Ever since the truck was conceived, I had wanted to install a backup camera video system in order to see clearly, behind the truck when backing up or changing lanes. To this end, Gnet of Canada helped out by sending out a basic flush mount backup camera. However, without a controller or video monitor, the camera was useless. Then came the great folks over at Safety Vision. I explained what I was looking for and they were greatly helpful. To be honest, I was just expecting a video monitor, but I received was a complete backup camera system. The kit included the surface mount backup camera with night vision and a microphone. It also included the controller which can accept inputs from up to three backup cameras. And it included about fifty feet of cable to make the run from the controller to the backup camera.
Installation was actually very, very easy. In my case, I wanted the monitor mounted from the headliner rather than on the dash. So I removed the double stick tape from the base of the backup camera monitor. Then I removed the metal trim along the windshield which secures the headliner. Because of the shape of the base of the backup camera monitor, I was able to slip it between the trim and the headliner and insert the center screw through the base and instantly had the pedestal in place. Next I drilled two small holes through the headliner and into the inner metal panel that serves as a drip rail for the cab mounted marker lights. Using a couple of black trim screws, the base was fully secured. The backup camera monitor then slipped over the compression nut of the base and was quickly in place. The next step was to route the cable from the backup camera monitor, down to the location where the controller would be mounted. In this case, it was inside the Havis Shields Consolidator Console. After removing the trim from the passenger side along the windshield post, I connected the cable to the backup camera monitor's output and ran it over and down so it exited underneath the dash. From here, I routed the backup camera monitor cable under the carpet, along the transmission hump, to the center console.
The next step was to install the backup camera system controller. It is a small box about the size of a tape cassette case. I decided to mount it to the inside of the front panel of the center console. After removing the front panel, I drilled the four holes and used four rivets to secure the controller to the panel. The controller has a three wire input and for Project Respodner, this was very simple. Red wire was connected to the battery source with a 5amp fuse. The black wire was grounded and the green wire, normally connected to the backup circuit of the vehicle, was connected to the ignition circuit so that the backup camera system will be on whenever the truck is running.
Now it was time to run the cable from the controller to the backup camera. Since there were already a few openings through the firewall near the steering column, I decided to use one of these rather than drill another hole. I started by snaking the cable up from underneath the truck, to the firewall access point. Inside the cab, I pulled back the carpeting and ran the cable along the transmission hump to the center console and connected the cable to the backup camera controller. The next step was to fish the other end of the cable along the frame to the rear of the truck. Because the cable was so long, once I had the end at the rear of the truck, I just pulled all of the excess cable through and then began securing the backup camera cable to the existing cabling with cable ties. Now the last step was to actually install the backup camera.
Figuring out where to install the camera was somewhat difficult. I had two real options. One was to install the camera on the end of the service body and the other was to mount it from the skid unit inside the bed of the truck. The first option would have worked but the perspective from the camera would be too far from the center to be very effective. The second option was what I chose and I fabricated a small bracket from 10ga steel that I then painted and bolted to the hose fairlead on the hose reel assembly. Once the bracket was in place, I installed the backup camera along with the protective hood. Next, I drilled a hole in the top of the bumper, below the tailgate and slipped the end of the cable through from underneath and routed it up along the hose reel to the backup camera.
With all of the backup camera components installed, I disconnected the fuel pump's power lead and turned on the ignition. The monitor flickered for a moment and voila, the view appeared on screen. It only took a few hours and now I can clearly see behind me while I'm driving. I made a few small adjustments to the camera angle and then firmly secured it in place. Thanks to Safety Vision, I have a well crafted, well engineered backup camera system in place which makes me a safer driver now that I can see where was unable to do so previously.
For more information and a lot of good advice, visit the Safety Vision website and give them a call. They will be happy to help you.