MASTERCELL on or off, the inSIGHT screen will confirm that.  It will tell you which input the MASTERCELL say turn on or off.  It will also tell you which cell it is supposed to be controlling and which output.

The following video goes through this in detail.  You can see which buttons to press to put the MASTERCELL into Messaging Mode.  You will also see what the messages on the MASTERCELL screen look like when you turn inputs on and off.  Check out the video here.

Messaging Mode is a very powerful tool.  You can use it as you go through the process of wiring your car or truck with our Infinitybox system.  You can wire each switch, step by step, then use Messaging Mode to confirm that you have the correct input wired to the switch by following the details of your Configuration Sheet.  You can also use this to confirm that you switch is working correctly and that you have good grounds for each of your switches.

If you have problems on the road, you can easily put the MASTERCELL into its Messaging Mode and check for any issues with your switches or the wiring from the MASTERCELL.  No tools are needed.

If you have any additional questions about the MASTERCELL Input Troubleshooting and Diagnostics features of the Infinitybox system, click here to contact our team.

MASTERCELL Polling Video

We pack a ton of powerful diagnostic tools into our Infinitybox 20-Circuit Kit.  With no tools, you can use the inSIGHT screen on the MASTERCELL to learn about everything that is going on in your car’s electrical system.  There is no other wiring harness on the market that can get you that power.

We just published another video going through the specifics of the built-in troubleshooting and diagnostic tools in your Infinitybox system.  This new video covers Polling the system from the MASTERCELL.  When the MASTERCELL power up, it takes an inventory of all of the cells on the CAN network.  This includes your POWERCELLs, inMOTION Cells, inVIRONMENT cells and inTOUCH NET.  From the MASTERCELL screen, you can easily check to make sure that all of the cells are properly communicating on the CAN network.

You can also dig deeper into each cell by polling it from the MASTERCELL screen.  By polling the POWERCELLs, you can get a measurement of the battery voltage measured locally at the POWERCELL.  You can also get a reading of the temperature of the POWERCELL.  You also get a measurement of the Charge Pump voltage on the POWERCELL.  This is a safety system that we monitor to make sure that the POWERCELL is operating correctly.  Lastly, you can get a picture of which outputs are on and off on the POWERCELL.

If you poll the MASTERCELL, you can get a real-time status of all of the switches that are connected.  This is really helpful for troubleshooting and checking your switches as you wire them to the Infinitybox system.

You can watch the new video that goes through polling the system from the MASTERCELL in detail.

You can download our full Diagnostic and Troubleshooting Guide for the 20-Circuit Kit by clicking this link.

You can click on this link if you have any additional technical questions about wiring your car or truck with our Infinitybox system.  

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air- Great 8 Winner

Our Infinitybox team is thrilled to be a part of Bob Matranga’s 1955 Chevy Bel Air.  This car was awarded as one of the Great 8 winners for the 2020 Ridler Award at the Detroit Autorama.  The car is appropriately named Brute Force.

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

Bob and his team built a stunning 1955 Chevy Bel Air.  You could spend hours looking at all of the details in this car.  From the engine, to the chassis, to the one-off lights, to the leather treatment to the emblems, this is an impressive car.

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

You can see an interview with Bob going through the details of the car here.  Thanks to EClassic Autos for the video content.

1955 Chevy Bel Air: Great 8 Winner at 2020 Detroit Autorama from eclassicautos on Vimeo.

Bob’s team started with our Infinitybox 20-Circuit Kit to wire the car.  From there, they added inMOTION to control their power locks and power windows.  They added inLINK for remote control from a key fob.  inRESERVE for active battery management.  inTOUCH NET so they can control the car from a tablet or smart phone.  And inVIRONMENT so they can control their Vintage Air Gen-IV from their touch screen.  They have the cells strategically located in the car to optimize the wiring harness and get them the most features.

We had a chance to talk to Chris Brown of Brown Auto Design at the Autorama.  Chris is the mastermind behind the design of this car.  He mentioned to us that he had very limited room to run wires in the car.  Using the Infinitybox system made wiring the car much easier for him and his team.

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

We are very proud to be a part of this project.  Congratulations to Bob and the entire team at Matranga Hot Rods for making it to the Great 8.

Click on this link to contact our team to learn more about wiring your car with our Infinitybox system.

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

1955 Chevy Bel Air wired with the Infinitybox System

Infinitybox Cell Outline Drawings

This blog post has the outline drawings for our Infinitybox MASTERCELL, POWERCELL and inMOTION Cell.  You can use these drawings to plan the layout of these cells in your car or truck project.  All of the dimensions on these drawings are in inches.

The basic footprint for the MASTERCELL, POWERCELL and inMOTION cell is exactly the same.  The mounting tabs for all three cells are identical.  The holes in the mounting tabs are designed for a 1/4″ X 5/8″ shoulder bolt.

Outline dimensions for the Infinitybox MASTERCELL

Outline dimensions for the Infinitybox MASTERCELL

Outline dimensions for the Infinitybox POWERCELL

Outline dimensions for the Infinitybox POWERCELL

Outline dimensions for the Infinitybox inMOTION Cell

Outline dimensions for the Infinitybox inMOTION Cell

 

You can download PDF versions of these drawings at these links.

MASTERCELL

POWERCELL

inMOTION Cell

Click on this link to contact our technical support team if you have any additional questions about our Infinitybox system.

MASTERCELL

The MASTERCELL is the brain of our Infinitybox system.  It is the core of our universal 20-Circuit Kit.  It connects to all of the switches in your car and decides what should be turning on and off in your electrical system.  The MASTERCELL connects to the POWERCELLs, inMOTION cells and other Infinitybox accessories through our CAN network and sends commands to control everything in your car.

The Infinitybox MASTERCELL

The Infinitybox MASTERCELL

All of your switches wire to the MASTERCELL.  Examples include you headlight switch, ignition switch, brake pedal switch and turn signal stalk.  You can even connect the MASTERCELL inputs to your ECU directly to take signals to control your cooling fans and fuel pump.  The MASTERCELL inputs work by being grounded to turn the input on.  There is no power at the switch.  Instead of having to bring power to the switch, you simply connect the MASTERCELL input to one terminal of the switch and you ground the other side of the switch.  When the switch is turned on, the MASTERCELL input gets connected to ground.  The MASTERCELL sees this ground signal and sends the commands to turn things on and off on the POWERCELLs.  Check out this blog post for a more detailed description of how the MASTERCELL inputs work.

The MASTERCELL also has the capability to include our optional inLINK radio.  This accessory gets you remote control of your Infinitybox system through a key fob.  You can control your lights, pop your trunk and access our power security and immobilizer features by pushing a button.  The receiver for the inLINK radio gets installed inside the MASTERCELL so there is no separate box that you need to install, wire or conceal.  This link will take you to more details on inLINK.

The MASTERCELL also has our inSIGHT display installed in it.  This LCD screen is your window to the Infinitybox system.  It lets you see what the system is doing and it lets you easily troubleshoot problems if you have them.  This link will take you to our diagnostics and troubleshooting guide to learn more about what you can do with the MASTERCELL inSIGHT screen.

This video will walk you through the details of the MASTERCELL.

You can watch our entire video series on YouTube.  Be sure to subscribe to our channel to see new videos as they post.

We have the solid model for the MASTERCELL available to our customers to help with their planning and mocking up process.

Click on this link to contact our team with questions about buying our Infinitybox system to wire your street-rod, hot-rod, resto-mod, race car, kit car or Pro-Touring build.

 

Wiring Switches in Parallel

Our Infinitybox system is the most powerful and flexible wiring harness available in the market. Our MASTERCELL inputs are flexible and adaptable for practically any application. A customer just asked this question and we thought that it was a great way to show off the flexibility of the MASTERCELL inputs. The customer is wiring the power window switches in his car. He wanted to know if there was a way to wire a parallel switch that would control all 4 windows at the same time. The answer is “yes” and this blog post will show you how to do it.

Our MASTERCELL inputs work by getting connected to ground. This link will take you to an older blog post that goes through the details of how the inputs work and how to connect a switch to them. Since the inputs work by a ground trigger, this gives you a lot of flexibility with your switches.

This picture shows you how to wire in a parallel switch to control multiple inputs simultaneously.

Picture of a wiring diagram showing how to wire two Infinitybox MASTERCELL inputs in parallel

Picture of a wiring diagram showing how to wire two Infinitybox MASTERCELL inputs in parallel

In this example, we’re showing two switches that control the driver’s and passenger’s windows. For the sake of clarity, we’re only showing the front windows and we’re only showing the down action. These switches are labeled Driver Down and Passenger Down in the wiring diagram. You are going to follow the wire colors from your configuration sheet to wire the switches and the power wires that go to the window regulator motors.

To wire in the parallel “master” switch, you are going to connect the MASTERCELL inputs for the Driver’s and Passenger’s switch together and bring them to the parallel switch. The important thing here is that you need to put a diode on each of the wires from the Driver’s and Passenger’s switch. These diodes are electrical check valves. They only let current flow in one direction. They block the flow of current in the other direction. Without these diodes, both the MASTERCELL inputs would be connected together at the parallel switch. They would both turn on with either switch. The diodes electrically isolate the two MASTERCELL inputs so they are operate independently from the individual switches but work together from the parallel switch.

You can source these diodes anywhere. We recommend a 1N4001 diode. These can be purchased easily from Amazon or other on-line retailers. The orientation of the diodes critical. This will not work correctly if they are installed backwards. Note the orientation of the diode symbol in the wiring diagram above. The line on the diode symbol corresponds to the silver line on the case of the diode. Look at the picture below.

Example of a simple diode

Example of a simple diode

We only show the down action for the power windows in this diagram. We also only show 2 window switches. You can join all 4 inputs together through diodes if you want to control your front and rear windows from a single parallel switch. You can also repeat this for the up action of your power windows.

This same approach can be used for other switches like your lighting. We posted a wiring diagram a while ago showing you how to wire your head lights and parking lights from a single switch using a similar arrangement. You can view that blog post by clicking this link.

Click on this link to download a PDF version of this wiring diagram.

Click on this link to contact our technical support team with any additional questions about wiring your car or truck with our Infinitybox system.