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Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Mon Sep 05, 2011 8:05 am
by aqn
U023 wrote:I upgraded my honker today with the FIAMM horns. I mounted them away from the radiator to minimize impact to the cooling capacity. [...]
I used some stock L shaped aluminum mounted with self tapping screws to the aluminum impact absorber in the bumper.
It looks to me that the aluminum bracket is grounded. Is that correct?

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:20 pm
by U023
It looks to me that the aluminum bracket is grounded. Is that correct?

The brackets are not separately grounded. The aluminum impact absorber they are mounted to appears to provide sufficient ground.

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Mon Sep 05, 2011 3:02 pm
by aqn
U023 wrote:
It looks to me that the aluminum bracket is grounded. Is that correct?

The brackets are not separately grounded. The aluminum impact absorber they are mounted to appears to provide sufficient ground.
Thanks. That's what I meant: "aluminum impact absorber" not "aluminum bracket"!

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:40 am
by kraff55
Thanks so much, OrientExpress, for posting the DIY step-by-step.
As I have wheel ramps, I opted to access from underneath.
Very easy and straightforward.
Best $16.00 I ever spent!

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2011 5:30 am
by geolizleaf
Honked the wimpy horn the other day. wow, it sucked.. Thanks to this thread, put the Wulu 320T horns in from underneath.. Pretty easy painless mod. Thanks to all that have contributed especially OrientExpress!

Now the horn has authority...

Unlike others have said, I think the lock beep actually comes from the new horns too. certainly the alarm horn comes from them.

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2011 9:39 am
by TomT
No, the alarm horn and meep come from a separate sounder on the passenger side of the car.

geolizleaf wrote:Unlike others have said, I think the lock beep actually comes from the new horns too. certainly the alarm horn comes from them.

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2011 2:49 pm
by jbrawn
aqn wrote:I recorded the stock horn and the Fiamm El Grande with my Android phone. (Shoulda used my camcorder.)

Here are the two sound samples as viewed in AVS Audio Editor:
Image
I don't quite understand the dB scale on the right, why it's in negative numbers, but regardless, the difference is about 3 dB, which means the Fiamms sounds about twice as loud as the stock horn.

Hi Folks,
I'm new to this board, and I've only got 12 days of experience with my Leaf; but I do know a lot about audio.

Virtually every consumer recording device (phones, camcorders, MP3 recorders, etc.) have some type of Automatic Gain Control (usually called "AGC" or "Limiter") which attempts to record any sound at the highest level it can manage without distortion. When you record two different horns with the same device and look at them in a waveform tool, you still have no idea what their relative volume is unless you are able to turn off all of the various AGC-like circuits and software all along the signal path.

If you don't own pro quality recording or video equipment, then the cheapest way I know to get accurate relative sound pressure level measurements is with a hand held meter like this one: http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2103667 which is $50 at Radio Shack.

Image

Perhaps the cheapest way to measure the comparison between horns is to put your favorite song on your MP3 player with your favorite ear buds in place and the volume set to a repeatable level, and slowly walk toward the car from a distance while some one else is honking the car's horn. Stop when you can clearly hear the horn above your music and measure your distance from the car. If you aren't considerably farther from the car with one horn compared to another, then they aren't very different in terms of loudness. This may not measure true differences in Sound Pressure Level (dB SPL), but it should give some indication of dB GIA (Getting an Idiot's Attention).

Taking all of that into consideration, the most important measurement of a car horn's loudness is probably just this: Does it sound louder to you?

Best Regards,

John.

Oh, the negative dB numbers on the screen are a measurement compared to "full scale" which is the highest waveform peak that can be defined by that particular bit depth. In other words, if the peak of a wave form reads -3 dB, then that peak is 3 dB lower than the maximum possible peak for that file type. Just to confuse things, peaks are measured with an amplitude form of dB, similar to dBV and this is different from power ratios like dB SPL or dBA. An increase of 10 dB SPL represents 10x as much power, 3.16x as much amplitude (e.g.: voltage on a speaker wire or height on a wave form display), and is perceived by most people as twice as loud.

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 12:35 pm
by gatico
Thanks so much! I was honking the horn and trying to find out where it is. I was afraid the horn would be some kind of "integrated sound module." Glad it's simple!

What happens when you hit the lock button on the remote trying to find the car in the parking lot? Does the new horn honk loud enough to locate the vehicle? I was thinking that there might be a problem where the power to the horn is not supplied for an adequate time to "rev up" the bigger horn. If that happens, might have to add some circuitry to impose a few hundred ms "minimum honk time."

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 1:54 pm
by Leafboy
gatico wrote:Thanks so much! I was honking the horn and trying to find out where it is. I was afraid the horn would be some kind of "integrated sound module." Glad it's simple!

What happens when you hit the lock button on the remote trying to find the car in the parking lot? Does the new horn honk loud enough to locate the vehicle? I was thinking that there might be a problem where the power to the horn is not supplied for an adequate time to "rev up" the bigger horn. If that happens, might have to add some circuitry to impose a few hundred ms "minimum honk time."

The horn is not a problem. The horn is a direct connection to B+ via a relay. But, the sounder for the lock/unlock is a different source.

Re: DIY Horn Upgrade Mod - Updated

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 2:01 pm
by TRONZ
OK, we need a poll on this or something. So far plug-and-play choices are:

2 Piece 12 Volt Electric Horn Set (110db) - $12.99
http://www.harborfreight.com/2-piece-12 ... 99911.html

FIAMM 74100 El Grande - Twin Horns (???db) - $16.65
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000DL ... PDKIKX0DER

Wolo Model 320-2T Maxi Sound Universal Red Low and High Tone Replacement Horns (???db) - $21.32
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00029 ... PDKIKX0DER

PIAA 85112 115db 500HZ + 600HZ Sports Horn (115db) - $45.35
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00079 ... PDKIKX0DER

HELLA 003399803 Supertone 12V High Tone/Low Tone Twin Horn Kit (118db) - $54.40
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0030Y ... PDKIKX0DER

Stebel Nautilus Compact Motorcycle Air Horn (139db) - $54.99
http://www.amazon.com/Stebel-Nautilus-C ... B000NPRTII
+ Optional wire harness
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0028Z ... Y7V3KR59AD


I ordered them by price. It would seem people are going for the FIAMM. Torn between FIAMM and PIAA.... Screw it. Going with FIAMM!