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View Full Version : Low-cost helmet speaker for Garmin GPS


EricJRW
04-29-2005, 11:09 PM
I came up with a low-cost (less than $6) solution to put Garmin audio into my helmet.

Parts:
1. 8-Ohm Mini Speaker (273-092) from Radio Shack $2.59
2. 1/8" (2.5mm) Mono Phone Plug (274-286) from Radio Shack $2.99
3. ~3' of wire
4. A bit of heat-shrink tubing to make things pretty
5. A plastic 35mm film canister, cut to hold the speaker
6. A couple dabs of glue from the hot glue gun to hold it together

The speaker is rated at 0.1 watts, whereas I was told that the speaker in the 12V adapter is 0.5 watts. On level 5/6 on my 2610 works for me with no problems. The wire I'm using is from an old set of headphones, and has a bit of resistance of its own so this probably helps.

The film canister was designed to protect the speaker's diaphragm. The speaker goes in diaphragm first. The back of the mini-speaker comes covered with a thin cloth-like material, so sound can still come out the back.

I'm very pleased with how well this works.

Eric

Pictures:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/100_0846.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/100_0847.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/100_0848.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/100_0849.jpg

URLs to larger pictures (in same order):
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/2d1860d8.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/6f71458c.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/ab89c69d.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v309/EricJRW/GPS/2e5a1714.jpg

Links to parts:
Speaker: http://www.radioshack.com/product.asp?catalog%5Fname=CTLG&product%5Fid=273-092
Phone Plug: http://www.radioshack.com/product.asp?catalog%5Fname=CTLG&product%5Fid=274-286

John Bennett
04-30-2005, 10:44 AM
Cool!

I'm currently working out how to install a cheap CB radio on my RT.

I REFUSE to pay +$100 for the motorcycle-specific speaker/mic headsets. They contain about $15 worth of parts and about $10 worth of labor. I'm designing my own.

I wish I could find an inexpensive source for heat-shrink tubing. The stuff they sell at Lowe's and Radio Shack is WAY over-priced. I really like heat-shrink tubing. It makes things look nice in addition to providing additional short protection.

Cool idea on the film canister.

chiko
04-30-2005, 12:10 PM
I tried something very similar but had to abandon.
The film cannisters I used are a wierd vinyl that doesnt take glue very well so it fell apart. Also I just couldnt get enough volume to overcome the ambient noise behind my screen.

BTW if you like the film cannister idea I was able to get a bag of them for free from Walgreens photo. They were just going to throw them away or maybe recycle. But I got half of a paper grocery bag. Lots of attempts to get it right.

EricJRW
05-04-2005, 10:48 AM
So far the hot glue gun glue seems to be working fine... It's not the prettiest job, but not that bad either. This was really a prototype build to see how things work. I suppose I could have drilled some holes in the bottom of the canister, as this would ensure the diaphram is moving freely and improve sound.

Never priced it, but I wonder if the HST would be priced better at Fry's?

Tx Rider
05-04-2005, 02:59 PM
Cool!

I'm currently working out how to install a cheap CB radio on my RT.

I REFUSE to pay +$100 for the motorcycle-specific speaker/mic headsets. They contain about $15 worth of parts and about $10 worth of labor. I'm designing my own.

I wish I could find an inexpensive source for heat-shrink tubing. The stuff they sell at Lowe's and Radio Shack is WAY over-priced. I really like heat-shrink tubing. It makes things look nice in addition to providing additional short protection.

Cool idea on the film canister.

I don't think the little assortment packs of heat shrink at radio shack are bad, the alternative is 50 or 100ft rolls of it in several sizes.

I've been using this silicon tape lately that beats the **** out of shrink wrap for most stuff, I LIKE this stuff. A roll is always on my bike. Everyone seems to be selling it these days, hardware stores, auto parts, radio shack... It really is good stuff.

For electronics Allied or other electronics distributors are probably cheaper and have anything you ever need for a projects, connectors, speakers, etc. Think industrial radio shack, with locations in major Texas cities.

http://www.alliedelec.com/

I used to use Electrotex as well, but they never made the web apparently.

The killer for two way radio is active noise cancellation to wipe the wind noise for your mic. I would even pay decent price but I have yet to gain confidence in any of the systems out there to cancel out wind noise on a naked bike. To me it's not going to be worth having without it. I'll be wiring it into a system into my molded earplug headset though.

Once I get that little sound cancelling number aced I'll be two way forever more. A CB radio is the best way to avoid tickets on a slab run, the trucks keep close tabs on every cop within miles as well as other uses. Switch to an FRS etc. and talk to the chatterboxers and others.

STCPO
05-04-2005, 03:11 PM
I'm currently working out how to install a cheap CB radio on my RT.



When you get this done, please share it with us. I've been looking at the same thing for the ST. I've thought about going with a Handheld, but if I can find it, something more integrated would be more suited to my wants.


Pete

EricJRW
05-04-2005, 04:13 PM
What is FRS?

STCPO
05-04-2005, 04:19 PM
What is FRS?

Family Radio Service. Basically big kids walkie talkies.

Everything you ever want to know about FRS is HERE (http://wireless.fcc.gov/services/personal/family/)

Pete

EricJRW
05-04-2005, 06:17 PM
OK, now I remember... Also features some privacy and suqalch control, right?

So bike to bike comms use FRS?

Interesting...