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window button mods and ac/heat knob mod

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  • window button mods and ac/heat knob mod

    so in my chevy van it has those push down to open window- no problem but then pull up to close- major pain.

    also i have the round ac/heat controls, i just smack them but not super easy while driving.
    any easy mods for both??
    Bike-on.com rep
    John@bike-on.com
    c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
    sponsored handcycle racer

  • #2
    Not familiar with Chevy, but maybe you could attach something to the knobs/buttons with 2 way tape? 3M Automotive trim attachment tape has a pretty strong bond.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Rustyjames View Post
      Not familiar with Chevy, but maybe you could attach something to the knobs/buttons with 2 way tape? 3M Automotive trim attachment tape has a pretty strong bond.
      here are web images i found of both controls. same in my van.
      Attached Files
      Bike-on.com rep
      John@bike-on.com
      c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
      sponsored handcycle racer

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      • #4
        A couple of small screws screwed into the window switches so you can pivot them forward and back. For the round heater knob try an L shaped screw into the outer edge of the knob. I found the best way to do this is put the screw or L shaped screw in a pair of vice grips then get it red hot and screw it in.

        Look at the kit in the photo something like this should have everything you need. They are at Walmart for about $6.
        Attached Files
        ^^(A)^^

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        • #5
          Originally posted by fuentejps View Post
          here are web images i found of both controls. same in my van.
          The HVAC knobs can either be "augmented" by attaching something to make them more oblong (e.g., wrap a hose clamp around it and tighten; the screw mechanism then makes the resulting assembly "out-of-round") OR replaced by knobs with compatible mounts (usually a D-shaped hole and pressed onto a similarly shaped shaft).

          Take a wandewr through an automotive department or an autoparts store: "I'm looking for a knob that would mount on the shaft that THIS knob mounts on BUT that is more oblong..."

          A possible problem would be sizing the overall "knob envelope" so that the knob can continue to rotate regardless of surrounding contours. E.g., the image seems to show the knobs on a panel that is slightly recessed -- would an oblong knob hit that raised portion as it was rotated?)

          As for the window switches, imagine fastening (epoxy?) a "nub" on the forward (moving) edge of the switch. So, the switch looks more like

          Code:
             ||
          +===
          than

          Code:
          +===
          (with the fulcrum at the left in each example).

          Press down on the || or push forward (to the right, in example) and the window opens.

          Pull back and the window raises.

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          • #6
            I have a similar but plain jane chev van as John. I think his window complaint is that in order to get the window back up you have to stick your finger in the recess and lift *up*. It's not a push forward type of thing.
            I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by nonoise View Post
              I have a similar but plain jane chev van as John. I think his window complaint is that in order to get the window back up you have to stick your finger in the recess and lift *up*. It's not a push forward type of thing.
              If the switch LEVER (!) had a portion that stood straight up, pushing that portion of it forward would cause the original lever to which it was attached to tilt downward.

              Likewise, if you pulled back on that upwards protruding extension, the LEVER would have no alternative but to tip upwards AS IF you'd hooked a finger under it and lifted.

              The fixed pivot point means the lever can only tip up or down, regardless of the forces you exert on it. What you want to do is apply a force in a "convenient" direction and then count on the (modified) mechanism to translate that into the desired motion.

              [Same sort of window controls on our car]

              Take a dinner fork (sorry, I can't think of anything else that would be ubiquitous enough and have a shape like I've described).
              Hold the end of the fork in one hand. This is the pivot point.
              Press down on the tines of the fork and the "window" opens.
              Lift UP on the tines and the window closes.

              Now, push FORWARD on the tines and where does it go? The other hand holding it prevents it from MOVING forward so it either tips downward or upward.
              Likewise, pull back on the tines.

              Now, imagine the tines were at a more pronounced angle (perpendicular) to the body of the fork for a more exagerated motion.

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              • #8
                I have a 3D printer and have a few ideas for things that could be attached to each control to make them easier to operate. I could make a few tests/samples and share pictures via this forum or email if you would like.

                For the windows how about something that would slide over the existing control and allow you to push/pull to operate (like described in the previous post)?

                For the ac/heater knobs about something that slides over the existing knob and provides more surface area (with a grippy surface) for your fist to push on a turn or thin area that would fit between two bent fingers that you could turn?

                I am an incomplete para so I cannot appreciate the many more issues an incomplete quad deals with day to day.

                /Bill

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by btimm View Post
                  I have a 3D printer and have a few ideas for things that could be attached to each control to make them easier to operate. I could make a few tests/samples and share pictures via this forum or email if you would like.
                  Excellent! The problem, IMO, will be makig something without knowledge of the specifics of "fitting it" to the car in question.

                  For the windows how about something that would slide over the existing control and allow you to push/pull to operate (like described in the previous post)?
                  If you'd rather "push down" (always!) to actuate the window switch, you could extend a piggy-backed lever rearward so you can apply downward force in front of the fulcrum for "open" and behind the fulcrum for "close"

                  For the ac/heater knobs about something that slides over the existing knob and provides more surface area (with a grippy surface) for your fist to push on a turn or thin area that would fit between two bent fingers that you could turn?
                  Again, the problem becomes one of knowing what's around the knobs that could potentially interfere with any "augmentation". I thought a helpful soul at your local NAPA/OReilly's/PepBoys/etc. might be able to dig through their assortment of "replacement knobs" and find something that does what you want, even if it was intended for a different make/model vehicle. (not so with window switches!)

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                  • #10
                    This looks like just about any 'ol knob will fit. https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Dorman-...ty!98115!US!-1
                    Next time I'm in my van I'll pull one if I remember.
                    I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by nonoise View Post
                      This looks like just about any 'ol knob will fit. https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Dorman-...ty!98115!US!-1
                      Next time I'm in my van I'll pull one if I remember.
                      An issue might be the location (i.e., protruding vs. recessed) of the shaft onto which the knob fits.

                      Another concern (both with the HVAC knob and the window controls) might be the potential for amplifying the "applied forces" that the knob/switch experiences. E.g., put a 3 inch lever arm on the knob and its far easier to "twist it" with more force than it was originally designed to handle.

                      [Ages ago, the HVAC controls largely moved mechanisms via flexible cable-in-cables routed behind the dash -- to open louvered doors, etc. Now, they tend to be electrical switches that talk to a bit of electronics that, in turn, do the actual work. Switches are often considerably more "dainty" than their predecessor mechanisms!]

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                      • #12
                        many thx to all u guys, this is why i love this forum. my dad did my window switch today. to screws with plastic sleeves. like what auto illustrated.
                        check these out at 3.30. these would be great and clean.
                        Bike-on.com rep
                        John@bike-on.com
                        c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
                        sponsored handcycle racer

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                        • #13
                          anyone see these b4, in the above vid
                          Bike-on.com rep
                          John@bike-on.com
                          c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
                          sponsored handcycle racer

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