On the surface, installing a 12 volt outlet is easy. find a spot, make a hole (make sure you can get to the back of the space where the hole is. Run some wires...and Voila! power for the asking. Yup, that would work for other folks. No problems. For me, as usual...nothing is easy. Odd, since I'm a pretty good person...my "karma" should be pretty good. Perhaps a previous life??? Naaaahhhh!
|Looking Into The Access Panel Opening|
So I removed the screws pulled off the rack and BEHOLD there was another reason for it being there. It covers the access to the shower plumbing! OK, I'll admit that it was a good idea to have access to this. I'm sure it will eventually leak and need fixing.
I knew I was essentially stuck with the magazine rack now. I could have just covered the hole with a piece of something, though it would never match and I really didn't want a mirror next to my head. Especially given that I would have to see myself early in the morning, waking up. NOT a good thing, trust me. Truth be told, I've been using the magazine rack as a spot to store my cell phone...tablet, etc. overnight. I figured it would be nice to be able to plug them in to charge as well. The nearest 12 Volt outlet was under the vanity sink on the facing. I was plugging in there, but the cord runs across the bathroom door. Not much fun for middle of the night bathroom visits!
|Vanity 12 Volt Socket|
I thought I was being smart and proactive!
The outer sleeve of the socket screws onto the inner sleeve and clamps down on the wood surrounding the hole. I screwed it down and realized the wood veneer used as the back of the magazine rack was far too thin to allow the socket to be tightened properly. I resorted to using a couple of large o-rings to bridge the gap. This works OK, for now, but I will likely cut a small block of wood and bore a whole for the inner socket at a later date. I can also screw this to the frame of the magazine rack so it will have more strength to resist plugging and unplugging chargers without cracking or breaking.
|Back Of The Magazine Rack|
Cutting the thin veneer paneling made a huge mess of wood chips and sawdust that, of course, was now all over the bed. Figures. At least it fit in properly now. Now to wire it all up and test.
I soldered them...did I mention I use heat shrink tubing.....no? Yes. I forgot to put that on the first wire and had to take the joint apart to slide it on, then re-solder. I have this 7 "P" rule. Proper, Prior, Planning, Prevents, Piss, Poor, Performance. I try to follow that, most of the time I am successful. The second wire joint worked out much easier. Make sure that the fuse to the existing wires will handle the additional load and the wires are sized to carry the load you will be drawing from the socket. Mine was OK.
|Badly Photographed Finished Product|
For an easy project, it wasn't so easy. Not because the steps are complicated, just that you never know what problems will come up and have to be solved to reach the finish line.
Now for a good night sleep. I'll have to watch my head, but at least I have power and an unobstructed path to the bathroom!
Be Seeing You...Down The Road,
Rich "The Wanderman"