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making homemade controller. need help

Discussion in 'Western Plows Discussion' started by 00silverado, Nov 25, 2014.

  1. 00silverado

    00silverado Member
    Messages: 47

    So my hand held controller went out the other day I have one coming but won't be here in time. So I'm gonna make one out of some toggle switches to use for the snow tomorrow. Any one know anything about this
    . Looking for a wiring diagram
     
  2. micklock

    micklock Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    I made one for my snowdogg but never made one for a western, but it can't be that different.
     
  3. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    If it's a straight blade it's not to hard since there are only three valves but with just switches it will be terribly hard to operate. If you use switches with diodes you could use one switch for each function. But without diodes you will need to do one switch for each valve and then select the correct combination for each function.

    Go to the western website and download the mechanic's guide. Schematics are there.
     
  4. micklock

    micklock Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    I used two 3way spring loaded switches and a 2way switch. First 3way I turned sideways for left and right, second 3way is for up and down and the 2way switch is for float.
     
  5. 00silverado

    00silverado Member
    Messages: 47

    That's what I bought 2 3 way switches and 1 2 way for power. I don't need diode right ?
     
  6. micklock

    micklock Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    I didn't need one.
     
  7. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    If you don't understand why you need the diodes you are not going to be plowing any time soon.
    The thing is that left angle needs two valves to open at the same time and the motor needs to run for three of the four functions. Without at least one diode you will get crossover of functions. If you get two double pole, double throw switches with a neutral centre (spring loaded to go to center / off when you let go) then you would only need one diode.

    Connect the motor activator wire on one pole and the valves on the other pole. The one diode would be needed to prevent the S2 and S3 valved from coming on together when you switch to angle right. The lower and float function both use the S1 valve exclusively so it's just a matter of connecting two switches to the same output, one with spring return and one that stays on.

    I built a test stand for plows with simple switches just as you are describing and learned the hard way that you need that one diode and the double pole switches.

    Miclock.... I am interested to see your magical diode free schematic, care to post it?????
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
  8. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    I looked again at how this works, still stuck with 2 DPDT (up / down, left / right) switches, one SPST switch for float and one diode to keep S2 and S3 isolated. There are no magical solutions, electricity runs on laws and you can't just make it do what you want. You have to follow the rules.
     
  9. micklock

    micklock Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    snowdogg has three solenoids. one for right, one for up and one for down, the default (just motor) is left.
     
  10. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Western has three valves too, S1 is for down, S3 (and motor) to raise, angle right is S2 (and motor) and finally angle left uses both the S2 and S3 simultaneously (and the motor). Angle left is the problem because both valves open together. You need the diode to isolate S2 from S3.

    Snow dog is pretty basic from what you describe, in that case I see no need for diode but Western does.
     
  11. 00silverado

    00silverado Member
    Messages: 47

    Ok what one do I need the diode on. And which one should I get
     
  12. micklock

    micklock Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    If you can figure it out you will like the toggle switches better than the handheld buttons. Here's a pic of my custom mount.

    20070101000005(4).jpg
     
  13. 00silverado

    00silverado Member
    Messages: 47

    Nice I tried it and he's right the plow only goes left. Where do I find out what kind of diode I need
     
  14. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    You will need to go to a local electronics supply shop for these. They should be rated for about 20V, I know your vehicle is 12V but you need to exceed that or it will fail. The second thing is th amperage rating. I have never actually measured how much current these valve coils draw but I would suspect less than two amps. So ask for regular diodes, (not zener diodes) that are good for up to 20 volts and will control up to 2 amps.

    They will be about 3/16" in diameter, if they are just tiny little things they will burn up like a fuse. Car alternators have six diodes that are 20 V and good for 100 times more than needed. Problem is that they have only one wire, the other end is pressed into a metal common connection.

    And Micklock.... I still say it looks like a dog's breakfast. And the drill index..... couldn't you at least have found a piece of aluminum and drilled three 1/2" holes for the three switches? You should have been featured on Gyligen's Island.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
  15. 00silverado

    00silverado Member
    Messages: 47

    OK I'll go in morning
     
  16. xjoedirt55x

    xjoedirt55x Senior Member
    Messages: 104

    To each their own, but I don't know how you can like anything better than a handheld.
     
  17. 00silverado

    00silverado Member
    Messages: 47

    And just curious which wires would it go on
     
  18. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    i hate to ask the obvious - but why didn't you just buy a controller from a local dealer instead of ordering one off the internet? i'm all for saving a few bucks when i can, but when there is a snowstorm on the way, why mess around? now you need to spend more money building your own temporary controller, but more importantly, spend hours and hours researching how to do it, and then more time actually building it - and all for something that will be used just once? and will probably not work nearly as well as you'd like it to....

    i don't see you coming out ahead on this one... if i were in your shoes i'd go this morning to a dealer and buy a controller. if the one you ordered cannot be returned, then you now have a spare - which isn't a bad thing.
     
  19. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    What he said!!!! Building your controller is not simple. If your time is worth minimum wage then it's going to cost $200 for the combined time and parts.
    I love a challenge but it seems like a lot of effort for a temporary fix.
     
  20. TJS

    TJS PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,340

    You need diodes. I made a diagram for an insta act pump. It uses toggles. I have to find it. I never built it though.