From: <>
To: <>
Subject: [DML] Digest Number 1097
Date: Sunday, June 30, 2002 7:30 PM

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There are 7 messages in this issue.

Topics in this digest:

1. Digital Dash
From: "Matthew P. Olans" <>

2. Door Lock Module
From: "checksix3" <>

3. Lock Module (was common electrical leak)
From: "daveswingle2" <>

4. Re: Re: Where is the common electrical leak?
From: "Walter Coe" <>

5. Re: doorplay .. How do we take the door apart?
From: "adam_one_million" <>

6. ADMIN NOTE: MSN/Hotmail Users
From: "daveswingle2" <>

7. Lock module
From: "checksix3" <>

Message: 1
Date: Sat, 29 Jun 2002 21:14:44 -0700
From: "Matthew P. Olans" <>
Subject: Digital Dash

Hi folks,
        I've been toying around with digital pics of my digital dash but my
cheap fixed lens Kodak can't seem to give a clear picture.  A few folks
around AZ have nicer cameras and we are going to try to get some good night
time pics to post.  I will throw one or two up in the files section of the
yahoogroups home page for people to see.  They will probably be up before
this post clears....:)
        So far I have about 4,000 miles on my digital dash and it has
performed flawlessly!  The fuel gauge is dead on, too.  That was the only
concern I had going into this adventure.  There are four settings on the
brain for the dash for different empty/full ohm readings and we picked the
closest one to the original sender and it seems to have worked out nicely.
        I talked with Curtis about his gauges too.  His are much more
colorful and flashy.  They suit his car well....:)  When I explained the
workings of the Dakota setup with everything running off one brain and
centralized wire terminals he flipped out.  Apparantly he went the tough
route with seperate brains and wiring for each gauge and it wasn't easy at
all.  I, for one, loved Curtis' setup, as I love mine, but where I am
competent enough to install and remove mine, I'd have had little chance with
individual gauges, although I am getting better each week....:)
     It certainly is not for everyone, but if you think it might be for you
I would enjoy talking with you about it.  Dakota has done 2 of these dashes
to date.  One-offs after these original two are still considered "custom" by
their standards which is over $900 with the correct senders.  They promise
me that if we pool our orders at one time they can offer it as a kit in the
$500-$600 range, and then add it to their list of kits for others instead of
getting the one-off price.

Drop me a line if I have piqued your interest.

VIN #16816
VIN #10365


Message: 2
Date: Sun, 30 Jun 2002 04:14:59 -0000
From: "checksix3" <>
Subject: Door Lock Module

The stock lock module can be made very reliable with a few simple 
mods, all of which Martin has mentioned. The switches and linkages in 
the doors must also be adjusted properly if you want total confidence 
in the system. (Btw, Martin is right about the wiring, the red wire 
only powers the solenoids and not the module.)

If you're still concerned about burned out solenoids, here is a 
simple and effective fix that I implemented when I rewound my 
solenoids and modified the module: Change the CB to a manual 
resettable one of a much lower rating.

The solenoids pull 10 amps per coil (either locking or unlocking)
for a total of 20 amps. This happens for less than 1 second during 
operation. Since the solenoids are intermitant duty, they will fry 
in a certain time. (say 30 seconds for the sake of this explaination.)

Use a thermal CB of 5 to 7 amps. (I like the Potter & Brumfield
W58 series or the Texas Instrument "klixon" series, both readily 
available.) Since these are thermal CBs, the specs are something
like: "trip at 150% in 30 minutes or trip at 400% in 15 seconds." 
(examples only, you get the idea.)

We can use this hysteresis to our advantage by using a much lower 
rated 5 or 7 amp CB to replace the stock breaker. You will be able to 
cycle the locks normally without nusiance tripping. If you continue 
to repeatable cycle the locks in a short time period (why would you 
do this?), the CB will trip after 10 cyles or so and must be manually 
reset. If your solenoids remain energized due to a fult in the lock 
module, this CB will take them off line in 15 seconds or so. (You can 
still open the car with the key or the handle if this happens.)

 In testing, my 5 amp P & B CB tolerates appox 10 rapid cycles before 
heating to the point of tripping, yet I have never had a single trip 
during "normal" lock/unlock operations. The CB rating can be played 
with as long as you don't exceed the time for solenoid burn up. I 
used 30 seconds for this, which I think is generous. (I would not go 
above a 10 amp CB.) Since bimetallic thermal CBs are pretty much 
immune to transients, thats not an issue here.

This way you will never burn up your solenoids or drain your battery  
if the module fails, which it should never do if you accomplish the 
other simple mods Martin mentioned.

Lockzilla? Its OK, but why do many assume what you can do yourself is 
inferior? This ain't rocket science folks. But its your choice and 
your money, I don't care either way. 


Message: 3
Date: Sun, 30 Jun 2002 04:28:48 -0000
From: "daveswingle2" <>
Subject: Lock Module (was common electrical leak)

NOTE - reference to parts INSIDE the lock module. 

A failure mode (not sure how common) of the lock module (in addition 
to the relays welding themselves together and burning up the 
solenoids) are the 1000uF electrolytic capacitors inside the module. 
If either of these fail short the locks actually still work pretty 
well, but the steady-state current draw of the module goes up enough 
to draw the battery down in a day or so, but NOT enough to blow any 

Disconnecting the large red wire won't help, you would have to unplug 
the multi-conductor plug to avoid this issue. 

Dave Swingle.

--- In dmcnews_at_dml_y..., Martin Gutkowski <webmaster_at_dml_d...> wrote:
> Hi Walt
> Lets do some quick maths here:
> My battery is 58Ah (OEM batt) - that means it will flatten in 58 
hours at 1A or in 1 hour
> at 58A.  11.7mA is 0.0117A
> 58 divided by 0.0117 equals 4957 hours
> which is 206 days
> I would call this a reasonable time for a battery to discharge "on 
its own" wouldn't you?
> IMO the emergency unlock is of limited use anyway.
> Martin
> #1458
> Walter Coe wrote:

> > > I have found that both my original door lock module and Randy's
> > > module draws the same 11.7 mA when sitting idle.
> > > The Lockzilla module sitting idle draws 11.1 mA.
> > > The Lockzilla module with the optional keyless remote entry 
draws 22.3 mA.


Message: 4
Date: Sun, 30 Jun 2002 02:28:08 -0400
From: "Walter Coe" <>
Subject: Re: Re: Where is the common electrical leak?

*****  Moderator's Note  *****
You're in luck...  the bit bucket is full for this week....

Mike G   Moderator of the week


> I would call this a reasonable time for a battery to discharge "on its
own" wouldn't you?

Uh, no.  :-)

If for example, your battery would discharge on it's own in 206 days and
also you have an OEM door lock module that will also discharge the battery
in the same amount of time, then both happening together will discharge the
battery in 103 days.  That is a 50% reduction in the battery's capacity.
You could just as well then have bought a cheaper 29Ah battery.  Then
without the drain of the door lock module you would be just as well off only
with more money in your pocket to call a tow truck.

Ah, I love it when I'm right.  And I'm out of beer, too.  Okay, I think we
are well past the 2 cent mark and going up over a nickel now.  I feel the
moderator reaching for the "delete" button.  No, now he is fidgeting
wondering where else this stupid post might go... no!  Not the bit bucket
under the table...ack~



Message: 5
Date: Sun, 30 Jun 2002 15:45:13 -0000
From: "adam_one_million" <>
Subject: Re: doorplay .. How do we take the door apart?

So how do I get the door apart to adjust the window/lock, etc? My 
door seems to have some sort of adhesive strip all the way around 
between the inner interior part and the outer metal part.. is this 
normal? Are the clips made of plastic or are they screws?


--- In dmcnews_at_dml_y..., Soma576_at_dml_a... wrote:
> In a message dated 6/29/02 9:48:13 AM Central Daylight Time, 
> acprice1_at_dml_h... writes:
> > Should I tell the garage what they did and make them pay for it? 
> > want to keep good relations with them since they are the only 
> > around me that is familiar with the car.. and they did do a great 
> > alignment on it. I was thinking of doing it myself, since i want 
> > learn about the car, and fix my door handle problem at the same 
> > 
> > All advice is appreciated!
> > 
> > Adam Price
> Adam,
> if they pay for it, who would you really trust to fix it correctly?
> unless you are really darn sure they are the ones who messed it up 
(the doors 
> can fall off of their tracks if you have the window down when you 
shut the 
> door really hard!), i would take this opportunity to spend an 
afternoon and 
> learn how to fix your windows!!!  is anything actually broken, or 
is it just 
> off of the track?  if it's off the track, that's cake once you get 
the door 
> apart.
> just my opinion!
> Andy
> Soma576_at_dml_a...
> 1982 DeLorean DMC-12 VIN#11596
> Fargo, ND 58102
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Message: 6
Date: Sun, 30 Jun 2002 15:59:37 -0000
From: "daveswingle2" <>
Subject: ADMIN NOTE: MSN/Hotmail Users

There seems to be a problem with right now - they are 
reject email for a lot of people and causing them to go on 
the "bounce" list. If this happens to you just write to the 
moderator and ask to be reset. 



Message: 7
Date: Sun, 30 Jun 2002 16:41:29 -0000
From: "checksix3" <>
Subject: Lock module

>>A failure mode (not sure how common) of the lock module (in 
addition to the relays welding themselves together and burning up the 
solenoids)are the 1000uF electrolytic capacitors inside the module. 
If either of these fail short the locks actually still work pretty 
well, but the steady-state current draw of the module goes up enough 
to draw the battery down in a day or so, but NOT enough to blow any 

Right you are Dave. The caps should be replaced as part of the 
upgrade, as electrolytics are prone to failure with age and heat due 
to their construction technique. Btw, if they truely short they will 
blow something (either themselves or something else), the problem you 
describe is probally leakage. As for blowing fuses, that feed doesn't 
even seem to be on one, at least from my initial inspection.

>>Disconnecting the large red wire won't help, you would have to 
unplug the multi-conductor plug to avoid this issue.<<

Right again, although DMC Joe can be excused for believing otherwise 
because the schematic shows what he stated. (Btw, even the Zilla 
schematic is rife with errors.) The print shows the violet wire 
(brown on the car side of the connector) feeding from the load side 
of the solenoid breaker. This is incorrect, at least on my car.  

From where it gets its feed is unknown to me at this time (its not on 
*any* of the fuses in my car) but you can bet any direct short in the 
module will quickly fry it or the wiring. This should be addressed as 
it could be a fire hazard and is another example of just how poorly 
the car is wired.

Another advantage of using a lower rated CB to feed the lock 
solenoids is that the violet (brown) wire can be fed from this 
breaker also. This would provide overcurrent protection for the 
module and wiring where none seems to exists now. Another advantage
is that installing a pullable CB like the P & B series W31 toggle or 
W23 pull type (instead of the W58 I mentioned) one can easily switch 
off all the power to the locking system for storage. If not this, the 
violet wire feeding the module needs to be put on a small fuse 

There are many things that need to be done to the car's electrical 
system (things that go beyond the well known fixes) to make it less 
of a toaster in the making. For example, adding a fusable link as 
close to the main source as possible was one of the first things
I did.


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