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    Thread: Garage door remotes - cheap yet stealthy alternatives?

    1. Member Farnsworth's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 04:48 PM #1
      I hate hanging crap off my visor. I hate visor clips creasing my visor, too. I've been trying to find a low-cost stealthy alternative but nothing appeals.

      Options I've found so far, and why I don't like them:

      (1) VW factory Homelink visor - Over $250 in parts to do this. Worse, the visor wiring harness is taped/epoxied/welded/held by the hand of god to the headliner. The E-Z-crease headliner has to be dropped to access it. Too much money and effort for a leased vehicle.

      (2) Gentex Mirror - I have an auto-dimming mirror from the factory already, there's no sense replacing it with one that costs the same or more than the above + looks aftermarket. Not an easy mod to reverse, either (I just put one in the wife's Bug) at lease end.

      (3) Flash2Pass - Intriguing, but something about emitting the open door signal every time I use the high-beams bothers me. I also don't like having to run a 2nd non-Homelink opening system in parallel with the original one.

      (4) MikadoTech - 10 years ago, these guys were making remotes out of factory switch blanks. Since then, they've fallen off the face of the Earth.

      The only other option I've found is a keychain-sized remote. They're not exactly slim.

      I know I can make one myself out of a switch blank + Radio Shack parts, but I'm not handy with soldering.

      I think those are all the options. Tell me I missed one or more...
      Life = f { , , , }

    2. Member PlatinumGLS's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 05:10 PM #2
      In cars I have owned that don't have Homelink, I remove the clip from the remote and keep it in the spot where the ashtray would be.
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    3. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 05:23 PM #3
      Put it in your center console and just pull it out when you need it??


      Some of the newer openers have wifi and allow you to open them via a smart phone app. That could be another option.
      Dave

    4. Member koston.'s Avatar
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      10-08-2012 05:36 PM #4
      Visor Clip = Door Card Clip
      Shutup and drive yo cah'!

    5. Member FigureFive's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 06:22 PM #5
      Is the CC map light console amenable to this? No soldering, just a Dremel, some JB Weld and wire tap connectors.


    6. Member jettagli1991's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 06:52 PM #6
      ^That would be my suggestion too. Those came in a lot of common cars like the Maxima, Altima, Pathfinder, i30, Windstar, Cirrus, Sebring convertible, Town Car, etc, so they are easy to find at the junkyard. You have to hack the visor apart carefully to remove it. Just make sure it has that little house symbol on it. That means it's the rolling code version on that type of sun visor unit- some mid-90's cars had the non rolling code ones with just an oval-shaped light on the face.

    7. 10-08-2012 07:05 PM #7
      I double side velcroed my remote under the steering wheel, in one of the little gaps I found.

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      10-08-2012 07:13 PM #8
      Quote Originally Posted by AIRider View Post
      I double side velcroed my remote under the steering wheel, in one of the little gaps I found.
      Boom
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    9. Banned Chris Stack's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 07:18 PM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by AIRider View Post
      I double side velcroed my remote under the steering wheel, in one of the little gaps I found.
      Did something similar in the S2000, the under dash is shallow, so I just velcroed it under the dash lip. Might not work on "more premium" cars with more fancy-pants interiors, though.

      Like this, but on the inside, and with Velcro (clip always slid off):


    10. Member Farnsworth's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 07:28 PM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by FigureFive View Post
      Is the CC map light console amenable to this? No soldering, just a Dremel, some JB Weld and wire tap connectors.

      CC has nothing like that unfortunately, otherwise good find
      Life = f { , , , }

    11. Member mikegilbert's Avatar
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      10-08-2012 08:02 PM #11
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      10-08-2012 08:41 PM #12
      That is awesome...wish it was cheaper
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    13. Banner Advertiser Chris@Revo USA's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 11:23 AM #13
      I have the keychain ones so they are about 1/4-1/3 the size of the normal visor remotes I just keep them in the ashtray on my vws and the cup holder in my jeep.

      I was going to do the carstyle4u one that mike posted in my sport wagon but it doesn't clear the angle into my garage so was never worth the money.

    14. 10-09-2012 11:23 AM #14
      I have one of these on my key car keys.

      It works well and allows me to have the opener with me when I am outside or in another car, without having to grab the opener before hand.

    15. Member Farnsworth's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 11:39 AM #15
      @mikegilbert, looks great, but the CC's switch blanks are very different from the other cars supported - and no, there are not (Passat) CC ones.



      @Air-over-Water, that's the 370LM remote , correct?

      Quote Originally Posted by Liftmaster
      This model is no longer available. The replacement remote control is model 890MAX.
      Which is almost as chunky as the CC's fob

      Life = f { , , , }

    16. Member Boogety Boogety's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 11:49 AM #16
      Parts:

      Normally-open push-button switch of your choosing
      3-6' of speaker wire
      Soldering iron
      Cheap extra or new mini garage door opener that works with your system

      Procedure:

      Solder wire to garage door opener button, and to your switch. Make sure it works before installing.
      Velcro or zip-tie garage door opener somewhere under dash or under headliner, where the signal can issue without too much trouble. Experiment.
      Place switch somewhere on or under dash or in some easy-for-you-to-find spot of your choosing. Hide it wisely.

      Henceforth:

      Press hidden button, access your garage at will... I've been doing this with my convertibles for almost twenty years now, way before Homelink was available, so I can leave them open without worrying about losing my remote...

    17. Senior Member abeR's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 11:50 AM #17
      iphone?




      or?

      Last edited by abeR; 10-09-2012 at 12:04 PM.
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    18. 10-09-2012 11:50 AM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by Farnsworth View Post
      @Air-over-Water, that's the 370LM remote , correct?
      Actually, I have the Chamberlain model 956d which came with the house.

      If you search a little you can find them both new and used.
      There are also some other small key chain remotes available.

    19. Member vdubturbo's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 12:21 PM #19
      I'm thinking about getting this for my bike. It's a cool idea b/c it uses an existing button/switch to activate it and it's universal. The trick would be to find the schematic so you could rig it to a switch in your car...

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    20. Member vdubturbo's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 12:25 PM #20
      NM, that's about the same thing as your flash2pass option. Sorry, didn't read thoroughly.
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    21. Senior Member dunhamjr's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 12:29 PM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by Farnsworth View Post
      (4) MikadoTech - 10 years ago, these guys were making remotes out of factory switch blanks. Since then, they've fallen off the face of the Earth.
      i have a mikadotech rolling code remote with a mk4 vw bezel. no mk4, so no use right now.

      you CAN still find them if you really search them out though.
      a couple 2-4 yrs ago i went asking around and found a phone # for the company. i called and asked what was up... and apparently, at that time, if you wanted something you could still phone in an order to them directly. this was their contact # 1-888-9MIKADO
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    22. Member lojasmo's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 12:30 PM #22
      in my 2003 golf, I disassembled the remote, soldered two wires from the circuit board and to an aftermarket button I got from radio shack, drilled a hole in the center console, put the remote under the shift boot, ran the wires out the hole, and screwed the button into the center console. The button ended up by my right thigh. Worked great.

    23. Member Egz's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 12:41 PM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by mikegilbert View Post
      I like this idea. I got the perfect spot for it too.


    24. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      10-09-2012 12:48 PM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by mikegilbert View Post
      This is what I've done with my past 2 cars.

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