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lockmup68

Jackalopee question, brake/turn signal off

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Jackaloppe has been working fine for 6 months since install. all new wiring entire route. The taillights are not connected to the trailer lights.

When turn signal is on, blinks synchronous with truck lights

Brake lights are synchronous with truck lights.

If turn signal is on (either side) and brakes are applied, now the trailer is opposite of truck lights in the blinking. (left turn signal on, truck and trailer blink synchronous. Apply brakes then truck light and trailer light blink opposite.) In boat trailers and such, this usually meant a bad ground. Or if grounding through the ball, it needs some lube or something to get through the rust to get a good ground. 

Where should I look to troubleshoot this? I have to get under the jackknife couch to get to the connections, so want to plan ahead. 

Thanks,

Shannon

Edited by lockmup68

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If you're saying the truck and trailer blink out of sequence with the brakes applied, then that is normal if the Jackolopee uses the 'three relay method' to merge the separate brake and turn signals.

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Referring to the drawing, when you are only using your turn signal the power for the light will come through the green wire and the truck & trailer will flash in sequence.  When your brakes are applied the power is switched to the red wire.  This will make your trailer turn signal flash out of sequence with the truck turn signal.

converter.JPG

Edited by Stan Wright

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Thanks. I'm pretty sure that they used to blink together. The signal is also kind of weak when brak and turn signal together. I'm going to do some troubleshooting next few days now that we are parked. 

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Shannon, first split the problem between truck and trailer. Disconnect the trailer.

Look at the Jackalopee troubleshooting lights and see if they are performing correctly (the running light not blinking together with the brakes or either of the turn signals). Incidentally the running lights on the Jackalopee is a completely separate circuit on the Printed Circuit Board and have nothing to do with left, right or brakes, a short someplace is the only way to cause this behavior.

If the Jackalopee light show proper action then truck wiring  is OK and something is backfed from the trailer wiring from the Jackalopee onward. Whenever I had to find it, two places were good place to look 

1. Wiring of the RV socket, it's pure crap and it's easy for few strands to "escape" and short to another terminal

2. The "Amish" wiring box in the trailer where the trailer umbilical end up and "distributes" to the lights, brakes, power etc. I have seen some real crap in those with splices, twist-ons, insulation "pierce-rs", electrical tape, all cramped into junction box half the size it should be. I had to chase the same problem you have on my rig after few years on the road, it was in that junction box.

If it's on the truck side, you might have to dig deeper. When I look at your truck, its construction and wiring, I don't see truck conversion, I see David by Michelangelo, I see Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vince, it's a PIECE OF ART. 

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will do. Getting work done and then will dig into it in a couple of days. Am I right in thinking the truck and trailer should be synchronized when turn signal is on and brakes are applied? The truck left turn light and the trailer left turn light should be blinking at same time when brakes area applied?

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3 hours ago, Stan Wright said:

If you're saying the truck and trailer blink out of sequence with the brakes applied, then that is normal if the Jackolopee uses the 'three relay method' to merge the separate brake and turn signals.

Stan, Jackalopee does not use the three relay system, it uses the four relay system.

 bctijNil.jpg

This was a conscious design decision, I did not want to muck with supplying the power to lights from my board, on my board, wired on my board, good opportunity for mis-wires and burnups. The Jackalopee is totally inert when it comes to power and does nor require any, the four relays act only as a logic circuit re-routing the the signals from lights. The running lights signal has a totally separate run (etch) from one side of the PCB to the other, it cannot short on the board. 

That does not mean that it's not possible with "creative" wiring outside of the Jackalopee. In the last ten years I collected a "rogue's gallery" of Jackalopees that came back from the field.

9U8ho12l.jpg

mRK6f5Ml.jpg

Needless to say these were not replaced "under Warranty"

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14 minutes ago, lockmup68 said:

will do. Getting work done and then will dig into it in a couple of days. Am I right in thinking the truck and trailer should be synchronized when turn signal is on and brakes are applied? The truck left turn light and the trailer left turn light should be blinking at same time when brakes area applied?

As you can see in my explanation above the four relays simply shuttle and redirect what comes in. Two solid lights (brakes) are interrupted (on that side) when either left or right comes in, the other side stays solid. with one blinking, pushing brakes will add solid light to the non-blinking side.

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Shannon, are the truck and the trailer the same type of lights? All incandescent or all LED? I see mixed and mismatched lights all the time. 2 lights, side by side on a trailer, powered by the same wire and using the same flasher will blink totally different from each other if one is LED and the other is not. 

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5 hours ago, phoenix2013 said:

 bctijNil.jpg

 

5 hours ago, lockmup68 said:

...Am I right in thinking the truck and trailer should be synchronized when turn signal is on and brakes are applied? The truck left turn light and the trailer left turn light should be blinking at same time when brakes area applied?

Even using the 4-relay design, wouldn't the truck turn signal and trailer turn signal flash out of sequence when the brakes are applied?  When the truck turn signal comes on it triggers the top relay and turns off the brake light to that side...so the truck turn signal would be on and the trailer signal would be off.

Edited by Stan Wright

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Stan, if you look at the drawing for the right turn signal/brake light,  the coil pulls the contact from terminal 87A to terminal 87. That gives a constant 12v to terminal 87 on the upper relay stopping the power from traveling on. When the turn signal supplies power to the coil on the upper relay then the contact is pulled to terminal 87 to allow the power to travel to the light. Clear as mud??:P

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6 hours ago, Mntom said:

Stan, if you look at the drawing for the right turn signal/brake light,  the coil pulls the contact from terminal 87A to terminal 87. That gives a constant 12v to terminal 87 on the upper relay stopping the power from traveling on. When the turn signal supplies power to the coil on the upper relay then the contact is pulled to terminal 87 to allow the power to travel to the light. Clear as mud??:P

I guess mud is correct.  I'm not seeing how "the coil pulls the contact from terminal 87A to terminal 87" relates to "That gives a constant 12v to terminal 87 on the upper relay stopping the power from traveling on". 

I added numbers to the four relay schematic for clarity.  Here is how I see the circuitry working:

Left turn signal only - Relay 1 is switched to the '87' position.  This creates a path from 'Left turn in' through relay 3 then relay 1 to 'left turn/brake out'.

Right turn signal only - Same as left turn signal but uses relays 4 and 2.

Brake lights only - Relays 3 and 4 are switched to the '87' position which disconnects both turn signal inputs to those relays.  The brake lights pass thru the '87a' contacts of relays 1 and 2 to the trailer brake lights.

Let's keep the brake lights on and turn on the left turn signal (Lockmup68's original question).  The left turn signal can't go through relay 3 but it turns on relay 1 (moving the contact to '87') which turns the light off on the left side because power was coming from the brake light input through '87a' of relay 1.  This would cause the truck turn signal and the trailer turn signal to be out of sequence...which was what Lockmup68 was questioning.

Does that make sense?

4 relay.jpg

Edited by Stan Wright

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Maybe Henry can explain it since he is way more 'articulate' on the keyboard than I am, but it sounds to me like a relay (#1 in this picture) is staying in the normally closed position.

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9 minutes ago, Mntom said:

Maybe Henry can explain it since he is way more 'articulate' on the keyboard than I am, but it sounds to me like a relay (#1 in this picture) is staying in the normally closed position.

Relay 1 is switched when the truck left turn signal is 'on'.

Relay 2 is switched when the truck right turn signal is on, and Relays 3 & 4 are switched when the truck brake lights are on.

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2 hours ago, Mntom said:

Maybe Henry can explain it since he is way more 'articulate' on the keyboard than I am, but it sounds to me like a relay (#1 in this picture) is staying in the normally closed position.

Stan has the answer.

To add a bit of "clarification", think in terms that when nothing is happening all the relays are in normally open position as shown touching 87a. When they see a light signal on any coil (+12V) they get pulled over to 87. Just follow that "logic" to see where signal goes trough and where at the same time it pulls the relay to 87  creating another pathway.

I would add that this kind of "relay logic" goes back to the beginning of electronics (20s-30s) and really exploded in the 60s (wow, I'm dating myself) with the advent of PLCs (Programmable Logic Controllers) and before ICs and eventually microprocessors were developed. PLC are still a backbone of the control industry, but they are now much more sophisticated combining relays and computers.

The reason I use this "ancient technology" is because it works very well and is designed to carry 30-40 Amps of power without a sweat and for about $20 bucks worth of parts in that circuit. To do it "right" in solid state (transistors, etc) and carry 40 Amps  you'd have to spend lot more than $20 bucks. That's why "high power Hoppy's" are limited to 5 Amps and still burn up (no proper heat sinking). 

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Jackalopee shuttles the lights through instantaneously (no delay). Volvo uses LCM (lights control module) which is programmable and has bee a pain in the ...... at times (needed to be reprogrammed). I don't know how International handles and splits their wiring, between the truck and the DOT socket. Do you even have the DOT socket on your truck. If that socket has been cut off, I would start at that point, and establish and see if the cable (or wires) at that junction give you the proper DOT signals, Jackalopee manual tell you what to expect there. If there is no socket and you see "custom wiring" from that point on consider parking a trash barrel next to the truck where to deposit the "custom wiring". Call me anytime for "consultations", I can save you a ton of time.

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Did you look at the LEDs on the Jackalopee (without the trailer plugged in) and see if the LED respond to the input from the DOT socket properly?

1. Running lights LED light up with Lights switch  in the cab on and off when switch is turned off. That LED should not light up with either Left, or Right, or Brakes being activated.

2. Left LED activated by turn stalk activated to Left

3.Right LED activated by turn stalk activated to Right

4. Both LEDs activated when brakes are pressed.

This is the starting and basic operational mode, lets see if the truck and Jackalopee agree on this.

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