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Stealth Smartphone mount

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  • Stealth Smartphone mount

    One of the things I miss when driving the TR6 is a convenient place to park my phone, particularly when I?m using the GPS. At the same time, I wanted something that could be reversed if I wanted the car to look ?period?. I decided to make use of the ideally located - but otherwise redundant - dashboard ashtray.
    To make a phone stand that would insert into the ashtray, I used some 5/16? steel bar (Lowes), and fashioned a ?bipod? that a friend of mine welded up (note to self: learn to weld). In the ashtray, I used some of those threaded brass tubes (which conveniently come with matching brass nuts), normally used to mount light fixtures, to build a couple of receptacles for the bipod. These are available at any Big Box. I drilled a couple of 7/16? holes through the floor of the ashtray, and inserted a couple of tubes, locking them in place with nuts top and bottom.


    To make asnug fit for the bipod legs, I lined the tubes with some thick duct tape. I tapered and rounded off the ends of the bipod legs so they would insert easily into the receptacles.
    I found one of these air vent-mounted magnetic phone mounts on Amazon for $7 (NFI in Amazon ? otherwise I?d be typing this from my Singer Porsche).

    This comes with a thin metal plate that I glued into my iphone case ? undetectable when installed. The prongs on the back of the magnet that engage the air vents are held in place with an M3 x .50 screw. I bought a longer screw at Lowes, drilled the bipod, and using the new screw and some epoxy, attached the magnet to the bipod. Before I did this, I tweaked the bipod in the bench vise so the phone would ultimately be tilted slightly upward and toward the driver. I had spaced the legs of the bipod wide, so introducing a bend in the horizontal portion pulled the legs in to match the receptacle spacing while angling the vertical section slightly toward the driver.

    When everything was adjusted, I masked off the rubberized front magnet and gave the bipod a couple of coats of satin black.
    The 7/16? holes in the ashtray are a little larger than the brass tubes, which gave me a little wiggle room when I was aligning the receptacles with the bipod legs. Once everything was aligned, I tightened the nuts, and poured ~20 ml 5 minute epoxy into the ashtray to lock everything in place.
    The bipod sits in the ashtray, and the phone simply sticks to the magnet. When I want a more original look, the bipod lifts out and the ashtray lid closes. I keep the bipod in the glove compartment. Installing it is literally, flip open the ashtray and slide the bipod into the receptacles ? 2 seconds.



    Reversing to an original look is equally easy. I have a couple of USB ports built into the dash support, so I keep a 18? USB cable in the glove box to charge the phone if necessary. The ashtray is still well capable of holding coins, which was all it was doing before I modded it. Total cost was ~$11, for the magnetic mount, the steel bar, and more 3M x .05 screws than I will ever need.
    Another note to self - clean the #$^*&*^$% dashboard!!! :angry:
    Dave C
    '72 Sapphire #CC82360UO
    Chapel Hill NC

  • #2
    Another note to self - clean the #$^*&*^$% dashboard!!! :angry:
    I was about to comment on that too !

    Nice work, I love it when people come up with neat little ideas like this

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    • #3
      Great idea! I would just stick mine on the center plinth but it tends to slide off.

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      • #4
        I too need to learn how to weld!!!!

        I've been noodling on how to secure iPhone. There are quite a few posts that involve drilling, etc. I went the lazy way...using magnets:
        1. stick big magnet on bottom of ashtray cover
        2. removed adhesive from bottom of phone mount, stuck on metal plate that came with mount and it sticks tightly to magnet.
        3. attach metal plate to back of iphone.
        4. pull phone and mount away from magents, close ashtray when done.

        I added a power source a while back that Keith(Brit in Alabama) posted about. I use those retractable cords.





        Bruce
        1974 base TR6 Emerald Green "Emmy"
        (with J-O/D added)

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        • #5
          Nice Spud!

          I kept mine simple. Since I have a 12v cig lighter in the ash tray and center console I had to do something different. I use the ash tray socket for a suction cup mount GPS so the phone goes down blow with cabling next to the seat into the console. It's attached with Velcro. I already have a patch on the back of the phone that sticks it to the dash of my DD so I found a place the put a hook patch below the gear shift. Sorry for the dark sideways pics taken with an iPad but you'll get the drift.




          72 Pimento w/overdrive

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          • #6
            Dave, you mentioned you have a couple of USP ports in dash support. Could you post a picture of that? I was thinking of putting a couple in the ash tray.

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            • #7
              Great idea! I would just stick mine on the center plinth but it tends to slide off.
              Darel --- To stop the slide-off, use a short piece (1.5 inches, or so) of Velcro on the plinth, sticky side down. Then press down the mating Velcro surface, sticky side up. The sticky side up will hold the back of the phone case and the phone can be removed when leaving the car. Did this a few years back. Same Velcro still in use. The down side ... In hot weather some of the sticky must be rubbed off the back of the phone when removing it. Otherwise the phone stays put.

              Dick

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              • #8
                Kind of the same thing I posted above if you can see it in the pictures with the Velcro. I have patches in all the cars to attach the phone where I can see it while driving (GPS) and in the DD it communicates through the Bluetooth system.
                72 Pimento w/overdrive

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                • #9
                  Pitman - sorry about the delay - I installed a twin USB outlet low on the passenger side of the dash support. Supplied by an unswitched line running through an in-line fuse (15 Amps, maybe?). I think I got the outlet through Amazon - required a ~1" diameter hole, IIRC.



                  Dave C
                  '72 Sapphire #CC82360UO
                  Chapel Hill NC

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I too have been looking for a way to mount a smart phone in the car. After seeing Alt TR6's set up I got on ebay and bought the mount and magnets for $15. works great. Thanks.
                    TRminator 1968 TR250
                    Frame off rotisserie restoration completed by myself and brother in 2014

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I too have been looking for a way to mount a smart phone in the car. After seeing Alt TR6's set up I got on ebay and bought the mount and magnets for $15. works great. Thanks.
                      Glad it worked out....and easy to reverse for when technology changes...........
                      Now I'm thinking of getting a TRF ashtray (on sale now for $8.47) and drilling a hole in bottom. Than I can route power cord to phone charger, so it's not left hanging in front of dash. When not in use it would hide easily in ashtray. Maybe do the same with cable to radio for Itunes/pandora/etc.
                      Bruce
                      1974 base TR6 Emerald Green "Emmy"
                      (with J-O/D added)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I got one of these from Amazon. 12v/USB ports You can take the ports out of the rectangular plate. I think they'll fit into the bottom of the ashtray. I figured I'd wait till I had the heater back in to make sure there was enough room above it.

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                        • #13
                          I too have been looking for a way to mount a smart phone in the car. After seeing Alt TR6's set up I got on ebay and bought the mount and magnets for $15. works great. Thanks.
                          Glad it worked out....and easy to reverse for when technology changes...........
                          Now I'm thinking of getting a TRF ashtray (on sale now for $8.47) and drilling a hole in bottom. Than I can route power cord to phone charger, so it's not left hanging in front of dash. When not in use it would hide easily in ashtray. Maybe do the same with cable to radio for Itunes/pandora/etc.
                          Bruce, and all --- One more idea of what can be done with our (mostly) defunct ashtrays. By reversing the 'tray, the power cord can be less conspicuous, if used in this manner.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            never a shortage of good ideas.................
                            Bruce
                            1974 base TR6 Emerald Green "Emmy"
                            (with J-O/D added)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              One more idea to share. I had tried a flex shaft phone mount on the windshield but had way to much bounce and placement wasn't all that good. This thread was a great starting point to use the ash tray for a mounting point.

                              I cut the clamp off of the flex arm which gave the the ball head and a short stub. Next I glued rare earth magnets to the bottom of the stub and underside of the ash tray for a stronger grip.

                              Thanks to everyone on this thread for getting me started!

















                              Paul / Bailey Island, ME
                              1975 / French Blue / CF36499U
                              Avis Studio

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                              Stealth Smartphone mount

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