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Old 08-20-2022, 03:21 PM #1
NautyBruiser19 NautyBruiser19 is offline
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Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)

I made a custom flip-up license plate to hide my portable solar panel hook-up, as I wasn't satisfied with other locations I had seen with other builds. I just installed a C4 Lowpro bumper which eliminated my setup, so I figured I would make a post about it before putting it up for sale and to give people an alternate location for an outlet. I now have an outlet installed near the d-ring bracket of the C4(I'll include a picture). It's not cheap or easy to make, and a caveat is I am a machinist and have access to many different tools, but it is feasible for anyone mechanically skilled. Most items are sourced from McMaster.


The system utilizes:
- The stock license plate mount and fasteners(requires drilling 1-1/8" hole through mount and bumper)
- 3/16" thick HDPE mounting plate the same shape as the license plate to maintain near-flush mounting with the outlet mounting plate
- A 304SS self-closing hinge inverted to make it self-opening with drilled and countersunk holes for flush-mount
- One hole panel outlet mounting plate from Powerwerx Link
- Dual Anderson Powerpole receptacle with weather cover Link
- Adhesive lined heat shrinkable breakout boot
- Stainless self-tapping flat head screws
- Black powder coated stainless steel license plate blank to stiffen the assembly
- Black silicone license plate cover with drain holes

The license plate assembly is fastened to the hinge with stainless flat head screws and black oxide stainless nylock nuts with black covers for aesthetics. The other side of the hinge is attached to the HDPE plate and bumper mount with stainless, flat head, self-tapping screws going through the original license plate mounting holes in the bumper mount. An additional two of the same fasteners are installed near the bottom of the bumper mount for strength. To fasten the license plate assembly to the mount when the hinge is closed, two thumb screws with stainless threads and black plastic knobs are installed in the bottom two license plate bolt holes with a retaining washer, and are screwed into the HDPE plate with brass thread inserts. I have 10AWG wires coming out of a heat shrink boot on the back to weather protect everything. There is also marine grade, plastic safe sealant in the dowel hole that retains the APP connectors inside the housing.

You can install pretty much any kind of low profile outlet with this method, but I chose to use an APP due to its versatility with 12V systems. It's completely weather sealed this way, and I ran it for over a year with no issues. The wires come right out above the aluminum crash bar, and if I were to make this again, I would move the outlet up 1/4-1/2" for a little extra clearance. The wires run along the power steering line and up to my Redarc BCDC charger mounting next to the battery(with an inline metri-pack 280 fuse holder mounted to radiator support).

Here are some pictures (more pictures in reply to this thread):

1) Side view
2) Front view
3) Hinged open
4) Weather cap open to APP
5) Side view with cover open
6) Breakout about crash bar
7) Wires zip tied to power steering line
8) BCDC charger in front of headlight next to battery
Attached Images
Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate1-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate2-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate3-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate4-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate5-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate6-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate7-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate8-jpg 
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Old 08-20-2022, 03:27 PM #2
NautyBruiser19 NautyBruiser19 is offline
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Pictures continued:

1) HDPE plate
2) License plate blank with hinge attached(silicone cover removed)
3) Back of bumper mount with outlet breakout
4) Front of bumper mount with outlet
5) New breakout and harness on my C4 Lowpro
6) Using the panel in Death Valley
7) Using the panel in 118 degrees camping on White Rim in Canyonlands

Like I said, I'll be putting this set-up for sale in the classifieds. If there's any questions ask away!
Attached Images
Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate9-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate10-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate11-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate12-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-plate13-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-solarpanel-jpg  Check Out My Hidden 12V Exterior Outlet (Solar Panel, Battery Tender, 12V)-solarpanel2-jpg 
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Old 08-20-2022, 04:13 PM #3
1jzgte 1jzgte is offline
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1jzgte is just really nice 1jzgte is just really nice 1jzgte is just really nice 1jzgte is just really nice
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1jzgte is just really nice 1jzgte is just really nice 1jzgte is just really nice 1jzgte is just really nice
if you ask me this should qualify for PHEV federal tax credit!
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Old 08-21-2022, 09:36 AM #4
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Very nice indeed !
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Old 08-21-2022, 02:16 PM #5
achtung6 achtung6 is offline
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So clean and well done. Kudos to you.
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Old 08-22-2022, 11:14 PM #6
NautyBruiser19 NautyBruiser19 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1jzgte View Post
if you ask me this should qualify for PHEV federal tax credit!
Ha! More like fine the hell out of me for making electricity without being connected to the grid.
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Old 08-22-2022, 11:15 PM #7
NautyBruiser19 NautyBruiser19 is offline
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Thanks guys @2000se and @achtung6 !
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Old 08-23-2022, 05:42 PM #8
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Now thats awesome!
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Old 08-23-2022, 05:45 PM #9
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Nicely done.
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